People get into playing card collecting for a variety of reasons. Some are cardists, some like the rarity of a limited numbered deck, and others, like me, are in it for the art (mostly).
I love stumbling on an opinionated, well executed, and unusual deck, something that makes me smile with delight. Culturae Animalis. Modern Idols. 5th Kingdom. These all hit me with just a solid wave of joy because they were so unexpected.
Aunt Susann’s Kopfüber decks from German artist Sulu Trüstedt is one such deck. Well, actually two such decks, because they come as a pair, one red and the other orange, and they are both so delightful and different. The original campaign was on the lower end of success: 69 backers brought in about $8,300.
Interestingly to me however, is that this campaign brought in the highest average amount per backer of any of the Kickstarters I backed last year. While most campaigns raise $30-40 per backer, Aunt Susann’s was about $120 per backer, an incredible financial accomplishment on top of these beautiful cards.
The decks themselves seem to be a very indie production, which, for me, adds to their awesomeness. The printing looks to be a local printer, the boxes (yes, each box contains two decks) are unsealed, and each package of two boxes is wrapped in paper. The cards themselves are a high gloss finish, much more suited to actual playing cards than doing card tricks. The weight and opacity feels right. And each box of two decks includes eight jokers. Yes, eight. And they’re all different!
The court cards all have what seem at first glance to be two-way arrangements. But the top and bottom are actually different. One might be wearing a hat, the other not. On the Jack of Spades for the red deck, one side is holding an apple, the other has taken a bite out of that apple and is now chewing it. And these are all different on the orange themed deck. No one took the easy way out in the art department on these decks!
And that, by the way, includes the pips. The symbols themselves are all pretty standard but the arrangement is unique by number and suit (the 10 of spades is arranged differently from the 10 of diamonds, for example), and it’s fun to see the hearts gathering together somewhat unpredictably, almost like they’re falling in love.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that Trüstedt also delivered some great postcards with these decks. They aren’t overt advertising vehicles for her, they’re just just post cards with the playing cards on the front.
I don’t see any evidence that more decks are forthcoming, but you never know.