The card-makers of Turnhout were prolific in their output and inveterate copiers.
Brepols started making playing cards in 1826, although he had been in the printing trade since 1800. In 1833 the firm was called Brepols & Dierckx (the former's son-in-law). Biermans (1875-1970) was a relatively late arrival on the Turnhout playing card scene.
Van Genechten started making playing cards in c.1840 and continued until the founding of Carta Mundi in 1970.
Gustaaf Mesmaekers founded his business in 1859 in association with Louis-François Moentack, who left the business in 1862.
40-card "A Todos Alumbra - Naypes Refinos" pack manufactured by Léonard Biermans, Turnhout, c.1880.
Special deck made for La Banque Nationale de Paris by Van Genechten, Turnhout, c.1962.
Belgian cardmakers have been actively designing and exporting playing cards since the 14th century.
BG Bouw Dutch Building Company publicity deck manufactured by Carta Mundi, c.1980.
Standard Genoese pattern with French indices made by Biermans for Cigarrillo Holiday and the Estanco de Naipes del Perú.
Promotional deck designed by Ray Goossens for the Boerenbond farmers’ union, c.1968.
One of the outstanding and most popular packs made by the Turnhout cardmakers was the Bongoût type. Special scenic Aces could be added to packs according to the client’s preferences.
British Airways Concorde playing cards made in Belgium by Carta Mundi, before 2003.
Brussels Euro Joker Club's 10th Anniversary deck, with artwork by Yvette Cleuter, was produced in a limited, signed and numbered edition of 400 copies.
Carta Mundi was founded in Turnhout on 27 June 1970 by pooling the production and sales facilities of the three surviving companies: Brepols, Van Genechten and Leonard Biermans.
‘Cartes de Luxe’ first published by Biermans in 1877 was reproduced in facsimile by Amstel Beer in c.1980.