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Published February 05, 2013 Updated June 11, 2022

French Costumes

The French taste for elegant, well engraved costume playing cards started during the early 19th century. O. Gibert of Paris produced a series of such fashion packs, or packs depicting historical characters.

1848 France Gibert Jean-Marie Blanquière Historical Add to Collection

O. Gibert, Paris: French Costumes, c.1848

Elegant, romantic and sophisticated!

The French taste for elegant, well engraved costume playing cards started during the early 19th century. O. Gibert of Paris produced a series of such fashion packs, or packs depicting historical characters. This example is known as 'Cartes Parisiennes'. Being hand coloured, there was no consistency from deck to deck. Each version surpasses the last one in exquisiteness, delicacy and charm.

Designs by Jean-Marie Blanquière.

French Costume playing cards published by O. Gibert, Paris, c.1850

Above: French Costume playing cards published by O. Gibert, Paris, c.1850. The cards measure approximately 2¼ x 3½ inches [85x54 mms]. Because they were hand made, they are not all exactly the same size, some cards vary by just a tiny bit. The backs are overall plain pink or blue. Images courtesy Rod Starling.

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By Rod Starling

Member since January 09, 2013

Rod Starling was one of the founding members of the 52 Plus Joker card collectors club. He authored many articles for the club's quarterly newsletter, Clear the Decks. His collection encompasses both foreign and American decks. Rod also authored a book titled The Art and Pleasures of Playing Cards.


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