“We hope you enjoy the game”
Schwäbisch Hall building society publicity deck with caricatures by Alex Kardas depicting contented savers and investors.
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Rex's main interest was in card games, because, he said, they were cheap and easy to get hold of in his early days of collecting. He is well known for his extensive knowledge of Pepys games and his book is on the bookshelves of many.
His other interest was non-standard playing cards. He also had collections of sheet music, music CDs, models of London buses, London Transport timetables and maps and other objects that intrigued him.
Rex had a chequered career at school. He was expelled twice, on one occasion for smoking! Despite this he trained as a radio engineer and worked for the BBC in the World Service.
Later he moved into sales and worked for a firm that made all kinds of packaging, a job he enjoyed until his retirement. He became an expert on boxes and would always investigate those that held his cards. He could always recognize a box made for Pepys, which were the same as those of Alf Cooke’s Universal Playing Card Company, who printed the card games. This interest changed into an ability to make and mend boxes, which he did with great dexterity. He loved this kind of handicraft work.
His dexterity of hand and eye soon led to his making card games of his own design. He spent hours and hours carefully cutting them out and colouring them by hand.
Comic Fortune-Telling Cards published by Reynolds & Sons, c.1850.
Comic Question & Answer cards by Josh. Reynolds & Sons, circa 1850.
IBM Linux One playing cards, c.2018.
Lion Coffee Mother Goose card game, late 19th C.
Black Peter card game designed by Willy Mayrl for Piatnik.
Gas Warm Homes Happy Families game published by British Gas, c.1980.
“H-O Kwartetspel” children’s card game promoting quick cooking oatmeal (instant porridge), 1930s.
“Werbung die Sticht” deck with artwork by Fritz Bünzli to promote advertising on playing cards by AG Müller 1982.
Baracca & Burattini puppetry deck printed by Dal Negro, 1998.
Crikey! Classic British Comics playing cards published by Bird Playing Cards, 2013.
Forfeits party card game by Merit Games, J & L Randall Ltd, c.1950.
Sherlock Holmes deck with caricatures by Jeff Decker published by Gemaco Playing Card Co. 1989
Periquito y Tontín Dominoes, featuring Feliz and Bonzo, 1920s.
“Deal Winners” promotional pack for Dundas & Wilson law firm.
Happy Gas Families published by British Gas, c.1985.
Pranks & Mimics for the Party, 1950s.
Gilroy Special Edition Playing Cards to commemorate the centenary of the birth of John Gilroy, 1989.
Christmas Playing Cards published by Novelty Playing Cards, Syracuse, New York, 1986.
Delightful comical deck designed by Loriot, the German cartoonist and comedian, 1973.
Hamm’s Beer promotion deck with bear cartoons by Frank M. Antoncich 1968.
Railway Stations quartet game illustrated by Wim Dolk and published by Servex BV, Utrecht, 1975.
Nationale-Nederlanden insurance company, 1984.
Investors Overseas Services, Ltd. (IOS) by A. G. Müller (Schaffhausen), c.1969.
Gibbs Happy Families card game promotion, both full sized and miniature versions, c.1946.
Electric Snap by the South Wales Electricity Board, 1950s.
Playtex - le jeu de la beauté et du destin, Grimaud, 1971.
Jeu de Memoire card game promoting Véritable Chaumes cheese from the village of St Antoines in south west France.
Two miniature card games promoting Vim Scouring Powder and Sunshine Soap, 1930s.
Deutsche Nutzpflanzen - Quartett game promoting Kali brand crop fertilizer, 1938.
Hungarian Drinking Skat, c.2004.
One Penny Card Games, 1920s.
One Penny Card Games, 1900-1910, mostly anonymous 'Snap' games and made in Germany.
Cow & Gate ‘Snap’ featuring Cow & Gate Baby Milk Food, 1935.
Naval and Military Families produced by Prince and Princess Louis of Battenberg, printed by Ernst Nister of Nuremberg, c.1905-10.
Ups and Downs humorous card game published in UK by A. N. Myers, c.1885.
Blue Brand Snap Up published by Van den Berghs probably late 1920s.
The Merry Game of Mr Bok and his Happy Families, promoting Bok furniture polish, 1930s.
Inspector card game published by W F Jackson & Sons, 1940s.
La Mariée du Mardi-Gras, published by Jeux et Jouets Français. Paris, early 1900s.
Parkinson’s Happy Families published by Parkinson’s of Doncaster, confectioners established in the early nineteenth century.