Nonarchs Playing Cards is one of Theory11's most popular decks, a cornerstone of their mission to "create the most breathtaking, luxury, designer playing cards". Their success is reflected by the pack being stocked in highstreet retailers such as Walmart and Target, as well as having multiple reprints over the years. Created in 2012, Monarchs was one of the first luxury decks to be produced, and is now seen as essential for luxury deck collectors. Considered by cardist and blogger Tim Silva an "instant classic" and a must-have.
Artist Curtis Jinkins (Neighborhood Studio>) says the guidelines for designing the deck were for it to have a "regal" theme and that the deck be "fit for a king". An open design brief. Jinkins notes that "the graphics had to be restructured to accommodate the theme" which was suppliemented by luxury printing techniques. Because it is a "casino quality" deck it was decided to keep the courts standard, so "magicians and dealers get instant recognition". The box received a lot attention during the design process as Jinkins points out "there were probably ten different iterations of the box front before the final design."
Theory11 have trademarked the backs "two snakes entwined around a vertical sword" design (see detail ) including the wordmark which says "regis de duobus malis, minus est sempereligendum", which in Latin means of two evils, the lesser must always be chosen, and the word regis which in Latin means king or monarch. Theory11 clearly take their brand very seriously. See the registered trademark
Theory11 says that "these are - by far - the best playing cards ever produced."
The deck was also featured throughout the film Now You See Me, where a team of talented illusionists and street magicians heist a huge amount of money from corrupt businessmen and funnel the money to audience members.
Theory11 focuses on the production of luxury decks for pop-culture franchises such as Harry Potter and James Bond
There are 56 cards in the deck: 52 playing cards, 2 jokers, 2 gaff cards. The gaff cards serve as advertisements for Theory11, with their slogan "the ultimate high-end luxury playing cards".
Member since March 15, 1997
Adam has been involved in developing the site as well as reviewing new decks and conducting research. He is particularly interested in innovation, Kickstarter and East Asian cards. He is a member of the IPCS and webmaster of the EPCS.
A limited edition art print of the King of Diamonds 1984 woodblock joker.
A limited edition art print of the Jack of Hearts 1984 woodblock joker.
Details of 13 paintings by 8 different Impressionist artists on elongated cards.
A deck of 55 cards, celebrating the master of mystery, murder and mayhem, Alfred Hitchcock.
Politicards™ 2016 & Politikids 2016: twin decks of satirical playing cards produced by Peter Green f...
Stylish ‘Tuxedo’ playing cards with animal faces created by Natalia Silva, USA, 2016.
‘The Deck of Hillary’ with quotes and photographs of Hillary Clinton, USA, 2003.
Shakespeare Insults playing cards with portraits by Jan Padover, USA, 2005.
Shakespeare playing cards: Quotes, the first volume of a double set published by Prospero Art of San...
Old Testament playing cards with illustrations by Jan Padover, USA, 2012.
Starz behind bars playing cards with mug shots of the rich and famous under arrest, USA, 2003.
House of Cards: Deck of Bush playing cards presenting reasons not to re-elect President Bush for a s...
Facsimile of ‘FDR New Deal Deck’ of 1934 re-published by Bill Schroeder, USA, 2010.
“Politically Wild John McCain” published by Newt’s Playing Cards, USA, 2008.
Strange facts from Robert Ripley’s ‘Believe It or Not’ books, in the form of cartoons.
Fate fortune telling cards published by Merrimack Publishing Corporation, USA.
Politicards 2004 with satirical cartoons by the award-winning illustrator Peter Green, USA.
Politicards 1971 for the presidential election in which Richard Nixon won a landslide victory.
Politicards 1984 with caricatures by Donald Gates, published by the Kamber Group, USA.
Politicards 1980 in which Ronald Reagan defeated the incumbent Jimmy Carter, with caricatures by Kei...
Stereotypical representations of gay men and men they most admire, in a 1981 pack from San Francisco...
‘52 Ways to talk about adoption’ family-centred playing cards produced by the Center for Adoption Su...