NOUVEAU Bicycle® Playing Cards
Discover the original heroes of the first 16c French decks in this custom ART NOUVEAU inspired BICYCLE® Deck
NOUVEAU Bicycle® deck is inspired by the historical and mythological heroes and heroines traditionally featured in the French playing cards since the 16th century. As for the art style and design, we wanted to pay tribute to the philosophical and artistic trend Art nouveau, promoted and popularized in France and contemporary to the birth of the first Bicycle Playing Cards in the late 19th century.
NOUVEAU Bicycle® is a fully custom limited edition deck manufactured and printed by USPCC and designed by Bona fide Playing Cards. It's a limited edition of 2,500 decks ( with USPCC, orders are subjected to 10% over/under run so we'll end with anywhere between 2,250 and 2,750 decks) that won't be printed again. Same happens if we reach the stretch goal for NOUVEAU Turquoise edition; It will be a limited 2,500 decks edition that won't be printed again.
The playing cards as we know them today are inspired by the designs produced in Rouen, France, back in the 16th century. There are different theories about who the court cards represent, though it’s hard to find a widely accepted one as the Rouen cards were so badly copied that the current designs are gross distortions of the original cards. As for our first card project (and surely not the last one), we decided to use the historical and mythological characters some believe were used for the creation of the first decks in Rouen, unlike the Kings, Queens and Jacks of the current cards, which represent no one in particular. Considering that, our deck faces go like this:
- King of Spades representing the biblical King David
- Queen of Spades representing the Greek goddess Pallas Athena
- Jack of Spades representing the legendary character Ogier the Dane
- King of Hearts representing the King Charlemagne
- Queen of Hearts representing the biblical character Judith
- Jack of Hearts representing the French military commander Étienne de Vignolles(aka La Hire)
- King of Diamonds representing Roman leader Julius Caesar
- Queen of Diamonds representing the biblical character Rachel
- Jack of Diamonds representing the Greek mythological hero and prince Hector
- King of Clubs representing the Greek King Alexander the Great
- Queen of Clubs representing the Celtic Queen Boudica
- Jack of Clubs representing the legendary Knight Sir Lancelot
Taking into account that NOUVEAU Bicycle® is a standard Bicycle card deck, it also features two Jokers. Our Jokers represent court jesters, just like the original Jokers first introduced in the 19th century.
Regarding the meaning of the suits, we can find just as many theories as for who the court cards represent. Just like before, we chose to use one of the most spread theories about the original French suits, where Spades were believed to represent nobility, Hearts the clergy, Diamonds the merchants and Clubs the commoners and the peasantry. If you take a closer look at our Aces, you can make out different characteristics and symbolisms representing each one of those categories.
As for the art style, we thought something of French inspiration was the best idea as we are paying tribute to the original French deck. It was a hard decision, taking into account that France was always known as a place of artistic reference, so after some thought we chose to use a style contemporary to the birth of the Bicycle Playing Cards in the late 19th century: Art Nouveau. Art Nouveau is a style of decorative art, architecture and design promoted and popularized in Paris in the late 19th century and characterized by intricate linear designs and flowing curves based on natural forms.
That said, the NOUVEAU Bicycle Playing Card deck features:
- Printed by The United States Playing Card Company
- Bicycle® branded
- Limited edition of 2,500 decks (with 10% over/under run)
- Limited Edition 1st printed branded deck
- 100% completely custom designed cards
- Custom Tuck Case
- Custom limited edition seal
- 56 cards including a full 52 card deck, plus 2 Jokers, 1 double backer card and one Ad card
- Designed by Bona fide Playing Cards
Check out the Add-ons list here. Just add the corresponding amount of the Add-ons you want to your pledge, plus the shipping (only if you live outside the US), to know your total pledge amount. After the end of the campaign you'll be able to specify and confirm exactly the items you've pledged for.
Risks and challenges
This is our first playing cards project and, like any other product, there always were, are and will be risks bringing it onto the market. However, we are positive our hard work and dedication will bring this project to life, making it the first in a long list of decks created by the young Bona Fide Playing Cards group. We've been in touch with the USPCC since the beginning of this idea, getting our designs approved both by the Artwork and Legal teams. The printing of the final artwork is pending on the successful funding of the Nouveau Bicycle Playing Cards project. As for the accessories, the posters, t-shirts and hoodies are of a high quality print; the wooden box is 100% handmade, making it an even more unique object for collectors.
About the artwork: As you can see, the Spades suit is already 100% finished and our team's artist is working on filling the rest of the cards. We'll be updating you with the final designs as she completes them.
About the delivery: Once and if the project is backed, there can always happen unforeseen complications during the production and delivery process. Taking that into account, we've left a generous amount of time to ensure the production and delivery of all the items without delay. All the packages will be fulfilled and sent by Lake Michigan Mailers, Inc.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (37 days)