The original plan for Monarch playing cards, was to use a gold metallic ink throughout, the first 144 decks were printed like this.

Click here to buy a deck

These were sent out to reviewers and people in the Theory11 inner circle. Metallic ink has certain properties that do not make it ideal for using on playing cards. it is a very “thin” ink which can rub off after a lot of friction (not ideal at all) and it is very expensive a lot more then standard Pantone ink (we are talking multiples of ten). So just before the first proper print run it was decided to drop the metallic gold and revert to standard inks.

The very striking and unique design features snakes twisting around a sword that has branches growing out of it. The wording “de duobus malis, minus est semper eligenoum” (of two evils, the lesser one should always be chosen) is on the back. The original Monarchs have a white on blue colour and the cards are bordered.

The only bit of gold ink can be found on the court cards and Jokers. It does come with a double backer.

The playing cards are housed in a stunning gold embossed box that is truly beautiful !

The cards are printed on FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) paper, this means the paper comes from sustainable forests. It is high quality Q1 stock and the varnish is Theory11 Premium 909 Finish.

Monarchs made it into GQ’s Holiday Gift Guide in #1 position for gifts under $20 and it appeared in the movie “Now you see me” and in 2016 the sequel.


Theory11 says: “We did not set out to raise the bar for quality playing cards. Our goal was to make playing cards fit for a king”
They did raise the bar and these cards are fit for a King !!

Monarchs5  Monarchs1