Kickstarter: Uusi Classic Playing Cards

02 Nov

Uusi started their sixth and final playing card project on Kickstarter. Creators of Blue Blood, Blueblood Redux (2nd edition of Blue Blood), Bohemia, Royal Optik, Pagan and Hotcakes Playing Cards, Peter and Linnea traditionally propose an entirely hand-painted deck of playing cards called “Uusi Classic”, the last deck in Uusi’s Six-Deck Series. There will be two decks with the same faces of cards and different colours of backs, Uusi Classic Blue and Uusi Classic Red decks.

These decks are planned to be printed by the United States Playing Card Company (USPCC).Uusi-Classic-Tuck-Cases-Front

Peter Dunham and Linnea Gits have been designing products for the market for over ten years. Uusi is their Chicago design studio.

“When we first started this journey our hoped-for mission was to create six unique and completely hand-drawn decks that would explore and push the boundaries of this multitudinous genre. Kickstarter was the perfect platform to present these unusual decks as each one was a labor of love – no two are the same in style or theme – so we never knew from one deck to the next if we would get funded. Arriving at our last playing card deck in this series feels almost surreal, but the journey we have shared with you of discovery, innovation and enjoyment has been one we will never forget!” ~ Uusi


Uusi was impressed with the rebirth of custom playing cards three years ago. Artists got their possibility to incorporate their artistic ideas into the format of playing cards and produce them due to Kickstarter and people’s support of such projects. Peter and Linnea decided to try them in this field as well. They initially planned to create six types of decks. So, it’s symbolic that the sixth Uusi’s deck draws its inspiration from the Renaissance era as the word “Renaissance” literally translates from French to English as “Rebirth”.

“We wanted to close out the series celebrating the rebirth of this humble item with our own interpretation of a classic style playing card deck.” ~ Uusi

Uusi Classic Deck: Jokers


The deck(s):

  • Custom court cards and Jokers;
  • Custom pips and number cards;
  • Two illustrated Uusi Design ad cards that form a diptych;
  • Original custom tuck cases will have premium paper stock and an embossed design;
  • Blue deck is planned to be unlimited edition;
  • Red deck is planned to be a Limited Edition of 3500;
  • Several decks with gilded edges of cards;
  • Should be printed on Bicycle playing card stock with an Air Cushion (linen) finish;
  • Planned to be printed by the United States Playing Card Company.


You could pledge here:

This project was funded on Saturday, November 29, 2014.

Uusi Classic Red Deck: The Queen of Spades


Uusi Classic Blue Deck: The Queen of Hearts


Uusi Classic Red Deck: The Queen of Clubs


Uusi Classic Blue Deck: The Queen of Diamonds


Uusi Classic Red Deck: The King of Spades


Uusi Classic Blue Deck: The King of Hearts


Uusi Classic Red Deck: The King of Clubs


Uusi Classic Blue Deck: The King of Diamonds


One of the most popular and wildly applied ideas Uusi has invented was its Diptych Ad Cards for Royal Optik deck. Peter and Linnea were the first designers to use this technique for modern playing cards. Two additional cards on the USPCC’s press sheet were mainly used for trick cards, playing instructions, company info, etc. Just a month after Uusi’s Royal Optik playing card project was funded on Kickstarter their diptych idea was picked up by other designers.

Uusi uses diptych idea for this decks as well. Two griffons (griffins) are depicted on the Diptych. Each one “guards” his own ad card and has several messages for playing card collectors. They both guard some wall. Griffons were quite popular for Renaissance art. In heraldry, the griffin’s amalgamation of lion and eagle gains in courage and boldness. It is used to denote strength and leadership.

The left griffon holds the left end of the ribbon with the Latin word “FINIS” and Roman numeral “VI” on it. The translation of FINIS is obvious – END. Roman numeral “VI” means the number of the deck design – 6th. You can also note “P&L” symbol on his part of the guarded wall. It means ” Peter & Linnea”.

The right griffon holds the longest part of the ribbon with several inscriptions on it. They name the deck, Uusi’s site and the country of producer. Roman numerals “MMXV”, hidden between flowers of Ipomoea or Calystegia, means the year of planned deck production – “2015”.

Uusi Classic Deck: Diptych Ad Cards


Custom hand-painted pips are some type of Uusi’s visiting card. They look a little bit similar to Bohemia‘s pips (the technique and shapes).

Uusi Classic Deck: Number Cards


Uusi Classic Playing Cards: Back Desings

Uusi-Classic-Blue-Fan Uusi-Classic-Red-Fan

Using a 400-plus year-old, hand gilding technique, Uusi will make 25 Uusi Classic Blue decks with Sterling Silver gilding and 25 Uusi Classic Red Decks with 24.75KT gilding. Gilded decks will be individually crafted at Uusi’s studio by Peter using actual gold or sterling silver leaf. Only 50 of each color will eventually be produced. Each deck will be numbered and comes with a special gold seal.

Uusi Classic Playing Cards: LE 24.75KT Gilded Deck


Uusi Classic Playing Cards: Sterling Silver Gilded Deck



Uusi Classic Playing Cards: Custom Seal




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