Theory11 Monarch Playing Cards
Credit: Photograph by Michael Pirrocco

Theory11 is the go-to brand among prestidigitators for its top tier Monarch line of high quality playing cards. They're printed on pliable but long-lasting paper that will last through endless shuffles and cuts, and come in a matte-finish "tuck" (what magicians call the box) with gold embossing that sets them apart from the usual plasticky decks that are too stiff, or cheapo ones that dog-ear instantly. That makes them attractive to sleight-of-handers, for sure but perfectly suited for weekly poker nights as well. [$7/deck;]