Feb 24, 2010

Card Showcase: 2009 Topps T206 David Wright Silk

This is definitely not my first card made from a different material other than cardboard or foilboard or other types of printed board varieties in which they come. There was a time in the mid-'90s when making cards out of different materials or simulated materials was the innovation of the industry.

One set in which I never acquired a card (but always wanted to) was 1995 Leaf Statistical Standouts. This particular insert set had embossed red stitching similar to 2009 Sweet Spot base cards, but the rest of the card face felt like the surface of a baseball. Leaf/Donruss continued this practice with 1996 Leaf Limited Lumberjacks (wood grain) and 1996 Leaf Limited Pennant Craze (felt). Other companies added to this practice including Upper Deck (1996 Upper Deck Run Producers (rubber like a home plate) and Topps (1997 Stadium Club Firebrand (wood, but issued only as redemptions) and 1997 Stadium Club Patent Leather (leather)).

This idea really reached a pinnacle when 1996 Leaf Preferred inserted into every pack cards made completely from steel. Suffice to say, the packs were really heavy.

Then, there was a set that focused completely on this concept, 1998 Leaf Fractal Materials, featuring cards made from Plastic, Leather, Nylon, and Wood. This set, unfortunately, had quite possibly the worst possible parallel set EVER associated with it, Fractal Materials Die-Cut, an even more confusing version of 1997 Leaf's Fractal Matrix. Please don't make me explain it, it's confusing to even read about it.

Now, there are parallel sets made of silk and printing plates made of metal (though much rarer). The silk cards are especially high in aesthetic value because they have usually been accompanied by a framing border. Though they differ from these other parallels in that there is no card back.

Humans are a tactile species. There are essentially two senses that dominate when we open a pack of cards, touch and sight. Simulating various textures of known materials or printing cards on different materials is one way in which card sets can enhance the overall collecting experience....until the cards are put into boxes or albums.

1 comment:

BA Benny said...

That is a beautiful card. I have to find one of those. I have a couple of the Topps silks but no 205's or Wrights.