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Topic: Does anyone make decent quality change bags anymore?!
Message: Posted by: Montbeliard (Nov 27, 2018 04:58AM)
Usually an adult close up kinda guy but looking to do some children’s magic now my own daughter is old enough. I bought lovely change bag from an Indian magic store a long time ago but stupidly sold it as I wasn’t doing kids’ stuff. Now I want one again, but essentially there’s one change bag for sale, with a plastic handle! Who wants a plastic handle?!

I know some folk don’t like change bags but for children they’re perfect - I don’t care if it looks like a prop, I just want it to look like a lovely, mystical, quality prop rather than a cheap bit of plastic. The sort of thing you could credibly claim was owned by your great grandfather and you found it in a dusty attic or something.

I’m UK based but will send abroad for it if I have to! Thanks.
Message: Posted by: WayneNZ (Nov 27, 2018 10:06AM)
Contact Practical Magic and buy the German one.
Message: Posted by: thomasR (Nov 27, 2018 11:09AM)
Ickle Pickle still makes them here in the USA. The bag has a flat wooden handle rather than the round metal handle. I've had their "zippered pickleover bag" for something like 20 years now and it's held up very nicely.
Message: Posted by: gomerel (Nov 27, 2018 09:24PM)
[quote]On Nov 27, 2018, Montbeliard wrote:
Usually an adult close up kinda guy but looking to do some children’s magic now my own daughter is old enough. I bought lovely change bag from an Indian magic store a long time ago but stupidly sold it as I wasn’t doing kids’ stuff. Now I want one again, but essentially there’s one change bag for sale, with a plastic handle! Who wants a plastic handle?!

I know some folk don’t like change bags but for children they’re perfect - I don’t care if it looks like a prop, I just want it to look like a lovely, mystical, quality prop rather than a cheap bit of plastic. The sort of thing you could credibly claim was owned by your great grandfather and you found it in a dusty attic or something.
I'm UK based but will send abroad for it if I have to! Thanks. [/quote]
I wouldn't consider entertaining kids without one.
Message: Posted by: Wizard of Oz (Nov 28, 2018 06:04PM)
Ye olde Google Image Search yields hundreds of hits:
https://www.google.com/search?q=magic+change+bag&client=firefox-b-1-ab&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjEg-jGpfjeAhVCUKwKHU7RATQQ_AUIECgD&biw=2048&bih=1055&dpr=2

I thought these looked promising, although I cannot vouch for the companies:
https://www.ebay.com/i/141441655390?chn=ps
https://stores.silkmagictricks.com/products/professional-change-bag-device-for-magic-tricks.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI85fjyKX43gIV17rACh2wTARgEAQYBCABEgL9lvD_BwE
https://abra4magic.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=MN097&Category_Code=

This seller I can totally vouch for, although the bag is out of stock. I would email him as he is always adding stock:
https://www.magiccollectibles.com/product/large-change-bag-very-nice-change-bag-in-good-condition
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Dec 1, 2018 03:31PM)
Change bags are VICTORIAN ERA PROPS.
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Dec 1, 2018 03:36PM)
[quote]On Nov 27, 2018, gomerel wrote:
[quote]On Nov 27, 2018, Montbeliard wrote:
Usually an adult close up kinda guy but looking to do some children’s magic now my own daughter is old enough. I bought lovely change bag from an Indian magic store a long time ago but stupidly sold it as I wasn’t doing kids’ stuff. Now I want one again, but essentially there’s one change bag for sale, with a plastic handle! Who wants a plastic handle?!

I know some folk don’t like change bags but for children they’re perfect - I don’t care if it looks like a prop, I just want it to look like a lovely, mystical, quality prop rather than a cheap bit of plastic. The sort of thing you could credibly claim was owned by your great grandfather and you found it in a dusty attic or something.
I'm UK based but will send abroad for it if I have to! Thanks. [/quote]
I wouldn't consider entertaining kids without one. [/quote]

I WOULDN'T CONSIDER DOING A SHOW >>>WITH<<< ONE. I worked for moppets thru college age young people, for fifty years. I respect their dignity.
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Dec 4, 2018 06:30AM)
Montbeliard

Here is Change Bags made in India it that is what you are looking for again.

https://magicgoods.com/products?keywords=change+bag
Message: Posted by: Mark Boody Illusionist (Dec 4, 2018 12:44PM)
[quote]On Dec 1, 2018, Dick Oslund wrote:
[quote]On Nov 27, 2018, gomerel wrote:
[quote]On Nov 27, 2018, Montbeliard wrote:
Usually an adult close up kinda guy but looking to do some children’s magic now my own daughter is old enough. I bought lovely change bag from an Indian magic store a long time ago but stupidly sold it as I wasn’t doing kids’ stuff. Now I want one again, but essentially there’s one change bag for sale, with a plastic handle! Who wants a plastic handle?!

I know some folk don’t like change bags but for children they’re perfect - I don’t care if it looks like a prop, I just want it to look like a lovely, mystical, quality prop rather than a cheap bit of plastic. The sort of thing you could credibly claim was owned by your great grandfather and you found it in a dusty attic or something.
I'm UK based but will send abroad for it if I have to! Thanks. [/quote]
I wouldn't consider entertaining kids without one. [/quote]

I WOULDN'T CONSIDER DOING A SHOW >>>WITH<<< ONE. I worked for moppets thru college age young people, for fifty years. I respect their dignity. [/quote]

Dick

What are your thoughts about a "hidden spring" or a "tear apart" change bag?

Do you find this a more "workable" type of prop?

Mark
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Dec 5, 2018 09:43AM)
Hi Mark!

What "magicians" call a "change bag", was rather common as a "utensil" to collect the offering at services. (I visited Bobbie Gurtler's (Andre Kole) show in California about 25 years ago, in a church. At the intermission, the pastor announced that those of us who were not church members did not need to contribute, but a collection would be taken up to help cover the cost of the program. (The church was full!) The ushers passed velvet bags with handles across the rows of seats. (I doubt that they were Petrie & Lewis!!!!!)

About the time that Frank Ducrot invented the 20th C Silks, dealers saw an "upsell" to amateurs who couldn't use a pull. They modified the church "utensil", and, the change bag was born.

When I was a young teen, I had one! (tie cutting). As soon as I realized that it was extremely outdated, I red lighted it. (the tie trick, too! --it had gotten too expensive!!!)

Gen Grant sold a "tote bag" later. It looked like what it was. A simple container with a draw string closure. It had no gold tassels, etc.

Some years later when I began using my friend, the late Don Lawton's MUTILATED PARASOL routine, I did not like the HOKEY purse. I used Gen's tote bag. (I never bothered to show it empty, and, no youngster EVER ASKED TO SEE IT EMPTY, ETC. Don's routine was so constructed, that showing the bag IMO, was not necessary! It would have messed up the tempo. (qui nimis probat, nihil probat --He who proves too much, proves nothing!) The laughs were there and a BIG MITT (with more laughs) at the finish!!!!! I adapted Don's routine to fit a school show, and, I did it for years for the elementaries. It was so strong that I could have closed with it! (It's in my book, as a tribute to Don.)

As soon as I outgrew the "boxes, tubes, cans, pans, and red velvet bags on a stick" phase, I resolved to use only "innocent" generic or generic looking props. (One exception: Abbott's DISECTO.) It's played strictly for comedy, (but, it does fool 'em) It was for High Schools, and, ALWAYS played strong, in the toughest high schools (The exception "proves" the rule!!)

Remember the guy who thinks, "If I had that bag, I could do that, too!"

The Tear Apart bag fits the tote bag concept IMO, as long as it doesn't have gold fringe and a tassel!!!!!!!!!!

Hope this helps!!
Message: Posted by: thomasR (Dec 5, 2018 08:03PM)
Steinmeyer has an excellent change bag routine in his Conjuring Anthology. It uses the change bag as a church collection bag.
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Dec 6, 2018 02:00AM)
I know Jim from my "Chicago Days"...(Didn't he usta do "Abbott's Vanishing Statue of Liberty Vanish? (heehee)

Only Jim would think of using the change bag like that!!!!!!!!!!!
Message: Posted by: Rainboguy (Dec 7, 2018 11:02AM)
The best "Change Bag" I have ever used was a VERY clever tip given to me by the late, great Karrell Fox at one of The Abbott's Get-Togethers many, many years ago. Like most methods Karrell used it was dumb simple....Karrell told me that "you never have to worry about having a change bag if you simply use two paper bags nested together and rolled down a bit".

He showed this to me, and a HUGE smile broke out!

Karrell was a genius as far as "simpler is better" as a Magician.

Not only does this always work anywhere and anyplace that paper bags are available...........its very deceptive and totally innocent looking.

Try it. You'll like it!

I miss Karrell Fox, He was ALWAYS available to talk Magic at the Abbott's Get-Togethers....and I learned A LOT from him!
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Dec 7, 2018 01:18PM)
Loftus Novelty made a metal change bag fashioned after the old P & L company. It is very high class Look like they sold out of the their original run, but have resupplied, which is unusual for them to do. Their magic is under the "Empire" brand name. Just to a search for Empire Change Bag, and you will see their change bag.

Here is the Zipper Change Bag by Loftus/Empire. Makes a gag when the child puts his hand in the bag, and it comes out the bottom, proving it is empty, and funny situtation.

https://www.ziggosparty.com/products/change-bag-w-handle?variant=21045086406&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=Google%20Shopping&gclid=CjwKCAiA0ajgBRA4EiwA9gFORxYJgD63Vff_dtITGQ4a0_1FTyPUK9Jb0go2bgmPdBcI_RuDl4C55BoCc3MQAvD_BwE
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Jun 25, 2019 08:42AM)
I have used Ickle Pickle for about 30 years now and it is still in great shape. Also there is nothing wrong with using a change bag today just because it was from another era long ago, most magic is and it has all stood the test of time for a reason. Kids love it, and it looks "magical" to them and garners their attention. But to them it is just a "bag" anyway they have no clue what its origins are. Not everything needs to be "new" to still be effective work today, this is what we call "magician overthinking" as we tend to focus on stuff a lot more than laymen do not even care about.

I also do acts that are Vaudeville themed as well, just like the old days so it is a presentation in itself. Many of my customers actually request "classic magic" shows with a tux and tails as well, which I still do today and audiences love them. They are "classic" for a reason and artistic, and as I said an act in itself much like an old play. I still use modern day stuff as well but not simply because it is modern, I use what I like and what works for my audiences. but I love the classics and so do laymen, not everyone needs to start doing just I-Phone tricks. In fact flashy, glitzy, glamourous, classic, magical, mysterious looking, props are what attracted me to magic as a kid, not some "natural looking" objects.

That is the great thing about magic though it is very broad and has something for everyone and every generation. So when you get down to it, it is a matter of style, taste, and personal preference. They all work.
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jun 26, 2019 09:11AM)
One of my pet peeves for years has been when a performer shows a prop and says "I found this in my grandfather's attic" (or something to that effect), and the prop looks brand-new. Personally, I consider it offensive.
Message: Posted by: thomasR (Jun 26, 2019 10:00AM)
Maybe my grandfather kept great pride in keeping his pocket silks in great condition! How would you know?
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jun 26, 2019 11:17AM)
I've been saying it for years: people who perform magic need to study other forms of entertainment and learn from them.

In professional live theater, TV, and the movies, every prop fits into the story and is in context with it, and there's a reason for it -- if it looks out of place, it could distract audiences from the story long enough to lose the flow of it. And if it's supposed to look out of place, there's an explanation for it. You see this in amateur theater (and high schools) all the time. Props, furniture, even costumes look like they were borrowed or just pulled from somewhere, and you go away thinking you've just watched "an amateur performance" instead of "a performance."

I've been in the entertainment industry for over thirty-five years, and I can tell you it's really easy to spot the people who take pride in their work and those who either don't or just don't know any better.
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Jun 26, 2019 01:22PM)
I keep some silks bunched up and wrinkled in my suitcase that are 40 years old, so I am covered for that. However as I said laymen are not thinking like that or that deep, only magicians are. Laymen are just there to see magic and have fun, not to psycho-analyze every piece of equipment, make sure that it all fits in, and that the patter patches. Anyone doing that is a magician or magic hobbyist. Also for those who do all of that including myself, normally it would not appreciated or even noticed because it not something laymen really care about or wish to dedicate their lives to. Even as a long-time magician myself I just try and enjoy the shows of other magicians, not look at all of their props critically, and focus on every single thing they do wrong. I have my own magic to worry about.

I know from almost 40 years or performing now and 28 years full-time professionally. Usually I am the only one that notices the little things and the extremes that I go to. I have never heard a laymen say anything even close to that kind of stuff. They have their own interests to worry and obsess about, not some magician doing a magic show. Just the same as all of that extra work will go unnoticed 99% of the time unless you have a magician or magic hobbyist in the crowd. But they are not the audience, and are far and few in between. So you just do the best possible magic and show that you can and hope that at least a few will recognize it. But magicians think much differently, and over-think much differently than laymen do.
Message: Posted by: thomasR (Jun 26, 2019 02:28PM)
I firmly believe that details matter. But it seems like you are trying to judge details, more than looking for things that truly matter.
But I’d have to know specifics to make that call. We may totally agree.

But “finding something in an attic” doesn’t mean that item needs to look old and worn.
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Jun 26, 2019 02:40PM)
Yeah which also contradicts the advice of keeping your silks ironed and neat for presentation, so which is it? I take care of my stuff really well and I have neat silks and old silks bunched up from when I was a kid. But I never heard anyone say anything either way. Most look at the big picture regardless and do not nitpick fine details, only other disgruntled magicians looking to be critics because they are the best magician on the world and everyone else sucks. They are the only ones over-analyzing every prop, word, and move. But even most magicians do not do that. I try not to watch magic with a critical eye but more so as a layman so I can enjoy the show. The only time I am critical while watching magic is when I am buying it.
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jun 26, 2019 03:55PM)
[quote]On Jun 26, 2019, sirbrad wrote:
Yeah which also contradicts the advice of keeping your silks ironed and neat for presentation, so which is it? [/quote]
It's in the context. A performer doing an "elegant" act would have the silks ironed and neat, while a comedian or clown act, or a character act, could very well have them crumpled up.

When I was doing my cards-and-doves act a million years ago, all my silks were white 27-inchers, washed and pressed before each show. I felt they were more in context with my persona and my act than a bunch of colored ones. And, for me, it made more sense, visually, to produce a white dove from a white silk than from a green or red one just because that's what everyone else was doing. But then again, I was spending a lot of time studying top professional performers (not just magicians) to see what they were doing and how they were doing it.
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Jun 26, 2019 05:28PM)
Yeah but again the context is only recognized by other magicians who think about it all the time. Structured themes and colors work well, but are still not necessary to have a great magic act. A white dove coming from a green silk can still be magical and amazing, and I highly doubt any layman would wonder why a silk was green and the dove was white. They are just amazed that a dove appeared from a silk period, they never question the color. In fact one could argue that the green silk provides better contrast to see the white dove better, even better yet with a black silk.

Some could think that the dove was more easily concealed in the white silk that is why they did not see it. But are they thinking any of that stuff? Highly doubtful, only we are. It is "magic" and there are no rules in magic except the ones that we set on ourselves. Everything does not need to "make sense" or be logical, because magic in itself it neither.

I was always a "routine" guy and OCD when it came to having perfectly structured routines and patter, everything must match, make sense, flow together, use all props logically etc. But after many years in the trenches I found out that is just not necessary. I can do a card trick, then a coin trick, then a rope trick and the reactions are still the same, nothing has to flow or blend or have anything to do with each other. It may be slightly more entertaining but not necessary to amaze and entertain.

So in the end it is simply personal preference and style, nothing is a universal law in magic. So that is why I have done it all and still do it all, based on my own personal preferences and tastes from has worked for me and my audiences for so long.
Message: Posted by: Pop Haydn (Jul 2, 2019 02:02PM)
[quote]On Jun 26, 2019, sirbrad wrote:
Yeah but again the context is only recognized by other magicians who think about it all the time. Structured themes and colors work well, but are still not necessary to have a great magic act. A white dove coming from a green silk can still be magical and amazing, and I highly doubt any layman would wonder why a silk was green and the dove was white. They are just amazed that a dove appeared from a silk period, they never question the color. In fact one could argue that the green silk provides better contrast to see the white dove better, even better yet with a black silk.

Some could think that the dove was more easily concealed in the white silk that is why they did not see it. But are they thinking any of that stuff? Highly doubtful, only we are. It is "magic" and there are no rules in magic except the ones that we set on ourselves. Everything does not need to "make sense" or be logical, because magic in itself it neither.

I was always a "routine" guy and OCD when it came to having perfectly structured routines and patter, everything must match, make sense, flow together, use all props logically etc. But after many years in the trenches I found out that is just not necessary. I can do a card trick, then a coin trick, then a rope trick and the reactions are still the same, nothing has to flow or blend or have anything to do with each other. It may be slightly more entertaining but not necessary to amaze and entertain.

So in the end it is simply personal preference and style, nothing is a universal law in magic. So that is why I have done it all and still do it all, based on my own personal preferences and tastes from has worked for me and my audiences for so long. [/quote]

This may work for you, but I think it is not good advice for most, and certainly not for an artist. It is a route to mediocrity in my opinion.
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Jul 2, 2019 06:08PM)
Yeah Pop! I agree 100% with you and George! --plus, I've already expressed my opinion about props like "red velvet bags on a stick, AND, BUYING MAGIC.......
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jul 2, 2019 06:56PM)
This thread got me thinking about how I would use a change bag IF I were to use one. I would start with the idea that it's an old collection bag from a small church.

First I would replace the short handle with a longer one, say three feet or so, and I would "distress" it to look like it had been used for many years. Then I would get rid of the tassel (maybe cut it like it had raveled and someone just cut it). Finally I would take some sandpaper and diluted tea lightly to the velvet, to give it an aged look. If the rim is bright and shiny, I would rough it up a bit. With it so disguised, I wouldn't have a problem saying it came from someone's grandfather's attic, and that he used to be a preacher or sexton somewhere.

This is what we do with props in theatre, TV, the movies, and other forms of entertainment. It's worked for many years and presents a unified, professional appearance.
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Jul 2, 2019 07:43PM)
[quote]On Jul 2, 2019, Pop Haydn wrote:
This may work for you, but I think it is not good advice for most, and certainly not for an artist. It is a route to mediocrity in my opinion. [/quote]

I don't think so, art is like magic in itself it is the freedom of expression. There are no set and defined rules except those that you make for yourself. It is just another way. I do what works for me and my audiences based on my own long-term experience not what other magicians do or say to do. Like art everyone is different and unique. Also I never said what I do, I said that I have done a wide variety of experimentation and the results are almost always the same in the end.

As long as the effect and routine are strong and entertaining the rest is just style and presentation. It is all a matter of personal style and preference, so you can't really say your way is more artistic or better than another way, it is just a different way. You can use old time tested methods or you can add your own touch to them also. Art is freedom of expression period, so you do what works for you and your personal style. But it does not necessarily make it the "best" way for everyone else either.
Message: Posted by: Wizard of Oz (Jul 2, 2019 09:48PM)
I have a very simple green corduroy change bag with a black satin lining. No handle, just a drawstring, which by pulling the bag closed and spreading it back open one can get to the secreted area very easily.

Using a simple bag like this, I think it could be fun to have an entire change bag routine. And I mean that quite literally. A change bag is put into another change bag, and changes. Then that change bag is put back into the other bag, and both are placed into a larger bag...and pulled out to reveal both have changed...or the outer bag is unchanged, but the inner bag is different. Of course, realize flat bags like these can be gimmicked for more than one change, so endless chaos can ensue.

Anyway, just a quick riff off the top of my head. Has anyone ever done this kind of routine? It's probably totally impractical as I would imagine the bags may not look empty.
Message: Posted by: FrankFindley (Jul 3, 2019 08:21PM)
Interesting discussion.

Even back in the late 1800s they didn't know what the change bag was supposed to be. Hardin described it in a 1899 issue of Mahatma by comparing it to a butterfly net:

[i]THE PLUSH BAG.
This is a piece of apparatus but little known, and to my thinking, a most valuable adjunct to the magician's outfit. It has a very mysterious effect when properly employed, and the secret is hard to detect. In appearance it resembles exactly a butterfly net, save that the net part is made of red plush. The interior is lined with black silk, and the wooden handle is about a foot in length...[clipped to protect secret]...The bag may be turned inside out, at pleasure, and examination will not disclose the...[clipped to protect secret]...A very pretty way to use the bag is to bring forward several long strips of different colored ribbons, and request the audience to tie them up into a bunch of knots, and then place them in the bag, which you hold at arms length by its handle. At your request the ribbons are taken out again, when they will be found to be united...[clipped to protect secret]... The bag may be used in many effective combinations.[/i]

If used as a production device it can be effective. A change routine at start gives impression of an empty bag setting up for a surprise effect. It isn't as powerful as other 'bare' approaches, but can be entertaining. Here is an example from Woody Pittman (RIP):

[youtube]vXPT6RxhIoc[/youtube]
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Jul 6, 2019 11:43AM)
[quote]On Nov 27, 2018, Montbeliard wrote:
Usually an adult close up kinda guy but looking to do some children’s magic now my own daughter is old enough. I bought lovely change bag from an Indian magic store a long time ago but stupidly sold it as I wasn’t doing kids’ stuff. Now I want one again, but essentially there’s one change bag for sale, with a plastic handle! Who wants a plastic handle?!

I know some folk don’t like change bags but for children they’re perfect - I don’t care if it looks like a prop, I just want it to look like a lovely, mystical, quality prop rather than a cheap bit of plastic. The sort of thing you could credibly claim was owned by your great grandfather and you found it in a dusty attic or something.

I’m UK based but will send abroad for it if I have to! Thanks. [/quote]

I find your OP "interesting". Why are you looking for a PROP that will "change" (that's what it is called!) "something" when you apparently don't even have a trick which requires that "something" be changed???

Magic suffers from this sort of thinking!!! (Some call it, "falling in love with a prop".)

To present a magic show (unless you are a mind reader) props are needed. But, a wise magician does not make or buy props, unless he knows a trick that needs them.

Children today have cell phones! They are not stupid. They KNOW that, if they had that tricky looking bag, they could "change" something, too.

I have entertained children for over 50 years, with GENERIC props, like silks, rope, golf balls. a tin can with a few silver dollars. etc.
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Jul 7, 2019 11:53PM)
[quote]On Jun 26, 2019, thomasR wrote:
I firmly believe that details matter. But it seems like you are trying to judge details, more than looking for things that truly matter.
But I’d have to know specifics to make that call. We may totally agree.

But “finding something in an attic” doesn’t mean that item needs to look old and worn. [/quote]

The devil is in the details.
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jul 8, 2019 08:25AM)
So many of the threads here in the Café seem to assume that all who perform magic do it for the same type of audience, or that what works for one performer works for all of them. Not so. What works for a kid show may not work for a grown-up show, and vice versa. Or what works for a Fourth of July picnic may not work for a "high society" party. Or what works in Branson may not work in Vegas.

But the one constant is the audience response: the applause. There's polite applause and there's genuine applause. And then there's genuine applause with vocalizations. When I first started performing, I didn't know the difference; I thought the applause meant I was knockin' em over. It was polite applause but I didn't know it: I was hearing what I wanted to hear. It took years and a lot of studying other performers (not just magic acts) to begin to see the difference. Eventually, with my cards-and-doves act (and all the details), I began to get genuine applause with vocalizations, and lots of positive comments afterwards. That's when I learned the difference.

And when I learned what worked for me and for the audiences I was playing to.
Message: Posted by: garymey (Aug 23, 2019 12:55AM)
I have two change bags (no tassels) that were given to me by my grandfather 60 years ago. They are still in perfect condition. The routine I developed way back and just did at our magic club as a lead-in to a teach-in for ways to use a Svengali decks uses the bags as a way to transport a chosen card wrapped in a silk from one side of the stage to another except only the silk makes it--the routine goes on using other standard props. http://www.oaklandmagiccircle.com/wordpress/svengali-deck-teach-in-video/ Depending on the kind of show one does, colorful magic props can be just fine. It is the ugly or worn old ones that bother me when they are being passed off as part of a fresh act. As collectibles they are a different matter. As others have said there are many kinds of ways of doing magic. If I am doing impromptu I don't want "magic props" but everyday objects. But if I am asked to do a magic show I think some mysterious, flashy items can be fine. And aren't packet tricks where you keep pulling different plastic wallets with different sets of cards pretty obviously gimmicked magic props?