New additions week 5 - 2018

This was a good week for new banknotes since I got a few new ones. One of the best was a banknote from my own country of the Netherlands which has been on my radar for a long time featuring the great-great-grandmother of our current King.

  • Denmark - 100 kroner (P61c)
  • Morocco - 100 dirham (P70)
  • Czech Republic - 100 korun (P18)
  • Scotland - 1 pound (P336a)
  • The Netherlands - 5 gulden (P90a)
  • The Netherlands - 20 gulden (P54a)

Steven | Thursday 01 February 2018 at 2:14 pm | | new additions | No comments

Lots of new notes from Mujand

I received a thick package from Texas last week with lots of new fantasy notes from Mujand. For those that never heard of Mujand: it's a fantasy banknote company publishing notes designed by the artist Celsus Solar. The biggest project from Mujand are the notes from Blissdane Naive but there are also smaller side projects. To explain what Blissdane Naive is, I'll just quote from the website:

"Nine planets orbit the Mujand Sun. The planet Blissdane Naive has life. It's a world where the fantastic is common and time has become yesterday, today and tomorrow... all at once. What may appear true today, changes within years, months, days, or hours. No one is sure. A time anomaly has hit Blissdane Naive and no one was aware or prepared until the past, present and future became in doubt. It's a mystery yet to be solved. Each country has its Story. These stories can be myth or history. For the people of Blissdane Naive it's getting hard to tell which is which. The Blissdane Naive time anomaly mystery is being revealed one banknote, one story at a time..." There is even a newspaper, the Mujand Investigator, to follow the stories.

All of this background makes it incredibly fun to collect these fantasy notes and read the sometimes bizarre stories. However, besides writing fun stories designer Celsus Solar is also a very skilled banknote designer who produces some of the best looking fantasy notes I ever saw. They are for sale in several eBay-stores but I would recommend visiting the shop on the Mujand site first because not all notes are for sale elsewhere. 

But let's dive into it and see what the content of the surprise package from Mujand was. First of all there were three new series, the M-, N- and O-series (I call them that for the first letter of the serial numbers). The M-series, or officially called the 'Lia Antootica Pirates series', consists of 4 notes of 5-, 10-, 25- and 50-sivar. The front of the notes show the so-called Founding Pirates, while the back of the note shows murdered members of the Royal family. To understand the design choices and what the implications were of this design, I recommend you read the short history of Lia Antootica. See if you can draw some parallels with our own time and world. Security features on the notes include a transparent hologram strip and unique serial numbering. 

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The second series is the N-series, or officially the Amotekunia Birds & Bees series, consists of two notes of 50- and 100-nemaz. The front of both notes show Bee-Eater birds. The back shows scientific research and the modification of bees. The security features are the same as the Pirate notes: a transparent hologram strip and unique serial numbering.

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The third new series from the Blissdane Naive world is just a single note so far: the 20-lixo note from Toroguay. The front shows scienteer / explorer Sergi Fonte. The back, which has a vertical orientation, shows a luminescent frog (they exist in our own world as well) and the daily life of the Dera people. This is the third series with the same transparent hologram strip and unique serial numbering as security features.

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One last note from Blissdane Naive and that is a new Tobacco note from the Poneet Islands. We already had one Tobacco note issued in 2016 but here is its brother. Or should I say sister? Like the first note we can also admire a naked lady on this new note who is enjoying a walk with her pig. Nothing wrong with that right? I really like the colorful design of the series. The design elements are more or less the same as the previous note in the series but it does have a different security strip. You could argue that this is a bit of a missed opportunity to keep the notes the same but I like the second strip more to be honest. 

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Last but not least, the final two notes exist outside the world of Blissdane Naive but in a whole world of their own. These are the two MAGA-notes, where MAGA of course stands for 'Make America Great Again'. The 1-dollar note has the official portrait of President Donald Trump in front of the White House on it, the American eagle and the text E Pluribus Unum. The back shows a portrait of First Lady Melania Trump with the Washington Monument in the back. 

The 5-dollar note has the official portrait of Vice-President Mike Pence in front of the United States Capitol building, the text Declaration of Independence and an image of the signing of this document which you can also see on the regular 2-dollar note from the United States. The back shows Second Lady Karen Pence with an aerial shot of the Lincoln Memorial.

Both notes have a transparent security strip and unique serial numbering starting with the letter T (for Trump I suppose). I'm not a huge fan of the security strip which has been used in these notes since it doesn't feel integrated into the note but more pasted on. The design of the notes is understated on the front but more lustrous on the back. The use of one or two colors with different tints and shades adds to the understated design regular American banknotes also have. This is something I always admire in Mujand banknotes: the thoughtful design and use of colors which add significantly to the overall appearance of the notes. 

Well, so far I've managed to write about the MAGA-notes without making a political statement so kudos to me. I don't know if people would criticize these notes because they don't like the people depicted. If that's the case, I have to ask if they also don't like collecting banknotes from Iraq, Iran, North Korea and so on? And no, I didn't just compare Trump to Saddam Hussein. 

I have understood that the usual sites which sell Mujand notes don't sell this particular series. So if you want them, you can visit the shopping section of the Mujand site. 

Disclaimer: these fantasy sets were sent for review purposes. The text is entirely mine and was not paid for or asked for in any way.

Steven | Sunday 06 August 2017 at 1:10 pm | | new additions | No comments
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New additions week 31 - 2017

No less than 11 new notes this week! In my local banknote shop I found two notes I quite liked. First a 100-shilling note from Uganda (P31c) with a design I thought was fascinating. I'm still a sucker for notes that "just look nice". In the same shop I also found an Austrian note which at first glance isn't all that special but the little 1-krone note (P73) is actually the first issue from the Austrian Government in 1922. I didn't have any note from that series yet, so here you go.

The biggest batch of new notes was in a package I got from Texas and were several new series and single notes from Mujand. The Blissdane Naive world keeps on expanding with an M-, N- and O-series. There was also a new Tobacco-note from the second F-series with a naked lady with a pig on it, how great is that?

But the biggest suprise were two MAGA-notes. MAGA? Make America Great Again, does that ring a bell? When I opened the package the face of Mike Pence on the fantasy 5-dollar note smiled at me. The 1-dollar note with Donald Trump on it? Not so many smiles...

I will post a separate review for the Mujand-notes later this weekend. 

Steven | Sunday 06 August 2017 at 11:16 am | | new additions | No comments

New additions week 28 - 2017

After last weeks discoveries at a local store I couldn't resist and just had to return again. This time with more time than just my lunch break. After going through the mountain of available notes twice I found several other notes I could add to my collection. 

  • Czechoslovakia: 50 korun (P96a)
  • Ukraine: 500 hryven (P23)
  • Ukraine: 1,000 Karbovantsiv (P35a2)
  • Germany (Empire): 5 Mark (P56a1)
  • Germany (Empire): 20 Mark (P57)
  • Germany (Weimar): 50,000 Mark (P80)
  • Germany (Weimar): 5,000 Mark (P81a)
  • Germany (Weimar): 100,000 Mark (P83a2)
  • Germany (Weimar): 100 Million Mark (P107e1)
  • Germany (Weimar): 50 Million Mark (P109b2)
  • Germany (Weimar): 500 Million Mark (P110f)

Steven | Monday 10 July 2017 at 09:10 am | | new additions | No comments

New additions week 27 - 2017

A couple of new notes today which I found in the infamous "1 dollar per note" box. Well, it turns out the seller hadn't really been paying attention because some of the notes there had a much higher catalog value. The Russian note in particular was hard to miss because of it's massive size. It's even hard to fit in one of my Leuchtturm Vario 1C folders! 

  • Germany - 20 mark - P46b
  • Germany - 1 million mark - P93
  • Poland - 1,000 marek - P29c
  • Russia - 500 rubles - P14b.c01

Steven | Tuesday 04 July 2017 at 10:34 pm | | new additions | Three comments

New additions week 25 - 2017

We've had a big family party last weekend which is always lots of fun, especially when the weather is as good as it has been for the past few days. It's also a good opportunity to see some family members who have been travelling a lot lately. Like a trip to Armenia and Georgia, which are two countries I probably will never visit.

Did I get a souvenir? Well, in fact... I got the BEST type of souvenir. Two new banknotes! The 1000-dram note from Armenia (P55b) and the recently issued 50-lari note from Georgia (P77) which looks great in real life. 

Steven | Monday 19 June 2017 at 11:33 am | | new additions | No comments

New additions week 23 - 2017

Yesterday was a very good day with regard to the mail I received. Two letters from Canada and Fiji with two of the best looking banknotes of 2017 so far. Welcome to my collection!

Steven | Saturday 10 June 2017 at 3:58 pm | | new additions | No comments

New additions week 12 - 2017

I recently visited my local brick and mortar store to get new plastic sheets for banknotes (I always use Leuchtturm Vario 3C by the way) but I couldn't pass the 1-euro bin without looking at the notes. For some reason I always find something wedged between some raggedy old notes. This day was no exception since there were a lot of new notes recently added. 

The harvest of this week:

  • Romania - 1 lei (P117d)
  • Czech Republic - 20 korun (P10a)
  • Thailand - 20 baht (p124a1)
  • Mexico - 20 pesos (P122k1)
  • Russia - 100 rubles (P13b.c01 and proving that size does matter)
  • France - Chambre de Commerce Marseille - 50 centimes (PNL)

Steven | Saturday 25 March 2017 at 4:41 pm | | new additions | No comments

New additions week 11 - 2017

Recently we had a teambuilding day at work. One of the tasks was to present something personal and talk about it. Of course I brought a banknote with me and talked about this beautiful hobby. This in turn led to several co-workers remembering that they also had some banknotes in their attics which they generously donated to me. 

So I have added the following notes to my collection:

  • Czechoslovakia, 10 Korun, P94
  • Czechoslovakia, 20 Korun, P95 (which I already had but in much worse condition).
  • Lithuania, 1 Litas, P53a

Steven | Monday 13 March 2017 at 10:09 pm | | new additions | No comments

New addiditions week 4 - 2017

In the new series from the master creator of fantasy banknotes, Mujand takes us back to the Greek mythology. We enter the dangerous world of the Sirens. These mythical creatures lured passing sailors with their songs and their beauty to their doom. This new edition to the continuing series of the fictional planet Blissdane Naive shows the banknotes from the island of Eklisivia. You can read the history of this island here. It's the classic siren story but with a little twist: the sirens from Eklisivia are also vampires. 

The banknotes are a hommage to this legend and in a fun way follow the story. At first glance the banknotes look like paintings from the Romantic era depicting a romanticized version of Greek history. Bright colors, beautiful women and delicious fruit. Until you look closer and see that the women have fangs in their mouth, snakes in their hair and the fruit consists mainly of poisonous berries. This series is a great addition to an already impressive line-up of fantasy banknotes. 

If you're interested in buying this series you can do so here at the website of Mujand. 

50 Nulas

100 Nulas

500 Nulas

1,000 Nulas

Disclaimer: this fantasy set was sent for review purposes. The text is entirely mine and was not paid for or asked for in any way.

Steven | Sunday 29 January 2017 at 12:52 pm | | new additions | No comments
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New additions week 52 - 2016

On the last day before my holiday I decided to visit the local coin shop. Of course you can get everything online, but there is still something special about a brick-and-mortar store, right? The shop near where I work specializes in coins and stamps but they have a small collection of banknotes, mostly the 1-euro-each toilet paper like notes but I can always find something nice there. In places like that with a big basket full of cheap notes, I especially try to look for visually appealing banknotes. For instance, the back of the 20-korun note below from Czechoslovakia which I think is stunning. 

The harvest today: 

  • Czechoslovakia: 20-korun (P95)
  • Greece: 1,000-drachmai (P110a)
  • Greece: 1,000-drachmai-on-100-drachmai (P111a)
  • Hungary: 20-forint (P169g)
  • Hungary: 50-forint (P170g)
  • Hungary: 100-forint (P171e)
  • Hungary: 100-forint (P171g)
  • Luxembourg: 10-francs (P53a)

Last but not least, I also received a very special banknote. This Christmas my family played secret Santa: everybody had to get one present for one other person. My little daughter of 5 had picked me and asked my wife: "Daddy loves banknotes but where does he buy them? I don't know where to get one!" My wife suggested she could make one herself. I think the result is very nice and I will give it a place of honour in my collection!

Steven | Friday 30 December 2016 at 11:33 pm | | new additions | No comments

New additions week 25 - 2016

Of course I couldn't wait long to add this beauty to my collection of Thai commemorative notes. So today I received the new 70-baht from Thailand.

Steven | Wednesday 22 June 2016 at 6:58 pm | | new additions | No comments