I am pretty sure this is a one off created by a very talented British craftsman but I have no other information on the creator. However, I can share what I have pieced together. The creative British inventor and Children’s magician, Len Belcher, wrote an article in Abracadabra (October 10th, 1949) titled “See That Wet!” which featured a weather house with a man and a woman, and the man figure disappearing and reappearing in place of the woman. Then c. 1954 Supreme Magic started selling their Little Weatherhouse with a similar premise. Then in 1983 Len Belcher was back in Abra (January 22nd, 1983) with a new article “Weatherman“, where he recalled his original article, the subsequent copying by a dealer of his idea, and came back with some more thoughts and a better routine. This is where the idea of the man going back and forth to the lady’s side is introduced. Len also beefed up some patter details, and included a sketch of a weather house.
From these beginnings I believe this prop was created. Although it didn’t come with a routine from reading the Len Belcher articles and the Supreme ad copy I came up with the effect below which seems to be in the spirit of what Len Belcher was going for and whoever the very talented craftsman was who created this.
Just look at the attention to detail – it is all solidly made from wood with metal figures, and the figures are even painted on both sides. Each brick is painted individually, and even the doors have extra grain painted on to add to the realism of the little house.
Here is the routine I came up with after studying the prop and reading the Belcher articles and Supreme advert.
Like many magician’s my first steps into magic were through a box of tricks under the Christmas Tree. My set was the Hocus Pocus Magic Box c. 1972 – like many toy magic boxes it was filled with many of the same effects. And although it really was great for a nine year old, I quickly distanced myself from it. That would not have been the case if I had received this set from Supreme Magic.
I had not seen this box of magic Supreme Magic released c. 1987 until recently. And boy what a really wonderful box it is. Filled with amazing magic from Supreme’s huge catalog, and a very informative and useful 88 page book by Ian Adair.
Although each box had varied content, here is what is in this one:
Although the ad copy for Make Your Choice doesn’t name the effect that it is a close-up version of, it is most likely Prestige, as they look basically the same to the audience, but use very different methods. Make Your Choice works well and there is nothing to break or go wrong, but it does require a simple move whereas Prestige is automatic. However, you need to have a little more distance to perform Prestige whereas you can be much closer with Make Your Choice. The gimmick for Prestige is a little more interesting and novel, but Make Your Choice still works fine as described.
In his review video David Dellman provides a useful product comparison of the two items. Thanks David!
There seems to be quite a lot of buzz around this item. The props are nicely made and it looks very effective. You can show five cards and they can freely pick any one and it will have the words on it you choose. The gimmick is quite clever. Very versatile.
If you need to force 5 or more items (you can purchase more cards) and are in a parlor or stage environment, this would be a perfect, clean, easy to do and no hassle choice. I personally would not add the vanish of the number which is shown as a bonus effect.
The effect can be performed without touching or holding the wallet at the end – the wallet can be given to the spectator and you never touch it again.
The Millennium Wallet required the use of specially gimmicked business cards to work. The Know It All Wallet works with any thin object that fits in the wallet.
The wallet looks and feels almost identical otherwise. To be honest until I saw this version I was more than happy with the Millennium and didn’t even think I wanted a different approach. But there is no doubt you can be cleaner with this version.
Anverdi’s Surprise Box is one of his finest creations. It came in a number of versions, also built by various dealers other than Anverdi. This fine version was sold by Mephisto-Huis and I believe it was built by them too. However, it might have been made by Anverdi and just sold by Mephisto-Huis, since it is almost identical to the version that appears in the Anverdi book. Also it looks quite different from the one that I do believe was built by Mephisto-Huis here. The cards that came with it were in fact made in Belgium (the home of Mephisto-Huis), but I replaced them with Bicycles for your performing pleasure 🙂 Also, the Anverdi book was in fact published by Mephisto-Huis so maybe they used some of their creations for the photos. Without any other input I am going to assume this was actually built by Mephisto-Huis, but if you have any more information let me know.
Either way it came with a clear lid which was a nice touch. The opaque lid version can be seen here.
In the ads that ran with this they say you can deal out from 2-50 cards. In my tests things become less reliable after about 25-30 cards. It can work but it is much more reliable before 25. It is easy enough to ensure that happens so I don’t consider this an issue.
This version is very reliable and as long as the batteries are fresh and you don’t add too many cards works cleanly every time.
Eddy Taytelbaum has no equal and inspired the mini-magic line that Alan Warner took on as the next generation with splendid results. Eddy invented this effect and like many of his creations, including his amazing Mummy, it is the gold standard. It is hard to always tell by photos alone, but with every single Taytelbaum effect I have owned they always work so smoothly. This particularly effect is no different.
I have seen others copy this effect, but there is clearly NO comparison to the original. The slide is so elegant as only Eddy can handcraft. It’s all wood with a beautifully applied dark green paint and his signature gold striping on the edges. The paint job is so smooth I can only think of Milson-Worth as the only other builder with such excellent results. It is hinged so it can be opened to expel any suspicions (the slide is ungimmicked). A brass hinge at one end keeps the slide locked closed.
This is a very nice version of the Warlock effect created by Abbott’s – sadly although it is the exact same method as Peter Warlock’s version there is no mention of the inventor online or in the instructions. I always find it sad when a large company like Abbott’s chooses not to acknowledge the inventor of a well known effect such as this. Even the name, Soft Glass, which sounds kind of cool, is not Abbott’s idea – it came when Jim Sherman of N.M.C. released their own version of Peter Warlock’s Glass Penetration (with permission from Davenport’s who held the rights at the time). However, in N.M.C.’s catalog they did at least acknowledge the inventor as Peter Warlock (though early adverts did not).
Abbott’s original released this c. 1946 and this is a surprisingly good version by Abbott’s re-released in 2021. It works very well and looks amazing. The current routine that Abbott’s uses is a little different from many other Warlock versions – instead of having four needles to push through each hole they thread the needle through each one. I actually like this presentation and it flows quite well.
I think it helps to also begin by tapping the glass to show it solid with a full size magic wand as an extra convincer.
This is another rare Jack Hughes classic and is a great way to finish Card Go.
It is a great idea, but I found this a little tricky to do smoothly but we’ll see how it looks in the video after I’ve had some more practice. It could easily be the age of the unit (almost 80 years!).
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