The Kinks, Part 3: Twisting Card To Box


To finish up our short series about adding kinks to magic (Just joining? Read part 1 and part 2 first), here’s a kink to add to a card to box routine.

Usual Plot

A card is chosen and then appears in the box.

The Kink

The card doesn’t appear inside the box, but within the layers of the box itself.


Back in 2015, Cards Against Humanity announced that they’d hidden a secret card inside their lids. The internet went wild.

Also, after writing this up, I realised it has a similar feel to Jay Sankey’s card-in-card trick.


You’ll need a small cube-shaped ring box made of cardboard, with a lift-off lid (the kind that resembles a Colour Vision box). Now make a false inner lid to ‘line’ the existing lid, made from card the same colour as the real lining. Tear the corner off a playing card and place it under the false lid. Now replace the ‘loaded’ lid back on the box. Place the rest of the torn card in the deck.


Start by performing Jay Sankey’s cunning pre-torn ruse. Vanish the corner of their chosen card as usual. Now say that it’s in the box, then remove the lid and show inside, where there’s… nothing.

Pause for a moment so they can see it’s empty. Then suggest maybe it’s in the lid. Slowly turn it over, then look disappointed when that’s empty too.

Then appear to have a brainwave and cleanly remove the inner lid (or have them do it, if performing in-person) to reveal the hidden corner, and show that it fits.


Sometimes almost-none feels less than none. Strange but true. Examples: a deserted road vs. a deserted empty road with tumbleweed, no-one clapping vs. just one person clapping. So, following this logic, you may prefer to have something nominal inside the box, like a tiny note that reads: ‘IOU a card’.

You could perform a similar thing with a card to envelope by adding a false wall. Have them look in the envelope to find it empty, then explain that it’s within the envelope itself, and have them tear it apart to find the card.

If you added a different card to the main section of the envelope, you could also do this as a mailed prediction. Send them the envelope but tell them not to open it. Hop on a video call and force the card in the secret compartment, then have them open the envelop and discover a card…which doesn’t match. Then have them tear apart the envelope to find the second, secret card, which matches.


Hopefully you’ve now been inspired to look at some tricks afresh and find ways to add some kinks to them. As ever, if you come up with something fun, let me know.


Similarly, what did you think of this short series? Was it helpful? Any other creativity topics or techniques you’d like me to cover? If so, drop me a line and I’ll do some more.