Oneman Handkerchief Vanish

This effect is so named because it is performed to fool one person while the rest of the audience sees and enjoys the perplexity of the one person. Finally, however, the whole audience is puzzled. A good comedy vanish.


Performer asks a spectator to assist him. He shows a glass tumbler on the table and then covers it with a cardboard tube. Performer takes a silk handkerchief and stands close beside spectator. He tells assistant to watch carefully as he vanishes handkerchief. He throws silk back over spectator's shoulder to vanish it. Spectator is puzzled but rest of audience is very much amused by the vanish. In the meantime, performer's assistant has picked up silk and placed in tumbler with cover over it. Performer goes to tumbler, lifts tube, and shows perplexed spectator that silk has appeared there. Magician then says he will repeat the trick as this spectator may not have understood it. He covers glass again after taking silk from it, and then proceeds to roll silk up between his hands. It suddenly disappears from his hands so that neither the spectator nor the rest of the audience know where it went to. Magician then uncovers glass again and there once more is seen the silk.


1 -- Two silk handkerchiefs, each about 13 inches square -- must be exactly alike.

3 -- A cardboard tube about three inches higher than the glass and big enough in diameter to slip over the glass easily.

4 -- A metal clip to hold one handkerchief concealed in tube.

5 -- A handkerchief "pull."


Make the tube of cardboard glued together. Get an ordinary metal clip and place it at top of tube. Tuck silk up into it just far enough to be held securely but to be released easily. Figure 90 shows arrangement of tube when it is placed over glass.

Adjust handkerchief "pull" at right side of body. Place it in right lower vest pocket so that you can reach it easily.

Have glass and tube on table at right of stage. (Right of stage is to your right as you face audience always.)

This effect requires an assistant to help you.

To Perform:

Have a gentleman come up from audience.

"I need a committee of one to help solve the mysterious wanderings of this magic silk. I believe, sir, that you possess an eagle eye. To begin with, I use a glass—a drinking glass —and a paper tube."

When spectator has come up, pick up tube with right hand. Place fingers inside and thumb outside so that you conceal the silk inside. Hold tube up so that all can see it, showing the inside empty, Figure 91.

"A tube that fits nicely over the glass, commonly referred to as papering a glass house."

Replace tube over glass.

"Now, for the mystery of Whither, Whither, Little Silk."

Have gentleman stand toward left side of stage, facing left. The table with

Sch Filtrace

tube and glass are back of him and farther to rear of stage. Go over and stand at left side of spectator. Start rolling up silk between your hands. Figure 92 shows position of spectator and yourself as seen by audience.

"Strange, isn't it—that when you roll up a silk in your hands it becomes smaller?"

Roll up silk and get it into closed left hand. Raise right hand upward and backward and strike left hand several times, Figure 93.

Then open left hand and show silk.

"The magic influence doesn't seem to be working very well."

Roll up silk again, retaining it in right hand this time. Pretend to leave silk in left hand again by closing left hand and removing right. Raise right hand upward and backward as before and throw silk back of you into hands of your assistant, Figure 94.

Strike left hand with finger-tips of right as hand comes down quickly.

Open left hand and show that silk has vanished. Show both hands freely.

The moment assistant gets silk, he raises tube, places silk in the glass, and replaces tube so that audience can see.

"There, that is much better. The silk has gone."

The spectator is always bewildered, and the audience finds his perplexity very amusing. This trick has even fooled clever magicians.

Now, go over to the table. Remove tube and expose silk in glass, Figure 95.

Remove silk and cover glass again with tube. As you place tube down, force concealed silk from clip with right fingers and push it into glass, Figure 96.

"Odd, sir, the way the little silk wanders around."

Go back to position at left of spectator again. Hold silk in left hand and get "pull" into right. Stand far

enough away from spectator so that he cannot see "pull."

"No doubt, sir, you were watching too closely before and would like to look closer this time. It is really very simple. All I really do is wave the silk a bit between my hands."

Work silk into "pull" and pretend to place silk in left hand. Close left hand. Release "pull" from right hand and let it fly back into place under your coat.

"Then I strike the left hand containing the handkerchief with the fingers of the right hand."

Raise right hand as before and strike left hand, Figure 97.

"This causes the silk to enter the psychic world and disappear."

Open left hand and show it empty. Then show both sides of right hand.

Go back to table. Uncover glass and show silk inside.

"And thus the little wanderer finds its way back into the glass again."

Remove silk from the glass with a jerk and a flourish.

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