The Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché is Louis Erard’s ode to high watchmaking

New Watch! • 26 Mar 2024

The Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché is Louis Erard’s ode to high watchmaking

Can Louis Erard balance the gruelling demands between haute horlogerie and accessibility? The answer is absolutely.

No challenges prove too daunting for Louis Erard, it seems. With the latest creation, the wonderfully named Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché, Louis Erard brings the ethereal craft of flinqué guilloché to life without having collectors break the bank.

Louis Erard Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché
The 39mm Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché by Louis Erard showcases contrasting colours

A hallmark of many a great watchmaker – think legends like Abraham-Louis Breguet – guilloché is one such decorative technique that demands total commitment in time, labour and know-how. And Louis Erard demonstrates that it can execute it to perfection with the Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché.

An objet d’art rich in detail 

Since a consequential update in 2022, in which the sensible size of 39mm was introduced alongside 42mm, with the Terracotta and stone dials Petite Seconde, the Excellence collection has quietly assumed its place as one of the premier dress options today. In the past four years, iteration upon iteration was thoughtfully designed to be equally distinctive as it was elegant, contemporary and reliable. Bars were raised substantially with the gradual inclusion of numerous colours, materials and decorative techniques, as well as precious gemstones and grand feu enamel. Capsule creations in collaboration with design maestro Alain Silberstein and independent watchmaker Konstantin Chaykin, which were nominated for the GPHG in recent years, helped elevate the collection’s burgeoning reputation. 

Louis Erard Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché
The 42mm fully anthracite version plays on the subtle light changes created by contrasting guilloché patterns

The Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché shows that once again Louis Erard is prepared to let the world know about its craftsmanship. Unlike the Excellence Guilloché Main editions, which were decidedly modern, the latest creation is a tribute to classic guilloché motifs. The 42mm reference features anthracite tones, while the 39mm model contrasts anthracite with blue to amplify the juxtaposition. 

Attention naturally falls on the centre of the dial. It emanates a curtain-like effect, known as flinqué guilloché, which is traditionally accomplished via a rose engine. The outer circle exhibits a woven motif, evocative of a panier picnic basket, and echoed by a similar guilloché pattern on the small seconds subdial. The seductive visual is complemented with a trusted Sellita movement, enabling the exquisite creation to bridge high watchmaking and accessibility. 

Democratising high watchmaking 

Among the most definitive signatures of haute horlogerie are the finishing. There is no shortcut to a flawless execution, which asks plenty of the watchmaker on time, labour and, ultimately, is it worth the trouble. For Louis Erard, the answer to that question is an irrevocable yes. Time after time, Louis Erard has proven itself as the leading agent provocateur in watchmaking, in making high watchmaking attainable and approachable. 

Louis Erard Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché
The Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché is arrayed with the much-loved fir tree hands

Louis Erard revels in its independence, making use of the rarified status to great effect, in order to stamp its own authority in watchmaking. The manifestation is especially evident in recent years with the wildly successful Alain Silberstein and Konstantin Chaykin collaborations. Peer recognition too came gushing in with Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Massena LAB Gold and Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Seconde/Seconde nominated at the 2022 edition of the GPHG for “Petite Aiguille” and Challenger award categories respectively. The Excellence Petite Seconde Guilloché is an exclamation mark emphasising that Louis Erard is a horological force to be reckoned with.

Tags: haute horlogerie high watchmaking louis erard

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