HANDS-ON: Le Régulateur Louis Erard travels to the darkside with Label NoirFergus Nash
A couple of years ago I wrote a few articles under the name The Modifier’s Series, providing an overview of the few brands capable of customising luxury watches to give them even more hype value. Outfits like MAD Paris, for example, managed to totally overhaul watches while catering to the modification requests of their clients, and some of the results are truly spectacular. Label Noir would have definitely made the cut had our Modifier’s Series continued. But now they’ve arrived through a collaboration with an imaginative Swiss brand in Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir.
One of the most common requests for a bespoke modified watch is to have the case blackened, either though PVD or DLC processes that produce varying results of texture and shine. Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir opts for a black PVD coating, leaving the case with a smooth yet dull, matte sheen. That charcoal-like tone runs with a general matte theme for the watch, including a large portion of the dial and the canvas surface of the strap.
In terms of dimensions, it’s a watch that doesn’t shy away with a diameter of 42mm, a thickness of 12.25mm, and a lug-to-lug of 49.6mm. The lugs are arched in design but stay mostly in line with the trajectory of the case, meaning that the size is generally suited better to a large wrist. The crown doesn’t screw down and it has 50m of water resistance, but this is hardly a watch styled for the beach. The caseback is engraved with the limited-edition number and also features a green-tinted sapphire window, making the movement even more enticing to stare at.
Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir puts particular emphasis on the hour hand, breaking the formula of previous Régulateur models that have had an equal division of subdials. Not only have they elected to make the hour subdial larger, but the change in finish makes it a beacon. The surface is slightly sunken, with a highly polished steel ring set around its perimeter. The subdial itself is also in a mirror gloss, imbuing a sense of class and versatility to the otherwise sci-fi appearance.
The bulk of the dial is vertically brushed, which almost looks like a flat matte texture from front on but reveals its complexity as light streaks across it at an angle. The distinct highlight colour is quite a vibrant lime green, with just enough pop to be quirky without being garish. Thanks to the relatively thin bezel, the dial has a lot of breathing space on the wrist.
Louis Erard are all about bringing luxury concepts and quality to an affordable price point, and the best way of getting there is by using off-the-shelf movements. Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir utilises a Sellita SW266-1, with a great reputation for reliability and accuracy. The automatic calibre has a beat rate of 28,800 vibrations per second, a power reserve of 38 hours, and is also decorated to the élaboré standards for a more exciting viewing experience through that green exhibition caseback. The rotor has been skeletonised slightly and decorated with the Louis Erard logo, filled with black enamel.
Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir pricing and availability:
You can join the waitlist for Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir on their website now, and they will be limited to 178 pieces. Price: 3,500 CHF
|Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir
|42mm x 12.25mm x 49.6mm
|Stainless steel with black PVD
|Sapphire front, green sapphire back
|Black canvas with leather backing and green stitching
|Limited to 178 pieces and waitlisted