Hermès Dressage Petite Seconde (H1837 manufacture caliber)

Baselworld 2012:  For 2012, house of Hermès presents its first manufacture movement (the Caliber H1837) and sets it within the understated Dressage Petite Seconde watch, a mainstay of the brand since 2003.   Whilst many associate Hermès with saddlery, scarves and ties, the brand has slowly but surely been establishing its horological credentials  – starting in 2006 with a 25% stake in Vaucher Manufacture, then in 2008 the H1 was showcased (a proprietary movement developed with Vaucher), and now this year the manufacture caliber H1837.   On the design front, I have long been a fan of the brand’s pieces — be it the Clipper Chrongraph in titanium, the Hermes Arceau Temps Suspendu (Best Men’s Watch at the Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix 2011), or the Hermès Arceau Marqueterie de Paille.  This year’s Dressage with manufacture movement will be available in either 18K pink gold case (limited to 175 pieces) or a stainless steel edition.  Available both in opaline silver and black, the dial of the timepiece features the traditional stamped vertical striping in its center and is equipped with dauphine-shaped open-worked hands, with applied numerals and markers and a recessed small seconds at 6 o’clock.

Hermès Dressage Petite Seconde with Manufacture Movement

limited edition 175 pieces in pink gold; steel case (non limited)

38.4mm x 40.5mm case (steel or pink gold), automatic mechanical Hermes Caliber H1837, alligator strap

close up (pink gold case)

“After 100 years of Hermès being involved in watchmaking, we are taking a big step this year with the first Hermès Manufacture in-house caliber,” says Luc Perramond, CEO of Hermès.  The movement, which was five years in the development process, was created in conjunction with Vaucher Manufacture in Fleurier, a movement maker of which Hermès is a 25 percent owner (with Sandoz Foundation owning the rest).  The Hermes Caliber H1837 is named in honor of the year that the brand was founded.  The Hermès “H” is prominently incorporated onto the movement aesthetic.