There are several manufacturers based mainly on two production sites: in the original Laguiole area, cradle of the first knives, and in Thiers, capital of French cutlery. In each zone, there are different types of manufacture:
To make sure of the authenticity of a Laguiole, check the exact provenance, the length of the guarantee, the quality of the materials and of the finishing touches. There are many low quality imported products that sell with a "Laguiole Véritable (True Laguiole)" stamp.
109 actions for a one-piece model, 166 for a 2-piece and 216 for the 3-piece, is the process raw materials undergo on the hands of the cutlery craftsman. It is in this long journey that lies the difference between industrial production and hand-crafted manufacture which, alone, guarantees that each Laguiole knife is a unique piece of work.
Main quality criteria of a local hand-crafted production.
The work of the blade and the spring plate
The work of the horn
The first "Laguiole" had a handle made of bone or horn (the hardest materials available at the time). The latter offers a wide variety of shades and designs. It is necessary to differentiate the horn tip from the horn bottom (or pressed horn). The massive horn tip presents a drawing in fleeing, much finer and harmonious than pressed horn, which is hollow and softer and more fragile after heated and moulded.
The work of precious woods
Wood, an easier material to work, arrived very early in the manufacture of the "Laguiole". If at the time their use was limited to local species, today’s creativity and design call for precious and exotic varieties, such as those used in marquetry. These pieces, which delight collectors, are the visual testimony of the perfect marriage of steel, brass, stainless steel and wood.