Amidst the excitement surrounding the release of the NOMOS neomatik collection, and the 3.2-mm in-house automatic movement DUW 3001, another watch from NOMOS Glashütte was selected to receive the prestigious German Design Award: NOMOS Lambda Weissgold—the elegant, haute horlogerie timepiece that is the watchmaker’s tribute to traditional, luxury Glashütte watchmaking with a NOMOS twist. The German Design Award has been recognizing outstanding and innovative design for over 60 years. Only bestowed upon products previously recognized by national or international design awards, it is among the most significant design prizes worldwide. With this latest honor, the already multiple-prize-winning Lambda Weissgold, which was brought onto the market in 2013, continues to capture interest and recognition with its beauty, elegance and fine workmanship.
Lambda is the Greek and mathematical symbol for intrinsic value and the Lambda models make that value quite tangible. The airy, white, silver-plated dial is wrapped in the discreet yet luxurious 18k white gold case. Behind the domed sapphire glass, its needle-like hour and minute hands indicate with clarity and precision. The Lambda Weissgold is hand-wound and features a dual mainspring barrel, which ticks for 84 hours between windings. To display this ample power reserve, a prominent 297-degree power reserve indicator sweeps across the upper space of the dial. “We wanted to create works of watchmaking art, individual pieces which demonstrate what we can do. Watches that will stay beautiful over decades to come—and with a value that will continue to grow,” says NOMOS CEO Uwe Ahrendt.
The design of the Lambda models was given an exceptionally high degree of attention; a noteworthy team was engaged in the task over the course of more than three years. Designers from the Hannes Wettstein studio drafted the flat and wrist-flattering gold case, while Prof. Axel Kufus, Michael Paul, and the team from the NOMOS design office Berlinerblau in Berlin drew up the fine dials, hands, and the Horween Genuine Shell Cordovan remborde straps and 18k gold clasp. The result: an outer elegance that does not have much to do with tradition per se, but—perhaps because of this—is classic and timeless all the same. “Lambda is a model that we have a particular soft spot for,” says Judith Borowski, head of design at NOMOS Glashütte. “An immense amount of work went into it; a highly talented group of designers spent nearly four years working with the NOMOS in-house design team on the form of this exceptional timepiece.”
The Lambda Weißgold varies from the traditional NOMOS lineup in more ways than its material. The careful assembly, regulation, and finishing of the Lambda is performed in a dedicated atelier by a select team of seasoned watchmakers. A single individual is responsible, for example, for hand-engraving each balance cock with the words, “Mit Liebe in Glashütte gefertigt,” which translates to “lovingly made in Glashütte.” This message from the watchmaker is a playful departure from the more traditional floral patterns found in such engravings—a NOMOS way of interpreting Glashütte watchmaking tradition.
A look through the sapphire caseback reveals the in-house caliber DUW 1001 (DUW stands for Deutsche Uhrenwerk NOMOS Glashütte), the culmination of luxurious and traditional Glashütte watchmaking. One might first notice the prominent Glashütte three-quarter plate, which conceals the gear train, mainspring barrels and other internal components. The three-quarter plate makes the movement visually quite distinctive from most Swiss movements, which typically use a series of bridges and cocks in its place. The historic advantage of the Glashütte approach is the added rigidity this plate provides to the caliber while also serving to keep dust particles away from the clockwork. On the three-quarter plate are six hand-polished gold chatons, the golden sleeves that support the ruby bearings, which are each secured with three tempered blue screws. The sunbeam polishing, added by hand and today a primarily decorative feature, was originally also added to create rough edges to attract dust particles. As modern watches are sealed tightly against dust and moisture, today these details pay tribute to the historic tradition of Glashütte watchmaking.
The NOMOS Lambda models have already received numerous awards since their inception, and the German Design Award is the twelfth accolade for NOMOS Glashütte this year — one of more than 130 awards and prizes to date—amongst them the Good Design Award from Chicago, the iF Product Design Award, the Red Dot Design Award, and the UK Watch and Jewellery Award, to name but a few. Since 1990, NOMOS has been building prize-winning timepieces in Glashütte, watches that have long been recognized as classics—namely Tangente, Tangomat, and Ahoi, as well as Orion, Tetra, Ludwig, Zürich, Club and, most recently, the neomatik series. Lambda Weissgold, with its DUW 1001 caliber, is emblematic of this progression, and is a beautiful part of the great spectrum of watchmaking being performed by NOMOS Glashütte.
All content sponsored and provided by Nomos Glashütte.