White gold and mother-of-pearl Flower jewellery

Omega’s 2015 collection is rife with inspirations that showcase the wondrous beauty of Mother Nature. Out of the 10 or so novelties presented to us in Basel, three took a leaf (no pun intended) from the natural world: The Constellation Pluma, the De Ville Prestige Dewdrop and the simply titled Flower jewellery collection.

It’s as if watchmakers want to compensate for modern man’s lack of interactions with nature by producing timepieces that remind us of what we’re missing. Or perhaps their inclinations are an acknowledgement of Mother Nature’s superior design skills. No man can dream up something as exquisite as a feather or a flower, but he or she can adapt those motifs onto watches and jewels as a tribute.

And adapt, Omega did. Last year it unveiled the Constellation Pluma in an icy blue-grey colour scheme and a dial streaked with wavy lines meant to evoke the barbs of a feather. This year, that model is joined by a winsome 27mm number sporting a light coral-coloured dial embellished with stylised feather shapes that seem to “float” around the dial. This alluring scheme is complemented by diamond indexes, a brushed steel case and an 18-karat red gold bezel studded with 32 full-cut sparklers and the iconic claws of the Constellation collection.

Red gold, steel and diamond Constellation Pluma watch

The bicolour theme continues on the bracelet, which alternates brushed steel links with polished 18-karat red gold bars. Given the growing popularity of automatic watches among women, Omega equipped this beauty with its proprietary Co-Axial calibre 8520, visible through a domed sapphire case back.

If the Constellation Pluma celebrates the avian world, then the De Ville Prestige Dewdrop takes the plunge into an imaginary abyss with a mother-of-pearl (MOP) dial and a bracelet crafted from individual beads shaped like water droplets. Like water itself, the bracelet is fluidly articulated with five links and a butterfly clasp, and drapes comfortably on the wrist like a piece of jewellery. The bracelet, in fact, derives from Omega’s Fine Jewellery Dewdrop collection.

The watch comes in two sizes, 32.7mm (automatic) and 27.4mm (quartz), in either 18-karat red or yellow gold. There are also two dials to choose from, in plain MOP or ornamented with butterfly motifs—more inspiration from nature. The shimmer from the MOP dial, the radiance of the diamond-set bezel, and the gleam from the polished bracelet all combine to create a very glittery affair that’s very cocktail-hour-appropriate.

Yellow gold and diamond De Ville Prestige Dewdrop watch

In the Flower collection of earrings and necklaces, Omega’s designers cleverly adapted the house logo into a floral design, using five interlocking omega symbols to create a five-petalled flower shape. The jewels are forged from 18-karat white gold and white MOP, the latter inspired by the brand’s MOP watch dials. It’s not quite the same as spending time in a park, but let’s just say that the therapeutic effect from having splurged on a jewel that has been shown Mother Nature’s love is undeniable.

Heroism Celebrated

While Omega turned to wondrous nature for its feminine universe, it looked to the stars for its mens’ designs. Back in 1970, NASA’s Apollo 13—the seventh manned mission in the Apollo programme and the third that was intended to land on the Moon—encountered a crisis in mid-flight. Two oxygen tanks exploded en route, and the crew was forced to abort the mission, perform mid-course corrections, and return to Earth.

This year is the 45th anniversary of that doomed mission, so Omega rolled out the Speedmaster Apollo 13 Silver Snoopy Award to celebrate the bravery and teamwork that brought astronauts Jim Lovell, Jack Swigert and Fred Haise home safely. Snoopy is a NASA mascot, and both Omega and the Apollo 13 crew received Silver Snoopy awards in 1970 in recognition of their efforts (Swigert wore a Speedmaster during the mission, which he used to accurately time a critical 14-second mid-course correction procedure).

It’s not the first time that Omega has produced a Snoopy piece; an earlier version from 2003 showcased the loveable beagle wearing a space helmet on the sub-dial at 9 o’clock. This time round, Snoopy assumes his favourite prone position at 9 o’clock, with a thought bubble saying “Failure is not an option.” Omega also added the rhetorical question, “What could you do in 14 seconds?” on the flange between the 12 and 3 o’clock indexes, in reference to Swigert’s critical operation.

Flip the watch over and you’ll find a 925 silver medallion that resembles the pin that NASA presented Omega with in 1970. The Silver Snoopy appears to be floating in space, an effect created by sprinkling silver powder on a dark blue enamel backdrop. Powered by Calibre 1861—the same manual-winding chronograph movement used in the legendary Moonwatch—this 42mm steel number is fitted with a nylon strap and comes in a limited edition of 1,970 pieces.

Text by Charmaine Ho