Hublot has a lot of time for football (see what we did there?), and the Swiss luxury watchmaker’s latest campaign to celebrate the World Cup has seen London-based Lebanese designer Mira Mikati creating 15 one-of-a-kind football designs.

As the tournament’s official timekeeper, timing all 64 matches, right through to the final in Doha’s Lusail Stadium this Sunday, Hublot are obviously deeply rooted in the 2022 World Cup. The company’s passion for the beautiful game has already seen them produce a special edition Big Bang e FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 timepiece ahead of the competition, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. For their most recent campaign, titled “Hublot Loves Football”, launched in celebration of the competition, the brand recruited designer Mira Mikati for a special project.

Mikati was invited to design a special, happy, colourful “Hublot Loves Football” campaign logo, and further, Hublot brought her together with 15 brand Ambassadors and Friends of the Brand to create 15 unique designs to represent the football of their dreams. Each is a one-off; a piece of art created to capture the themes of hope and universal respect, as well as the individual personalities of the football stars and their shared passion for football. Some are hand-drawn and painted, others crocheted, representing the human element in football, and together creating a quite unique collection.

The list of individuals in question reads like a who’s who of footballing royalty; the 15 in full was Kylian Mbappé, Pelé, Laure Boulleau, Marcel Desailly, Dider Deschamps, Luis Figo, Ada Hegerberg, Roberto Martinez, Alex Morgan, Jose Mourinho, Alexia Putellas, Hervé Renard, Xherdan Shaqiri, Gareth Southgate, and David Trezeguet.

The collection has been housed in 'Hublot Villa’, the brand’s pop-up space in Qatar, and we were fortunate enough to get to visit it to see the work first hand and to speak with Makati herself about the project. 

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Before your collaboration with Hublot, what was your relationship like with football?

My relationship with football was directly linked to my children. They couldn’t miss one match from their favourite team or player. It was their moment of happiness, so it became our family reunion, full of joy, screams and excitement.

Your style pops with so much energy, you must have had so many ideas that came to mind when you started to think about this World Cup collaboration with Hublot?

When Hublot approached me, I couldn’t believe it!!! What an exciting project! What a dream! The first idea that came to my mind was to bring my colourful universe to Hublot. A huge splash of colour invading Hublot for Hublot Loves Football: COLOURS, COLOURS and more COLOURS!!!

What does that starting point look like? How do you begin the ideation process and what stood about the space working in football offers?

Our collaboration was divided into two parts. The first part was about creating the dream football of each of Hublot’s ambassadors.

I wanted each ball to tell a unique story. Each design would represent a trait of their personality and a glimpse of their own dreams. My wish was to create a ball that would make them smile without forgetting the power of colours.

Then I was asked to imagine the visual identity of Hublot Loves Football campaign. I wanted to join Hublot’s DNA with mine. My focus was to implement a playful, colourful energy and identity as this campaign is all about celebrating football’s incredible emotions. 

It’s a creative industry – did you jump at the chance to add your own take on the game into the equation? It feels like you’ve been able to offer something unique…

I was very lucky. Hublot gave me a blank canvas to dream on – the sky was the limit. I was able to bring this freedom onto every ambassador’s football as well as my creative process for the Hublot Loves Football campaign. It was incredible as this is also a core value I share for my brand: “Dream High, Dream Big, there is no limit!”  

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What were your objectives or ambitions as you began this project?

My main objective was to bring my universe and my identity to a new world. A world that I wasn’t particularly connected to at the beginning, but that surprisingly has many common grounds with mine.

What’s it been like to work with Hublot specifically? It must be good to know a brand appreciates your style and wants you to just do you?

Working with Hublot was wonderful, I learned a lot about the watch world.  I remember visiting their manufacture in Nyon and was mind blown by the savoir faire, attention to details behind each watch and most inspiring: the watch maker’s contagious passion.

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We’ve touched on the ideation process but you’ve created an extensive collection of designs for the brand for this world cup – where did you draw inspiration?

Each football was inspired by the talent’s personality. They were my primary source of inspiration and then came the fun process to translate them into my colours!

Are there any particular favourite designs you’ve done as part of this collaboration?

I absolutely love each and every design. Each ball tells a particular story, reveals and belongs to a unique person behind it.

Seeing it come to life, your work now in the hands of elite football talent, how did that feel?

It’s a dream! I am proud of this partnership. Seeing each ambassador smiling with their football is the best gift. A truly special collaboration that will forever stay in my heart.

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What about working with the likes of Mbappé, can you tell us about that?

Imagining and creating Kylian’s Mbappé's dream football was one of the most exciting challenges of my career. I loved every second of it. Kylian is an artist on the pitch, but also outside, he is an extremely creative individual, full of ideas and goals – pun intended! He wanted a football that would remind him of the importance of dreams in our life.

Did the project give you more hunger to do things within football? What would you like to do next?

Since the World Cup started, I am watching as many matches as possible! It’s a real new passion. The emotions and energies that football bring to our soul are so powerful and unique!

I am full of dreams, the next one would be a surprise but if you want a clue, you’ll see me where you least expect it.

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The Big Bang e FIFA World Cup Will be available through