1. First of all we have to admit that we loved the brand name. Whats the story behind ''Zayiana''?
-I was looking for a name that could combine all of me!! Difficult! I was brought up in Egypt and lived there until the age of thirteen. My father is of Maltese/Italian origin born in Egypt and my mother English. We moved to Greece in 1979 and have lived here ever since.
ZAYANA without the ‘i” is an indirect Quranic name for girls that means “adorner”, one who adorns and beautifies something, one who improves things and solves problems.
I changed it a little, adding the “i” making it more catchy. The meaning represents my passion. I love both countries that I lived in and both have a natural beauty, history and culture that few countries in the world could compete with. This is a major source of inspiration for me . I also feel that it is a word that can be used to describe me as a person. I am always trying to improve things, I love being surrounded by beautiful objects.
2.What motivated you to enter into the world of greek design?
-Living through the financial crisis and seeing this country being harassed, and especially seeing my own children being bullied for being Greeks while studying abroad made me change my course in my business. Having been in the business of creating gift products for over 20 years, I realized that, we (as Greeks) had to start being proud of who we are and what we have. So we started creating products, that firstly, Greeks would be proud to buy and share these products with their families abroad.
3. The positive energy is all around this store. Is it you or the objects?
-The positive energy in the store is nothing more than the energy of this country and its heritage.
4. To be 100% honest i adore everything that has to do with the ''evil eye''. I want it everywhere! How do your clients react? Do they buy an evil eye object because they are religious or just because its a #greek classical trend?
-I love the “evil eye”. We produce it, not as a religious object, but as a good energy item for the home, for a new shop, for a newborn and the energy continues to spread. All our eyes are hand painted, one by one, so they are unique in this sense.
5 What is the biggest obstacle -from your point of view- about being productive and successful in Greece?
-The bureaucracy, the constantly changing laws on taxes, and the continual increase of the latter. All this creates a restlessness in the market.
6. Are you optimistic? Do you think we will ''see the light in the end of the tunnel"?
I believe that Greece will slowly buy surely, come out of the crisis, it has to. All we have to do is believe in ourselves and keep trying doing our best.
7.Are you the type of character who would swim against the stream or would you rather be on the safe side?
-Who doesn’t want to be on the safe side?? I do take risks, I opened my shop three years ago, in the middle of the crisis. I was told by most people, what I was doing was suicidal!! It was the best decision I have ever made!!!!
8.Thinking out of the box is for you?
-This is definitely me. My mind is on a continual roller coaster of ideas, brainstorming for something avant garde, something new, something different.
9. Are they any objects or jewellery items that you love the most, or you have a certain connection with them?
-No, I love all the products we create, but once put in the shop, I am onto to the next small projects.
10. Υour next future goals?
-Climbing up to the next step.