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Elle AyoubZadeh had two things on her mind while creating new styles for Zvelle’s line of handcrafted shoes. The first was the number five. “I’m fascinated with numbers and it’s one of my favourites,” said the brand’s Founder and Creative Director. The other? Her Persian heritage. “I didn’t grow up learning to read or write Farsi so my interaction with the written language has been limited, but I’ve always been fond of its symbol for the number five”. Looking much like an upside-down heart, you’ll see the curvaceous Persian symbol in many new styles being released by Zvelle over the next few months.

“What I most like about the Farsi symbol ۵ is its symmetry and roundness,” says AyoubZadeh. “The more you pay attention to it, the more layers you see”. The number five was Coco Chanel’s lucky number. Like Madam Coco herself, AyoubZadeh designs with a strong woman in mind. “The beauty of five - or ‘panj’ as it’s called in Farsi - is that it represents independence in mind and soul,” says the designer. “This is the quality that I most admire in the women for whom I design”.

“The beauty of five - or ‘panj’ as it’s called in Farsi - is that it represents independence in mind and soul." - Elle AyoubZadeh

You’ll see many elements of ‘panj’ in Zvelle’s new styles, some more subtle than others and each pair has been named as an ode to AyoubZadeh’s Persian background. “The names represent a memory, legend or woman whose life inspires me,” she says. Elle named her two new sandals Shirin, which means ‘charming and pleasant’ in old Persian and is the legendary character in a love story written by the poet Nizami Ganjavi. “We all have our own love stories,” says the designer. “They’re based on romance, friendship, or a path we’ve chosen. It’s this love that binds us all”.

Anyone wearing Zvelle’s new ‘panj’-inspired styles will notice that they’re not only aesthetically beautiful, but conversation starters as well. “Things aren’t always what they seem,” says the company’s passionate founder. “It’s not an upside down heart on your feet but a symbol of adventure, loyalty and strength.”