What Is Feng Shui? (Pronounced Fung Shway)
The word “Feng Shui” translates literally to “Wind Water.”
Advocates of this practice believe that the feelings in our mind, body, or spirit are directly related to the positioning of the interior or exterior of the home.
Taoists began to practice Feng Shui when they noticed that the land and the human body are both filled with the same life-giving energy called “Qi,” pronounced “Chee.”
The objective of this practice is to strategically place colors, objects, and naturalistic elements in your home. By using Feng shui you will bring balance and eliminate blockages to the flow of Qi within your space.
Feng Shui principles state:
“when you feel good at home, the rest of your life will significantly improve.”
The makeup of the earth and humans are elementally similar, as we are both sustained or made of fire, water, earth, metal, and wood. Bringing in a balanced mixture of elements into your home will help you feel more “in tune” with nature.
Below we have outlined basic principles of Feng Shui to help you create the most beautiful, comfortable, and functional designs for your home.
The Basic Principles of Feng Shui
These concepts should apply to all areas of your designs!
You can change your luck, earn more money, be happier, and live longer when you design your home with these basic principles in mind:
- Energy Flow – When you walk in a room, is it easy to navigate? Visualize the energy flow in your home as if it were a flowing stream or river. The river begins at the entry of your home, then enters each room. When you walk into a room, can you imagine any places where the river may be dammed up? When you can walk through each room effortlessly, then you know the energy flow is good.
- Mimic Nature – Imagine that you are walking through a forest in the great outdoors. Above, there is lightness, sky, and pastels. Below, there is heaviness, ground, darkness. You will need to use your intuition and creative visualizations to create a design that mirrors the transition and colors of nature.
- Cleanliness – Clutter is another block to good energy flow. When you have too many objects that aren’t being used, you are inviting stagnation into your life. Design your home to make cleaning areas as easy as possible. Do your best to pick raised furniture so that dust cannot gather. Then the energy can flow and your mind will be at peace.
- Manifesting – When you redesign your home, now is the opportune time to create the space for your goals to manifest. If you want romance, design a large master bedroom with a spa. If you want to travel, put images of faraway lands in the foyer. Even displaying little personal symbols can have a great impact on your success.
Design Tips to Balance the 5 Feng Shui Elements
In this section, we will describe the qualities, objects, materials, and colors that correspond to the 5 elements of Feng Shui. Remember, the goal is to balance these elements in your home.
To achieve balance in nature, all the elements must be present in equal amounts as they depend on each other for their formation and regulation. If you find yourself lacking any of the qualities described below, incorporate more of that element into your designs.
Fire element for increased socializing.
Objects – fire features, candles, electronics, diverse or creative lighting fixtures, triangle shapes
Materials – anything made from animals such as rugs, blankets, or horns
Colors – reds, oranges, pinks, purples
Water element for a clear mind.
Water fosters a strong will power, resourcefulness, clarity of mind, gentleness, and regenerative abilities. Water features are especially good at calming the emotions for increased relaxation.
Objects – aquariums, fountains, water features, mirrors
Materials – free form shapes, reflective materials
Colors – blacks, blues
Wood element for creativity and decision making.
Objects – rectangular, broad, and vertical objects reaching for the sky, flowers, plants
Materials – anything made out of trees or plants
Colors – greens, lighter blues
Earth element for trust and stability.
Objects – square shapes, stone accents, crystals, landscape photos, clay bowls or vases
Materials – clay, stone, bricks
Colors – earth tones, browns, beiges, yellows
Metal element for intelligence and sharpness.
Metal is the element that rules the powers of the mind to increase sharpness, intelligence, mental clarity, and logic. Metals wall decorations are a great way to bring this element into your home or landscape design.
Objects – round shapes, stones, metal wall art, jewels, bejeweled chandeliers
Materials – silver, gold, iron, metals
Colors – whites, silvers, golds, pastels
Featured Project by Eco Minded Solutions
This artistic retreat with a modern minimalist style incorporates many elements of Feng Shui in our landscape design that is colorful, distinct, and perfect for a professional artist – with a wonderful balance of textures in this project.
Feng Shui Tips to Inspire Your Designs
View our short list of tips below for suggestions on how you can add the principles of Feng Shui into each location of your home.
Landscape / Entrances Feng Shui Tips
Make every entrance to your home bold and inviting so that guests know where to enter. In Feng Shui, a statue or water feature near the entrance can act as a “greeter.”
Remember to create a clear pathway that is well lit. As this is the most visited location of your home, be sure that plants around the entrance are evergreen.
A balance of textures help to balance your outdoor environment with functional elements that are warm and inviting.
Living Room Feng Shui Tips
The living room is a place of comfort, relaxation, and, sometimes, socializing. Pick soft furniture so that you can restore yourself from a hard day’s work.
Bedroom Feng Shui Tips
It’s important that the bed is placed in a command position with enough room on each side to walk comfortably. The bed should be as far away from the door as possible, while still being able to see the door while reclining.
A headboard is recommended for stability but a footboard can be a block to movement. To create romance, flesh tones with fire colors are ideal. Hide electronics for optimal sleep.
Bathroom Feng Shui Tips
Good Feng Shui declares that you should always keep the toilet seat down to prevent Qi from escaping the home. Add earth and fire elements to combat the strong water element in here.
Large mirrors will help the negative bathroom energy “disappear.” This space is especially important to keep clean and clutter free.
Kitchen Feng Shui Tips
When you are considering your kitchen design, make sure you can see the entrance of the kitchen from where you are cooking. Don’t worry if you can’t, just put a mirror to help you out.
No matter how small the kitchen, seating should be added (it’s practical too!). Store as many kitchen utilities out of sight as possible, especially knives.
In a Feng Shui dining room, an oval table is recommended. Soft chairs will allow your guests to feel comfortable while eating.
Reds and yellows are great for increasing appetite in this room – that is – if you don’t have too long of a wait before dinner is served!
Feng Shui Is Just One Element of Design
When designing your home with Feng Shui in mind, there is a lot to consider.
If you follow some of the basic principles in this article, you will be ahead of the curve in your design research. Feng Shui is just one piece of the pie, and there are a lot more designs to explore.
Here are some related articles to keep you going on your full journey for design inspiration.
- Transitional Spaces – Trendy Design Style for San Diego
- Benefits of Simultaneous Indoor & Outdoor Design
- Remodel To Look Like San Diego
- Family-Friendly Design Ideas