The recent celebration of Chinese New Year ushered in the Year of the Dog. The dog is an animal known for it’s loyalty, faithfulness and, especially, it’s ability to remain perfectly happy and content spending time at home with it’s family. In the spirit of Chinese New Year, here are some ancient Chinese feng shui home tips to help you remain happy and content at home by creating a perfectly peaceful and prosperous space.
What is feng shui?
Feng shui is an ancient Chinese art. The words literally mean “wind water,” which are associated with good luck, and good health. Most people will say that a home that has been “feng shui’d” feels more peaceful and harmonious.
To increase the amount of good vibes in your home, follow these five easy feng shui home decor tips for a lucky, prosperous Year of the Dog.
1. Declutter your home
When decluttering your home, a good rule of thumb is to minimize the amount of objects that collect dust. Image: Oishi Architect
The single most important objective in creating feng shui is allowing for the flow of good energy, or chi, throughout your home. Chi brings good health, wealth and luck.
Decluttering must be thorough—simply hiding your stuff won’t cut it. Items under the furniture, overloaded bookcases and closets, and outdated or broken items all affect chi flow. It’s time to clear out closets, the space under the bed and all cabinets and shelves. Keep only the items you love—or ones that have special meaning—and discard or donate the old and unused.
2. Get air and light flowing throughout
Lots of windows let natural light shine in, and retractable doors circulate air. Image: Klopf Architecture
To ensure the constant flow of good energy throughout the home, wind (air) and light must move as well. You’ve decluttered your home in step one, making it easier for energy to flow. Now open the windows to increase air flow. Maximize light movement by keeping all glass, mirrors and windows clean. Have a dark corner or space that needs a little brightening? Add a lamp to illuminate the spot, or place a mirror to reflect light from a different spot.
3. Add plants
A live plant attracts good chi energy in this contemporary feng shui kitchen. Image: 82 Design
Air flow is important in feng shui, but the air must be pure. Plants filter the air, creating a healthier, cleaner environment. Plants also attract vibrant chi energy due to their life force. As long as the plants are kept healthy, you’re attracting good energy.
Some plants are better for feng shui than others. In fact, some plants, like cactus, are considered bad feng shui, because they lack the need for water (water is like wealth), or they’re spiky and “unfriendly.”
Here’s a list of some of the best (and luckiest) plants you can invite into your space. Most of these plants are low-maintenance, and do very well indoors:
- Lucky Bamboo
- Peace Lily
- Rubber Plant
- English Ivy
- Boston Fern
- Spider Plant
4. Add more of your favorite colors to activate the energy associated with them
Colors play a very important role in feng shui; add them through wall art, decorative objects or paint.
Here’s a general list of what each color activates:
- Red: luck and wealth
- Orange: happiness and fun
- Yellow: mental stimulation, power
- Green: peace, balance, healing
- Blue: calmness, communication, spirtuality
- Purple: wealth, high spirituality
- White: cleansing and purity
- Black: power, especially when paired with red
- Brown: nurturing
5. Go for Yin and Yang
Yin and Yang elements shown in this living room include black and white accents and boxy furniture paired with rounded edge items. Image: Maurizio Giovannoni
Feng shui followers believe that everything is composed of two opposing but connected forces: Yin (feminine) and Yang (masculine). It’s the balance of forces such as dark and light, or night and day; one cannot exist without the other. When decorating, create balance by applying this concept to your home.
These are just the basics of feng shui; there’s much more to the art and science, including directions, numbers, elements and more. Getting started with these 5 tips should be a good start; you should feel the difference in your space in no time!
Adding some feng shui to your home? Leave a comment, and let us know how it goes!
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