Feng Shui Decorating

The ancient Chinese art of Feng Shui (pronounced FUNG-schway) is making a comeback in the modern world. But is it really possible to change your attitude just by rearranging your living space?

Many people say yes. Feng Shui is an Asian philosophy that dates back some 5,000 years. Practitioners strive to find the proper arrangement of objects and furniture that will best suit your personality and lifestyle. The goal is to arrange a home in such a way as to maximize feelings of safety and comfort, which will, in turn, positively affect your health, attitude, even your level of success.

Feng Shui Decorating Basics
Traditional Feng Shui revolves around placement and symbolism. More contemporary Feng Shui also considers a number of psychological factors, including the use of color, aromatherapy, and air quality.

Like anything that’s been around for thousands of years, the practice of Feng Shui has a number of variations. While the ancient art is complex, many of the concepts appeal to common sense. For example, Feng Shui consultants say that clients achieve optimum Feng Shui by living in harmony with the earth. Change your decor to reflect the seasons, they say, and bring natural elements inside. Plants, for example, can have a calming effect. Annoying sounds, such as creaking doors and dripping faucets, can disrupt the ch'i (life force) of your home.

In addition, Feng Shui consultants say, people tend to feel uncomfortable--even unsafe--when their view is blocked. Does your house have any seats that do not allow guests to see who is entering the room, or that block their sense of what is taking place in another part of the house?

Optimum Feng Shui occurs when the life force (or ch’i) is permitted to move freely around the house. Clutter is an obstruction to this life force. Finding a place for clutter may be first on your agenda.

What to Expect from a Feng Shui Consultant
A consultant will locate the various energy centers of your home, make new arrangements, and use crystals, mirrors, and chimes to achieve certain effects. Before you call in a consultant, there are a few tricks you can try on your own.?

Feng Shui in the bedroom
Your bed should be positioned such that you have a clear view of the doorway. Your headboard should touch the wall, many practitioners say. And don’t place the bed against the window or your ch’i might escape.

Some Feng Shui experts point the head of the bed north to induce sound sleeping, but different headboard positions produce different effects. For example, a headboard pointing west can make one lazy, while a headboard pointing south is said to worsen family arguments.

Feng Shui in the Kitchen
The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in the home because of the link between food preparation and the nourishment of the body and spirit. Feng Shui practitioners believe, for example, that the flavor of food will change if the cook is startled, so they recommend placing a mirror nearby so you can see who is entering while you are busy at the stove.

Feng Shui in the Family Room
Attract more light in the family sector of your living space with crystals and mirrors. Position family room furniture so your guests face either south or east when sitting, and make sure no seats make guests stare at the wall.

Feng Shui in the Dining Room
Choose a round, oval, or octagonal dining room table, since angles on tables create shars (negative energy zones). Feng Shui practitioners also say that these rounded tables create a more welcoming environment.