Feng Shui, pronounced fung shway, translates to ‘wind and water’ and is an ancient Chinese art form based around placement of objects that relate to the elements of Feng Shui. Feng Shui is about enhancing the flow of chi, the universal energy flow, in order to help create a harmonious environment that ultimately is believed to benefit ones happiness, health and wealth.
In its most simplistic form, Feng Shui can be viewed as a decorating style that if applied, is thought to positively affect our surroundings.
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There are five elements in Feng Shui - Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. In order to help create positive chi and balance, have a look at the objects in your rooms that relate to these elements so as to help personalise your space. Think about your home and its layout in terms of how the chi, or energy, may be flowing around the space. How balanced is this movement? Its believed energy flow can be stagnant in areas where there is lots of clutter – think home desks overflowing with paperwork or wardrobes filled to the brim, the doors almost bursting at the hinges. Or the opposite, energy moving speedily through long narrow hallways, up straight staircases or from the garden path straight to the front door. This inbalance of energy flow if adopting Feng Shui principals is thought to lead to possible financial concerns, health alarms and negative worries.
So, perhaps it’s time to give your home a quick once over and see how you may be able to create a more harmonious living environment. We take a look at the five elements in Feng Shui and how you can incorporate these into your home.
The element of wood is thought to evoke creativity and represent strength, growth and intuition. As such, if you have a room that consists of too much wood, you may be experiencing emotions such as stubbornness, a decline in creativeness and a general lack of motivation. To incorporate wood into you interior, think of objects that resemble trees and branches or incorporate the material through timber flooring, timber wall tiles, timber furniture, timber carved sculptures, floral arrangements with sticks and branches or cotton items like bed-linen, cushions or table-linen.
Fire, as an element in design, can help boost articulateness, motivation, passion and confidence. If your room lacks fire, this may result in low self-esteem, an absence of compassion and a generally negative attitude. On the other hand, incorporating too much of the fire element into your interior design may result in aggression, irritability and thoughtlessness. Decorative candles, fireplaces, natural sunlight and incorporating rich tones of reds in decor are the perfect solution for capturing the element of fire in a room.
It's probably of no surprise that the earth element brings a feeling of balance, grounding and stability. Therefore, if their is an abundance of this element, one can feel agitated, erratic and be unreliable. Minimal use of the earth element in your interior can make one feel unfocused, have low motivation and feel sluggish and lethargic. The element of earth can be seamlessly incorporated into your interior design styling through using items such as stacked stone, carved stone objects, pottery and feature wallpaper with landscape imagery.
Metal is thought to affect ones mental clarity and focus. Too much metal in a design can result in speaking before thinking, disorganisation and a feeling of being easily overwhelmed. Too little, and it's thought to evoke a sense of over cautiousness and lack of ability to speak up. Incorporating metal into your interior can be easily achieved through door handles, photo frames, featured walls of pressed metal, furniture made from metals, tapware and using colours such as gold, silver and rust.
The element of water is closely related to spirituality and emotions and when balance is achieved in your design, it can bring about perceptiveness, inspiration and wisdom. Too much water and one can feel a sense of emotional drowning and, too little, one may lack sympathy and feel isolated and stressed. Water features, fish tanks, photographs of the ocean, rivers or lakes and aqua and teal colour schemes are all lovely ways to incorporate the water element into your design.
We hope this brief overview of Feng Shui has inspired you to look at your interior with a different perspective and perhaps look at ways of how you may create a harmonious, balanced interior by incorporating the five elements of wood, fire, metal, earth and water.