When you’re undertaking a renovation or complete redesign of your home, there are a lot of things to consider. Maybe there were areas of the house that had become damaged or deteriorated, or you have to fulfill specific needs, such as constructing a home office or converting a room for the kids.
Many people have heard of feng shui, but unless you’re a practitioner, feng shui principles aren’t often considered when redesigning a home. To many, the practice smacks of superstition and pseudoscience. It doesn’t help that its image is wrapped in mysticism and esoteric terms.
However, a growing number of modern feng shui experts have made the practice more relatable to the layman. As it turns out, what you need is an understanding of space and how the layout of furniture and structures affects the flow of energy within the home. Here are some easy to grasp fundamentals you can apply to your home improvement.
The flow of energy begins just as you would typically enter the house – through the front door. Close your eyes and imagine energy flowing as you would naturally move through the house, from the entrance to exit. It tends to proceed out through the back door.
In feng shui, you don’t wish to completely obstruct the flow of energy, but you don’t want it to rush through the house too swiftly. Slowing it down and letting it linger is more desirable. It is similar to how abstract artworks on the eye and mind of the viewer, inviting them to wander and wonder instead of merely taking a glance and moving on.
For houses with multiple levels, watch the placement of stairs. These are portals that transport energy up and down the house, creating a sensation of flux and disturbance. If you have stairs ending directly at doors, it’s desirable to redesign your staircase so that the flow of energy becomes more natural, and each room retains its energy balance.
Here’s one area where common sense, interior design experts, and feng shui practitioners can all agree: our homes need to make good use of space, and that includes leaving more space empty than most of us currently do.
Although the philosophy and reasoning behind it are different for feng shui, the message is the same. Clutter in our houses is not a pleasant sight, and it obstructs energy. Many of us leave objects lying around that are related to our work or maybe artifacts of the past. It is essential to know when to let go of things that can have negative associations – or at least have a proper and organised place to store them away.
Position and balance
No one wants to have empty rooms, of course. You should have furniture, fixtures, art objects, and other elements that provide a variety of shape, colour, and texture to make things interesting. The key lies in achieving proper balance and positioning.
You might not incorporate the literal five elements of wood, earth, fire, water, and metal, but you can strike a right balance between staple materials such as wood, stone, and metal fixtures while introducing cool and warm colours with tiles, paintings, or other décor.
Like how graphic designers use white space, or composers use silence, the amount of space isn’t what matters. It’s how the space combines with the objects in your home that can generate harmony and interest.
You don’t need to go all-in on feng shui if you find it too mystical, but you can certainly borrow from its time-tested principles to create a beautiful sense of balance in your redesigned home.