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Posts Tagged Decorating

Living Room Feng Shui – Bring New Life to Your Living Room

Living RoomBy Jessica Hoelzel

What room in our homes do we not “live in”? All rooms are for living, right?

Ironically, living rooms can be one of the rooms with the least life. The living room, and formal living rooms in particular, have gone out of favor. With an inclination for casual lifestyle and entertainment, families have gravitated towards family rooms and rec rooms – places to watch TV, movies, or play games.

Living rooms have come to feel “stuffy” and go unused. With more space of high value to homeowners, leaving an entire room neglected does not seem wise. From a feng shui perspective, having a room in your home with no life is not wise either. Depending on where that room falls in your home’s bagua, the lack of life (or chi) could be having adverse effects on your life. And especially if it’s the first thing seen upon walking in the door.

If you’re not using your living room, the question is, why? Could it be a place you’d enjoy spending time in? If so, it’s well worth the effort to make it a place that calls you in.

Here are some ways to make the living room more inviting and functional:

  • Create a good flow. Place a table behind the sofa if it backs up to the entrance.
  • Make it homey. Add softness with rugs, throws blankets and pillows.
  • Add some personality. Display artwork and things with special meaning.
  • Bring life to it. Have plants, and décor with lively patterns for visual interest.
  • Create a reason to go in. Lay out magazines or stacks of interesting books; add music.
  • Make it suitable for entertaining. Add a coffee table with a purposeful tray, or a handy bar cart.
  • Set the stage for conversation. Group furniture at 90 degree angles, or around the fireplace.

If, after careful consideration, you’ve determined that a living room is just not a space that makes sense for your family’s lifestyle, is there something else you’re in dire need of? Maybe it would make sense to transform it into something new. With intention, it could go from unused (dead) space to a place of energy and life. Maybe a home office, playroom, music room, or library? You decide.

Using Musical Instruments to Adjust Feng Shui

musical instrumentBy Carole Hyder

A musical instrument can be a very effective and inspiring Feng Shui adjustment if used with intention. Certainly if someone is a musician, their instrument will hold a lot of meaning for them and remind them of the joy and creative satisfaction they get from playing. Having a reminder of a skill, talent, and/or fascination with a particular aspect of music can go a long way in supporting creativity.

However, whether you know how to play an instrument or not, it could still be a unique and effective Feng Shui adjustment. Think about what you want to bring into your life and see if any of these metaphors resonate appropriately and then, either hang the actual instrument or a poster or picture of it in a place where you’ll see it.

  • You want to feel lighter and less weighted down, perhaps alleviating some tendencies toward depression. Flutes or recorders can offer a lilting reminder of this intention.
  • You feel the need to be more grounded and centered. A picture of a bass drum or a tuba or a taiku drum will speak to that core value.
  • You want to get some forward momentum in your life. Every marching band is inspired by sounds from the brass section—-trumpets, trombones, coronets would all work to create the fast movement you may be searching for.
  • You want more stability and peace in your life. A stringed instrument can provide the kind of soothing qualities you need, most specifically a harp.

I worked with a doctor who was assigned a new office and wanted to make it a balanced space. In the course of our conversation he mentioned that he used to play trumpet—-he even showed me pictures of himself as a young man playing in a band. He was proud of this time in his life but had happily relegated his trumpet-playing to occasional moments in the privacy of his home. I suggested he find some way to represent that aspect of himself. He found a large abstract oil painting of a trumpet, hung it in his office and was inspired every single day. Plus it offered up some great conversations with patients and staff.

Musical instruments can definitely be used as a Feng Shui adjustment, however, as with any Feng Shui adjustment, the instrument needs to speak to you in a positive, creative and intentional way.

What’s on YOUR Walls? The Art of Feng Shui

Frames of rooster placed above the fireplaceBy Carole Hyder

Everything in your environment—-home or office—-can have an impact on your outlook whether you may be conscious of its effect or not. It goes without saying that the artwork you hang on your walls is not exempt from providing this same influence.

There are some definite Feng Shui guidelines when placing artwork in your space that can empower both you and your art. It’s obvious you should love the artwork you display and you should continue to be inspired by its presence. If not, remove it, sell it or give it away. If you and your partner/spouse cannot agree on a piece of art that is jointly owned (one loves it; the other does not), take steps to place the artwork where the one who loves it can truly enjoy its message and the other doesn’t have to see it on a regular basis.

Here are some other Feng Shui “rules” for assessing your artwork:

  1. Have restful art in the bedroom (florals, pastoral landscapes, calming colors);
  2. Have food-related or farm-related art in the kitchen and eating areas (fruit, farming scenes, agricultural themes). Images or colors that support health are appropriate here.
  3. Your daring, innovative and controversial art is nicely positioned in public spaces such as the living room or family room.
  4. Scenes that depict warring factions, such as those depicted in mythology, must be carefully positioned so their conflict doesn’t play out in some way in your life.

Whatever artwork you may have on your walls, make sure it still inspires you and speaks to who you are. More importantly, make sure it reflects where you are heading; otherwise, it’s holding you back. If you’ve had the same artwork on your walls for many years, ask yourself if you still love it and if it still fits with your goals. Or perhaps it’s time for a new vision. Let your space help you move forward in perceptive, subtle and artful ways.

Creating Calm During the Holidays: A Feng Shui Guide

Christmas Table DecorationBy Lisa Janusz

It always throws me off to see holiday decorations out so early. I am one of those that longs for the days of yore when they didn’t come out until the day after Thanksgiving. Now stores are stocking them before Halloween! It seems to push the frantic-ness of the season forward – resulting in energy that impacts us longer.

Even if it’s your “favorite time of year,” the hustle and bustle can be overwhelming. Luckily Feng Shui can help with that! You can use some basic principles to guide your décor this holiday season.

  • Use decorations you love. No matter what time of the year it is, the principle is the same: if you don’t love it or use it, release it. Every year I go through my decorations. In addition to veering away from red and green, I’ve also seen my tastes change over the years. Of course I still keep some sentimental decorations, but I’ve gotten pretty ruthless in letting things go.
  • Use decorations that align with the “feeling” that you want around you. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that people start adding fire-y décor (candles, lights, the color red) to their spaces, in addition to adding MORE stuff, and they start to feel overwhelmed. What surrounds us affects us. This year start by asking, “How do I want my home to feel?” To calm your space, think about paring down what you put on display. Also try adding a few unsaturated colors to balance the saturation of the reds, greens, and blues that typically dominate.
  • Lastly – and maybe most importantly – create a sacred space to support you. Keep one or more rooms (like your bedroom) free of seasonal decorations. Set up a place that is just for you to relax. This could be away from the décor, or it might within it. I like sitting in our living room with the only sources of light being the Christmas tree and a few candles. The active energy of those is nicely balanced by the darkness and quietness of the night. It becomes a time to reflect, relax, enjoy and be grateful.

The holidays can bring with them a range of emotions – uplifting and challenging. So…go forth, take charge and create a space to help you through what may (or may not) be your “favorite time of year.”

Looking for more holiday decorating tips? Listen to our recorded call from last year. Just register here to get access.

Adding Some New Energy

Lisa posted about changing her pillow covers. With Feng Shui we know that small changes can reap big results…but in this case, it’s just an energetic shift bringing some renewed energy.

group-after

If you want to see the before and after pics: http://www.inspirechi.com/pillow-talk/

 

Seeing Red? Feeling Blue? Tickled Pink? Feng Shui Color Suggestions

white chair red wallPerhaps one of the questions I get asked more than any other is “What color should I paint the (fill in name of room here)?” It goes without saying that a person who is integrating Feng Shui into their space is already on board with energy and intention, as well as the basics of Feng Shui principles. They want to get it right in terms of setting up their space to reflect their ideal life. That includes their choice of colors.

There are some Feng Shui “rules” that determine a color that should be used in a room or an area based on that room’s position in the overall layout. This can be a help to those who want to assure a Feng Shui alignment on this level:

  • Partnership area – Pink
  • Creativity & Children area – White
  • Helpful People area – Gray
  • Career area – Black
  • Knowledge area – Blue
  • Family area – Green
  • Wealth area – Purple
  • Fame & Reputation area – Red

red candlesThe suggested colors come with a fair amount of lee-way because there is no specific tone or intensity required. For instance, if the area in question is in the Family area where the color green is recommended, this could be a very soft green, a dark forest green, something in the mint tone or have a more sage feel to it. There is no one right green. Likewise, the Fame & Reputation area could be enhanced with a dark red, a blue-red, something with more purple or jewel tones in it. Personal preference is the guiding choice.

Additionally, there could be a small representation of the color and it would still be an effective Feng Shui adjustment. If your intention was to activate your Career area, a small black pillow might be all you want in this area. Or perhaps you would add some artwork with a small amount of black in it or with a black frame to address your career issues. If the specified color isn’t one of your favorites, adding a small amount may be the way to address the problem.

That said, you may still object to having the smallest hint of a color, let alone painting an entire area the designated color, because you simply don’t like it. It may not align with the other decorative items you have in that space. Well, then, here’s the new rule: Use whatever color you love. It’s pretty simple—-check in with your own preferences, find a color that makes your heart sing, and your Feng Shui will be right in line with your goals. Use the rules as a guide first and adjust accordingly if need be. This is, after all, your home and you want it to show your true colors.

CH-15-twitterBy Carole Hyder

Wind & Water School of Feng Shui Founder, Faculty and International Feng Shui Expert

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