Interior Style

How to master the layout of your home, according to Feng Shui

How to style your home to make it feel as good as it looks, according to an expertAccording to Feng Shui principles, adding curved furniture into your living space promotes a smooth flow of energy

The art of Feng Shui (pronounced fung shway) is an ancient Chinese practice with a history dating back 6000 years. It seeks to draw parallels between how we place certain objects around the home and your own personal well-being. A cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, if you will.

The philosophy looks to elements like how your space is lit, the colours present, materiality, function and flow. Internationally accredited Feng Shui master Jane Langof has been practicing the art for over 15 years, and works closely with clients to transform their spaces by integrating traditional Feng Shui practices with modern design principles.

“There is a growing preference among homeowners to create living spaces that are not only beautiful but also harmonious,” she explains. “There’s a strong desire for homes to be sanctuaries and Feng Shui’s principles of harmony and balance resonate with those seeking to turn their homes into places of comfort and stability.”

What are the rules of Feng Shui?

Feng Shui translates to “wind-water” in English, which reflects the main belief that when managed properly, the smooth flow of wind and water can bring harmony and balance to an environment. With this in mind, the practice of Feng Shui involves arranging objects within a living space to optimise this flow of energy and life force, known as ‘qi’ or ‘chi’, in order to promote health, prosperity and well-being.

An oval or round table is great for creating a smooth, gentle flow of qi (energy) around a dining area

Is lighting important to Feng Shui practice?

Lighting is very important in feng shui as it is one of the strongest manifestations of energy. Natural light promotes a positive flow, so keep curtains and blinds open throughout the day and use lamps to illuminate dark spaces. Candles are great for creating a calm and sensual energy in the bedroom. Good quality air is also important, so open windows to allow fresh air to flow throughout the house.

How can I Feng Shui my home?

To help guide you through how to apply Feng Shui to your home, we asked Jane to share a few of the basic dos and don’ts of Feng Shui in various spaces throughout your home.

1. The Entryway

First impressions absolutely count. In the practice of Feng Shui, your front door and entryway is known as the ‘Mouth of Chi’ and is where energy enters your space. When refreshing your home according to the practice, it’s a great place to start.

Do: Place a console table with artwork and a fresh vase of flowers or foliage near your door (but not blocking the entrance).

Don’t: Hang a mirror opposite your door as it is believed to reflect energies and opportunities back out.

Do: Make sure your door handle hardware is polished, the lights are bright and clean, and any plants right outside are lush and healthy.

Don’t: Ignore the colour you paint your door, as it can mean different things in Feng Shui. For example, red attracts recognition and abundance, while glossy black speaks to your career.

A console table at the entrance to your home is a great way to ground the space and style elements such as fresh flowers and artwork

2. The Kitchen

As the heart of the home, it should come as no surprise that according to Feng Shui principles, the kitchen is responsible for much of your health and vitality.

Do: Opt for neutral colours and natural materials like stone for your kitchen to offset the strong ‘fire’ element—representative of passion and anger—that comes from your stovetop.

Don’t: Position the kitchen in the middle of your home, as according to Feng Shui, it is believed to burn the ‘heart of the home’ and can indicate digestive illnesses.

Do: Use a plant, screen or some piece of furniture to block any view from the front door to the stovetop as it is believed to absorb any energy entering your home.

Don’t: Have your back to the entrance of the room as you cook as cooking in ‘the command position’ is believed to transfer positive attributes into the food you’re cooking and on to your family.

A clean and well-organised kitchen is a given in the practice of feng shui

3. The Living and Dining Room

As the communal hub of the home, the energy of your living and dining rooms has a lot to do with the way you interact with others in the home.

Do: Arrange your living room into a L or U shape to encourage communication and harmony in the home.

Don’t: Position your sofas directly across each other as it can create oppositional energy that can trigger arguments.

Do: Add curved furniture into your space to promote a smooth flow of energy. This extends to the dining table where a round table with an even number of chairs is best.

Don’t: Let clutter build up as a messy space can hinder the flow of positive energy, known as ‘qi’. Similarly, broken or unused items can carry negative energy and should be removed.

Round tables are encouraged in Feng Shui as they promote connection. These styles combine the circular shape with natural materials

4. The Bedroom

When it comes to our well-being, there is perhaps no room in the house more important than the bedroom. To avoid waking up on the wrong side of the bed, here are some things to consider.

Do: Position your bed against a solid wall without windows and diagonally opposite the door to promote protection and security in both love and life.

Don’t: Put a TV in your bedroom as this—and other tech devices—introduce yang energy which is active and lively and disrupts the peaceful and calming atmosphere.

Do: Incorporate soft colours such as muted pinks, grey and creams, and style things such as lamps in pairs.

Don’t: Store anything under the bed if you can help it as it can create blockages in your life.

A headboard is crucial in Feng Shui, particularly one that is upholstered or crafted from solid wood. This style is perfect with its neutral colours which promote serenity and calmness, while its soft curve ensures good energy flow around your room.

5. The Home Office

Post-pandemic, many of us have continued to work from home in some respect, dedicating an area within our homes as an office space. Set yourself up for success with these small adjustments.

Do: Position your office chair in a commanding position, with your back against a solid wall and your desk diagonally opposite the door.

Don’t: Work in a space without a window as this will stifle your creativity.

Do: Incorporate some indoor plants into your working space as they symbolise growth.

Don’t: Let your desk and drawers fill up with clutter and mess. Throw out anything finished, broken or damaged as it may carry negative energy.

Avoid sitting with your back to your home office entrance, to receive any opportunities that enter the door.

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