If you’re anything like us, January started off with the best of intentions, but by February you’re running low on steam. So to inspire you to rethink your home and channel your inner organizer, we’ve asked Vallerie Drorbaugh, Style Manager for The Foundary (an awesome flash sale home site) to share with us some of her expert tips and some shopping advice for creating the best “chi” in your home.
THENEST: What is feng shui & why is it important?
Vallerie Drorbaugh: Feng-shui is the art of arranging furniture and objects to create and promote positive energy, or "chi", in the space. There are five elements essential to feng shui: fire, wood, metal, water, and earth. Most objects will have several elements within them, as each shape, color, and material is a variable.
TN: What types of pieces can provide good energy in your home?
VD: The simplest teaching is to clear any clutter from a space. Clutter represents stagnancy, and should be kept to a minimum to allow for opportunistic change.
To combat the clutter, use furniture pieces like cabinets and apothecary -style chests that provide storage and reduce clutter. And when all else fails, screens provide privacy and camouflage items that just can't be parted with.
TN: How can Nesties incorporate the five important elements in Feng Shui?
VD: Decorate with Plants: Plants are important in feng shui, as they purify the air and add living energy. They represent the wood element, which enhances creativity, strength, and flexibility. Bamboo plants are considered especially lucky. So are plants with rounded leaves or flowers.
Hang Mirrors: Mirrors are highly regarded and versatile in feng shui. Mirrors represent the water element, connected to the emotions, spirituality, and wisdom. They dispel negative energy, reflect upon areas unseen, and make a space seem larger. Placing a mirror outside of a bathroom can prevent positive energy from flowing down the drain. Use a mirror to illuminate an entryway if your space calls for seating to face the opposite direction. Mirrors can also be used to reflect natural light to shady areas, where negative energy can dwell.
Focus on Lighting: Lighting is representative of the fire element, tied to expressiveness, enthusiasm, and career. While best for good chi, natural light eventually diminishes. A variety of lighting options in each room allows for adjustment when the occasion calls for it. A mixture of ceiling fixtures, wall sconces, and floor and table lamps is an appropriate and multi-faceted solution. The fire element can also be achieved with candles, incense, and shades of red, purple, and strong yellow.
Accessorize with Clay: The earth element represents stability, order, balance, and physical strength. It can be satisfied with landscape art, clay figurines, and earthenware objects.
Incorporate metal: Metal helps to gain clarity, organization, and improved mental logic. This can be done with objects made of metals; objects in the color of white, grey, or silver; and objects in round or oval shapes. Metal vases, bowls, picture frames, and wall sculptures represent this element, as well as rocks and stones.
Want more tips? Check out this how-to feng shui your home slideshow.