Feng shui is making a postmillennial comeback. Real estate markets are now revealing the impact of globalization on interior design. As East meets West, style sensibilities are becoming hybridized and demand for culturally aware design is rapidly growing.
If we take into consideration the booming green and wellness movements that are often directly inspired by Eastern practice, feng shui is quickly becoming a ‘must’ in every design professional’s repertoire.
Feng shui is now mainstream
While the various schools of this Ancient Eastern philosophy are complex and multifaceted, at its core, feng shui is about balance. Meaning “wind-water” in English, feng shui is governed by the premise that combining the elements of nature will create positive energy in the private sphere of the home. Now who wouldn’t like to know how to boost productivity and auspiciousness?
However, we’ve long said goodbye to days when adhering to the principles of feng shui meant a complete overhaul of a client’s space. How you incorporate these elements into your design is a fluid process. Relax your rigid approach, and allow design decisions to take on more of a holistic dimension.
Organization and well-being are linked
Negotiating the delicate balance between doing your job as a design professional and making sure you don’t alienate your clients can be difficult in an intensely personal space such as the home. While you can most likely imagine the finished product as soon as you map out a floor plan, clients may be more reluctant to let go off possessions they have an emotional attachment to—or maybe they just find it difficult to let go of things they once considered an investment.
Help deliver the tough love that organizational experts must sometimes employ by explaining how clutter can negatively affect a space. Imparting this basic tenet of feng shui will help your clients understand why getting rid of unnecessary items is a healthy process.
Interior design is a diverse market
Being knowledgeable of non-Western design philosophies will give your business an edge. An increasingly globalized world means you should be comfortable working with different cultural traditions. Your business can attract entirely new client bases if you see cultural difference as a welcome challenge and work to meet shifting demands.
It’s important to know that feng shui is not a religious practice. Many clients like to know their design professional has experience working with different approaches to style. Whether finding a home that adheres to feng shui is a dealbreaker for potential clients or not, staying up-to-date on different demands is a vital part of what being an expert in design means.
Feng shui goes hand in hand with green design
Now more than ever clients are interested in the connection between home and wellbeing. Feng shui taps into this holistic relationship between human and natural environment, making it ideal for homeowners who want to go ‘green’ within their home. By incorporating principles of feng shui, you can guide your clients to design elements that minimize environmental impact and enhance the health-home connection. For example, select items that are environmentally friendly: energy efficient appliances, natural fiber carpets, and sustainable wood products.
Showcase other natural elements like water fountains, or lush plants that will beautify and purify a space. Other décor pieces should focus on bringing in light and clarity. These can range from a beautiful crystal chandelier to minimalist style inspired mirrors. The best part? Clients can transition into feng shui design. Practice sustainable design by restyling older furniture. So out with the old and in with newish!
Color can be therapeutic
Colour plays a distinct role in feng shui. According to color psychology, there is a direct correlation between mood and the experience of color. Feng shui aims to cultivate this connection with paint choices. For example, a strong red is considered aggressive, while a yellow is considered a color that will boost productivity. Because the principles of feng shui take into account that colour is highly subjective, paint choices don’t have to be steered by ephemeral trends. Instead, draw design insight directly from your clients by determining exactly what colors inspire them.
Don’t be misled by the idea that feng shui is only about subdued earth tones. While greens are generally regarded as calming, this is entirely contingent upon shade. A lime green is more likely to inspire energy than soothe the senses! In other words, you can be daring with inspired color choices! So pair complimentary colors for visual impact and emotional wellbeing.
Learn how to simplify with accessories
According to feng shui, every object in a room has intention. This isn’t really quite that different from taking inventory of a room. Just like optimizing the layout and functionality of a space is an innate part of what you do as a design professional, feng shui is all about improving the flow of a home. Feng shui accomplishes balance by integrating décor that both simplifies and unites design elements. For example, accessories might be grouped by theme or color. A crystal frame may be paired with crystal votive candleholders by virtue of their shared natural elements.
Creating harmony through cohesive design can be accomplished through a range of different ways. Transform a main architectural element into a focal point, and showcase your client’s best pieces with open shelving. Because numbers are auspicious in feng shui, a flip can simply mean including five gorgeous pillows instead of an even number. Contrary to the popular misconception that feng shui is a rigid practice, there is a lot of room for versatility in terms of how you play with your signature style.
Inspire mindfulness in the details
As a design professional, you already understand the significance that home environment has on quality of life. Incorporating elements of feng shui will allow you to become even more conscious of these details. The essential ‘chi’ of feng shui is all about movement. Because the energy of a room is constantly fluctuating, balance is an ongoing effort. Keeping the energy of a room in check can be as simple as fixing a squeaky doorknob!
Feng shui isn’t a newfangled trend. It is a fresh way of looking at the space around you and enhancing its purpose and functionality. Clients will certainly appreciate that you don’t overlook the small but meaningful components of their home.