What Is Feng Shui Decorating?

Karen Frazier
beautiful room with fireplace

When you decorate a home, workspace, room, or other space according to the principles of feng shui, it means you chose colors, decor, and placement of furniture and other decorative items in a way that optimizes the flow of chi, or energy. At the same time, using feng shui in decoration offers solutions for naturally occurring inauspicious placements that generate sha chi, or negative energy. The result is a home or space that functions well energetically, creating the potential for optimal conditions in life.

1. Create Unimpeded Energy Flow

Your very first step in feng shui decorating is to make sure there is nothing impeding or hampering the flow of energy throughout your spaces. Therefore, one of the best things you can do as you begin feng shui decoration is to declutter and clean. When you remove excess clutter, dirt, and dust, it immediately improves energy flow because it creates new, unimpeded pathways for chi.

Eliminate both physical clutter and mental or emotional clutter. Get rid of items you don't love, objects that are broken, dead plants, and any objects that may bring bad memories or associations. Surround yourself with objects and colors you love and that make you happy.

2. Decide Which School of Feng Shui to Use

If you're new to decorating with feng shui, it can be confusing because there are different schools of feng shui, and each follows slightly separate principles. The two main schools include western (or black hat) and traditional. The western school outlines sectors of the home based on the front door facing in while the traditional school uses compass directions for object placement. Choose one of these and create decor according to that school of thought.

3. Get to Know the Bagua

Western Bagua
Western Bagua

One of the primary tools of feng shui is the bagua. A bagua is a map that outlines the sectors in each space or home. Each sector is associated with a different aspect of life (such as family, career, or prosperity), and you can appropriately place decorative items and use colors and materials that strengthen and support each of these areas. The bagua map you use depends on the school of feng shui you decide to follow.

4. Seek Balance and Harmony

Next, consider the principles of yin and yang in order to balance the energy of space. The goal is to place items appropriately and use colors and materials representing yin (which is receptive and feminine) and yang (which is active and masculine). For example, items with curving, fluid lines are evocative of yin while those with straight lines and sharp angles are evocative of yang energy. You can use the bagua to determine placement.

5. Place Decorative Elements Appropriately

You can also use the bagua to place colors and decor in appropriate sectors of a space in order to balance the energies of the five Taoist elements which are essential in feng shui design. These elements of wood, earth, fire, water, and metal, all generate specific energy and require appropriate placement in a home. Each element requires specific placement according to the bagua for the most auspicious energy, and various colors, items, and materials represent each of these elements (for example, a fish tank represents the element of water).

6. Attend to the Energy of Every Room

Each room in your home has specific energetic uses that can also benefit from feng shui. Therefore, when decorating using feng shui, you can go room by room to place appropriate objects to improve the energy of that space.

Feng Shui crystal ball

7. Counteract Negative Chi

There are some elements in a space you can't do much about, such as the direction your home faces or home layout issues that are a part of your house's structure, that may create inauspicious chi. While you cannot change these features, you can enlist feng shui cures and remedies to help counteract this energy.

Optimize the Energy of Your Space

Ultimately, the goal of feng shui decorating is to optimize how you arrange and decorate your living space in order to create balance and harmony while generating optimal chi flow. Feng shui is a powerful tool for creating positive energy in the spaces you live, work, and play that allows you to find balance and harmony in all aspects of your life.

What Is Feng Shui Decorating?