Japanese-inspired interiors, Zen-style homes and amazing garden retreats that borrow generously from Asian motifs; contemporary design is quickly discovering the many advantages of looking towards the East. We’ve previously discussed the way modern life is becoming a touch too hectic and monotonous for most of us, and how every new trend in interior design seems to be an effort to escape this never-ending cycle. From opening up the view to bring in natural goodness to creating spa-like bathrooms at home, all the trends seem to be pointing one way. And the growing popularity of Feng Shui is simply added proof!
Today we delve into Feng Shui tips for the living room, which promise to improve the overall ambiance of your home while transforming your lifestyle. Easy to incorporate and aesthetically pleasing, Feng Shui actually elevates and enhances the existing theme of your home without demanding too many renovations or revamps.
1. Organize with Less
No matter which room of the house it is, the basic principles of Feng Shui remain constant, and it doesn’t really take a rocket scientist to figure out that the best way to begin is by de-cluttering the space. With the living room, the idea is to keep only what you love and ensure that there is a coherent style and pattern to decorating. With the growing popularity of open floor plans, area rugs, raised floors and false ceilings have become twice as important. If the living room seems far too cluttered, it is time to get ruthless with decorating!
Weapons are generally associated with negative energy, so think twice before you have those big, bad hunting rifles hanging above the fireplace! Obviously, vintage swords and decor with sharp edges are also unwanted in the living room. (Or in any room!)
2. It All Starts at the Door!
The trend of painting the door in a bold color might be new in the West, but bright and brilliant doors have been making a bold statement in the Far East for a long time now. Classic Feng Shui suggests the color of the front door depends on the direction it is facing. Generally green is a fine option if you have a house facing east, while blues are perfect for the southeast-facing home. Red generally works well for homes with a south-facing entrance, while black and dark purple are suggested for the north-facing doors.
by Stephanie Wiley Photography
by Glenn Layton Homes
Obviously there are other intricate elements to consider here, but even if you want another bold shade, it is best to keep in mind what Feng Shui suggests and incorporate a color of your choice. It definitely is the time to do away with boring white!
by RW Anderson Homes
by MAGDALENA & MGS Architecture
3. Television and the Couch
Once you have the color of the door picked, it is time to get down to the placement of the decor in the living room. The large couch or section of chairs in the living room that is the focal point of the room must always face toward the entrance. It is also a good idea to place the couch as close to the wall as possible. This design scheme not only conforms to the principles of Feng Shui, it’s also defined by our evolutionary instincts! We always want to sit in a ‘position of empowerment’ where we are in control of the surroundings.
by Erika Lam
The placement of the television is not so much about where it goes, but is more about how well you can conceal it when not in use. A good idea is to have a separate TV room, which makes the living room a hub of social activity and interaction. If you cannot afford to dedicate an exclusive room to the television, then hide the TV behind sliding doors to make the living room more Feng Shui-friendly.
by DiGiacomo Homes & Renovation
by Tom Stringer Design Partners
4. Colors and Styles
It is not very often that you see living rooms with striking patterns and overtly bold colors. If you have a living space with neutral hues, a few pops of bright color here and there and cozy decor, then you already have things spot on! Feng Shui suggests that the living room is a place of Yin and hence it is best to create a calming and relaxed atmosphere. A balance of elements is another key aspect in creating this perfect, harmonious atmosphere. Feng Shui places great emphasis on bringing together the five elements of nature in every setting.
by The Works
While fire, earth, water metal and wood make up the five elements, you cannot always take them too literally. For instance, glass is a water element, and placing a stylish mirror near a fireplace is the ideal way to balance fire and water! Brick and ceramics can be used to usher in the earth element, while natural stone and metallic accents are an ideal way to give the room the hint of metal it needs.
by Bruce Palmer Coastal Design
by Jennifer Worts Design
5. A Line between Heaven and Earth!
One of the biggest problems with contemporary living rooms and Feng Shui is the way in which they are connected with the rest of the house. With an open floor plan and possibly high ceilings, the positive energy moves upwards and away from the living area. Add a few smart dividers between each area of the open floor plan to give the living room a better definition. Glass partitions or even traditional shoji screen-style dividers work well. If you have a really high ceiling, then create the illusion of a room with a lower ceiling by placing wall art, photographs and accessories at a lower eye level.
by Sarah Natsumi Moore
by Going Home To Roost
6. Lighting and the Flow of Energy
Speaking of high ceilings, another modern trend is to showcase heavy, exposed wooden beams in the living room to drive home a rustic, cabin style. While heavy beams hanging above you head never makes for good Feng Shui, we are not going to ask you to abandon this style either. Instead use string lights and multiple layers of additional ambient lighting to give these beams a lighter and brighter touch! Lighting is a key aspect of good Feng Shui in any room. Avoid dark corners and shadows at all cost, and turn mirrors to create additional visual space along with better illumination of the room.
For those looking to give their entire home a Feng Shui makeover, check out this cool guide that we showcased earlier. And for those trying to give their bedroom a Feng Shui touch, here is Kate with some useful tips. Enjoy!