I stumbled across this great picture with numbers for the different areas of the home and it inspired me to do a walk-through (by number) of the different areas of your home. The numbers in the picture are a bit random, but it is a fun way to present some quick tips on how you can optimize each area. Ready, here goes!
1. Bathroom: Don’t believe what you may hear about the bathroom in feng shui. Your money does NOT flow out your drains or your toilet! That is nonsense! In order to have a comfortable bathroom, choose warm earth tone colors and add fluffy, soft towels for added comfort.
2. Garage: For many of us, the garage is our first impression when we return home. Keep it neat and organized. Opt for closed cabinets to store items to give a sense of peace when the garage door goes up instead of chaos.
3. Bedroom: Make sure to position your bed so that you have a clear view of the door instead of being directly in-line with the door. You will relax better knowing that you can easily see when someone enters the room.
4. Kitchen: Put the knife block away! Even the police department agrees with this old feng shui adage. If someone should break into your home and they are unarmed, they know right where to go if you should startle them. Place the knife block in a cupboard, or buy a knife drawer organizer to keep these sharp instruments out of view and harm’s way.
5. Living Rooms, Great Rooms, and Family Rooms: Avoid placing furniture in confrontation position (as indicated in the picture). Furniture placed directly opposite one another does not feel relaxing. Instead, either splay the furniture out in a “V” or “L” shape so people can easily see each other and converse, but not feel that they are in direct alignment with each other.
6. Back to the Bedroom (on the nightstand): Never sleep with anything electrical closer than three feet from your head while you are lying down. If placed too close, you (particularly your head) will be exposed to electromagnetic energy from clock radios, telephones, and other electronic devices for hours at a time. More and more studies are concluding that longterm exposure to electromagnetic fields can lead to all sorts of health issues. Better safe than sorry!
7. Plants: Humans feel nurtured when plants are included in their homes and offices. Just be sure to avoid plants with spikes, thorns, or very pointy leaves in order for the space to feel optimal.
8. Home Office: If you need to have an office in your home, be sure to designate it as its own space. If the home office serves double duty as a guest room, never include a bed in there. That large piece of furniture places more importance on the room’s role as a bedroom rather than a place where work gets done. Instead, use sofa beds, Murphy beds, or blow-up beds for guests when the need arises. The rest of the time your home office will be exactly that; an office.
9. Dining Room: When possible, a round table is the best choice for a dining table. This way all the guests can see one another and there is no hierarchy or “head” of the table. Everyone will enjoy their meal and the conversation better when they can see each other and be seated in a way that allows them to feel equal. An added bonus is your children will share about their day more readily around a round table than a rectangle shaped one.
10. Hallways: Place artwork on only one side of a narrow hallway to keep the hall from feeling even narrower than it already is. Avoid placing a mirror at the end of a long hallway as you will be making the long hallway appear even longer.
11. Main Entry: The main entry is the first impression of the home. It should be well-lit and free of clutter.
12. Basements and Crawlspaces: The most important thing to consider in these areas is whether or not there are any environmental dangers such as dampness, black mold, mildew or radon gas. If you suspect any of these conditions, call and expert and have your home checked. You and your family’s health depend on it!
13. Outdoor Seating Areas: The more comfortable you make this area, the more you’ll use it. Umbrellas and awnings keep things cool on a hot day, and attractive, comfortable patio furniture will help you make the most of this outdoor “room” for socializing and entertaining.
14. Powder Rooms: These rooms have similar requirements as a full bathroom, however they are also smaller and we spend less time in them than bathrooms with tubs and showers. Therefore, if you want to make a bold color or decor statement in your home, the powder room is the place to do it! Wild colors, prints, and themes in a power room make this little room fun and interesting without being tiresome. Look on-line for some really fun power room decorating ideas.
15. Staircases: Contrary to what you may have heard, your money will NOT flow down the stairs and out the door if your stairs directly face your front door. To make the staircase feel safer and more comfortable, avoid cascading artwork on the wall leading down the stairs. There isn’t enough room to step back and admire the art, it can make the stairwell feel smaller, and it is also uncomfortable to be walking up or down the stairs and feel as if you might knock something off the wall. Leave the side walls of the stairs blank and save the artwork for the landing.
16. Windows: Drapes, drape panels, and textured blinds will add interest to any window while softening the feel of a room. Even if you never close the drapes, having color around the edge of the window “frames” the view and makes both the room and the view from the window, more attractive and interesting.
17. Artwork: Choose artwork carefully. All images should be positive and uplifting. If you have difficulty finding the right piece, web sites like art.com are great resources. Also, if you are single, try to find artwork with images of pairs of things (or people) to reinforce the subliminal message of partnership.
18. Attics and Storage Areas: Keep clutter organized and to a minimum. Clutter is anything you don’t want, love, need, or use. Clutter can stagnate our lives and deplete our energy. Sure, no one enjoys clearing out clutter, but the feeling of accomplishment and “lightness” you experience after doing so is well worth the effort!
19. Sunlight: Human beings need sunlight in order to produce hormones that keep us happy and balanced. Be sure to let sunlight into the home through windows and skylights. The sun’s radiation also has a rejuvenating effect on the energy of the home. If you’re worried about your furniture fading, solar shades will let the light in without the harmful UV rays that cause furniture to fade or the home to heat up.
20. Fireplaces: Fireplaces add charm and ambiance to any home. Be sure to keep the chimney clean and free of dangerous build ups, and when possible use clean fuel like gas instead of polluting the environment with carbon from burning wood and prefabricated logs.
That’s the quick rundown. I hope you found a treasure or two in all these suggestions. For many, many more ideas, pick up a copy of my best-selling book, Feng Shui that Makes Sense: Easy Ways to Create a Home that FEELS as Good as it Looks. Enjoy!!
Copyright 2012 Cathleen McCandless, All Rights Reserved. No material may be copied without written permission from the author.