This article is taken from my July 2016 newsletter. All information in this article and the newsletter are copyright protected and may not be copied without written permission. To read the July Newsletter, please click here.
Most likely texture isn’t a subject you’ve thought a lot about, but can you imagine life without it? Nature is rich in texture. From the crevices and grooves of tree bark to the soft fur of a kitten, texture adds depth, interest, and variety to our lives.
I once worked with a client who was trying to sell her house and having no success. She had smooth marble floors, no rugs, leather furniture, glass tables with metal legs, and wood window blinds. There was not one surface in the main rooms of the house that was not smooth and sleek. Buyers were telling my client that the thing they didn’t like about the house is that it felt “cold”. My client didn’t understand why they were saying that or what to do about it. When I saw the way she chose to decorate her home, I could see immediately why it wasn’t selling. The explanation was simple. When there is an abundance of very smooth surfaces in a room (marble, glass, metal, leather), the room lacks texture and will often feel cold and unfriendly.
Remember that Feng Shui goes beyond how a space looks and focuses on how a space feels
. If you’ve read my book, Feng Shui that Makes Sense
, you’ll know that one of the most important aspects of creating good feng shui is to add materials, shapes, and images from nature to your living and working environments. By including a variety of textures indoors, you’ll be creating a space that will instinctively feel more relaxed and nurturing because texture is such an important aspect of the natural world.
To illustrate the role texture plays in creating a relaxing space, look at the living rooms pictured above. Both rooms are stark white, but evoke completely different feelings. The main difference between the two is that the living room on the bottom has a variety of textures, and the room on top does not. Completely smooth surfaces rarely exist in nature. Even bodies of water usually have ripples upon them. When a room has nothing but completely smooth surfaces it will tend to feel cold and uncomfortable because these conditions are simply not found abundantly in a natural setting. When texture is added to balance all the smooth surfaces, the room will instinctively feel better.
How can you bring more texture into your home and work spaces?
Here are ten easy tips to help you out.
1. Area rugs
Area rugs are a great way to balance the feeling in rooms with smooth floors. Textured rugs will warm up a space and have the added benefit of noise reduction.
Plants add texture to a room while at the same time creating a soothing presence. In fact, many varieties of houseplants have been shown to purify the air and reduce the effects of exposure to electromagnetic fields.
Throw pillows are an easy and inexpensive way to add texture and color to a room. Pillows with textured fabric can also be used to help balance the smooth surfaces of leather furniture, which sometimes feels cold.
Baskets add a lot of texture and warmth to a room. They make great storage options and some can even be used for wall decorations.
Like pillows, attractive throw blankets introduce texture and color into a space, and are great to have on hand for curling up with a good book.
6. Stones and Sea Shells
Stones and sea shells are beautiful additions to a room. They will add texture and are another way to bring natural elements indoors.
6. Window Treatment
Drapes, woven blinds and upholstered window panels add texture and interest to any room. If the window looks out on a great view, the window treatment can add interest and depth to the view, much as a mat does in a picture frame.
7. Wicker Furnishings
Like baskets, wicker furniture adds wonderful texture to a room. Wicker furniture can also be used to give a casual tropical feeling to a space.
Choose upholstery with interesting textures for chairs and couches. The variety of colors, patterns and textures is endless. If you love leather furniture, opt for leather that has texture rather than smooth to make the room feel warmer and more relaxing.
9. Wall Coverings
Everything from grass cloth to stone can be added to walls to add texture and warmth to a room. It is also popular to cover walls with reclaimed distressed wood for a more rustic feel. Rooms with texture on the walls often feel more relaxing. The pebbles on the powder room wall to the right add texture, warmth, and natural earth tones to the small space.
10. Lamp Shades
Lamp shades are an easy, simple way to bring in texture. The shades can be made from a variety of materials from paper to plastic. When the light shines through them in the evening it will highlight the textures in the lamp shade, creating visual interest and adding warmth to the room. Incidentally, please notice the distressed wood wall covering behind the lampshades in the picture to the left; illustrating the concept of textured wall coverings I mentioned in tip number 9 above.
Well, there you have it. Ten easy ways to bring texture and greater comfort and relaxation into a room. So the next time you’re in a room that feels cold or unfriendly stop to notice whether or not there is a lack of textured surfaces. Chances are that by adding just one or two of the ideas mentioned above the room will go from uncomfortable to comfortable very quickly, and “comfortable” is just another word to describe good feng shui!
Copyright 2016, Cathleen McCandless, All Rights Reserved.