A somewhat mystical Chinese concept over 3,000 years old, Feng Shui (literally, “wind” and “water”), is the art of balancing life energies using the placement of either natural or synthetic objects within an individual’s living environment. According to Feng Shui principles, “chi” energy exists everywhere but remains in a constant state of change, or flux, because stagnation results in negative spiritual, mental and physical health.
Unbalanced chi can produce illness, depression and other disturbances in a person’s life. To understand unbalanced chi is to understand the Chinese concept of Yin (light) and Yang (dark), two fundamental, natural forces that create harmony as they continuously interact with each other. In regards to decorating rooms in a home, Feng Shui laws demand that the universal forces of Yin and Yang are enhanced using the color, shade, illumination, texture and shape of the objects adorning a room.
Windows and Feng Shui
Windows represent one of the more important focal points when integrating Feng Shui principles in the layout of your home. Windows allow light to enter a room, give us spectacular or simple views of the world outside, provides a way for fresh air to circulate through a living area and have the power to enhance chi. Based on the concept that all objects may promote or interfere with the flow of energy, window treatments complementing Feng Shui possess these characteristics:
Windows facing the entrance to a room will benefit from honeycomb blinds that prevent energy from leaving the room too quickly. Honeycomb blinds provide insulation against cold and heat yet gently filters streaming sunlight with impeding it.
Windows placed in corners are considered to be restricted in Feng Shui thought and need sheer window shades to allow chi to flow into the room with disrupting its activity.
Window treatment elements such as horizontally lined patterns and floral prints are deem “Yin” elements and may reduce the natural flow of chi. Balancing these designs with “Yang” elements such as vertical lines, plain fabrics and oblique shapes is supposed to assist the flow of energy. When such a balance is created, chi does not stagnate and consequently cause mental or physical issues.
Absence of abundant natural illumination and a pleasant view are elements counter-intuitive to Feng Shui principles. Windows overlooking water, trees or gardens should not be overwhelmed with heavy drapes or dark curtains. Instead, Feng Shui experts recommend using window treatments that allow the natural energy of these objects to flow into the room, such as tie-back curtains, sheers or cafe-type curtains.
Window treatments that droop limply over windows are not conducive to good Feng Shui. Choose lively valances to dress up curtains and curtain rings made of natural materials like wood or bamboo. Curtains or drapes that correlate with the seasons also keep energy flowing fluidly in a room throughout the year. During winter months, for example, use heavier fabrics and varying shades of blue when hanging window treatments. Alternatively, use light fabric and warm shades of orange and red for enhancing summer Feng Shui.