By Erica Sofrina, Author of Small Changes, Dynamic Results! Feng Shui for the Western World
Is your living space looking tired and uninspiring? Rearranging and reinventing our living space is one of the most powerful ways to free up creative energies and get our lives back on track. By mixing up the chi in our outer space, we revitalized the chi in our inner space. Here are 8 easy ways to revitalize a stale space and make you feel like you have moved into a brand new home!
1. First clutter clear and clean. You need to start with a clean palette so that you can see the possibilities. Often times the longer we live someplace the more stuff we accumulate. And, did you notice, clutter has babies? Why is it that that bag of stuff we aimlessly put on the floor suddenly grew into another big pile? I know it is no small feat, but if we make a commitment to tackle the clutter piles and get organized, we will feel hugely different in our space.
2. Change up the Accessories: TJ Maxx Home store and Ross are wonderful resource for very inexpensive pillows, art, throws and other accessories. Change out the pillows and add a new throw over a chair or sofa to match, bring in some new candles(‘feng shui’ those mostly-burned ones and recycle or throw away) and voila! A brand new look!
3. Take down all the art: Clean every piece, including the glass and dust behind where it was on the wall. Regroup art in themes such as similar subjects, colors, style and frames and put them together to hang in interesting groupings.
3. Rehang the pictures and group them in relationship to furniture and other objects. Make sure they are low enough and close enough to the objects you are grouping them with. Group according to things like similar frames, subject matter or themes, texture, pattern and complimentary colors to group smaller pictures together and hang them very close to each other. Most people hang pictures much too high. A good average is to have the top of a large picture at about 5 ½ feet. When you look at a larger picture your eyes should land at about 3/4 of the way from the top. And, always use art that is inspiring and sends a positive message. Art depicting nature is always preferable as it brings in the important Feng Shui Five Elements.
4. Rearrange the Furniture: Often times rooms don’t work because the furniture is not arranged right and the main pieces of furniture are too far away from each other. If your furniture is lined up along the wall chances are no one gravitates to this room. This is because after 5 1/2 feet you no longer have an intimate conversation area, making it difficult for people to connect. If you have a large room, you need to divide it into two separate areas in order to make it work. Create one conversation area with the sofa, two end table on either side, two chairs opposite the sofa, and a coffee table with a rug underneath. The second might be the two other chairs angled towards each other in another section of the room, a small table between, and a floor lamp. On the occasions that you need additional seating, temporarily move the other two chairs back to the larger seating area.
5.Group favorite objects in relationship to the furniture and art. Find similarities using the same general guidelines as artwork and group medium or smaller objects in threes and fives to add interest. Make it up and mix it up and embrace variety and change. Find new and interesting groupings and display them together.
6. Oil or Polish all wood furniture. Get a good furniture polish or wood oil and clean and polish all wood furniture. If a piece is scratched or the finish is bad, find a scarf, mat or runner from your treasure trove and cover it up, arranging decorative items on top. (I use Old-English dark-wood scratch-cover for fixing up really scuffed pieces. )
7. Bring in Nature: Pictures, objects, patterns and shapes from the natural world will always rejuvenate our space. Add fresh flowers and live plants, water features, and, of course our beloved pets to keep the chi moving. Nix the dead or dying plants. Get rid of plastic pots and ugly drainage dishes and find attractive pots for the healthy plants you are going to display. Decorative plates serve as attractive bases and keep the moisture from from damaging wood surfaces.
8. Create Focal Points.This might be the mantle or the coffee table or any surface and arrange complimentary objects there. A good rule of thumb is one or two per room, however, I like to add something pleasing to look at on every surface. Add fresh candles, your favorite crystals and art objects and use only the things that make your heart sing.
Voila! You have a brand new look that will inspire a fresh new outlook on life!