A Design Blog of Feng Shui Designer Sherry Burton Ways

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Feng Shui Color Tips to Incoporate the Five Elements

Feng Shui is an ancient science of creating a flow of positive energy called Chi throughout your interior. One of the basic principles of Feng Shui is the study of the Five Elements. These elements are Earth, Water, Fire, and Metal. It is important to create a balanced presence is represented by certain colors and the easiest way to incorporate the Five Elements is by using these colors in your interiors.

Here are Feng Shui Color Tips to incorporate the Five Elements in your décor:

Earth

Courtesy of Visualvamp.blogspot.com

Courtesy of Visualvamp.blogspot.com

The element of earth is represented by the colors light yellow and earth tones like sand and beige. The earth element will help create stability and harmony in your relationships. It is easy to add earth colors to your décor through terracotta planters, natural stones and shells, and ceramic accessories.

Fire

Courtesy of inspiration.lane.tumblr.com

Courtesy of inspiration.lane.tumblr.com

The Fire element is associated with personal energy and fulfilling your career. Colors that represent the element Fire are red, bright yellow, orange, light purple and pink. Introduce the Fire element in your home by painting an accent walls in any of these colors. You can also hang a large piece of artwork with dominant fire colors.

Metal

Courtesy of blog.stylizimo.com

Courtesy of blog.stylizimo.com

The element Metal is instrumental in bringing the energy of clarity and focus to your home. Incorporate the element of Metal by using white, black and metallic shades like silver, gold and copper. One of the most effective ways of introducing metal energies in your home is using white furniture and upholstery. You can also place large metallic structures or hang metal picture fraes.

Water

Courtesy of decoratingpins.com

Courtesy of decoratingpins.com

Water is an ancient symbol of abundance. It represents purity and evokes a calm feeling. Colors that represent the water element in Feng Shui are black and blue You can add the colors of water in your décor by hanging a painting of the ocean or a water body. Consider placing light scones or flower vases that are made from transparent glass. The color blue has a calming effect, therefore, you can choose to paint your walls in a shade of light blue.

Wood

Courtesy of homebunch.com

Courtesy of homebunch.com

Wood is the fifth element in Feng Shui and is represented by the colors green and brown. Wood energies are important for good health, wellbeing and prosperity. Window coverings in light green or brown colors can be effective in adding the element of wood. You can also choose between wooden furniture or wall accents like wainscoting and molding.

Feng Shui colors are powerful. To learn more contact sherry@kreativeways.com

How to Decorate a Multi-Functional Space

I have often come across people who are confused about decorating a large room in their home.  They end up buying very large furniture that does nothing to make the room feel cozier or functional.  When you have a great room, it is a good idea to make it multi-functional and take advantage of the large spac.  Without adding walls, you can make the space serve different purposes for the entire family.

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Here are a few ideas to help you get started:

1.  Make a plan.

It is important to understand the function of the space around which you will be designing before you get started.  On a piece of paper, draw a rough floor plan.  Decide the areas you would like to create in your great room.  Correct placement of the furniture can help you divide the space without actually putting up walls.

2. Create conversation areas.

In your plan, chalk out areas where the family can sit together and spend time.  These can be areas to watch the television, to play video games or board games.  Use easy and comfortable furniture like sofas, ottomans, and recliners to create distinct conversational areas.  Use a day bed to visually divide the large area into two distinct functions.

3.  Create a cozy corner.

Once you have created conversational areas, also plan for a cozy corner for some quiet time.  In a corner, place a small area rug and an armchair or two.  Stack books in a book shelf behind the armchairs and install a floor lamp.  Drape a throw over the arm chair to make it appear warm and inviting.  Finally tie the cozy corner together with a small coffee table.

4.  Separating the functional areas.

Demarcating specific areas for specific functions is not difficult.  Make use of interesting area rugs to visually divide the room.  When you place furniture around an area rug, it behaves like an anchor and ties everything around it quite distinctly.  You can also make use of wooden screens to divide the room without compromising on the design aspect of the room.

5. Space to move around.

Always remember to leave adequate space to move around the furniture easily.  People navigating in the room should be able to walk with ease without bumping or having to move the furniture around.  The walkways should never be blocked with small decor like floor lamps or side tables.  As a rule of thumb, keep a three feet distance between the furniture to create easy flow.

6. Make use of circular patterns.

Finally, make use of circles.  Circles depict flow and are much easier to navigate around.  Instead of a square center table, consider using a circular one.  Choose patterns on the upholstery that have a circular pattern or curves that makes the multi-functional room easy on the eyes as well.

Here is a quick video on some other multifunctional decorating ideas.

Decorating with Pantone’s Color of the Year- Radiant Orchid

Whether you are someone who seeks inspiration from trends or someone who believes in creating their own trends, you cannot miss Pantone’s color of the year- Radiant Orchid.  A gorgeous mix of purple and pink, Radiant Orchid will require you to stretch your creative thinking abilities.  It is a charming color that is packed with energy and luxurious charm.

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Here are a few ideas to introduce Radiant purple in your home decor:

1.  Splashes here and there-

If you are afraid to incorporate the color of the year in your decor, the easiest way is to introduce splashes of the color here and there.  When you “grow into” the color, you can choose to move to the next level or eliminate it all together.  Next time you visit the florist, pick a bunch of purple orchids and voila, you have just added the trending new shade into your home decor.

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2.  Use as a luxurious accent-

Although Radiant orchid is a bright and vivacious color, it will be a bold decision to cover your entire room in this shade of purple.  The color can get boring very easily, therefore it is best to use it as an accent.  Radiant orchid radiates a royal feel and luxurious fabrics like velvets and damasks that incorporate this shade of purple will work well for upholstering ottomans and dining chairs.  You can also drape your armchair with a mohair throw in radiant orchid for a touch of opulence.

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3.  Not so feminine-

A lot of people are afraid of the pink undertones in radiant orchid.  It is being touted as a feminine color for interiors.  But the great thing about Radiant orchid is that is can easily swing between feminine and very masculine.  Use radiant orchid in conjunction with reds, yellows, and oranges to bring out its charming, feminine side.  But the color becomes very masculine and bold when paired with glossy blacks, grays and dark browns.

4.  In the kid’s bedroom-

If there is one room in your home that can pull off a coat of radiant purple from ceiling to floor, it is the kids’ bedroom.  The color is bright and will bring energy to the room.  When painting the entire room in radiant orchid, it is important to keep the other decor muted.  White works best with radiant orchid in the kids’ room.  Remember, too much of color can be disturbing for the child.

5.  Cool off the kitchen-

Radiant orchid is a beautiful mix of blue and red.  The blue hue in the color has a cooling effect, therefore it is very well suited for use in the kitchen.  Consider using cabinets with a glossy Radiant orchid finish paired with black and white.  You can also paint an accent wall in the kitchen in this shade to add a punch.

Interested in learning how to incorporate the 2014 Color of the Year in your home?  Contact us today at interiors@kreativeways.com and we will set up a free 20 minute phone consultation!

Four Quick & Easy Ways to Zen Your Space

Unlike what most people think, introducing a Zen sensibility to your space is quite easy.  Zen interiors mean living a simple lifestyle and design aesthetic that lends a calming effect to your home.  It does not require extensive remodeling of your home, just a few changes can create a huge impact.  Imagine bringing the serenity of your yoga class home!

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Here are four quick and easy ways to Zen your space:

1) Live a clutter free life–  The first and probably most important rule of Zen decorating is getting rid of clutter.  The Japanese art of home decoration believes that clutter creates chaos and will not let your mind be at ease.  Clear everything that disturbs your line of sight.  Open spaces enhance the free flow of Chi-energy and it will instantly have a positive effect.  You will quickly realize the importance of a clutter free home.

2) Spare the bright colors– Zen decorating emphasizes the use of earth tones.  Your Zen home should be like a retreat where you can relax and feel at ease.  Bright colors disturb the balance.  Look for invigorating and fresh earthy tones like greens, browns and blues.  These are subtle yet soft making your home feel close to the outdoors.  Painting is the easier and most inexpensive solution to bringing in the Zen energy.

ZenElements

3) Use the Five Feng Shui Elements for your decor-  Zen decorating does not mean having a sparsely decorated, boring home.  In fact decorating with details is an interesting aspect of Zen principles.  Borrowing from the ancient Chinese art of placement, Feng Shui, the use  the the five elements earth, water, fire, mental and wood in your decor.  Bring in the wood element of a house plant which will add wealth as well as vibrancy and cheerfulness into your space.  Consider a mix of metal and wood for furnishings, accessories and  wall treatment inspiration.  Decorate your bare walls with serene paintings and photographs.  Limit your decor to one painting per room.  Use objects found in nature like rocks, shells and tree branches to creatively decorate your space.  You can also fill a glass bowl with shells for display on a mantel or shelf.

4) Organization and storage– Organization is another important aspect of Zen design.  An organized home will help you keep calm and feel at peace.  Take time to organize your closets, the kid’s room, drawers, refrigerator and the pantry.  These are some of the places where clutter tends to build up quicker than you think.  Make use of storage binds and boxes, label them neatly and create a place in the home for them.  When everything is neatly stacked and labeled, it will free your mind from small issues like finding birthday candles at the nick of time and will give you the opportunity to be at ease.

Here is another Zen Decorating Tip:

If you would like to create a Zen Decor and do not know where to start, contact me at Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC and I would be happy to provide you a free phone consultation to get started.

An Introduction to Zen Decorating

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Zen decorating is a Japanese style of interior decor that embodies the values of minimalistic and simplistic living.  Does the word Zen transport you to a dreamy land of peaceful Buddahs and stress free living?  Then you are on the right track.  Applying Zen principles can help you break the stress and relax in familiar surroundings like your home or office.

A few basic principles can help convert your home or part of it into a Zen inspired space that feels like a retreat.  Here are four aspects of Zen decorating to get you started:

1) Minimalism- Decorating your home with Zen sensibilities means that you have to clear your surroundings of clutter down to the bare minimum.  Do away with knick knacks sitting on the console table, ornate displays of decorative pieces and even intricate wall papers.  The interiors must be unobstructed and filled with abundant natural light.  Think simplicity and open spaces.  Swap your exotic Victorian style furniture and upholstery with intricate patterns for simple textures and clean, straight lines.  Hide any disturbances in the room like electrical wiring and electronics that can cause stress.  This does not mean that you stop watching TV but simply place the TV in a cabinet with doors that can be shut when not in use.

2) Color Palette- Zen decorating takes its inspiration largely from nature.  Use warm, neutral colors to paint your walls.  Avoid any pops of bright colors as these will clash with the Zen style of design and disturb the balance.  Choose a muted, earthy color scheme for your upholstery, carpets and furniture as well.  Some of the most commonly used colors are creamy whites, coffee browns and shades of green.  Avoid stark colors like white and black, your palette should be warm and subdued.

ZenDecor

3) Nature Inspired Accents- Use minimal accessories to personalize your home.  When choosing accents, look for ones that represent the Zen elements of Feng Shui like earth, water,  fire, wood and metal.   Potted plants like bonsai and bamboo tend to create a tranquil atmosphere in the room and do not need a lot of care.  You can also place an indoor waterfall that creates a soothing trickling sound.  Fabrics made of natural fibers like wool, linen, and jute will ensure that your interiors are comfortable, warm and inviting.  Keep your walls free of intricate paintings and pictures.  If you want to hang a Zen inspired painting, limit it to only one per room.  Remember the rule of thumb- keep only what you really love, and harmonize with nature.

4) Lighting- Light is an important aspect to the Zen style of decorating.  Don’t block any natural sources of light like windows and sunroofs.  Avoid using drapes, instead you can opt for translucent screens that fill the room with abundant natural light.  For the evenings after the sun goes down, opt for wall sconces or pendant fixtures.  Instead of using only overhead fixtures that cast dark shadows, enhance the lighting by adding simple but modern wall sconces.  Dimmers can be used to set the mood.  Soft light and the scent from aromatic candles made of soy or beeswax will help you relax after a hard day of work.

In the next few weeks I will be focusing on Zen Decorating through a several videos.

Here is the first on how to accessorize a Zen inspired console:

 

Sustainability: A Design Trend for 2014

Sustainability in itself is a trend for 2014.  With a lot of focus on green design and living an Eco-conscious lifetyle, interior designers like me are moving towards using recycled and sustainable materials at every step of the design process.  By contributing towards an eco-friendly environment, you will be able to live peacefully without the worry of leaving a carbon footprint on the environment that your home remodling will generate.

Here are five great eco-friendly trends to look forward to in 2014:

1.  Bamboo cabinets-

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Bamboo is technically classified as grass and hardly requires water which makes it easy to grow.  It is durable, resistant to insects and sustainable because it grows quickly.  Bamboo is being widely used for flooring, backsplashes, and even fabric.  The light color of bamboo cabinets in the kitchen will create a sense of airiness and openness.  It lends a minimalistic feel which is chic and suave.

2.  Recycled glass tiles-

Glass tiles

The great thing about glass is that is recyclable, not once but can be reused many times over.  The use of recycled glass helps in limiting the waste that goes into landfills.  From translucent to creatively textured, glass tiles are like jewelry for your home.  Due it its reflective surface, glass tiles can help add a luxurious look to your bathroom or kitchen.

3.  Organic cork flooring-

CorkFlooring

Cork is gaining popularity as a material choice for flooring because of its natural and eco-friendly origins.  Natural bark is produced from the barks of cork trees.  The trees regenerate their back and therefore it is a renewable resource.  Consider cork flooring because it feels great to walk on, is naturally warm and is a great shock absorber.  It is especially good for homes with children because it does not collect dust and has a natural substance saves the cork from rot, mildew and pests.

4.  Paper composite counter top-

An interesting development in the area of Green living and eco-friendly designs are recycled counter tops.  Made with a combination of waste paper and non-petroleum based resins, these are much sturdier than you can imagine.  Durable and easy to maintain, paper composite counter tops are lighter than stone making them easier to install.  These are available in medium to dark colors in a matte finish that will give your kitchen a stylish character.

5.  Reclaimed wood furniture and accessories-

Reclaimedfurniture

There is a growing appreciation for reclaimed wood that is slowly finding home in modern design.  The imperfections and rich patina that forms on the wood as it ages is a testament of its fine character.  Reclaimed wood radiates a feeling of warmth and is being used to create dining tables, beds, benches and even wall decor.  Reclaimed wood from deconstructed buildings is being mixed with a variety of modern elements to add texture and layers to the interiors.  It works well with metal and adds chic industrial look.  You can also place an antique cabinet to bring in the time honored feel of reclaimed wood.

If you need some ideas or looking for ways to incorporate eco-friendly design into your home for 201, contact us today at interiors@kreativeways.com.

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Feng Shui Design for Abundance and Prosperity in 2014

We are just a few days away from the New Year and it is time to look forward to a prosperous and fulfilling 2014.  According to the Chinese calendar, this is the Year of the Wood Horse and the age old practice of decorating your home according to Feng Shui can help fill your home with abundance and prosperity.

To create good Feng Shui, base your interior design on the wonderful characteristics of the horse this New Year.  Horses are active and have abundant energy, they are bright, friendly and high spirited.  Horses are gentle and have a pleasing aura that is attractive to everyone around them.  Wild and carefree, horses are the epitome of elegance and sensuality.

Here are four Feng Shui ways to create abundance and prosperity for your home in 2014:

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1.  Color- Since this is the Year of the Wood Horse, decorate your home in earthy shades of green and brown to bring good luck and prosperity.  The colors you use in your home should be in harmony with the element for the year, in this case, wood.  The shades of green and brown are both modern for the interiors and soothing for the eyes.  Use touches of blue and black to enhance your color scheme and add elegance.  Blue and black represent the element of water which supports the growth of wood.

2.  Material- Use natural materials to design the interior spaces of your home.  Look for wooden decor like wooden wind chimes, solid wood and bamboo furniture.  The natural grain and texture of the wood reflects the carefree nature of the horse that is adventurous and cheerful at the same time.  You can also use other natural decor like fur, feather and fabrics made with natural fibers like jute and linen.  You can also install stone sculptures to fill in awkward corners.  Natural materials will add depth to your decor.

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3.  Decorating ideas- The regal horse teaches us a thing or two about luxury and elegance.  Design your interiors to reflect prosperity, luxury and opulence to Feng Shui your home for wealth and abundance.  Look for high-quality fabrics with rich textures for your upholstery.  Decorate your home with crystals like turquoise, pearls and lapis lazuli.  Opt for unique shapes and unleash your create side.  Decorate in layers of similar colors to create a plush look.

4. Feng Shui area for 2014- The South- west area of your home is considered to be auspicious in the year 2014.  It is the area for Good luck, wealth and career.  Free this area of any fire element and Feng Shui fire decor.  Water elements in this area will energize the space and create good Feng Shui.  Decorate the area with water fountains and dragon turtles.  You can also place pictures of energetic horses.  Use this area of your home to strengthen your career and personal goals by placing a board that displays your vision for the future.  Certain Feng Shui charms like Chinese gold coins, money tree and wealth symbols like water and plants placed in this area are considered good for wealth and prosperity.

If you would like a Feng Shui and Design service to prepare for the New Year contact us today at interiors@kreativeways.com to schedule an appointment.

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