Although feng shui can be dated back to around 4,000 B.C.E., it took until Richard Nixon’s 1972 visit to China for it to come to the West. Since then, feng shui has become deeply ingrained in our cultural consciousness as people all over the country have begun using the practice inside their homes. However, feng shui was almost exclusively used outside of the home, primarily for city planning and later for the exterior of palaces. So how can you use feng shui to improve the exterior of your own house?
Feng Shui 101
The first step to implementing feng shui outside your home is to understand the core principles that form the foundation of the philosophy. For starters, feng shui recognizes five elements, each of which corresponds to their own cardinal directions and colors:
- Fire: red, yellow, orange, purple, and pink.
- Earth: brown, green, and sandy colors
- Wood: greens and blues.
- Water: blue and black
- Metal: white, gray, and silver
Also important is the Bagua, which is essentially a map of eight symbols found in Taoism. The path to each of the symbols is comprised of three lines, which are either broken or unbroken so as to balance the yin and yang of each. It is this balance between yin (negative energy) and yang (positive energy), that is the fundamental goal of feng shui. When a balance is achieved, it is believed by practitioners to promote positivity, health, and prosperity.
In With The Good, Out With The Bad
Two of the best ways to implement feng shui outside your own home are in the colors of your houseand the front door. When it comes to the former it’s important to try to blend the color of your home with that of its surroundings, be they natural or man-made. Your home shouldn’t blend in completely though, just make sure that your choice of paint color compliments the landscape. Then be sure to add a pop of color to your home’s accents, like the window trim and shutters so as to attract more positive energy.
Equally, if not more important, is the front door as it serves as the threshold both to and from your home. This means that the front door serves as the portal through which energy enters your home and the energy that you take with you when you leave. The color you choose for your front should correspond to the direction that it faces, as it needs to activate the appropriate element. Below is a chart to help you determine the right color for your door and which ones to avoid.
|Cardinal Direction||Compatible Colors||Incompatible Colors|
Following the above rules will allow you to establish a strong foundation for feng shui in and outside of your home. By attracting good chi into your home and allowing an easy way for bad chi to exit, you will achieve a harmonious balance of yin and yang.
About Angie Bersin: Angie is part of the content marketing team at Redfin and enjoys writing about home decor and real estate trends. As a long-term Seattleite, Angie enjoys traveling the globe to find content inspiration. Her dream home would be an urban loft filled with natural light, high ceilings, and an open floor plan.
Photo courtesy of Unsplash under Creative Commons 0 License