Colour plays a huge part in shaping our moods and helping us to connect to our emotions, and this is especially the case within our homes. Whether it's red to inspire passion or greys and blues to encourage peace, carefully selecting primary and accent colours is a great way to shift the energy in your living space. Anjie Cho, architect and co-founder of the Mindful Design Feng Shui School, has some tips and advice on how to work with colour to create a holistic space:
Hopeful greens and blues
Greens, teals, and blues are associated with hope, new beginnings, and growth, like plants and the element of wood. These colors are calming and relaxing, and lend themselves to tranquility and healthy supportive energy. These are balancing colors and the colors of nature and plants.
In feng shui, green and blue represent life and renewed energy and activate the area of New Beginnings. These two colors can be extremely restorative. Bright fluorescent colors are more stimulating and refreshing. Green is related to the heart chakra, which is related to emotional healing and empathy. Greens and blues are great to use as wall paint colors for most rooms in a home. Soft hues are especially beneficial in the bedroom when one needs rest.
Earthy yellows, oranges, and browns
The colors yellow, orange, and brown are radiant, warm, and frequently found in nature. The restful earthy hues in this bedroom invite you to hibernate and be cozy. The deep, warm orange and brown tones in the wooden headboard, pillows, and blankets invoke the earth element of nourishment and self-care. They are also the colors of the harvest season, which can symbolize both activity and hibernation.
Deep earthy shades indicate strength and endurance, while also being nurturing and tranquil. The pale browns and neutral tones of sand and soil are soothing hues, representing stability and the nurturing of mother earth. Brown can be elegant and also symbolize the quiet steadiness of a tree. For a calm atmosphere, stay on the light end, but away from yellow colors. Flesh tones are appropriate for restful rooms such as the bedroom.
White symbolizes purity, heaven, and simplicity. White is the absence of all color and can represent a blank slate. In nature, we see white in clouds and snow. Clouds refer to the heavens, while the winter snow reminds us of stark coldness. White is the ultimate yang, or active, color.
White is a great base to start with, but it’s best to avoid creating rooms that are entirely stark white. White can be sharp and harsh on the eyes. Imagine walking in a field of snow; it is glaringly blinding and exhausting.
Supportive and neutral grays
Grays are considered tranquil and quiet, as they are a balance of black and white, yin and yang. They are also neutral shades that can complement almost any color. Gray can feel a bit cold, depressing, and isolating, reminiscent of being stuck inside on a rainy day. Gray is thought of as an ambiguous color, as in the “gray area.”
Because it is such a noncommittal color, grayish hues are suitable for most spaces. Simply use them in combination with any other color to generate a more sophisticated and supported look.
Red is the most auspicious color when it comes to Feng shui. It is sensuous, dynamic, and very stimulating.
While red is appropriate for many applications, it is not suitable for relaxing environments because it can be very active. Take care to use it in moderation, as a little bit of red can go a long way.
If you need some more passion in the bedroom, add some red sheets or a red blanket. If you are looking for a promotion or some recognition in your career, try placing a Mars yantra in the Recognition area of your home office or desk. A yantra is a Tantric mandala composed of interlocking geometric figures—such as circles, triangles, and floral shapes—that form a pattern. They can be used to strengthen your meditative focus. By using a red yantra, you can adjust lack of passion and fame by adding fire.
In feng shui, black is related to wisdom and knowledge. Black is the combination of all colors. It has depth and symbolizes the incorporation of all things. Black is also the most yin or passive color.
Although black can be contemplative, too much will generate a dark look. Excessive black is not appropriate for home interiors because it will absorb light and feel oppressive and depressing. Instead, blacks can be used as dramatic accent pieces.
Pinks and peach tones are connected to the relationship area of The feng shui map. These colors are feminine, nurturing, romantic, soft, and innocent. Pink is also associated with youthfulness, love, and joy.
Pink and peach colors, especially on painted walls, are incredibly flattering for skin tones. You will be seen through “rose-colored glasses” in a pink setting. The color makes you appear healthier and creates a glow.
In feng shui, peach is a very lucky color for attracting a romantic partner. We call it “peach blossom luck.” It is ideal to paint your bedroom peach and wear peach to attract your future mate. After you meet the right person, be sure to change the intention of the paint color to support the new relationship rather than attracting a new one!
This extract is from Holistic Spaces by Anjie Cho.