With a history that dates from about 3500 B.C, Feng Shui is an art, a practice and a philosophical system that has been around for ages. Wikipedia defines Feng Shui as: “a Chinese philosophical system of harmonizing the human existence with the surrounding environment.” It is based on the idea that a good flow in energy in your surroundings can lead to prosperity in your life. The flow of energy depends on the placement of certain objects, or the angles of doorways or counters in rooms. The popularity of Feng Shui, and thus the belief in it, seems to wax and wane over periods of time or in different parts of the world. What is interesting is that, despite criticisms and disbelief in its validity, many big corporations consult Feng Shui experts when they are drawing up the plans for a new building. Whether you subscribe to the philosophy, or if you’re doing it to be “rather safe than sorry”, maybe some of the following pointers can help you bring more harmony into your life.
It is deemed one of the most important days in our lives. Extensive planning, research and often an enormous amount of money are spent on the ceremony as well as the subsequent celebration of love and union between two people. Many western wedding traditions have become popular outside the western world, but few people know where these customs originate from and what their original meanings are.
The Wedding Ring
It is unclear where exactly the custom of exchanging rings originated, but many people believe that it might have sprung from the Ancient Roman belief in the Vena Amoris. This was thought to be a vein that ran directly from the fourth finger to the heart; therefore, an exchange of rings would connect partners from heart to heart. The use of a diamond engagement ring is a thoroughly modern one that seems to have sprung up in the 1920’s after De Beers Diamond Company started an ad campaign called “Diamonds Are Forever”.
Installing a skylight is a great way to let natural light into a dark or windowless room or even just to incorporate the open skies into your design. Most skylights can also be opened for extra ventilation in summer. This is especially handy for very hot rooms as hot air which accumulates naturally near the ceiling can be released.
Know the difference
The sun’s rays enter windows at an angle. A skylight allows the sun’s to enter a room directly. As with a window, the light is concentrated on one spot, which may fade furniture or flooring in that area. Choosing slightly tinted glass will help neutralise this. Installing a blind or window covering is another option.
Nowadays the purpose of a well-designed showroom is about more than just marketing products. With so many consumers choosing to purchase goods online, it’s difficult enough just to get people to the stores.
There’s been much talk about the threat online shopping poses to bricks-and-mortar retail, but a well-designed showroom demonstrates how retail can play to its strengths by offering consumers an experience they don’t get online.
Creating an immersive environment
One effective design trend is to convert the showroom into something that resembles a real-world environment appropriate to the product being advertised.
An example would be a showroom designed to promote furniture, its approach being to create a realistic living room or dining room area. In some cases the designers even use mannequins gathered around a model dining room table or fireplace to capture the family environment.
Eating in dining rooms used to be quite a formal occasion. Think about Jane Austin and Charles Dickens and their depictions of families seated around a well-set table with servants and different courses and rituals. Think about the ‘50s, ‘60s and 70’s, when families ate their dinner around the table and woe betide the kid who was late.
Then TV dinners came along and laps become the dining surface of choice.
Many people tried to hold onto the evening dining habit. Phrases like, “the family that eats together stays together”, were bandied about.
And then kitchens came into vogue. Formal dining rooms were abandoned for comfy kitchens. Kitchens became pseudo family rooms; they became the heart of the home, where friends and family gathered and where parties ended up.
If you dream of giving your house and garden a make-over but the financial implications or the enormity of the task are enough to stop you in your tracks, not to worry. There is no need to go rushing to your bank to apply for an assortment of instant loans just yet. There are simple ways to make your house look more welcoming.
Firstly, make sure that the entrance to your house, from the street to your front door, is clean and clear of any obstacles or overgrown bushes. If you have a verandah, this should be swept regularly and kept clear of clutter. Stepping stones or some sort of pathway makes it handy for visitors to be able to see at a glance where they need to walk as they enter your property.