Princess Lim Fernandez keeps feng shui practical and modern. Her guidelines are easy to follow, and don’t require tearing the whole house down for extra luck.
“Feng shui is not just for the Chinese. It is about maintaining balance,” she said. “There should be harmony between form (doors, furniture, fixtures) and timing (dates, direction, location), which works like a computer’s hardware and software—one cannot work without the other.”
She learned feng shui as an apprentice to popular “masters” such as Paul Lau and Joseph Chau, who were known for giving well-attended feng shui talks in Mandarin Oriental Manila hotel for years.
Fernandez, a management engineering graduate of Ateneo de Manila University, studied feng shui extensively when she established her Yin & Yang Shop of Harmony, a “cures” store in Makati Shangri-La hotel in 1998. The shop moved to Mandarin but is now in New World Hotel, also in Makati.
For 2015, she gave basic feng shui guidelines that one can practice throughout the year in a talk held recently in LRI Design Plaza in Bel-Air II, Nicanor Garcia St. Makati.
Here are Lim’s 10 basic feng shui tips for the home:
1. Make sure that the main door (not the gate) opens up to a pleasing vista. “Standing from the inside, look out; what you see is what you receive,” she said. “Make sure there aren’t too many trees or bamboo that block the sunlight and energy, which means less luck coming in.”
Shrubs and plants are okay. Go for a pleasant, clutter-free view.
2. Don’t leave the dog by the front door. “No matter how much we care for pets, they are naturally smelly. Their cage may be on the side of, but not too close, to the main door.”
3. Keep the entrance clean. “Entering the main door, the first thing you see should be something welcoming, not clutter,” she said. “If the door opens to a blank wall, put a frame that evokes good memories—not necessarily a photo of the family. It may be a photo or painting of the house or the place where you had your honeymoon, that favorite place where you traveled.”
One may also have a coat closet by the doorway to put stuff one carries upon going in, such as jackets, umbrellas, bags, among others.
4. Never put mirrors across doors. “It’s the worst thing a door can open up to. It reflects the door and bounces the reflection, making it ‘door-to-door,’ so whatever money comes in, goes out.”
5. Know which colors you need according to your birth month, for balance. “Those born in summer already have too much fire, so the home should have cooler colors in the form of blue tiles, metal furniture, a brass bed. Those born in winter can go for a country look with lots of wood and warm lights.”
Winter-born people (November, December, January) need fire colors such as red, orange, purple, pink, maroon.
Summer-born people (May, June, July) need water colors such as blue, black, silver, gray.
Spring-born people (February, March) need metal colors such as white and gold.
Fall people (August, September, October) need wood colors such as brown and green.
6. Green, the lucky color of the year, may not be your lucky shade. “It’s a common misconception. You can wear green at events such as Chinese New Year, and Lantern and Mid-Autumn Festivals. Otherwise, use the color that’s good for you according to your chart.
“You don’t even have to wear the colors—that’s such a hassle. Some people like to wear black or white, that’s fine. Your lucky color may be the color of your bag, scarf or cellphone case since people practically carry their phones to sleep. Red is a lucky color by default, so go for red lipstick.”
7. Make sure that the kitchen stove and sink are not across each other. It would be clashing fire and water; side by side is okay.
8. A gathering area should be the heart of the home. It may be the living or family room, not the kitchen or bathroom.
9. Illuminate your unit. “For those living in condominiums or buildings, make sure that you turn on the lights by the main door once you enter, and turn them off before going to bed.”
10. Position the bed properly. Make sure that the headboard is facing the window and there’s no light directly above it, as this would drain one’s energy.