Professor Lin of Berkeley CA introduced The Black Hat Sect, a Western method of Feng Shui utilizing the Bagua Map/ template floor plan to describe different aspects of a space or room. The Bagua can be laid over any space or room and Feng Shui adjustments can be applied to maximize ultimate harmony and auspiciousness. Not all Feng Shui experts use Bagua Maps, some use compass direction and other modalities. I find the Bauga Method to be the most applicable to modern society and easy to use.
Feng Shui incorporates aspects of floor plan and placement, also the use of elements. The five elements in Feng Shui are: fire, earth, metal, water, and wood; together with their colors, elements can be used to achieve harmony, balanced energy and luck in the environment. Elements are importantly used to balance energies so that the space feels comfortable to it’s occupants. See your Feng Shui consultant to find out more in depth how proper use of elements balance a space or how the misuse create disorder.
Meanwhile, we have all seen in high end architectural magazines neutral-grey ultra-modern stainless steel kitchens, with sharp lines, no textures and no color except neutrals. That’s all good for a magazine selling furniture or architectural design, but who wants to live that way? The room as it is, feels cold, hard and uninviting, but you can make the ultra modern look and neutral color palate work by adding neutral textures in the same monochrome colors: a multi-textured floor rug, artwork on the walls with rough edges, a textured pottery on the counter, by counterbalancing the smooth lines the sterile feeling is placated while keeping the sophisticated modern tone.
Feng Shui is about having choices in your decor, there is not one answer or correct design choice. Other options to warm the space up could be accomplished by adding the “wood element” such as a green plant or a “fire element” such as a vase of red flowers or red candle sticks to the decor. These simple elements neutralize all the “metal elements”, straight lines, neutral colors when not balanced feel harsh. Sometimes all it takes is one or two opposing elements to soften and balance a whole room, what was a cold uninviting environment turns into a warm balanced space while still in keeping with the design integrity. Oppositely, too much “wood or earth element” would stifle a space and make it feel claustrophobic and unambitious.
Ultimately, Feng Shui decorating encompasses many aspects: color use, element utilization, furniture placement, energy enhancement with harmony, intention(what you want to accomplish with the space) making Feng Shui decorating and art versatile, there are always many options and solutions to choose from.