Q&A Sunday: Feng Shui for Toilets

My husband had knee replacement surgery, so we added a 4 inch seat raiser to the toilet seat and cannot close the lid. I have been putting a folded towel over the open bowl--do you have any other suggestions?

Angela L., Victorville, CA

Dear Angela,

Thanks so much for your question. I hope your husband is on the mend after his knee replacement surgery.

First, it’s great that you’re accommodating his needs in a practical way by adding a riser to the toilet seat, but it sounds like you’re concerned that you can’t close the toilet lid. For the readers, ideally it’s good to keep your toilet bowl lid closed. There are practical reasons for this: the moisture in the toilet actually adds to the moisture in the bathroom and can create mold and mildew. Closing the lid also energetically puts a lid on the excess downward water energy in a bathroom.

It’s nice that you’re mindful of trying to maintain this cover by putting a folded towel over the open bowl, which is a great solution. You of course want to keep that towel clean and change it regularly, because it can accumulate bacteria. You can also keep your bathroom door closed, which effectively does the same thing as closing the toilet lid. Another suggestion is to put a mirror outside the bathroom door, which energetically helps the bathroom disappear from the floor plan.

Because your husband had knee surgery, another thing to pay attention to is your landscaping, and especially the trees on your property. The health of a landscape affects the health of the people living there, and the branches of a tree can represent joints, including knees. If there are any trees on your property with broken or extremely heavy branches, it’s a good idea to prune and take care of them. This can be helpful in terms of your husband’s recovery as well as preventing possible joint problems in the future.

Thanks so much for your question, Angela. We’d love to hear more about what’s going on with the trees on your property. Good luck with your husband’s recovery!

by Anjie Cho

Mindful Design is a new way to learn feng shui. Our a unique training program takes an holistic approach to learning the art of feng shui design. Mindful design is about becoming aware, and attentive, to the energy around you: both inner and outer qi. It is about promoting a better way of living and creating sacred spaces that support, and nourish. Visit us at mindfuldesignschool.com.

Thanks for reading our "Q&A Sunday".  We will be answering questions submitted by our readers. Click here to submit any Feng Shui or Green Design questions!

How to spruce up a Sheepshead Bay co-op with a peach-tiled bath and plain kitchen

featured this month on Brick Underground by Leah Hochbaum Rosner

image credit:  Brick Underground

image credit: Brick Underground

This Sheepshead Bay one bedroom, 2711 Ave., X, #6D is asking $225,000 and has a lot going for it, according to architect and Feng Shui expert Anjie Cho, including a “workable” floor plan, a private balcony, and decent-looking floors.

Still, there are lots of things that could be improved, such as the prodigiously peach bathroom, which she believes needs to be gutted immediately. “The wallpaper. That vanity. That gray tub. Oh my God,” she says.

She also hates the tiny, makeshift sunroom between the living room and terrace—which accounts for the second layer of windows visible behind the original windows—as well as two terrace doors. It takes precious square footage away from the terrace and makes the back wall in the living room look too busy. It’s also fairly shabby-looking, she says, noting the exposed wiring and “dingy” doors. “It’s the first thing you see when you walk in. It doesn’t make a very good impression.”

...read full article

Dive deeper into feng shui to transform your life!

Mindful Design is a new way to learn feng shui. Create sacred spaces that support, and nourish.

Visit us at mindfuldesignschool.com

Down the Drain: 7 Feng Shui Mistakes You're Making in the Bathroom

featured this month on realtor.com by Jennifer Geddes

image credit: SasinParaksa/iStock via  realtor.com

image credit: SasinParaksa/iStock via realtor.com

We've waxed on about the benefits of feng shui in the communal spaces of your home, like the living room and the kitchen. After all, that's where you spend the bulk of your time, so naturally you want things to be harmonious.

But there’s an oft-overlooked room where, if you're not careful, good energy (chi) can drain out of your home.

”The bathroom is one of the key energy centers in the home, so focusing on this space is important for good feng shui," says Ping Deters,  a certified feng shui consultant.

”In the Western world, bathrooms are now luxurious and a place of relaxation, and keeping this area restful and in balance can affect one's health and well-being," adds Anjie Cho, an architect, feng shui educator, and author of "Holistic Spaces: 108 Ways to Create a Mindful and Peaceful Home."

But from the color of your walls to your tiny trash can, you could be unwittingly throwing off your balance in this space. Here are seven major ways you're screwing up your bathroom feng shui.

...read full article

If you’d like to learn more about feng shui check out the Mindful Design Feng Shui certification program. Laura Morris and I are launching our program in September 2018. We have a free webinar “Five Feng Shui Tools Revealed: Must-Do Business Boosters for Soulpreneurs and Wellness Practitioners” coming up, too! To get on the list about it, sign up at: www.mindfuldesignschool.com.

Mindful Design is a new way to learn feng shui. Our unique training program takes an holistic approach to learning the art of feng shui design. Mindful design is about becoming aware, and attentive, to the energy around you: both inner and outer qi. It is about promoting a better way of living and creating sacred spaces that support, and nourish.

Visit the Holistic Spaces Store

How to Choose Your Bathroom Vanity Lighting

featured this month on Houzz by Yanic Simard

The bathroom vanity is a special part of the home, but one that can sometimes get overlooked. In a primary bathroom, it can be the central hub for many important parts of our self-care and the true workhorse for much of our daily routines. For this reason, bathroom vanities need carefully selected lighting to live up to their full potential. There are many options to choose from, all of which work in different scenarios and can be used together to get the best of both worlds. Read on to find out how to pick the right bathroom vanity lighting.

Use a Single Sconce Above the Mirror If:

  • You don’t have room on one or both sides of the mirror to fit a pair of sconces.
  • You have a very wide mirror with no breaks in between.
  • You have a tall space and want to dramatically accentuate the height by adding a focal point up high.

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Choosing Quartz Composite Countertops

Choosing Quartz Composite Countertops.jpg

Quartz is one of my favorite healing crystals to use in feng shui and other holistic adjustments, but its usefulness doesn't stop at providing balance and amplifying nourishing energy . Actually, quartz is a great option for kitchen and bathroom remodeling, which are included in most renovation projects!

What is Quartz?

Quartz is actually one of the most abundant (the second most common) minerals found on Earth and dates back to ancient times. It was used for jewelry during China's Ming Dynasty and has been found in Aztec graves, also used as jewelry. This comes as no surprise, since quartz is a durable, useful and available substance. This durability and seemingly endless stock are primarily why quartz is such a great choice for renovation projects in kitchens and bathrooms. 

Quartz, which we use often in pure crystal form, is the hardest known non-gem material in the world and compares to diamonds and sapphires in strength. In fact, when renovations include granite countertops or other granite features, quartz is generally the reason these options are so durable. Typical granite consists of a mixed makeup of minerals, including about 20-35% quartz; however, it is possible to increase the percentage of quartz to 93% for optimum performance. This is what we call quartz composite surfacing. 

How is Quartz Used?

One typical feature of both kitchens and bathrooms is countertop. From sinks in bathrooms to prep space in kitchens, homeowners often choose to refurbish or replace the surfacing material for their countertops to keep up with modern trends or guarantee sturdy, long-lasting counters. This last feature is one of the most compelling reasons to opt for quartz surfacing material and is where we commonly see it used in homes. 

One of the most popular ways to use quartz in renovations is through the Breton method, which combines varieties of quartz and other aggregate materials with crushed mineral powders, binding resin and pigment to create a customizable, uniform, sturdy, slab of stone.

Why Choose Quartz Composites?

Aside from its durability and ready availability, quartz has plenty of perks that granite or stone countertops don't offer. Most notably, quartz is almost non-porous, which means that it resists staining and requires less upkeep than typical granite or stone options. Most stone counters are porous, which results in easy stains and means that the countertops need to be sealed, both initially and repeatedly throughout their lives. In contrast, quartz never needs to be sealed and is much harder to stain. 

Since it is one of the hardest minerals on the planet, quartz is also scratch resistant and heat scorch resistant. It also offers four to five times the flexural strength of stone, making it more likely to bend, less likely to break. All of these perks make quartz surfacing nearly maintenance free, and thanks to modern processes, it is available in a wide color palette to match any design scheme. Finally, quartz is naturally anti-bacterial as a non-porous surface, and adding additional anti-bacterial to the quartz surface composition is an option as well. 

Have you ever considered using quartz surfacing in your home renovations instead of stone countertops? I'd love to hear about your past or upcoming projects and how you choose your materials!

by Anjie Cho