"Practitioners of Feng Shui aim to use this art to help create balanced spaces, which promote balanced lives in turn. It is effective because the environment you live in is a mirror of your life. When the space is disorganized and unbalanced, there is a good chance that your life does not look very different."
-Feng Shui Interior Design
There is so much fun to be had in learning and practising new skills!
I'm having fun completing a Feng Shui Interior Design course! It is an art form that I want to bring to my clients homes to help them live an amazing life wherever they are.
It takes intuition and creativity to be a designer, and also a Feng Shui practitioner. I am surprised by the similarities in regards to the main principals in Interior Design / Interior Decorating and in Feng Shui.
I will personally test Feng Shui cures by applying one or two, intentionally and thoughtfully in the focus of Abundance & Prosperity...
Feng Shui cures are like remedies that are used in a space to help balance, enhance or activate energy.
Besides from Abundance & Prosperity, some other cure categories are Relationships & Love, Creativity & Children, Career & Journey, Health Center, and many more.
More to come on this amazing and extensive art form!!!
Inspiration to change can come in many forms. It could be something someone said to you that planted a seed (one of my favourite methods to inspire change), it could be the annoying feeling of restlessness caused by that predictable routine, or it could even be art that got you thinking about (and craving) change.
If you think/feel that change is needed, I highly suggest you contact me to have a design consultation (my rates are much less than a psychologist!). Seriously though...artists who care about the people they work with can help us solve problems by simply listening and being passionate, understanding our dreams and translating that into reality. It can be nearly impossible to figure out alone, as I’m sure you know already, being directly in the middle of a situation usually makes it difficult for us to detach emotionally in order to see the big picture. Whereas when someone from the outside looks in, it seems so easy for them to see the underlying problem(s) quickly. Talking honestly to people you are comfortable with about your life and where you are will reap many benefits; remember to be honest, respectful, open, and careful not to drain other people’s energy. If you are open to change but don’t know where to start, take moments to listen to recurring thoughts that preoccupy your mind…they will be key indicators as to where your subconscious energy has got you preoccupied. Follow your heart and take baby steps. Re-adjust as required, but the point is to keep moving in a forward motion.
Change does not happen overnight (unless you’re on a house staging deadline!) so feel free to start somewhere small. Accomplishing a few simple, small tasks that will lead to change and create confidence and a sense of achievement. I do not think that there are good or bad times to change something in your life because if your life is broken or perfect, change can bring new opportunities and a fresh view on life. It can open you up to fears deep within, giving you a positive opportunity to work on yourself.
"In small, inspired bursts, I can change my personal living space in 5-10 minutes."
My value system often stays the same but I am open to changing my interest/hobbies/focus. With that, I am inspired to change my interior quite often! I try to select good “bones” for my spaces (things that shouldn’t need to be changed too often, e.g., flooring, paint colours, window treatments) in order to make smaller changes easier, cheaper and faster. When I walk into my space and am not feeling the love, all I need to do is change the placement of furniture, decorative items, remove items or add new items. Easy-peasy! In small, inspired bursts, I can change my personal living space in 5-10 minutes. I do this at least twice a month in my main living areas.
Imagine walking into your living room or bedroom now. You have entered your space and it is surprisingly very different from how you left it! You are not fearful or upset because it is inviting. You feel excited that this is your new space. The new and fresh feeling may last for days or months (we get used to new stuff quickly), nonetheless, there is a change that happened and not only did you survive, it feels good!
A design consultation can commence change...put the wheels in motion.
A lot of people don't think of completing an interior design consultation until they are ready to action the changes in their home. Although I believe that there is no perfect time for anything in life, in spite of our best efforts, everything cannot be planned perfectly. It is most important to go with the feel of life from moment to moment. It helps me and the people close to me live fuller happier lives. Whether the actual work commences right away or in a year, you’ve had a consultation, you’ve got a plan and the forward motion has been set. Hopefully you feel inspired after your consultation and your designer/decorator has sent you a summary of the discussions that took place as well as written recommendations. I send a design consultation summary to all my clients by email afterwards so that they can keep the ideas and suggestions close to look back on as required.
Having a vision or visions for your space(s) is key, above all this is the most important step. Start collecting ideas and start thinking about how you want your space to be. Imagine things to be different and dream of your ideal space. What would it look like? I want my clients to share their visions of their dream home, so that I may help them get that much closer to living a happier life!
Good luck and cheers!
In light of a new decorative purchase, I would like to present a before and after example of my T.V.-free family living room space. I have been waiting 4 years to buy a rug because it wasn't a priority and let me tell you what a great difference it has made. It makes the space appear more inviting and gives off the feeling of coziness!
I touch base on just how much of a difference a living room rug can make in one of my first blog posts if you want more information, here's the link : "Very Useful, Go-To Interior Design Diagrams".
Look for yourself:
Above is a photo with the new rug in place.
Below, without the rug.
The rug is from Costco.ca and it is huge: 10 ft. 2 in. x 7 ft. 10 in! Costing in at about $480 with tax and shipping.
Here is a picture of it below from the website (ecarpetgallery Labrador Cream Shag Area Rug):
This new rug is fun and comfortable. Also the price is incomparable to other stores. I waited and waited for a rug that fit my budget then remembered that Costco probably had newer selections from when I checked last. Sure enough, they had a boatload of new rugs at incomparable prices!
I hope you enjoyed this demonstration of how much of a difference an appropriate-sized rug can make. Check out the diagrams in the link above to see what size would be best for your space. Simultaneously, the diagrams can be very entertaining in terms of what not to do! Good luck and have fun!
I find it incredible how the use of colors on walls can dramatically change the way a room looks and feels. A room can go from dark and grungy to light and open with the strategic use of paint.
It is very important to have a vision of your space in mind before selecting paint, or at least to know how you want to feel when you are in the space. Once you know what you want, you can refer to the color therapy guidelines in my blog post here to select the appropriate colors.
"Designing/decorating (...) is a form of art and we make the rules..."
I think that it’s really important to have two paint colors in one room (3 walls being the main color and 1 wall being the accent color which can be lighter or darker than the main color on the other 3 walls). There are always exceptions to designing/decorating because it is a form of art and we make the rules, these are simply guidelines. Play around with it! Don't fear change, embrace it because it could potentially let a lot of light into your life. If your paint plan turns out to be a bust, it's not the end of the world, it's more experience up your sleeve.
Take a look at the examples below and see for yourself how strategically selected paint color can dramatically change the look and feel of a space. I am in the process of creating my portfolio and I wish for the before and after pictures to clearly relay how simple changes (such as paint) can make the world of a difference.
Love your space! Love how you feel in it!
I wish for everyone to enjoy being where they live.
Good luck and cheers!
There is a new special kind of paint available for your home. If you're a Germophobe, this is for you!
Sherwin Williams has come out with a new line of paint called "Paint Shield" that claims to kill 99.9% of bacteria after just two hours of exposure. Say whaaa!? Paint that can kill germs?
This would be so practical if you have a daycare at home or for those days when you want to lock yourself in a germ-free room (everyone has those days, right?)!
I think my time to become a Super Hero has come, where I will voluntarily paint every inch of every clinic or hospital I will ever need to go to with this paint (while wearing a black mask and leather bat girl costume). Picture it now…
There are over 590 colors to choose from, taboot! If you need help selecting colors, give me a ring or shoot me an e-mail and note that MaisonMiroir clients have a 30% off discount at Sherwin Williams ;)
Check out the video below that explains the magic of this paint!
Now, for SW to invent a paint that can kill 99.9% of bad energy, negative spirits and boogey monsters. I would slather that all over my walls (my son would agree!).
*Giveaway at bottom of blog post*
Natural scents that is; pure and organic essential oils (E.O’s). I am now a HUGE fan of essential oils! Last summer, I was going through a difficult period at my day job where I was put under a lot of pressure for an extended period of time (over a year). I was at a crossroads. I needed to find a way to make it all work; juggling being a Mom, a wife, a performing employee and kind to myself. That’s where essential oils come in!
I started with a google search, “natural ways to deal with stress and anxiety”, which led to essential oils being a quick, easy and inexpensive way to feel better now.
I first bought Lavender essential oil, which is said to be a terrific E.O. that helps with a multitude of physical and emotional discomforts. I returned a week later to purchase Frankincense (great for anxiety and stress) and Orange (to uplift my mood). The instantaneous mood lift I received from rubbing these essential oils on the bones behind my ears, improved my stress levels and attitude at work and at home with my family. From there I started a collection, where I am now at about 50 different oils!
Not only are essential oils antibacterial, clean the air, and are great for your skin, they also create memories! This is called "odor-evoked autobiographical memory". The part of your brain that processes smells is very close to the hippocampus and amygdala which are the areas of the brain that take care of memory and emotion. Think of getting a whiff of freshly cut grass, baked goods, rain, or perfume. Memories and emotions come to the surface and we suddenly experience flashbacks especially childhood memories.
"Say NO to chemicals in your house! "
When people walk into my house, they almost always comment on how good it smells! It's not an artificial, chemically smell full of toxins. It’s my essential oil Nebulizer (Nebulizer is a fancy term for Humidifier in which a fine spray is emitted for medicinal purposes). I consciously start my nebulizer before people come over, on weekends and when it's time to relax. Say NO to chemicals in your house! As an added bonus to smelling good and purifying the air, I help create scent memories for my family and friends! Isn't that cool?
Are you a fan, too? Which oil is your favorite!?
I love: Bergamot (for comfort), Frankincense (for stress release), Carrot Seed (for face skin care), Peppermint (for revitalizing baths), and I love many others! These diffuser blends from Saje are amazing: Spa Spirit, Tranquility and Liquid Sunshine.
Like this Facebook post and Share MaisonMiroir's Facebook page for a chance to win a free Ultrasonic Nebulizer ($100 value!).
Good luck and cheers!
Chromotherapy or color therapy, is a form of alternative medicine that is used to affect our moods. Think of your favorite store...what color do they use to advertise themselves. Do they reflect yellow to show that their products are inexpensive, or green to show how environmentally conscious their company is? Our own personal color preferences tell us much more than we realize about our personality, feelings and deepest thoughts. Chromotherapy is a tool that can be used to affect our subconscious mind to better suit ourselves in our environments at home through interior design. We can alter how we feel and think by using color in a physical form or even in thought form! Isn't that amazing!? The trick is, you must believe!
“Mere color, unspoiled by meaning, and unallied with definite form, can speak to the soul in a thousand different ways. ” Oscar Wilde
You must believe color therapy works because it is a form of alternative medicine, and is considered pseudoscience (meaning it's not backed by science). For me, this part is easy because I love to believe in all sorts of alternative medicine. If you are new to alternative medicine, this is a great place to start because color is already all around us! Color has the potential to connect us to the inner world which in turn opens us up to living lives filled with love, hope and happiness. It can also help us to alleviate negative emotions and moods such as anger, fear, worry, stress and depression by gently encouraging us to regain our inner power and acknowledge our innate wisdom.
You should be aware that all of our chakras are represented by different colors. If you have physical pain in your body and take a look at which chakra is being affected, you may better understand the root cause of your pain (the most important step of healing yourself). For example, I am asthmatic and have a very "small" voice and my weakest chakra is my throat chakra. I have to work everyday on my communication, keeping my word, speaking my truest truth and knowing when to speak and when to be silent. In turn, to strengthen this chakra and always speak my truth, I could carry a turquoise healing stone with me, wear more blue or paint my living room aqua (just kidding!).
The message I would like to leave you with is, there is so much going on all around us, all the time. We could tap into these simple things and in turn live better lives! You can create the ideal environment for you and your family at home by keeping color therapy in mind when decorating. Create the ambiance you desire and in turn, be happy in your house! Below is an excerpt from https://www.cyclicx.com/color-therapy-the-colorful-way-to-get-healthy.html of how exactly different colors can affect us and I recommend you look into this more if it is of interest to you and remember to be mindful of color when decorating your spaces! Cheers and good luck to all of you!
Red: Brings liveliness and activeness. It connotes boldness, stability, energy, focused mind, attentiveness and also creativity. This color even has the tendency to increase hunger levels. But too much using of red color can lead to uneasiness, short temper and also an enmity feeling within self.
Orange: This color will also affect mental balance. It increases happiness and winning chances. It also enhances the nature of being friendly with others apart from being loyal to people. According to color therapists it works magnificently in curing depression. Even this color can lead to increased uneasiness and discomforts when overused.
Yellow: This is one color to increase the activeness of both body and mind. It increases positive feelings. It denotes self-respect, wisdom, positive mind, and also inspiration. This color helps in increasing memory power, concentration and also lessens stress.
Green: This color gives peace of mind and new energy. It defines love, optimism, self-control and harmony. Using this color can reduce mental stress and give inner peace. But over using it can lead to sluggishness and lack of interest.
Violet: This denotes spiritual personality. It is linked to inspiration, creativity and beauty. People who use this color too often fall prey to increased sleeping hours, increased stress, and heightened appetite. According to therapists too much using of this color can also mentally upset you wherein you cannot manage emotions properly.
Magenta: This color is related to compassion and sensitivity. Using this color will help you in managing both internal and external emotions. This color should be avoided by those who are suffering from depression and also who have social anxiety disorder.
Blue: This color is linked to perfect thought process. It denotes creativity, expression of thoughts, vigor and energy. It is highly useful in reducing the hyper activeness in children. This is the reason behind why many of the school uniforms are in blue color. But overdoing of this color will lead to insecurity, pessimism, tiredness and also lack of interest.
Sky blue: This color depicts peace and expression of thoughts. Cleanliness of thoughts, solace, confidence and talking without fear are the signs that can be increased by using this color. The one best character that is found in this color and not found in other colors is it does not lead to any side effects even when it is over used.
Let me start by saying that interior design is wonderful and exciting! Although as with everything, there are good and bad sides and both are equally as important. Today I would like to explore the bad sides.
Sometimes a blank canvas can be intimidating. It can be difficult to imagine how all those blank walls and empty space will come together as one. It is overwhelming at times to choose the perfect flooring options, paint colors and furniture that will match your vision when you're faced with endless options. Sometimes you can feel stuck and unsure which direction to follow.
Whereas a populated space has another set of challenges. It can be alive and functional but drenched with old energy. Sometimes there is accumulated clutter and the organizational tasks required seem daunting and draining. Choosing what to throw out, what to donate and what to keep can prove to be difficult; material attachments can be paralyzing.
"I have learnt that it is very important for a successful end result, NOT to force things."
When I feel bad about moving forward with the task at hand, I STOP and look away for a while. It could be a break of 2 minutes, or a week (when time permits!). I have learnt that it is very important for a successful end result, NOT to force things. Taking a break allows time to recollect myself and remember what my goals are. Then, when I look back at the problem with fresh eyes, I blur my vision slightly (literally and metaphorically) to see the obstacle with a different perspective.
Using this trick allows me to regain my center and keep calm. In return, I feel confident to make the best decisions possible, tackle the next task and keep a positive outlook on the entire project until the end. The end is usually a sad time for me. I have to mentally let go of the project after it's completion, and wish it on it's way with the best intentions possible.
I was inspired at a recent Reiki session to purposefully and consciously place light energy into projects (literally into material objects) and into my clients and in return fulfil my personal life goal which is to spread light. This is such a rewarding business to be working in and I feel blessed to have direct contact with people and opportunities to help them live a better life!
This may seem over the top for some of you and that's okay! I just want to express how extremely rewarding it can be to feel like you can make a difference, however small, by spreading your gift in our world. In order to spread your gift, you need to know what it is. If you don't know yet what gift you have to share, please work actively towards finding out. One way, is to try things that you have always wanted to try. That will lead you in the direction of self understanding and exploration - which is always a step in the right direction. Also, you can remember what you loved to do as a child to find clues.
Good luck and I wish you all the best.
I would like to share these very helpful design diagrams and look at some in-depth together. If ever you feel stuck or have design questions, these are really good to have handy. I don't think they are ALL great. I recommend researching more in depth the subjects of interest or concern, e.g. color psychology is huge and cannot be summed up in a simple diagram.
For example, it might make sense to hang curtains at window frame height. Although hanging them at ceiling height instantly makes the space seem larger and more open by forcing the eye to look up and around.
Here are my favorites that I think you should pay special attention to:
I will be posting a blog in regards to color psychology very shortly. Color psychology is fun and easy; I look at it as a science.
Hopefully you will share the same enthusiasm!
When you feel passionate about something, do you share your light openly with the world? Do you look for it in others and encourage them to shine? When my creative spark is ignited and burning bright, it feels like I am on top of the world and it’s easy to convey because I feel great! I feel confident to explore ideas and possibilities that have popped up in my mind and I become inspired to make something, sometimes out of nothing!
I feel this way when I make art, design, and entertain my family and friends. Also when I play drums! The first time I played drums, it turned into a 2 hour session of learning new sequences and repeating. Afterwards I remember feeling like I had done the best work out of my life and was thinking extremely clearly; I felt like Superwoman! Drumming is something I plan on harnessing in the near future to be able to feel like a super hero daily, as well as participate in family “jam” sessions! Luckily, my teacher is my husband and I have daily access to his knowledge and patience.
I encourage everyone to tug on your creative strings and have some fun! Do it for yourself and at the same time, share your light with the world and help make it brighter.
The simple thought of space needing design, whether a blank canvas or not, is enough to get my senses heightened and creative spark ignited! Then my blood starts to race with thoughts of the potential for change and I feel excited for an opportunity to create a new space.
The goal is always to bring life and happiness to my clients and new projects by maintaining a positive attitude even in the face of challenge. After all, challenges are opportunities for growth. I like to get my clients ideas and visions for their space in order to visualize how to make it all come together beautifully. It's amazing how many people know what they want from their space, but don't know how to get there. Often times they just need someone to listen and guide them. Everyone is creative in their own way- no exceptions. Some through painting, others though music or literature, sports, technology, healing, organization, etc. Creativity is endless and we all have the potential to open up and let our soul shine onto the work we are doing.
Can you see it? It's the sight of renewed objects!
Recycled and given the opportunity to shine bright once again!
Spray paint is a simple and easy to learn Do-it-Yourself (DIY) tool. Coupled with a little elbow grease and motivation, spray paint has unlimited potential. It is very easy to remove from glass and mirrors using nail polish remover or acetone. It also covers evenly, given you remember to keep a distance (follow instructions on can) and allow appropriate drying time in between coats. Did I mention that it's fun to use! Get your creativity on and try it for yourself!
The semi-flush fixtures above were painted for MaisonMiroir's recent condo project (before and after photos coming soon!). These originally hid behind a brushed nickel finish, making them forgetful. I was aiming for an antique finish, hence the layers of brown.
They hang from the ceiling in my client's kitchen, matching with the dark brown cabinetry (Before and After photos coming soon!).
This DIY project took 2 hours to complete from the initial preparation process (cleaning all parts, removing glass, etc.) to final top coat. The more parts to clean prior to spray painting, the longer the project will be. The cleaning process should never be skipped.
Below is an example of a very time-consuming but worthwhile DIY spray paint project. This project was an attempt to update these ultra modern light fixtures in my living room. I could no longer stand the starkness of the stainless steel! An "almond" colored spray paint was my saviour here (scroll down)!
These lamp shades were completely revitalized within 4 hours! The cost was minimal, and the changes were phenomenal! I spray painted some select hanging beads with white primer and other select beads were painted the same almond color as the shade.
My purpose is to clearly demonstrate how simple and effective spray paint can be. Below is the final example I wish to share with you. I like to use spray paint to tie objects together seamlessly when a consistent look is required. In this case below, given that all the painting frames were different, it was critical that the frames matched because they were going to be hung side-by-side. These are original water paintings therefore a lot of care and attention to detail was required during the entire process. Any spray paint that snuck onto the glass was removed easily with Q-tips and acetone.
After (photos of the three frames hung in the clients space will be posted soon!)
I hope that I have given you some inspiration and insight into how easily old and outdated objects can be transformed and renewed. Good luck with your own DIY projects and remember that MaisonMiroir clients receive a 30% discount off of Sherwin Williams paint (including their spray paint).
Let me know if you have any questions or any upcoming DIY projects of your own in the comments section below!