9 Common Feng Shui Decorating Mistakes

cluttered interior space
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If you’re interested in applying feng shui principles to your home, here’s a list of nine common decorating mistakes.

Please keep in mind that not everything is a feng shui adjustment, so if you love one (or many) of these feng shui errors, it’s okay. Just know you have it in your home because you love it, and not for its feng shui application.

  • 01 of 09

    Dried, Dying, or Sick Flowers and Plants

    dried roses hanging as decoration

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    Living green plants and fresh flowers bring positive life energy into a home and are excellent feng shui. But this does not apply to flowers and plants that are ailing. This also includes natural elements that are preserved and/or dried. They are no longer living, so they do not offer any life energy. If a plant is sick, do your best to heal the plant, but remember that ailing plants indicate challenges for the inhabitants of the home. 

    Dried lavender in your closet is okay. It's not a feng shui decoration. And sometimes people have preserved flowers that are quite meaningful to them, like their dried wedding bouquet. This is okay to have as it’s precious to you. But, it’s not something you’d use for feng shui purposes.

  • 02 of 09

    Sharp, Thorny, or Pointy Plants

    sharp pointy needles on a cactus plant

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    Along the lines of plants, if you are using a plant as a feng shui cure, it’s best to avoid plants that have sharp leaves or needles. Also, thorny plants are not recommended. In feng shui, these shapes create sharp energy that most people want to avoid. Instead, we prefer soft and rounded leaves that will invite soft and gentle energy into your home. 

    But for example, if you have a cactus that you love, it’s acceptable to have some plants in your home that you care for that aren’t necessarily for feng shui use.

  • 03 of 09

    Broken or Obscured Mirrors

    shards of mirror on a wall

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    Mirrors are highly symbolic in most cultures. When they are flat and clear, they can expand your view and reflect inner teachings for the observer. Therefore, any broken or obscured mirrors will not tell the truth. Broken mirrors are also dangerous and can lead to accidents. If possible, work with clear, polished mirrors that reflect with clarity.

  • 04 of 09

    Bagua Mirror

    bagua mirror

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    Many people have seen these Bagua mirrors floating around Chinatown. They typically consist of a round mirror with an octagon frame, painted with symbols and such. A Bagua mirror is used to deflect undesired energies.

    Unfortunately, this sacred feng shui object is often placed incorrectly. Bagua mirrors should never be used in decorating the interior of a home. It’s always located on the exterior of a home. 

    We would recommend only work with this feng shui object under the guidance of a feng shui consultant.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Random Asian Objects

    feng shui money frog

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    Random Asian or Asian-inspired knick-knacks do not necessarily have a feng shui function. Placing something Asian-inspired in your home because you have some inkling that it might have something to do with feng shui is not advised and a poor assumption. This is especially true if you dislike or don't even need it.

    The key here is to have objects in your home that you love and serve a purpose that you can recognize. If you have included an Asian object that you love and you understand the reason, this is okay. 

  • 06 of 09

    Storage Under the Bed

    bedroom with storage under the bed

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    While it makes practical sense, it’s not good feng shui to have storage underneath your bed. This applies to storage boxes, loose storage, beds with built-in storage (like drawers), and so on. You spend many hours sleeping over all this stuff, and so it affects you. 

    Storage under your bed may represent subconscious blocks in many areas of your life, including your romantic relationships. If possible, you want nothing under the bed. In feng shui, we want the energy to flow easily around you. And if you absolutely must store things under the bed, please stick to soft, sleep-related items like soft pillows, blankets, and linens.

  • 07 of 09

    A Bed Without a Headboard

    mattress on the floor without a headboard

    Dmitry Zvolskiy / Pexels

    In feng shui practice, you need to have a headboard that is fastened securely to the bed and against a solid wall. It’s not good feng shui to have just a mattress plopped on the floor or a bed floating in space. 

    The headboard strengthens, supports, and connects. This applies to your relationships, your wellbeing, and your life in general.

  • 08 of 09

    Blocked Doors

    doors with clutter

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    It’s best to avoid placing anything behind a door that prevents the door from opening at least 90 degrees. Even if you have nice hooks that are perfectly organized without clutter, if the door can’t open at least 90 degrees, it’s not good feng shui. 

    On the mundane level, it makes it difficult and stressful to walk through that door. On an energetic level, it limits the good energy and opportunities that you can receive.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Feng Shui Cures in All Bagua Areas

    Bagua map

    The Spruce / Nusha Ashjaee

    Finally, a common feng shui decorating mistake is trying to correct all of the Bagua areas. The Bagua is the feng shui energy map and is overlaid on your home. It’s very alluring to attempt to address all the areas of your life by making feng shui adjustments in every area, and every room in your home. 

    It’s better to choose one to three areas to work on. This way you focus on what’s important and needs attention.