# The Five Elements and Correlating Shapes Used in Feng Shui

Feng shui is the practice of managing energy flow through the careful arrangement and orientation of physical spaces. Central to this philosophy is the concept of five essential elements that are the driving force of energy moving throughout the world.

Each of the five elementsâ€”fire, metal, wood, earth, and waterâ€”all have specific manifestations in terms of color, its productive/destructive cycle, and shape.

Look at ways to incorporate shape as it relates to each of the five elements into your spaces. By following these basic concepts, you can make feng shui decorating an easy, subtle, but very powerful tool in your home and office.

### Shape in the Five Elements

Take a look at how feng shui elements are expressed in shapes:

• Wood: Rectangular
• Fire: Triangular
• Earth: Square
• Metal: Round
• Water: Wavy

When you start applying the feng shui theory of five elements, you can get confused as to the feng shui element representation of a specific piece of furniture or a decor item. Color seems self-explanatory, but an item may have a shape and material that relates to a conflicting feng shui element.

### Find Out What Takes Precedence

Since you know that a feng shui element can be represented by color, shape, and material. Which is more important? For example, you have a blue, square coffee table made of wood. Blue is the color of the feng shui water element, the table is made of wood representing the wood element, and it is a square, which is the shape of the earth element. So which one of the three elements does the table actually represent?

Generally, when you have difficulty defining the feng shui element of a specific decor item, the color of the item will be used as the first criteria. Second, comes the shape, and then, the material from which the item is made.

Of course, when the feng shui element is obvious, such as a metal staircase (metal element) or a plant (wood element), there is no guesswork. In most cases, though, you will see that each decor item brings two or more elements, and in time you will find it easier to get a sense or understand the feng shui element expression of various items in your home.

### Feng Shui Decorating

Decorating with the five feng shui elements is an art form. You have to experiment and practice with different items until you get to a place where you easily understand the language, or the feeling of a specific object. Once you get that, you will see how it fits into the bigger picture.

Do not overthink it. Let your intuition guide you. If you have an immediate positive or happy response to an item, then that means you are picking up on its quality of energy. Through experimenting and trusting your inner voice, you will start picking items that speak to you. All it takes is an open mind that is willing to listen.

Once you know how to balance the five elements in your home by using simple decor items, as well as various feng shui cures, a harmonious home is truly yours to enjoy.