CURERS - Healers and Practices

featured this month on Free & Native

We were inspired to start our Saturday IG Story CURER series to highlight some of our favorite healers teachers, expanders, and thinkers. We asked some of our CURERS to now share their own go-to healers and healing practices with all of you. Stay tuned Saturdays on @freeandnative IG for a new CURER each week!

So honored to be featured among Katie Dalebout's healing practices! 

iii. Katie Dalebout • Let it Out

Feng Shui consultant Anjie Cho of Holistic Spaces (NYC + LA)-- has designed and cleared every space I've ever lived in which as helped so much. I wouldn't live anywhere without first having Anjie clear it and set it up optimally according to Feng Shui principles.

Sacha Jones, Stiggly’s Holistics NYC, Sacha is one of the coolest, smartest, women I’ve ever met. She’s an herbalist, holistic health counselor, and officiates weddings. I don’t know where I’d be without her wellness and life guidance. full article

Q&A Sunday: Feng Shui for a New Home

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We are looking to move to a new home. What positive feng shui elements should we look for when looking for a new home?

Margaret W., Seal Beach, CA

Just in case you didn’t know, Margaret is my sister and the co-owner of Holistic Spaces Studio!

Margaret, I get this question a lot! First of all, it really is the best to start looking for or designing a home from the beginning with feng shui in mind. This way you can avoid doing remedial feng shui. While most feng shui is remedial, it’s most ideal to get it right to begin with! Because each home and family has different needs, I’ll address the general exterior elements that affect the feng shui of a home.

Neighborhood Chi

As you approach the new home, pay close attention to the chi (or energy) of the neighborhood. Are the trees healthy? Is the neighborhood vibrant? Do the neighbors appear happy? You can gather a lot of information from observing the area. From the feng shui perspective, when the natural and human elements in the surrounding area are lively and lush it’s a good indication that the inhabitants will dwell similarly.

Curb Appeal

Getting closer to the prospective home, examine the condition of the exterior including the landscaping, the curb and location of the entry door. Like the neighborhood chi, in feng shui we look for healthy landscaping and good curb appeal. The exterior appearance influences how the world will see the homeowners. We want the exterior to be welcoming and well manicured. The location of the door is also important. Was it easy to find the front door? Or is it hidden behind an overgrowth of bushes? The ease in which you can find the front door indicates how effortless it will be for opportunities and positive energy to find their way into your life.

Predecessor Chi

If possible, research as much information as you can about all the previous owners. The fates of the preceding inhabitants surely affect the feng shui of the home. The predecessor energy may indicate a happy and abundant lifestyle. On the other hand it may expose leanings towards health or money troubles. This is especially true if there are recurring patterns. But if you find a home that you love, there are usually ways to clear the home of the negative predecessor chi with space clearing techniques.

By the way, in case you're also selling a home, here are some feng shui tips for sellers!

Overall, it’s important to look at the location, exterior and history of a home before you decide to move. We want your home to improve and support the health, happiness and prosperity of you and your family.

by Anjie Cho

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!

Q&A Sunday: Welcoming New Friendships

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What is a good way to welcome new friendships in your life? Not just superficial friends but actually friends with whom you truly connect and are supportive?

Charmaine B.M., Morganville, NJ

Hi Charmaine, 

Thank you so much for your question! It's a great one, because many people run into the same issue as we get older, in that it's not as easy to welcome new friends into our lives. It's harder to meet people, and we also tend to grow apart from former friends. Not everyone walks the same path, and sometimes friends don't serve us as well once our paths diverge. 

My first suggestion for you is to look at the location of your dining room and dining table in your home. How close are they to the front door? In your case, it's better if the dining room and table are further towards the back of the home. If they are close to the front door, is it possible for you to move the dining room or table towards the back of the house / room, past the mid-line? Your dining table represents how you break bread with people, interact with them and connect with them. When the dining area is close to the door, it may indicate superficial friendships coming into and leaving from your life quickly. Kind of like "dining and dashing!"

If you do have the situation in your home with the dining area near the front door, but can't change it, there's still hope! The second option, if the first is not available to you, is to place a mirror in the dining area. Choose a large mirror (the larger, the better) and set it up so that it reflects the dining table towards the back of your home. This means that when you look at the mirror, you're facing the back of the home. This energetically pulls your dining table back further into the home and therefore further into the feng shui bagua layout of your home. This may seem a bit confusing, so I encourage you to submit your floor plan, and I can specify which wall to use. 

I also suggest using your dining area often, if you don't already. These days we often neglect dining tables and end up using them as landing places for old mail, working at home and essentially everything but eating! In fact, if you're working at your dining room table too often, that could signify that you are spending too much time on work and not enough on cultivating friendships. Take some time to clean off your table, and host a dinner party or a few friends to activate that energy. 

Finally, activate the Benefactors area of your home. You're not just looking for superficial friends, but for people who can connect with and support you. This means you're looking for Benefactors, helpful people in your life who comfort and encourage you. To welcome these relationships, activate the Benefactors area of the bagua. You can do this by adding a heavy statue in this area to provide support and stability. You can also add plants to your Benefactors area, especially plants with red flowers. Red is auspicious in feng shui, and green plants stimulate new growth and new beginnings

If you'd like, send your floor plan along, and we'll take a more personal look at your dining area. If you're already working with a consultant, consider getting into the question a bit deeper and looking at your specific situation. Are you meeting lots of friends but not connecting? Do you not meet anyone? Do your friends often betray you? It's important to answer these questions so that you can take steps to adjust your space and life to make room for great friends!

by Anjie Cho

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!

Go Fair Trade in Your Holistic Spaces

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October is Fair Trade Month, which is exciting for us, because Fair Trade principles align closely with what we work toward in creating truly nourishing holistic spaces. There are numerous organizations dedicated to moving us closer to a Fair Trade society, and though each of them has their own set of specific standards and guidelines, there are a few underlying principles that really define what it means to encourage Fair Trade. 

First, let's define "fair trade." According to Merriam-Webster, fair trade is 

a movement whose goal is to help producers in developing countries to get a fair price for their products so as to reduce poverty, provide for the ethical treatment of workers and farmers, and promote environmentally sustainable practices.

Following this general push to ensure that producers around the world are treated fairly and humanely, Fair Trade principles require that organizations participating in this trade meet the following guidelines:

  • Seek to create opportunities for disadvantaged producers
  • Maintain clear and understandable processes and procedures
  • Establish fair prices that will both benefit producers and find sustainability in market
  • Refrain from engaging in any sort of child labor or forced labor
  • Refrain from discrimination for any reason, including but not limited to, age, gender, caste, nationality, HIV status and political beliefs
  • Provide good working conditions
  • Provide training and beneficial opportunities for workers to build their skills
  • Actively promote fair trade
  • Respect the environment

These conditions ensure that employers and companies not only reach out to third-world producers to take an active part in relieving poverty, but that each of these service providers and producers are treated with humane, dignified conditions that establish an enhanced quality of life. 

This is all great, but what can each of us do to help encourage fair trading in our society? We can seek out Fair Trade products! The most common Fair Trade items are coffee, wine, fresh fruits and handicrafts. When you're creating a holistic space, Fair Trade handicrafts can be a fantastic way to fill your space with beautiful items while helping others at the same time! 

Keep an eye out for:

  • hand knit, organic textiles
  • hand carved statues and home decor
  • hand embroidered wall hangings and other art made from natural materials like jute. (Organic cotton is farmed with much higher regard for our environment, and often by family farmers in disadvantaged areas. Likewise, jute is a 100% biodegradable and recyclable rain-fed crop that grows predominately in Bangladesh and other Indian countries. )
  • fair trade essential oils, (like the ones we use in our home mists!)

Like everything, there are products that will give the impression of Fair Trade without meeting the requirements, so be sure to look for a Fair Trade seal and do your research! Check out My Favorite Things this month to get your search started!

by Anjie Cho

Visit the Holistic Spaces Store

My Favorite Things: 5 Fair Trade Autumn Essentials

Welcome to My Favorite Things! Each month, we highlight products to help you create a holistic lifestyle that inspires and nurtures you, so that you can be happier and feel supported.

October is officially Fair Trade Month, during which we're all encouraged to focus on making purchases that align with fair trade practices around the world. Seeking out fair trade goods is a spectacular way to do our part to ensure that our environment and workers and employees around the world are not exploited in any way. In honor of Fair Trade Month and the new season, we've gathered up our favorite fall essentials that contribute to fair and honest working conditions around the globe!

Organic Cotton Throw

Fall is the time to add warmer layers to your space, and this organic throw is an incredible addition. It's not only 100% organic cotton with eco-friendly, non-toxic dyes, it's sourced ethically in India and produced on Fair Trade farms and mills. 

Throws even come in a reusable storage box, and a portion of proceeds goes to stop human trafficking. If you want to embrace the season in feng shui style, opt for white to symbolize the Metal element and Completion area of the bagua, which are associated with fall. 

Available at: Boll & Branch

Jute Market Bag

As the weather cools, It's time to head to the farmer's market and choose seasonal veggies to nurture your body and spirit. We've talked before about bringing your own bag, and this one is perfect!

This jute market bag is hand knotted and stretches to accommodate various market products. They are created by CORR: The Jute Works, a Fair Trade Bangladesh organization that works to help rural women provide for their families and provides beneficial trainings on everyday issues. A portion of funds from craft sales go to helping children attend school as well!

Available at: serrv

Recycled Metal Bells

One of our favorite ways to say hello to fall is through the feng shui cure of circumambulation (here's what that means), and these bells are a great tool! 

Handmade in Moradabad, India as part of a workshop through Noah's Ark, a Fair Trade registered handicraft marketing organization, these recycled bells are perfect for circumambulating to activate clarity and joy in your space for the new season. Since they're metal, they also add the metal element, which is related to autumn! 

Available at: One World Projects

Focus Spray with Essential Oils

Here at Holistic Spaces, we're proud to also use Fair Trade where possible, including our apothecary mists, no. 1 Happy and no. 2 Focus, which are made with Fair Trade essential oils

Autumn is time for grounding ourselves in preparation for winter, and as we near the holiday season, stressors and busyness can make focus difficult. Our Focus spray helps to provide grounding and meditative focus and is safe and eco-friendly! 

Available at: Holistic Spaces

Plant-Based Dry Skin Brush

Skin is our largest organ, and it can get sluggish during the change to cooler weather. Dry brushing can help to give your skin and lymphatic system a refresh to ensure that you're eliminating toxins as needed throughout the autumn and winter.

This brush is made with ethically traded cactus bristles, harvested and manufactured by a group of indigenous Nanhu women called Ya Munts'I Behna. 

Available at: The Body Shop