Q&A Sunday: Adding Plants to Your Bedroom

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I was wondering which plants I can use in a bedroom space that faces east but windows are on the north wall.

Cami H., Atlanta, GA

Hi Cami

Thanks for your email and question. I practice BTB feng shui, which is one of the many schools of feng shui. One of the major differentiating factors with the BTB school is that we focus on the direction of energy rather than the cardinal directions (like north, south, east, west). With that in mind, in a mundane sense, I would recommend placing the plants as close to the window as possible to ensure that they get enough light. 

As far as best plants to use in the bedroom, it depends! If it’s for feng shui applications, such as to add more wood energy (as suggested in an early episode of our podcast), then it’s best to stick to plants that have round soft leaves rather than sharp pointy ones. These three plants are some of the best options to add for feng shui adjustments!

Practically, did you know there are many houseplants that are great for the bedroom because they release oxygen at night time? Snake plants, also known as Mother-in-Law's Tongue, are one of the best options for bedroom plants for this exact reason. You can also use Moth or Dendrobium Orchids, especially if you are looking for a stable relationship, Bromeliads, Aloe Vera or certain types of Cactus plants. Just keep in mind with the last two, if you're making a feng shui adjustment, avoid pointy leaves!

On another note, since your window is facing north, it won't likely get a lot of direct sunlight. To counteract this, aim for a plant that thrives in full or partial shade. Hosta, English Ivy and Hydrangeas are a few good choices!  

I'm happy to hear that you're considering adding plants to your bedroom space. Living plants are such beautiful and meaningful additions to any space. We'd love to see photos of the plants and arrangements you decide. Send them along!

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.


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Autumnal Equinox in Feng Shui Terms

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Maybe you know this Monday, September 23, was the autumnal equinox this year, but what exactly does that mean?

The autumnal equinox is one of two times per year, the other being spring equinox, that the sun crosses the equator, temporarily rendering day and night the same length and signifying the change of seasons from summer to fall. These times are also referred to as the autumnal and vernal equinoxes. On a more scientific level, the autumnal equinox occurs when the Earth's equator crosses the center of the sun, meaning that for one of two times each year, the Earth is not tilted one way or the other in reference to the sun. 

Since autumn is ultimately a transition into winter, it's important from a feng shui perspective that we take time to nurture ourselves in preparation for colder, darker months. Below are some tips to help you and your home fall back into autumn in harmony.

De-Clutter Your Closet

It is that time again - time to put away the off-season summer clothing and bring out the warm, autumnal gear. While you go through your clothes, take some time to de-clutter your closet. If your closet is full, you are energetically telling the universe you have no room for anything new. Make space for some amazing opportunities!

Refresh Your Bed Linens

As the weather gets cooler, adjust your bed linens accordingly. Autumn and winter lend to soft blankets and heavier duvets. If possible, treat yourself to some organic bedding. The chemicals used in conventional fabrics not only off-gas VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), the toxins also get absorbed into your bloodstream through skin contact. 

Also think about the colors of your bedding. Warmer earthy colors like burgundies, browns and taupes are great for the cooler months.

Deep Clean The Refrigerator

Along with the clothes you wear and bed you sleep in, the change in season also lends to a change in the food you eat. This is the time to transition into warmer, cooked foods, and fewer raw, cold foods. Look at this as an opportunity to deep clean and de-clutter. Empty out the refrigerator and remove anything expired, old and/or spoiled. Spoiled and expired food symbolize neglect of one’s overall health. If possible, compost the organic material, or find a compost drop-off location and recycle or reuse the glass and plastic containers.

When cleaning the interior of the refrigerator, I prefer to use natural non-toxic cleaners, such as baking soda to scrub, and a mixture of vinegar, water and eucalyptus essential oil to wipe down and disinfect. Then open up a new container of baking soda to absorb any odors in your newly organized and clean refrigerator.

I also keep a clear natural crystal quartz in my refrigerator. I program that crystal with the intention to enhance the life energy and nourishment for the food that I will later eat.

Let's welcome the autumnal equinox with positive feng shui adjustments to our home with these three simple tips.

Also be sure to read my interview with Angela Mastoris about the Chinese Medicine considerations for Adjusting to the Fall Equinox here!

by Anjie Cho


If you’d like to learn more about feng shui check out the Mindful Design Feng Shui certification program. Laura Morris and I launched our program in September 2018. To get on the list about it, sign up at: www.mindfuldesignschool.com.

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

Live the Green Dream and Let Plants Take Root In Your Home

featured on Irish Examiner by Kya deLongchamps

image credit: Irish Examiner

image credit: Irish Examiner

Minimalist or austere? The uptight, sleek, relatively empty neutral space spiked with worthy mid-century inspired furnishings is being challenged in 2019 with the return to a cosier more full inhabited feel of maximalism. Celebrated American architect Robert Charles Venturi Jr, who sadly died this year, tangled with the Mies Van Der Rohe’s sacred but paralysing adage trotted out in the last 10 years of decorating – ‘Less is more’, Venturi stated flatly, ‘- and less - is a bore.’

One of the most popular and luxurious interpretations of the ‘more is more’ school of aesthetics is the Memphis look – a 1970s fantasy of brass bound tables, marble, velvet and abstract art layered joyfully over every wall, glass and lacquered surface. It’s still chic, but there’s a lot more ‘you’ in these playful rooms.

In lush imagery of the Memphis lifestyle in European and American trade shows, living and faux greenery softens glass counters, orphaned corners and empty vertical voids using the exquisite geometry of rosette succulents, string-of-pearl (trailing Senecio Rowleyanus) and statuesque palms-house super-stars.

…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


Gardening Without the Garden: How to Garden When You Don't Have Outdoor Space

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There’s just something about fresh-grown produce that elevates a good dish to a great dish. What’s a home cook to do, however, when there’s no home garden to harvest? Flex your green thumb and get ready! Whether your gardening is on hiatus due to seasonal weather or it’s non-existent because of lack of outdoor space, an indoor garden is just what you’re seeking.

Let’s start with where.

You can dedicate as much or as little space to your indoor garden as you wish. Ideally, your indoor plot will have ready access to natural light. A window sill is a natural fit for this. Consider using brackets up a length of your window frame and boards to add shelving if you’d like more window-fronted planting space. Other alternatives are a table, repurposed dresser, or bookshelf placed in a sunny spot. Heavier plants will be happy in beautiful pot on the floor. 

If your ideal space doesn’t have ready access to sunlight or you’re growing in the dead of winter, consider purchasing a grow light.

Most of your plants like a nice consistent ‘warm’ state. Aim for a range of 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit. That should be easy enough because it likely falls within the same range a happy human enjoys. Just remember to avoid putting your indoor garden in a drafty space. 

So what will you grow?

Some plants are more readily adaptable to indoor gardening than others. As an example, you can grow tomatoes indoors, but certain varieties will be happier in a pot near a window than others. Smaller fruited plants like cherry, grape and plum will perform better than the larger varieties.

Carrots and other root vegetables require a good amount of room to grow down. If you want to try your hand at some crunchy goodness, look for a window box or pot that’s at least a foot and half deep. Alternatively, grow varieties that tend to be more short and squat than long and lean. One more tip: water your carrots with tepid chamomile tea to help ward off fungus! 

It’s probably no surprise that microgreens are a good indoor option. Look for a shallow pot or tray (no more than 2 inches deep) and use a seed mix containing greens like kale, Swiss chard, beets and mesclun. Mist the soil daily to keep it from drying out. Once the greens have grown 1-2 inches tall and have at least two sets of leaves on them, they’re ready to eat. Other good indoor plants include: lemons, potatoes, herbs, mushrooms, beans, and strawberries. Don’t stop there, either! Do some digging and experimenting to see what works well in your space. 

Your garden is also your décor.

As practical (and yummy!) as an indoor garden might be, it’s also unique and beautiful design choice! Get creative with your planters; empty tins (with drainage holes added), troughs made from reclaimed wood, and old shoe organizers can all make unique and beautiful planting options.

by Anjie Cho


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.


The Truth About Compostable Plastics

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We’re in a time when people are finally starting to care a little more about our environment, and we’re taking steps to ensure that it sticks around for a while. That said, some of these steps aren’t quite as helpful as they may seem, especially when all the information isn’t provided. Case in point: compostable plastic ware.

First things first, there is a misunderstanding that the words “biodegradable” and “compostable” are interchangeable. They aren’t. For an object to be biodegradable, it merely has to have the capability to be broken down organically. If something is compostable, the American Society for Testing and Materials specifies that it can be broken down according to a specific process that ultimately leads to the production of humus. What does this mean? It means compostable plastic ware isn’t dealt with in the same manner as biodegradable plastic ware, especially since the two ultimately have different uses. Since compostable plastics are eventually returned to the soil from which we derive our food and water, their decomp must produce carbon dioxide and water, leave no distinguishable difference from other compost, and produce no toxic substance, otherwise we end up eating and drinking toxicity.

So what does that have to do with the purchase and use of compostable plastic ware? First of all, purchase of compostable plastic ware, for actual composting, requires more awareness and dedication to ensuring the substantial makeup of the product. If you’re buying these to ultimately throw in landfills (I hope you’re not), the difference between biodegradable and compostable isn’t terribly important. However, if you’re buying compostable plastic ware with the intent to actually do your part and compost it, it’s important to make sure it can actually be composted and not just degraded.

Secondly, us regular environmentally aware people can’t compost compostable plastic on our own. Because of the composition of plastic ware, the processes used in a professional composting facility are extremely important to the assurance that these utensils properly degrade in order to leave no toxic substance in our soil. No matter how awesome your compost pile at home is, we can’t produce the heat necessary to compost this plastic ware in a reasonable amount of time. So if you’re going to buy compostable plastic ware, know where the closest composting facility is and whether you have access to it, as these sorts of businesses often only cater to larger companies.

Here’s the other thing: production of compostable plastic ware requires massive amounts of certain crops, including corn and potatoes, which are often grown using a system called monocropping. In short, when a farmer monocrops, he uses the exact same land over and over again to grow the exact same crop. Get it? Mono. Crop? The issue with this process is that growing in this style rapidly depletes the earth used to grow these crops, not only wearing out the soil faster, but making crops harder to grow. Lots of times this results in farmers turning to chemicals to promote growth in dilapidated fields. Is this all coming together yet? As much as many of us want to do our parts to contribute to rebuilding our planet, it seems that compostable plastic ware may not be the best route. Make sure you know what you’re buying into when you pick up that box of forks.  

by Anjie Cho


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.