The 5 elements of nature—water, wood, fire, earth and metal—bring different energies into your living or work space. Decorate according to these properties, and you’ll enhance the Feng Shui flow.
What are the 5 Feng Shui elements?
In Feng Shui, just like in astrology, the “elements” of nature are an essential part of the practice. Feng Shui uses them to decode the energy in your home.
In astrology, we use nature’s elements to understand people’s temperaments. Western astrology divides the zodiac sign into four elements: fire, earth, air, and water.
Feng Shui, like Chinese astrology, distinguishes five elements: fire, earth, metal, water, and wood. Various regions of the Feng Shui bagua map correspond with each element.
The feng shui elements are associated with specific colors, shapes, and energy. Adding shapes, colors, and energy to the regions of a home or room with these elements can enhance harmony and improve the flow of energy.
Understanding the 5-Element Theory
Or, the 5-Element “cycle of life”
The five feng shui elements each have an element that creates it (the “parent”) and an element that is created by it (the “offspring”). For example, the fire element is created by wood (parent). Fire creates earth (offspring). Water destroys fire.
|Parent||Nourishes & Creates (Offspring)||Destroys & Controls|
Feng Shui Element: Fire
Energy: Pulsating, energy, vitality (yang)
Colors: Red shades, pinks
Design Ideas to Activate Flow/Energy: Lights, candles, candelabras, a fireplace; hang a painting or sculpture with a bold splash of red or triangle shapes
Feng Shui Element: Earth
Energy: Stability, nurturing, sustaining
Colors: Orange, yellow, earth tones
Season: Transition of seasons
Design Ideas to Activate Flow/Energy: Terra cotta pots, ceramics, soft fabrics and colors
Feng Shui Element: Metal
Energy: Focus, direct, contracting
Colors: Grey, pastels, white
Design Ideas to Activate Flow/Energy: Metal objects, metallic finishes and fixtures
Feng Shui Element: Water
Colors: Black, dark tones
Design Ideas to Activate Flow/Energy: Fountains, fish tanks, mirrors
Feng Shui Element: Wood
Energy: Changing, growth, sprouting
Shape: Rectangular, columnar
Colors: Green shades
Design Ideas to Activate Flow/Energy: Plants, wood flooring and furniture, sculpture