28 October 2016
Andy Wan believes home is where one purifies the soul. In his designs, he often uses a calming palette of colors and light sources to create harmony. Photo: Pure AW’s Designers Ltd.
Andy Wan believes home is where one purifies the soul. In his designs, he often uses a calming palette of colors and light sources to create harmony. Photo: Pure AW’s Designers Ltd.

Why a designer became a firm believer in feng shui

It’s hard to define feng shui.

Some call it environmental science; some say it is based on the influence of magnetic fields; others say it is based on the balance of energy.

What interior designer Andy Wan cares about is only that it works.

Wan has been in the design business for over a decade.

He first took an interest in feng shui a long time ago, when he was still a student in Britain.

At that time, it was more like appreciating it as part of Chinese culture.

But increasingly, he has found that real-life examples attest to the time-tested wisdom time and again.

Working with some big clients over the years, Wan noticed a pattern.

They usually brought their own feng shui masters into the design process.

“As they are able to identify homes and offices with good feng shui, their businesses benefit and improve steadily,” Wan says.

“As they become wealthier, they can afford places with even better feng shui, leading to a virtuous cycle.”

That is why Wan decided to study the subject in depth with a feng shui teacher.

He followed his master around on site visits and noted down his remarks on different landscapes, views and interior settings.

Wan also attended talks on feng shui to enrich his knowledge.

Feng shui is now fully integrated into his designs.

For Wan, blending feng shui into his interior designs has an additional purpose.

“I hope my clients can live healthy lives in the homes I design,” Wan said.

Good feng shui is as much about enhancing health as boosting wealth.

For those interested in feng shui basics, the location and view of a property matters a lot.

But it’s not a straightforward good or bad — the interpretation changes with time.

“Between 2004 and 2023, a property looking out on the waterfront in the southwestern direction is good for wealth,” Wan said as an example.

Not all parts of a home or office are equal in feng shui terms.

Within a property, there are good feng shui zones and bad ones.

Some types of bad energy could attract illness, others could bring fights among colleagues or family members.

Wan’s job is to identify good feng shui zones and do his best to harness their positive energy.

“Good feng shui zones should be used as the main entrance, bedroom or kitchen for example, which homeowners use frequently or where they stay for long hours,” he said.

Colors matter, too.

Red, for instance is the color that amplifies energy, good or bad.

“In a bad energy zone, red should be avoided,” Wan said.

The placing of furniture is also key.

And, usually, installing a light or fan right above the bed is not a good idea.

Wan also has deep respect for nature and strives to deliver designs that are not only beautiful and correct in their feng shui but are also eco-friendly and sustainable.

This explains why his firm is called Pure AW’s Designers Ltd.

A stands for air, W for water and s for sun, all essential elements for life.

Wan uses mostly LED lighting and eco-friendly paint in his work.

He prefers to use high-quality and durable materials.

Wan tries to ensure that his designs stay in style for a long time, so that customers won’t need to refurbish their homes or shops frequently.

In that sense, Wan said, he is trying to do his bit to save our planet.

“I hope my designs won’t look outdated, even in 10 years,” he said.

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EJ Insight writer

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