The celebrations for Chinese New Year will begin in a few days’ time. Many of you must already have completed shopping for this fortnight event. It is that time of the year which brings home relatives and close friends from distant parts of the world. Much joviality is about to ensue. Morning prayers and worships will be followed by long evenings entertaining the guests and enjoying a hearty meal together. But have you prepared the living room yet to welcome yours guests in style? What? Waiting for the last minute? Too pressed for time? Not in the mood?
Well, we do understand your quandary. It is an already hectic time for you shouldering all kinds of responsibilities at home and at work. There remains hardly any time to rest leaving any possibilities of elaborate preparations completely out of question. However, it is such an occasion that comes only once in a year. So drag your heels for a couple of hours more. The suggestions we have today will give your living room such a strikingly beautiful makeover. Moreover, these will hardly take much of your time. So let’s begin.
Like all ancient cultures, the Chinese deeply believe in the potency of colours. Red, bright orange, golden yellow and green are considered to be auspicious colours. These are supposed to be harbingers of growth and prosperity in life. Think of various ways of incorporating these colours in your living room. See if your sofa needs to be upholstered anew.
Buy curtains, cushion covers or area rugs in any or a combination of these colours. Specht Architects painted the bookcase of West Hall Hill’s Residence in bright reddish orange. It is balanced off with a sofa in neutral grey. Simple and small touches are enough. Overdoing may result in garish effects.
It is rooted in the very tradition of a lunar new year. Cleansing and resolving the clutter around the room is necessary for “sweeping away” any painful memories of the past. An uncluttered place also invites positive energy. You may remember this post where we briefly discussed the various ways of clearing up or hiding the clutters in the interior of our homes. It creates a more hygienic environment and drives away the dusts and cobwebs settled in the corners of the room. If you are already following this ritualistically then you do not need to worry about this step at all.
This lunar year is a year of red fire monkey. It resonates well with fire and metallic energy. If you are very fond of white interior, shiny mirrored surfaces, metallic silver and gold tones then it is an appropriate time for you to introduce this in the interior of your living room. Use moderation though. You may not like a place throbbing with energy twenty four hours a day. It may add to the stress.
You may also seek expert help to understand if metallic energy is suited to your constituent. A shiny centre table, decorative mirror, storage units with mirrored cabinets, metallic pendant lighting or a golden vase full of flowers will ensure you keep things balanced and normal without failing to harness the prevailing energy.
Include flowers and potted plants in your design scheme. Chrysanthemums, alliums, lilies and orchids are considered auspicious. You can bring home any one of these or the ones of your choice. When installed at home jade plant, holy basil, marjoram etc are believed to bring good fortunes. They are going to keep the interior fresh and charming all year through.
You can keep these potted plants on or near the window pane. Guiana chestnut loves moisture, so besides living room, can also be kept in the kitchen and dining area. Chinese new year coincides with spring festival, so prominent pictures of cherry and almond blossoms are favoured for decorations as well. Peach blossoms, actual or in painting, will keep the red monkey happy.
Wooden elements will not only help to balance off the excessive metallic energy, but to keep your feet firmly rooted in ground throughout the year. By nurturing the energy of Mother Earth, you will learn to take better care of yourself and the people around you. Wood creates a classy ambience in any room and your living room will not be an exception.
By adding a wooden storage unit here, a shelf there or strategically placing a small tea table just beside the sofa you will be able to create an elegant interior. It induces that warmth in the environment that modern home sometimes lack. Premium quality wood requires minimal treatment and will serve you for decades.
Over the years, red lanterns have become synonymous with the Chinese new year. Since this festive occasion is celebrated globally, red lanterns can easily be procured in any big cities. If you are facing difficulties in having them why not think of some alternative. A fresh lampshade or an oriental lantern will be an equally impressive choice for your living room. Keep candles on the table, on top of the mantelpiece or any other place you can possibly conceive.
Light them up in time and look around to see your living room magically transformed. Be careful, do not place lit up candles close to curtains, on rug etc where there is a chance of catching fire. Peach or orange flavoured aromatic candles will be appropriate for a monkey year as a red money is particularly fond of these fruits. They will also keep the interior fresh all day long.
We have already discussed how important golden colour is in Chinese culture. During this period, gold ingots, golden paper money etc are placed in home to welcome wealth and happiness in life. Gold ingots were once used as currency in the country. However, any golden decorative object has the same power of creating an impactful ambience. Golden colour also wards off negative energy.
This Laughing Buddha is seen holding a gold ingot in his left hand. He is believed to bring wealth and abundance in life. Placing them in the northwest corner of a living room is supposed to give you best results. In the middle of all fun and frolic, take some time out to relax and energise yourself for a brand new year. Brace up to meet all kinds of challenges to be a step closer to your cherished goals.