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Feng Shui Solutions for Sleeping Under Beams

A creative canopy bed at the Barcelo Asia Garden Hotel in Malaysia

I often need to find good ways to cover beams in the bedrooms I design. In the past week alone, three clients contacted me for solutions to sleeping under beams, so it seemed like a good moment to share some of my Feng Shui remedies with you.

 Here’s the reason why sleeping under beams is a Feng Shui no-no: beams break the natural flow of chi energy that moves throughout the room. A steady, smooth flow of chi in our environment supports healthy circulation and promotes a feeling of well being. When the flow is disrupted, it can affect health.

However, it is important to keep in mind that sleeping under a beam will not make you sick. Rather, if you already have an underlying physical issue, the break in chi flow around the bed can aggravate that weakness.

Here are three solutions that I use to address beams in the bedroom:

1. Do It Yourself Canopy

2. Canopy Bed

3. Drop Ceiling

Let’s look at each one…

1. The DIY Canopy:

This simple piece of cloth elegantly hides the beam above.

The solution above is ideal for a client from LA who called last week and is considering moving into an apartment with this beam in her bedroom:

Someone recently sent me a picture of this bedroom beam - a prime candidate for the DIY canopy.

This is how to do it: just find a pretty piece of fabric the width of the bed, attach one end to the seam where the wall behind your bed meets the ceiling.  Then attach the other end of the fabric to the ceiling just above the foot of your bed.  Try to keep a gentle, hammock-like bow to the fabric so that it clears the beam without touching it.  The picture of the remedy above shows a rather sheer piece of fabric, but I would recommend a thicker fabric to fully hide the view of the beam (it isn’t a complete remedy unless the beam is entirely obscured).A nice variation on this is to take a much longer piece of fabric (like an Indian sari) and let the rest of the fabric drape down the wall behind your bed, which creates an elegant headboard.

 2. A Canopy bed:

A canopy bed hides the beams at the Little Olarro Kenya Hotel

When dealing with a lot of beams, a good solution is to invest in a canopy bed. The fabric overhead will separate you from the beam above. My clients in New York just moved into this charming apartment in Greenwich Village, and a canopy bed would be ideal for their bedroom:

My client's romantic bedroom could use a canopy bed.


The Asseman Canopy by Patrizia Cagliani, sold through Suite New York.

3. Drop the bedroom ceiling to hide the beams.

In this NYC apartment near Wall Street, I dropped my client’s bedroom ceiling to cover the beams. 

After: My client's bedroom after I dropped the ceiling.

My client was having difficulty sleeping when under the beams. But after this renovation, he has reported that he sleeps wonderfully. Here is how the bedroom looked before:

Before: My client's bedroom before I renovated and dropped the ceiling.

 Another perk of dropping your bedroom ceiling is that you create space above the ceiling to add lighting. In this bedroom, I added recessed lights and a ceiling fan to help air circulation, which also supports sound sleep.

So whatever your budget, there is a way for you to create your own Feng Shui “remedy” and support good sleep and good health.

June 21, 2013   43 Comments

Catch this gorgeous show before it closes

Happy New Year! I hope it has been wonderful so far.

If you are in the New York area, I encourage you to check out this show before it ends: Robert Kushner at DC Moore Gallery in Chelsea.

Its at 535 West 22nd Street, New York (between 10th/11th Aves). Showing through January 5th, 2013.

Robert Kushners work from a previous show at DC Moore

I love Robert’s work because it is a wonderful representation of Feng Shui in art: the beautiful way he paints nature, the saturated colors, and the use of gold leaf (a great “metal” element and Feng Shui remedy to protect health).

From the DC Moore press release:

 “In his heroically large-scale paintings, Kushner combines organic representational elements with flat, geometric grounds of solid or textured color. In doing so, he acknowledges a unique range of influences, including Islamic and European decorative arts, Chinese and Japanese sumi-e ink painting, and American abstract painting. Kushner’s multimedia works on paper are composed atop antique texts from a variety of sources with hand-painted flowers, gold leaf additions, and found vintage photographs. In both his paintings and painted collages, Kushner unites art historical tradition with modernism and aesthetic pleasure with intellectual rigor.”

 You might also know Robert’s work if you take the 6 Train – check out his large mosaic piece at the 77th Street stop:

Robert is a great friend and a gifted artist, I hope you get a chance to see his work!

January 4, 2013   No Comments