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Maintain the festive flow by setting healthy holiday boundaries

A detail from my christmas tree (yes I’m a mermaid at heart)

During the holidays I find it’s important to set a few healthy boundaries that will allow me to maximize the fun and good vibes, while preserving my sense of peace and serenity.  Feng Shui is all about balance, and here are a few things I recommend to preserve yours:

Season and Space: while you might like to set up holiday décor throughout your house, you can also avoid overwhelm by keeping your personal space free from too much festive clutter. Make sure there is at least one area of the house where you can restore and reconnect to the spirit within you.

Size Matters: with the exception of kids toys, less really is more when it comes to gifts. In this age of Amazon, everyone buys what they need and get it the next day. So there really isn’t any need to go all out on an oversized or overpriced gift.  My motto is the gift should ideally be small enough to fit in a Christmas stocking. (If it needs to be a little bigger, then it ought to fit beneath a dwarf Christmas tree 😊.  A small, well considered gift is usually the most appreciated. It shows that you truly thought about that person’s unique style or taste, and also didn’t want to add more clutter to their space.

Size does matter (as this bad boy who wondered through my yard confirms)

Days and Times: set your holiday hours and honor them. As you receive invitations, really think about how each one works with your schedule and sanity. You don’t have to accept every single invite. To those you politely decline, remember to send your love and well-wishes, and perhaps make plan to spend quality time with that person in the new year.

Kid Around: Do you remember what you loved about the holidays as a kid? Mine was making cookies with my Italian grandmother, using her cherished family’s recipes. Make a commitment to do one or two of those things this year. You might visit the tree in Rockefeller Center, or tour the neighborhood decorations, or wander a toy store, and though you’ll probably be doing these things for your kids…really do it for yourself. If nobody in your family wants to accompany you, go do it on your own! I promise, you’ll have plenty of cheerful company around you.

Make quiet space away from the holiday frenzy a priority (personal alters like this one to Laxmi, goddess of abundance, helps me pause and refocus)

Intending Magic: it’s a powerful practice to pause before heading into a holiday gathering, or anytime you remember, and make an intention for how you’d like to see that activity going. Do a quick visualization of the warm, smiling faces and overall great vibe you are about to enjoy.  Essentially, you’re creating the magic inside yourself before you even arrive. Then you can take a deep breath and easefully step into the next action, knowing you’ve put that energy into the space, and into the world. It’s amazing how often this simple practice can manifest wonderful experiences that far exceed our expectations.

And finally, let me intend this for you:  May you have a delightful, magical and thoroughly well-balanced holiday season, where you maintain both your joy and serenity.  With a little healthy boundary-setting, those two things can easily go hand in hand. Happy Holidays!

December 12, 2019   No Comments

Southampton Guest House Preview

Renovations are always a big job – and extra challenging when you live elsewhere and simply can’t manage all the details. I think that’s our sweet spot! Our dear Brooklyn clients have a summer home in Southampton and wanted to turn their run down shed into a lovely guest cottage for family and friends. We were happy to take on this project for them (I just love transforming spaces like this)! Here are a few before – after pics. We’re still finishing up the last details and will post final shots soon…

exterior after

The Cottage, after the exterior work was completed.


exterior before

The Cottage, before the work began.


before doors

Living area -before. Notice the low ceilings.


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Living area- after. Just a few steps from the pool, this space can double as a pool house!

before dining

Dining area – before.


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Dining Area – after.


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The new loft has a steel cable railing.

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The new sleeping Loft.

Check back for final pictures and Feng Shui design tips for creating your dream guest house! Subscribe to the blog for more design inspiration. Thanks and Happy Spring!

March 2, 2017   No Comments



Rooster 2017 NY

Happy, Happy New Year! The Year of the Rooster calls us to Wake Up and Get Moving. Promising days are ahead (yes, it’s true)! But you have to take action. Here’s why:

At the end of January we come to the end of the “2 Black Star Year.” In Feng Shui, a “2 Year” brings obstacles, illness, arguments and general negativity. We in the US have seen quite a bit of this in our 2016 politics.

But the good news is, that energy is about to be replaced by the “1 White Fortune Year.” The “1 Year” is associated with success, wealth and fame. Now, just because the energy is better, we still must work to make use of it. How? By visualizing what we want. We have the power to literally create the life of our dreams if we can stay in a state of positive expectation about it.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from 17 years of practicing Feng Shui, it’s this: when I line up my spiritual, emotional and physical energies around something, it manifests.

My Feng Shui master calls it the “3 Lucks”:

Heaven Luck – Your connection to God, your Great Self, or whatever higher power you believe in

Human Luck – Your positive metal attitude and actions

Earth Luck – Your powerful physical space and personal environment (this includes Feng Shui and what I call creating your “Powerhouse”)

When all three are aligned, life flows easefully.

Now, do I manifest my visions overnight? Almost never. But as long as I hold my positive vision of it, I can all but guarantee a positive result. Try it. But also make sure your 3 Lucks are in place…

That brings me to your Feng Shui tips for 2017. When our Earth Luck – our physical space – is as strong as it can be, we are supported by the power of our environment. And that support can help make our vision a reality.

See your Feng Shui tips below…

Wake up


Below is a list of different recommendations for each part of your space. They are based on the eight compass directions (N, S, E, W, NE, SE, NW, SW) as well as the Center. Determine where these directions fall in your home or office, and apply the suggested natural element or color to each area. It does not need to be a big item. Keep it simple, and if after a few weeks you feel that you need more support in an area, make that remedy a little larger.

NORTH: Extremely strong for power and money, as well as new romance. Make use of this great energy by spending time in this area. No remedy is needed, but you can add WATER such as a fountain, artwork with images of water, or colors blue or black in furniture and accessories.

NORTHEAST: This space can be wonderful for success related to creative pursuits such as writing, acting, and painting as long as you add the remedy FIRE. This can be a red candle or red light fixture, or colors red, hot pink or purple in artwork or accessories.

EAST: Good area for money and even having a baby if you add FIRE element. Like the NE area, you can add a red candle or bright light fixture, or colors red, fuchsia or purple in artwork, furniture or accessories.

SOUTHEAST: Very nice for romance as well as creativity, writing, and academics this year! No remedy needed, but you could add PLANTS or flowers to enhance the good vibes.

SOUTH: This zone is weak for health– especially if your bedroom or front door falls in the South. Remedy this area and protect health this year by adding MOVING METAL such as a ceiling fan, metal clock or a hanging metal mobile. Best colors are silver, gold, white or gray.

SOUTHWEST: The SW can be good for sales and marketing or starting a new job. However, this energy can take a toll on health. Support yourself by adding METAL items such as furniture or light fixtures in brass, stainless steel, iron to this area, or colors gray, white, gold or silver in artwork and accessories.

WEST: There is a chance of legal issues or theft here this year. Remedy with FIRE element like a candle, red lamp, or color red, fuchsia, or purple in artwork, rugs, drapes or accessories. Given the chance for robbery, take common sense precautions by making sure you have working locks on doors or windows too. If you work on a computer in this area make sure you have updated security software.

NORTHWEST: This zone is quite weak this year, with a chance of obstacles or health issues. Strengthen with METAL, furniture or accessories in brass, stainless steel, iron to this area – or colors gray, white, gold or silver. If possible, add a MOVING METAL accessory (see SOUTH for suggestions).

CENTER: This area can be strong for money related to real estate or stock investments. Best elements are WATER and METAL. A fountain in a metal container is ideal. Or add accessories in brass, stainless steel, and images of water in artwork. Best colors are black, blue, silver, gold, grey or white.

May you have a successful year of visualizing – and realizing – your dreams!


January 27, 2017   7 Comments