ORIENTAL STYLE: INTRODUCTION
The oriental furnishing style is not unique and homogeneous, as what we Westerners have obtained from the East mixes different traditions and philosophies together. In fact, the oriental style includes Chinese Feng Shui philosophy, Japanese Zen philosophy and “oriental minimalism”.
In addition, there are several distinctive features of the various styles, which come together to give an exotic and spiritual touch to the home.
Furnishing an oriental-style house means giving it a very precise and defined character. In fact, the home becomes not only an expression of tastes and personality, but also through the soul and spirit towards nature.
Furthermore, the oriental style aims at a balance that is not only external but also consequently internal.
In fact, the desire and desire to discover distant places in the world is an increasingly widespread trend in the modern world. The philosophies and the way of life of a part of the globe is ideally combined with the increasingly widespread trend of furnishing an oriental style home.
And, furthermore, the Far East refers to the whole area comprising the nations of Asia such as China, Japan, South Korea, Thailand and Burma.
All this thus connotes, in an elegant fusion of styles vaguely with an exotic and ethnic character, a relaxing domestic environment with a spiritual flavor.
The furnishing style generally recognized as “oriental” is, as mentioned, a set of styles that in Eastern countries are quite distinct from each other. Among the styles included in the one commonly called oriental, there are the Japanese style, the Zen style, the oriental minimalism, the Feng Shui, the Chinese style.
The elements that unite these styles are the materials used and the philosophy that dictates the rules. This philosophy is devoted to the well-being of body and mind, to their beneficial relationship with nature, to the essentiality of the furniture, to balance and above all to order.
Furthermore, the visual impact must be harmonious, peaceful, pleasant, but never aggressive. In fact, functionality is given by the search for essentiality, by the presence of a few elements that are easy to fix and keep in order.
Finally, the distinctive features of the oriental style are aesthetically recognized by the colors used, the natural materials, the location of the furnishings and the shapes of the furnishings.
The oriental style can be distinguished by the presence of some particular distinctive features:
- use of natural materials, such as wood and paper;
- presence of dim lights, coming from mood lamps and / or candles;
- presence of perfumed essences and / or incense;
- use of sliding doors;
- tendency to use the floor. In fact, the floor-living room is characterized by futon beds on tatami mats, low tables with cushions as seats, which testify to the philosophy of style, tending towards essentiality;
- sometimes use of colored lacquers, from the Chinese tradition;
- use of colors suitable for the various functions of the rooms;
- location of furnishings according to philosophical and spiritual beliefs. In fact, Feng Shui teaches that harmony with nature also means taking into account the four cardinal points, the presence of light and wind in the house;
- extensive use of fabrics. In fact, in addition to creating relaxing atmospheres, they allow you to renovate the house without changing furnishings and furniture, whose position remains fundamental in this style.
A very characteristic room in the oriental furnishing style is the bedroom: floor covered with tatami and futon mattresses placed on top, to be rolled up and stored during the day, or beds with a very low structure and padded headboards, lined with fabric, hung on sticks nailed to the wall.
The presence of sliding doors between rooms is another evocation of the oriental style. The use of low tables for dining, the presence of cushions on the floor as seats instead of chairs, are also other characteristic elements of this style.
So, we can certainly say that I distinctive features of the oriental style are a harmonious, calmvisual impact, due to the particular care taken in theuse of colours, the exclusive use of natural materials and few furnishings with simple shapes placed according to precise rules. According to the Feng shui the ideal design of homes is one made taking into account the presence of magnetic fields and energetic. Thus it is possible to create dwellings whose interior is in harmony with the exterior.
WHERE TO PLACE THE FURNITURE
As mentioned, furniture in the oriental style tends to be placed downwards, so on the floor. But that’s not all: the orientation of the furniture itself is also important for oriental philosophy and well-being in harmony with nature. For example, the bed should face north, and the front door should never face another door to the outside, so that the life force entering the house does not immediately slip out.
Furnishings in the middle of the room are not recommended: especially the chairs should be placed along the walls.
For furniture and upholstery, the oriental style uses mainly natural materials. For example, the interior doors in the Japanese style are the “fusuma” the typical sliding doors made of paper “shoji“.
For the rest, the most commonly used material, both for cladding and for furniture, is wood, especially in light-coloured woods, in any case of oriental origin. Bamboo is another popular material used for certain types of furniture: light, durable and natural.
The use of sliding paper partitions in Japanese style, separates the rooms giving them a great brightness, but heating a house equipped with paper partitions is difficult: such environments will be cold during the bad season.
Another material that must be used in the home according to Feng Shui philosophy to balance the presence of wood is metal. The fabrics, widely used in this style, can be light like organza, or crinkled, shiny and pleated, or they can be drapes of silk.
The furniture of the oriental style have defined shapes, more often square, devoted to minimalism and essentiality, but as far as possible without sharp edges. No decoration is allowed on the furniture and walls, except those consisting naturally of fabrics. The decorations are only present in Chinese furniture of the period, where coloured lacquering was also common. The “floor” tendency means that the essential, simple forms of oriental furnishings are developed horizontally, in any case downwards, and almost never vertically.
Zen tradition and above all Feng Shui dictate the rules regarding the colours of this style. According to Feng Shui every colour has a precise meaning and must be associated with particular activities.
Zen tradition, in accordance with minimalism, tends instead to the almost exclusive use of neutral and/or soft colors.
Feng Shui, on the other hand, also recommends the use of bright colours, such as red or yellow-gold, which are auspicious and suitable for characterizing a room that overlooks an unpleasant landscape. Feng Shui also recommends the use of soft colors for small rooms, where there is already a lack of space.
Green and brown are other contemplated colours: brown is the colour of earth and wood and therefore of nature, as well as green, which also symbolizes rebirth.
Blue is the color of study and relaxation, therefore also suitable for the sleeping area, while pink is the color of love.
Strangely enough, Feng Shui also contemplates the use of black, considered the summa of all colours; be careful, however, because in some cases it could be a bad omen.
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