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Kitchen Design & Feng Shui

Jennifer is an HGTV-featured Feng Shui Master, Interior Designer, and Color Consultant with 25 years of experience, & hundreds of clients.

The Kitchen: hub of the home!


Are you burning up your wealth?

Wood is the element of Wealth, and it belongs in the Southeast corner, according to ancient Feng Shui precepts.

So, if your stove is located in the Southeast, you are figuratively "burning up your wealth".

However, since food is equivalent with wealth in China, the number of burners on your stove also represents your wealth. So, if you put a mirrored backsplash behind your stove burners, you are symbolically "doubling your wealth". There are many complex factors to Feng Shui. We take all of these into account when doing a consultation.

When we analyze a person's home, the very first thing we do is take compass directions throughout the house and come up with a game plan for balancing out all the elements. Next, we analyze the Feng Shui Trigram (sign) of all of the people who live in the home, and make sure they are spending time in all their best areas, and avoiding their worst.

Types of Feng Shui

Feng Shui is a complex practice with many different schools, and the recommendations will vary from school to school and from one practitioner to another. So too, advice will differ depending upon the unique home - and the unique people living in it. Despite the fact that different schools may have diverse views on some topics, there are basic Feng Shui principles that apply to all kitchens.

At Feng Shui Style, we use the Compass School, Form School, and Eight Mansion Theory. For more information about these schools, go to:

Feng Shui Schools

Modern kitchen with pops of orange


A sunny yellow kitchen can bring in the sunshine even when it's cloudy

Cheery yellow kitchen

Cheery yellow kitchen

Kitchen Placement within the Home


The first thing to consider when looking at the kitchen is its placement in terms of the whole house.

We can't always decide where each room in a house or apartment will be in relation to the others, but if you're working with new construction or doing extensive renovations, ideally the kitchen will be in the back of the house, at least behind the centerline of the house.

It's better if you don't see the kitchen immediately upon entering the house, since it tends to make your life "all about food", which can lead to digestive, nutritional, and eating problems.

Having the kitchen at the entry point also means that guests may come over to eat and then leave immediately. Such a placement can also encourage the inhabitants to be obsessed with cooking and eating (of course some people don't find this to be a problem).

If your kitchen is in the front of the house, don't panic; there are always remedies. Try to hide the kitchen from the entrance - or at least "screen" it. You could hang sheer or beaded curtains over the kitchen door, or install louvered doors. Another idea is to provide something delightfully eye-catching across a hall or in a vestibule near the kitchen. That way, attention is diverted from the kitchen upon entering.

Want to really spice things up? Try some bright red cabinets!

Chinese red cabinets

Chinese red cabinets

Kitchen Layout

It is very important for the cook to be in a "commanding position" while cooking at the stove. The cook should be able to clearly see the doorway without turning around. Renovating a kitchen so this is achieved can be particularly challenging. Many modern kitchens have the range facing the wall.

Many Feng Shui consultants recommend hanging something reflective, such as a mirror on the backsplash area of the stove. The reflective surface can be any size, but the bigger it is, the more powerful the correction will be.

In China, the number of burners on the stove represent the families' wealth. By adding a reflective item like a mirror behind the burners, you are effectively "doubling your wealth".

If you're adding an island, it may significantly impact the "kitchen triangle"

Carrera marble island

Carrera marble island

Kitchen Islands

For a dramatic solution to the "back to the audience" dilemma, consider installing a cooking island. Placing the stove in a central island allows the cook to see the entire room, including the doorway.

Beyond the Feng Shui benefits, a cooking island is practical. The wider your view, the more you'll be able to comfortably talk with dinner guests or keep an eye on the kids as you cook.

Feng Shui Style on Twitter

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Feng Shui Master/Interior Designer. Renaissance Woman, Entrepreneur, Hugger of Animals, Buildings & Trees. Live in an 1895 Queen Anne Victorian. Anglophile.

Capiz Shells in a chandelier: inexpensive, but gorgeous!

Isabela Orange Capiz Shell Pendant

Isabela Orange Capiz Shell Pendant

Feng Shui Lighting

In any room, fluorescent lights do not promote good health; they are constantly flickering, affecting the eyes and nervous system, and can cause hypertension, eyestrain and headaches.

Shadows should not be cast while preparing and cooking food. Ensure that your kitchen is well lit with incandescent bulbs or halogen lights.

Avoid the temptation to use LED lights - prolonged use can cause blindness, and they also screw up our endocrine systems.

Mixing classic and contemporary keeps the space fresh

The copper lanterns warm up the gray walls to create a classy kitchen.

The copper lanterns warm up the gray walls to create a classy kitchen.

The Five Elements: Wu Xing

The Five Elements

The Five Elements

The Five Elements

There are 5 Elements to consider when trying to achieve good Feng Shui: Water, Earth, Wood, Fire, and Metal. Each major appliance and major piece of furniture in the kitchen is considered one of these elements.

The fridge and sink are both water elements. The cabinets are usually wood, as well as the table or chairs. The stove and oven are fire elements. If people have a tile or terra cotta floor, that would be earth, along with granite and marble countertops.

The idea is to achieve a balance between all the elements, and to make sure that non-compatible elements are placed away from each other. For this reason, you would never want your stove right next to your sink. Specifically, the best place for the sink would be North (for Career), East (for Family and Health) or SouthEast (for Wealth).

This is why getting a full-blown Feng Shui consultation by a professional is more than just a good idea. If your sink was in the wrong area, you could potentially bring down your reputation. If your stove was in the wrong area, you could be burning up your wealth - literally.

The Dragon = Fire!

The Dragon = Fire!

The Dragon = Fire!

Various options for the "Kitchen Triangle"

Different kitchen layouts

Different kitchen layouts

The Kitchen Triangle

A good kitchen design is based on a traditional triangle model, with the sink, refrigerator and range making up each point of the triangle. There should be a 6-8 foot distance between each appliance; this allows for maximum convenience and a minimum of repeated moves.

Because you'll have that space between each of the major appliances, it should be easy to adhere to the Feng Shui principle of having fire elements separated from water elements.

A good way of separating fire and water is to add something made of wood in between, such as a plant or a painting of a plant.

How about a sexy backsplash?


The Kitchen Stove

The stove represents health and wealth, so you want to use the burners on the stove top equally, rotating their use rather than habitually using a particular one. This correlates with getting money from multiple sources.

A regular stove, as opposed to a microwave, is preferred because it is more in keeping with the Feng Shui belief that we should slow down, become more conscious of each activity, and do activities with intention.

Heating a quick meal in the microwave is certainly convenient, but doing this may not lead to the most serene state of mind.

Many Feng Shui consultants (including myself) are concerned with excess radiation and electromagnetic fields and advise against a microwave altogether. A steamer and a toaster oven can achieve everything that a microwave can, with better quality. Obviously, each home and family will have to find their own balance between modern conveniences and optimal Feng Shui practices.

In summation

The kitchen should be kept neat and uncluttered, and any broken appliances should be thrown out. It is better to have no toaster than one that doesn't work.

In Feng Shui, windows should not be placed over the stove because heat represents prosperity, and you don't want your prosperity flowing out the window.

Top Kitchen Design Trends

Luckily, Feng Shui isn't only about having a room with good ch'i, or energy; it's also simply a practical guide for design. For this reason, Feng Shui can be used with any style of room. Some of the most popular trends include:

Two-Toned: Dressed to Impress


Herringbone Tile: Style with a Twist


Statement Stools Pack a Punch of Color


Bold Backsplash: Noteworthy Tile


Eye-Catching Pendants: Mix + Match


Reader Feedback

umbrella-bagger on September 13, 2013:

Excellent Lens. I love reading about Feng Shui, and I think it's especially important in the kitchen, since there are so many elements (appliances, cookware, utensils, etc.) Can very easily become cluttered.

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SatyamPandey on September 11, 2012:

Hope you also post more feng shui tips for other parts home like these kitchen design Feng shui tips.Thanx for this post.....

SatyamPandey on September 11, 2012:

Great Feng Shui tips this can help me in good kitchen design.I also want to make a kitchen that is designed according to Feng shui.

tastebud on June 13, 2012:

The kitchen is probably the most used room in the house today. I know the island in our house is the most used spot in our upstairs. Having an efficient layout is important. For more ideas check out KitchenDesignSite.org

Fran Tollett on May 01, 2012:

Great information on this lens. Loved it.

Entrance Mats on April 25, 2012:

Great Lens. The kitchen has been the first thing you see when you enter any of the homes/apartments I've lived in, and I've always felt as though my at-home life was dominated by the kitchen! Very interesting how that works.

BillKx on September 30, 2011:

I don`t know very much about Feng Shui, but I can really see how a well laid out kitchen can enhance the perception of nourishment and prosperity. Great Lens. And don`t forget to complement your design with a proper kitchen sink review

ltraider on April 14, 2011:

Another Great Lens. What should one consider when renovating a bathroom?

BeaGabrielle1 on November 22, 2010:

Love your lens! Lots of interesting tidbits son feng shui. Thanks for the share!

scar4 on November 04, 2010:

Really learnt a lot from your lens, thank you.

WriterBuzz on November 01, 2010:

Nice lens. I gave you a thumbs up, and hope that you continue to build lenses. I just made one Migraine Headaches that might interest you. Leave me a comment if you surf on by....

jsimpson121 on October 05, 2010:

This is great information. To make my kitchen more Feng Shui, I installed ready to assemble cabinets. It made things a lot easier, and they look beautiful!

tomas-m-riddle on September 23, 2010:

I thought the idea of screening your kitchen from the entrance was inovative; we had beaded doorways in my house so may be it is me but that is horriffic. I did like the louvered doors. That would work really well.

granite-charlotte on August 02, 2010:

Thanks for the great information on Granite Countertops. Granite is a great addition to any home -- especially to help with the feng shui in the entire room. Nothing beats natural stone and the beauty it provides.

schwisky on July 05, 2010:

Thanks for the info! I found it really interesting - the spiritual aspect of kitchen planning.

syreza on July 04, 2010:

I found this informative and interesting blog from yahoo group and i think its very useful and knowledge able

This is what makes the web so great. We can find so much info on things we like :-)


Delta Kitchen Faucet

Sy "Kitchen Improvement"Reza

yourhealthyguy on July 03, 2010:

Thanks Jennifer, extremely informative work. Feng Shui has changed my life as I have decorated my whole home using these principles and also others that I found in the site feng shui decorating studio,/a>. I'm going to add some of your tips to my kitchen feng shui too now!

digitalnotes on April 01, 2010:

as a non believer i thought this lens would be just bull but i got some really nice ideas and have bookmarked to return. a few thousand years of history can't all be wrong.


renee7 on March 05, 2010:

I'm not quite sure if I buy into the whole Feng Shui philosophy, but I love some of the really sensible decorating ideas that Feng Shui embraces, so I say, why not!?

GenaGeorge on September 27, 2009:

Hey, great lens. It really gave me some insperational ideas I can do to my kitchen. I just got some Unfinished Kitchen Cabinets that I can't wait to put up. Your great ideas will be a big help.

houstondavid26 on September 16, 2009:

Very Nice Lens on Kitchen Fengshui. Interesting info. I like to use Flagstone in My Kitchen. You can also try it.

AffiliatePounce on July 21, 2009:

Hi, great lens! I have recently had great work done by Danish kitchens Brisbane They are a great resource and have free design service

clemency lm on June 23, 2009:

Great lens, thank you for the information.

rydigga on May 18, 2009:

Excellent lens with very practical Feng Shui tips. Thanks for sharing.

Kevin Wilson 2 on January 20, 2009:

Hi Jennifer, just wanted to invite you to add your kitchen lens to my new Kitchen Designs group at


Brian Stephens from France on January 16, 2009:

Great lens, I just fitted a new kitchen and I have broken so many rules I don't even want to go there, still you have suggested some fixes as well. Welcome to the Interior Design, Soft furnishings and Décor Group

Brian Stephens from France on January 16, 2009:

Great lens, I just fitted a new kitchen and I have broken so many rules I don't even want to go there, still you have suggested some fixes as well. Welcome to the Interior Design, Soft furnishings and Décor Group

joelo4387 on January 07, 2009:

Great lense I rated it 5 Stars. Check out my lense on Appliance Parts I think you will find it interesting

Ali_Baba on December 30, 2008:

WOW. This lens really helped me because I'm in the process of redesigning my kitchen. Lots of great tips here. Thanks for all your hard work!


milly_cupid on November 13, 2008:

Hey there Jen! Very nice blog. I really find it inspiring for me. I run a blog where I talk all about the importance of using bathroom photos when coming up with ideas of what to do to your own place. You have also done a really good job of this covering kitchens.

Great work on this lens you've obviously put tons of time into it, keep it up it's very inspiring for designers.

anonymous on September 11, 2008:


Nice lens! The kitchen designs are excellent and liked them a lot. I will recommend this to one of my friend, as she is in a plan to design her kitchen newly.

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anonymous on August 14, 2008:

Wow! Beautiful lens. I am giving 5 stars for your valuable lens.

If you feel free please visit kitchen remodeling blog

anonymous on August 14, 2008:

Wow! Your lens is beautiful. I really enjoyed with your lens. I am giving 5 stars for your valuable lens.

If you feel free please visit kitchen remodeling blog

Motocross_Life on August 01, 2008:

What a cool lens! Who knew so much thought went into designing a kitchen. I have a newfound appreciation for it. Thanks.

richgerman on June 24, 2008:

FENG SHUI expert huh? well thanks for sharing your knowledge here we've learn some things from you.. keep it up! i hope everyone will take a look for this topic also! 5 stars!

richgerman on June 24, 2008:

FENG SHUI expert huh? well thanks for sharing your knowledge here we've learn some things from you.. keep it up! i hope everyone will take a look for this topic also! 5 stars!

Kevin Wilson 2 on June 18, 2008:

Excellent lens, lots of meaty information and great pictures too. 5*! You might enjoy my kitchen lenses at Kitchen Layouts and Custom Kitchen Islands

anonymous on May 05, 2008:


what a great information about kitchen room designing, I really appreciate with your lens. This lens providing grateful information about kitchen layout.

I have created one interesting lens here, please check out at bathroom remodeling.

geetoo on April 27, 2008:

Good lens. More informative. I enjoyed to go through your lens and like this lens. Nice job and keep it up. It is my pleasure to share with you an informative site about Acura Extended Warranty on Acura Extended Warranty If your time permits please step into this site to surf more information about Acura Extended Warranty.

Vicki from USA on January 22, 2008:

Hi Jennifer!! This is another great lens! I haven't even read everything here yet, but I've already learned something that I have not learned from my two Feng Shui books and a multitude of FS articles I've read! Thank you for sharing your wisdom! 5 more stars!! I'm lensrolling you to my Vintage Cookbooks and Retro Cookbooks lenses so others will hopefully come over here and learn how to Feng Shui their kitchens & their lives!

Karendelac on December 29, 2007:

5 Stars for you !

Your site was really great ~~ you gave me a lot of ideas to remodel my home... thanks

Please give me ratings and sign my guest book as well.

best wishes to you,


ShortSaleRealtor on November 15, 2007:

great lens 5 stars 4 u

Ayla on November 13, 2007:

Hi Jennifer,

Love your lens, this is also a subject I am getting passionate about so look forward to learning a lot more from you. Thank you for dropping by to my lens too.


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