Feng Shui Around Us

The ancient Chinese art and science of ‘Feng Shui’ has mystified other cultures for centuries. What is Feng Shui and just what importance does it play in everyday life?

Answers to these questions as well as other enlightening information can be found in SDC New online Feng Shui course developed in Asia by expert interior designers. Professional Interior designers as well as home decorators and home improvement enthusiasts will now have the opportunity of completing an easy to understand online course on this engaging field.

Apart from Interior design and decorating, Feng Shui principles can also be used in other areas such as architecture, garden design and health care.

We examined some of the most iconic Feng Shui inspired Architectural marvels below:

City Hall, London, UK


The radical shape minimises the surface area exposed to direct sunlight (approx 25 per cent less than an equivalent rectangular building) and saves energy. From a strictly Form School perspective, the flowing design is ideally placed on the South Bank of the River Thames, although it does resemble a pile of coins falling over. In Feng Shui terms it is the metal element, which is good for a municipal building.

Burj Al Arab, Dubai, U.A.E


This unique luxury hotel completed in 1999 is built on its own island in the shape of a dhow, a type of Arabian vessel. An interesting example of wind and water! It is the fourth tallest hotel in the world, although almost forty per cent of its total height is made up of non-occupiable space. Standing on an artificial island, it is connected to the mainland by a private curving bridge. In Feng Shui terms, this is a wood type building, which means that it receives a lot of support from its water environment.

Sydney Opera House, Australia


Begun in 1957 by Architect John Utzon with his competition winning design and eventually completed in August 1973 under the direction of Sir Peter Hall, this building is surely an architectural landmark of the 20th century. In Feng Shui terms, its angular designs mean it is classified as a fire type building; perfect for housing the arts. However, its water environment may lead to disagreements, particularly amongst staff.

Kansai Airport Terminal, Osaka, Japan

Opened in 1994 to relieve overcrowding at Osaka, Kansai is on a man made island. Sinking into the soft soils of Osaka Bay, it sits on hydraulic jacks. The soaring wing-like passenger terminal stretches for over a mile and wide atriums reach over 60 meters to the curved ceiling, where colourful mobiles float on a gentle breeze. This water type building within a water environment is perfect for travel and communication.

Kingdom Centre, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia


Winner of the “Best New Skyscraper of the Year” for design and functionality in 2002 is based on historic geomantic principles and houses commercial offices, residential apartments and the Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh. This 99-storey, 992 ft skyscraper is the second tallest skyscraper in Saudi Arabia and the world’s third tallest building with a hole. This is a metal type building, in a fire and earth type zone.

Check out the SDC Online Feng Shui course: http://www.styledesigncollege.com/course-short-feng-shui.php
Source: http://www.feng-shui-institute.org/



Lucid Stead – Reflections from a Californian desert

American artist Phillip K Smith III has added mirrors to the walls of a 70 year old desert shack in California to create the illusion that you can see right through the building. He has called it ‘Lucid Stead’, “Lucid Stead is about tapping into the quiet and the pace of change of the desert,” said Smith. “When you slow down and align yourself with the desert, the project begins to unfold before you. It reveals that it is about light and shadow, reflected light, projected light, and change.”

What was expected to be a two day event for a handful of viewers, turned into over 400 people making the journey over two weekends. People as far away as New York City and Canada traveled to the California High Desert to experience it. Numerous media sources have asked to do cover stories on the work. Thousands of photos professional and amateur, were taken, posted and shared across blogs and social media sights. In just over 30 days, Lucid Stead officially became a phenomenon.

Kobi Levi – footwear designer interview


We at Xpresso were extremely excited to interview Kobi Levi. He specializes in footwear design and development and has produced some of the most interesting and creative footwear designs out there.

Xpresso: Tell us a little bit about your background and how you got into designing?

Kobi:I was always fascinated with the shapes of footwear and saw them as wearable sculptures. My first designs were created when I was in high-school. They were made from cardboard back then. I wanted to show my own point of view with my artistic designs. So I studied design in college and also went to “old school” shoe makers to learn the technical aspects of the craft. This way I acquired the tools to create my designs by myself.

Xpresso: What is the best part about your job?

Kobi: Once all the hard work of designing and developing a new style is done, the best part for me is to see how an image or an idea, that was alive only in my mind, has come to life and I can touch it and use it. Realizing an idea into a materialized object is really great. I also love to see people wearing my designs and enjoying them.

Xpresso: We were amazed when we saw your latest collection. What was your inspiration?

Kobi: I don’t really design according to collections. I work to develop artistic designs all the time. Every few weeks or months I publish a new one. Inspiration can come from everywhere and everything. I like to take inspirations for my work from different aspects of life, not necessarily other designs or a specific subject.

Xpresso: Do you have a favorite design, if so, which and why?

Kobi: Usually each time a new design is created it becomes my favorite for a while. But really I like all of them. They are like children to me.

Xpresso: What did you do before you got into designing?

Kobi: I was always designing shoes, bags, even wedding dresses for a while. Shoe design is my main vocation and sole occupation.

Xpresso: What can we expect to see in the future from you?

Kobi: First, a new website is to air very soon. It’s really exciting because it will show all the designs so far. New styles are also coming soon. Some are inspired by sea creatures and other animals too. I also plan to show some men styles.

Xpresso: Advice to anyone looking for a career in designing/fashion?

Kobi: Work hard and stay focused on your passion!

You can find out more about Kobi at: kobilevidesign.blogspot.com