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Common interior design mistakes and how to avoid or fix them.

November 16, 2017

Common interior design mistakes and how to avoid or fix them.

One very common interior design mistake is to follow, strong interior design tends from the TV shows, magazines or social media. What I mean by strong is, quite individuated to a time, or a theme or specific look. By the time we notice a trend, its often outdated already, it can easily date your home to that period in time.


For example the current already & passed in my opinion trend of “timber look” ceramic tiles, this will date your home or renovation to this precise time of around 2015-2016. It was a new and relatively innovative product not extensively seen before, so specific to that time. Another current trend which I happen to quite admire, is the Biophilic inspired trend, using Nature as inspiration.


I applaud these principles of bringing nature into our homes to nuture our souls. However the current trend refers to natural patterns of plants, flowers shells, feather etc. But it may, depending on the individual strength of a particular design or pattern, date quickly.

Certainly the associated trend of tribal-influenced Biophilic design where feathers and printed tribal artefacts etc , are featured will. Again I personally really like tribal-inspired patterns and prints. But be careful they may date your home or renovations or worse they may it outdated already.  



One way to notice if a trend is collapsing and a past already is if the materials are already heavily discounted or on sale, via the big discount houses. They are trying to clear of stock that is not moving for a reason.


All this is easily fixed, choose finishes you like not "what is on trend" and more toward neutrals with less specific patterns or colours finishes and materials. That being said if you wait 15 or 20 years, it may become retro enough to be on trend again.

Be an individual. Not part of the heard.


Real natural materials tend not to date so easily useless they have not been used much before, natural materials and natural colours are considered to be the best Vastu Feng Shui materials, having the best subtle vibration, but they also have different qualities too, so need to be selected with discernment as well.  


Anthony Ashworth Zen Home- Conscious Home

Tags: conscious home, feng shui, vastu, vastu shastra, zen home

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November 16, 2017

Creating a Welcoming Home (the Temples and Markets way).

On first impressions:
“First impressions count and are all important in the feeling of a welcome home and not just for your guests, but importantly for you to feel fully welcomed. Create a beautiful, inspirational entry that reminds & inspired you of what life you really want to live. Then critically, use it!

Many of us now drive directly into our dark smelly garage, if so then into a bland hallway, so try going back out through the garage door and in through your now beautiful & inspirational entry! The ancient Chinese referred to this as the ‘Shining golden entryway’.”
Follow Anthony on Facebook or Instagram.

Tags: conscious home, feng shui, interior design, vastu, wabi sabi, zen home

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Why Vastu and Feng Shui are influencing the Australian property industry

November 16, 2017

  • Think you might build or renovate? Consider the practices of Vastu and Feng Shui to guide you on direction, aspect and location for success
    . (Getty Images)
When it comes to home constructions or renovations, practicality and function are important, however, increasingly in Australia, cultural influences from Vastu and Feng Shui are playing a lead role.
Lakshmi Singh

12 SEP 2016 - 12:18 PM  UPDATED 12 SEP 2016 - 12:48 PM


In 2012, demographer Bernard Salt predicted that by “osmosis”, the Australian property industry could reflect cultural preferences of home buyers – and these predictions are coming true. Vastu and Feng Shui are increasingly being incorporated into property development as buyers and developers alike are seeking harmony in their homes.

At their heart, both Vastu and Feng Shui are all about ensuring your living spaces encourage health, coherence and prosperity.

Vastu is an ancient “Indian poetic art and science of crafting an energetically balanced home for and of the soul,” says Anthony Ashworth, a Sydney-based Vastu consultant. Earth, Air, Fire, Water and the Vastu mandala (the indwelling spirit of the home itself) are important elements to consider in Vastu, he says.

What makes a Vastu-compliant home? Location, direction and orientation of rooms play a significant role and if unbalanced, can impact family life, as Anne Clark, lifestyle health consultant and author discovered.

“We used to live in a property in Kuranda where we were in a valley, down low, and we had several disasters, flooding and even sickness. In our current property at Cooroy, we are up high and have prospered more as a result. No disasters,” she says.

Feng Shui – composed of the invisible chi (energy) in the sky and the visible chi in the land around us is about the interaction and influence of this energy in both indoor and outdoor living spaces, says

Kony Kang, accredited Feng Shui consultant with the Association of Feng Shui Consultants.

[When designing the home], ensure the master bedroom can be placed in the southwest, and the northeast is open.

Kang’s advice starts with selecting the right location at both the macro level (state or suburb) and the micro level (the street). A compatibility test between the direction the front door is facing and the place or time of birth of the owner can also impact suitability, he says.

Aspects such as the orientation of the kitchen, the presence of windows overlooking certain features and even the time period in which you want to live in the home may all have an impact on whether the energy in the house is optimal for you, says Kang.

“Location and landform might be ok, but we need to see whether it is good for you to live in this property at this time,” he says.

If you have the opportunity to start building a house from empty land, Ashworth’s advice is to consider a site that allows plenty of space and access to light from the north and east.

“[When designing the home], ensure the master bedroom can be placed in the southwest, and the northeast is open,” he says.

Vastu principles can also be applied based on a family’s life stage and for a young family, abundance and relationships could be very important. To invite abundance – both in terms of physical health and wealth, Ashworth advises against placing toilets in the north and northeast but establishing a water feature, pictures of nature and elements with the colour green in these directions.

To invite abundance – both in terms of physical health and wealth, Ashworth advises against placing toilets in the north and northeast.

For older couples, spiritual concerns might be more of interest and Ashworth recommends energising the north and northeast by setting up a meditation spot here or keeping a clean bowl of water with clear quartz stone in it.

All is not lost if you’ve bought your property already as the practices can be applied during renovations to improve the aspect of your home.

Chen plans to employ a Feng Shui consultant to advise him about renovating to make space for an extra bathroom as well as suggestions on placement of furniture throughout the house.

Similarly, Clarke placed a water fountain and highlighted their front entrance with crystals to abide by Vastu principles.

“Ultimately, I’m grateful for the peace it brings,” she says.

Love the story? Follow the author here: Twitter @singh_lakshmi 

Tags: conscious home, feng shui., vastu, vastu shastra, zen home

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Zen Home- How your home can help you recover from work stress

November 16, 2017


How your home can help you recover from work stress February 15, 2015

Linda moon : with interview inclusions by Anthony ashworth 


Peace: Stress and pollution make it more important than ever that we find respite from the modern world in our homes.

These tips will help transform your home into a haven that rejuvenates you after a stressful day.

Peace: Stress and pollution make it more important than ever that we find respite from the modern world in our homes.

Modern homes are generally far too masculine and have a lot of fire/yang energy that creates stress and anxiety," says Anthony Ashworth, a consultant in Zen-inspired interior design and feng shui.

"Think of your home as more like a bowl than a box; as a place of ease and rest, and being, not doing."

Minimise sharp edges, hard finishes and angular furniture, including glass tables and granite surfaces, which amplify stress, he says. Soften windows with curtains and choose furniture with rounded edges and softer materials.

Calm the senses
Bring the aromas of the forest indoors with a potpourri of bark and leaves, or essential oils. "Promote a deep, restful mood with frankincense," suggests aromatherapist Catherine Cervasio, who recommends rosemary for clarity and lemon to pep up energy.

Avoid artificial lighting that's too harsh, bright or dark, and maximise natural light in your main living space.

Ashworth recommends earthy colours for calm: soft whites, natural browns and greens. Urban noise, the television and the hum of fluorescent lighting and appliances can be stress-inducing. "Ensure all appliances are as quiet as you can afford," Ashworth advises. Mask unpleasant sounds with an indoor fountain or music that mimics nature. Nurture connection
Studies show that hard furniture, or heavy furniture that doesn't move or is lined side by side against walls, can hinder social interaction. Encourage companionship with comfy, movable furniture configured in circles or semi-circles. Open-plan kitchens enable communication while cooking, the modern version of gathering at the hearth.

Warm indoor temperatures foster social interaction, according to research published in Psychological Science. Declutter
Clutter saps our mental resources, leading to potential for greater stress. Peter Walsh, author of Does This Clutter Make My Butt Look Fat?, also believes it can make us overweight. He blames clutter and obesity on loss of personal control and a culture that encourages instant gratification and the consumption of more than we need.

Walsh has a simple decluttering recipe: go through every room methodically, and ditch anything you haven't used in the past year or don't love with a passion. List everything you need for the house and don't buy anything else. Don't let stuff rule you: do you really want piles of old newspapers on the kitchen table? Think natural
In alpine areas, beds made of stone pine are said to improve sleep quality.

A study by Austria's Human Research Institute reported that sleeping in a stone pine bed could reduce heart rate and induce a more restful sleep, greater sense of wellbeing and higher extroversion. Flavonoids in the pine's essential oils are thought to be responsible. Natural materials link us to nature, says Ashworth. Choose wood, stone, bamboo and paper rather than plastic, and pieces that age gracefully. "It's all about how your home feels rather than how it looks," he says. "More than 90 per cent of everything we find in the home is manufactured," says Nicole Bijlsma, author of Healthy Home, Healthy Family. She warns that many chemicals found in the home are unregulated and toxic to human health. Bijlsma's strategy is "less is best".

Avoid pesticides, chemical cleaners, plastics and artificial fragrances. Open windows to air the house, and use damp microfibre cloths for cleaning. Set the scene
Those without a pleasant outlook needn't lament: pictures of nature also elicit calm, according to studies by Roger Ulrich, an architecture professor at Sweden's Chalmers University of Technology. Hide a brick wall with displays of leafy branches, indoor plants or a nature-themed screen.And keep washing or paperwork out of view – it can cause stress.

Give peace a chance

Ashworth recommends dedicating a small space as a "peace" zone to retreat to when life overwhelms you.

Reflect tranquility with an inspirational painting, spiritual emblem, candle or positive affirmations. It's a reminder that home is where our inner harmony resides.

Blind Walks A simple way of exploring our surroundings in a different way is to do so blindfolded, being led around by a partner. Try it for a few minutes and then swap over. Try it again, but this time attempt to sense what is in front of you, as though the space around you was an organ of perception.

It can be very interesting to explore attitudes to personal space in a group, particularly how people feel when their space is ignored, infringed or disrupted. By examining and understanding our perception of space, we can learn how to manipulate it. As a solo exercise, try and observe yourself in different situations, from stillness to movement, and how you relate to the space around you. We can learn to feel that the space around us is a medium, or an organ of communication through which we can send ripples or waves. T’ai Chi is a very good BodyMind exercise in this respect, as its slow, graceful movements are useful in enhancing the feeling of being immersed in a fluid-like space.

Tags: conscious home, interior design, vastu, wabi sabi, zen home

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Storm Deva - The Nature Spirit of a giant storm.

November 10, 2017


Storm Deva - The Nature Spirit of a giant storm.

A shamanic true tale 



I had gotten into my sacred bath, I bath ritually and journey in the bath for myself or for clients a couple times a week for 2 hours or so.


The bath is my private uninterrupted space, I set it up the same way each time with many accouterments such as waterproof speakers, essential oils, my home made bath salts , candles, incense, flower head and herbs, flute, didgeridoo & mouth harp (the drum does not like the steamy hot atmosphere), crystals and other power objects I may be working with, I smudge the bathroom known to the family as my Bath-Womb and smudge myself .


So I was just beginning to go into an altered state via music, throat chanting etc.

I follow a kind of shamanic routine to get into shamanic consciousness.


Soon I felt an unusual presents, not a familiar one.


It was big, very very big and powerful but felt gentle & strong.

Through and behind my chanting I began to feel or maybe hear what I thought was a train in the distance or blasting or something?

I could feel the vibrations, then over the 30 minutes or so, it got louder and deeper and more intense.

Something was up the birds had stopped singing and the colour of the light had changed.


I realised the deep rumblings were thunder, an amazing orchestral beating of thousands of kettle drums and grandmother drums being struck rhythmically by Thor’s lightening hammer .

Then my phone (used in the bath to play trance music & drumming tracks) pinged and it said “storm and flood warning “ in your area.


So I opened the weather radar to see, wow a huge storm front and I mean huge was coming in across the whole eastern seaboard of Australia from Queensland to Victoria and the entire coast of New South Wales.


I recalled my mystic mate Kevin Parker, had asking me if I had ever worked shamanically with the weather Deva spirits? At the time I said no it had not arisen for me.

The radar showed this monumental storm front was shortly going to pound us. No way in the world could it miss us, it was going to be quite a storm.


I realised it was close to twilight, twilight is a time when my and the doors of perception are most open and when the veils between the worlds is thinnest, a perfect time to connect .


I had already connected with the energy of this storm well before it arrived or even rationally knew it was coming, so it seemed very much to be an invitation to connect & go further and deeper, so I did.


I settled in to connect with the energies deeper, it felt amazing to feel into the sheer power of something this big, this Giant Nature Spirit Deva of the storm.


It was careering down on me and the booming rhythmic thundered was getting closer, thunder literally shaking the very earth like a huge shamans drum.


A thought arose in me, a doubt. Who am I to talk to this Huge Devic Spirit, maybe the energy is too big, maybe I should back off ?


“NO” the storm Deva said, you have asked permission you are humble, feel me “NOW”.

My heart raced a little, then opened up still further, I was in tears of rapture at the tingles that were coursing through my body. The storm and I had become one, the barriers of my limiting skin and limiting consciousness gone, my ego thin, the ecstasy and bliss were beautiful    


The Storm Deva then said ! tas it spoke to my consciousness


“LETS PLAY, ask me something !”


What does one ask a mega storm? In retrospect I can not believe what I asked of it!

I said

“how about you go around me and miss my home completely” Knowing fore well this was impossible having seen the trajectory & size of the storm coming into three entire states.


The Strom went very quiet, , the thunder stopped the wind settled, the birds started to call out seemingly in delight and celebration.

Storm Deva said “WATCH”

I was looking out of my bathroom window as the windows are always open when I bath, but I could not see a lot of the sky as the trees water sodden, had closed in around the window. I kept feeling into the energy, amazing as it was.


Storm Deva said again “WATCH ME”


I said “I’m trying too” , should I get out of the bath and go onto the terrace to watch the light show roll in ?

Strom Deva said “NO” watch ME from above,”


I thought to myself, of course I will shamanically travel up and fly into the sky and watch from there.    


Storm Deva said “NO …. use your iphone “  


I opened the radar again to see the Radar live video, showing the storms progress over the past half hour or so, it had been literally coming straight at me in a huge front, as I watched I could not believe my eyes, the radar showed the storm had begun to change direction, ever so slightly at first increasingly more over the next 15 minutes. Finally and impossibly the storm slid by my home by literally only a few hundred meters away or less, the front was so big it could not possibly do this, but it had somehow opened up a gap and over the next half an hour or more as waves of the front came through, each one went past and even around my home so that the storm was all around very close to me & yet not ever over me, the Storm Deva seemed to Giggle at my astonishment, I even said at one point “enough!” who am I to have you do this ?

I was strangely disappointed that I had missed the fury of storm , and said to the the Storm Deva I ‘m sorry if that was egotistical of me to ask such a big ask, just let it rip.






Titans such as this it seems, talk very slowly with few words, but with great authority, entering your consciousness almost from the inside out. It is difficult to describe with mere words.    


At this point I want to say that it had occurred to me before asking that we had, had a lot of rain in the weeks before this storm and the land and all the plant and animals, rivers etc did not need more water, although half an hour or so after getting out of the bath, it poured and has not stopped raining much since then.  


The reason I share this story is not to make me look the Shaman, or in order to demonstrate that these things are possible, I have communicated with many a Nature Spirit, Elementals such as fire or water, animal spirits, plants, a place, a home, a waterfall, even a landscape and a whole city Deva, but I felt to small or too in my ego or too less than, to try to manipulate the weather, I may never try to manipulate the weather, but I will communicate with Weather Deva’s given the chance.

It occurs to me in hindsight that it was a block on my behalf to not to want to try as I felt the only reason one would do so, was for personal human gain.

I do not communicate with other spirits for personal gain, but I had this block that to do so with weather would be.


We as humans have to a large extent been programmed to ask what can nature, the universe do for me, rather then just communicating for the sake of communicating, communicating with and building relationship with other nature spirits has always been a joy.


Let me tell you, communicating with a storm is a joyous experience, try it one day for yourself ! I now look at the sky the clouds and the rain in a different way, they are no longer inert weather patterns, they are playful titans in the service of great spirit.


Kevin is often reminding me that the work with Nature Spirits must be fun ! As well as being serious.

Well Kevin it seems you have indeed been listening to those clouds and they to you. As this was the funniest experience in a while. Between you, great spirit and a Great Storm you have taught me a very BIG great lesson.

One can simply play without the need for wanting anything or any outcome out of it. Thank you I am most grateful !


This occurred over 12 months ago, only now do I feel confident and brave enough to share it in this Blog.


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Dowsing as a support to Feng Shui

November 10, 2017

I recently gave a presentation at the AFSC conference on the Gold Coast 2017 on Dowsing  as a support to Feng Shui, followed by workshops on the Gold Coast and in Sydney, but dowsing is more then a mere support, its amongst the the very ancient roots & foundations of Feng Shui itself.

More than 2000 years ago the writings of the veritable sage Confucius mentions dowsing, Emperor Kwang Sung 2200 BC was known to have dowsed & the prophecies of Hosea more than 1400 years ago talk of dowsing for water veins  he refers to as ‘divination’. Emperor Ta Yu, the founder of the Hsia dynasty also talks of dowsing. Dowsing was used to determine underground water and energy streams and dragon lines.

In the later periods the Feng Shui masters used and still do use today the Lou Pan, the indication of the trembling of the the Lou Pan needle is used to access earth energies and geopathic stress.

My point here is, dowsing is sometimes considered a new age or ancient western modality, it is not ! It clearly was and can be an integrated part of our present Feng Shui practice, I would go so far as to suggest or ask, that without implementing it into our Feng Shui work and consultations are we fully and authentically practicing Feng Shui?

Dowsing is an art that taps into our intuition into the divine feminine within all of us, it’s a diagnostic tool that tunes into unseen energies inherent or embedded in a home or the land under it or surrounding it, these unhealthy or troublesome energies may be man made or natural or even spirit energies.

The dowsing rod, pendulum or Lou Pan needle is not magic, no psychic ability is needed.

Dowsing & it’s tools are simply instruments which shows the reaction of the human nervous system & subconscious selves. Our rational mind may process 4 or 5 pieces of information at one time, our subconscious can process over 40,000 pieces of information at one time and is far more sensitive than any of our 5 senses, as experienced through our rational mind, dowsing taps into our ancient intuitive self, the gut feeling that kept us alive as a species a for millions of years before we developed our rational minds. So get dowsing for your clients and yourself, if you know how or learn how to if you don’t.

After many years of dowsing & much research, I now teach specific techniques to become professionally proficient & confident with dowsing, entraining both the left an right brain together so they work in harmony for significant & accurate results. If you would like to learn or step up and inot your dowsing skills please contact me, to register your interest. Anthony Ashworth  

*This article appeared in the AFSC Association of Feng Shui Consutants news letter Nov 2107  

ademdum Dowsing is also intricatly linked with Vastu 



Tags: dowsing, earth energies, feng shui, vastu, vastu shasta, zen home

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