For Fatima Al Shirawi, she knew that delving into the world of colour and Feng Shui was a rare career choice for an Arab woman. But her passion for education led her to live all over the world and find a way to make each space and city her personal haven, discovers Sharon Carvalho
How did you go about starting The Gracious F?
I have a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Marketing from George Washington University. My second degree is in Fashion Design from London College of Fashion. By combining my educational background I created The Gracious F. The concept of my company is all about understanding your self, your space and creating a confident and productive life for any age, career and nationality. I have a strong belief in myself and I truly believe that people have a miracle inside them.
What inspired you to get into colour consulting and styling?
I had to take colour psychology as part of my degree for Fashion Design. I was taught and mentored by the creator of colour effects, Angela Wright. She inspired me from the very first day of class with this fascinating science. I saw how instant the effect was. The science of colour effects was beyond just knowing what colour to wear; this was a life-changing step on so many different levels. The element of styling came naturally to me, as I have always been a little fashionista from birth. My mother, through her style and grace, opened my eyes to the beauty and style of feminine women. I perfected this talent by learning the science and esthetic of styling through my education.
What are the common Feng Shui concerns that your clients come to you with?
The most common concerns my clients come to me with is that they have trouble sleeping, or feel very depressed when they enter their home. Some have a very stressful career and seek solace in their home. Our corporate clients look for motivation at work and to increase productivity. In addition, through Feng Shui, clients want me to help them achieve a level of productivity, help balance the money flow and ensure the workspace is protected and distributed well.
Is there a series of steps you follow when you go about addressing their concerns?
We have four steps:
1. Narrowing down the main reason why the individual wants to change their life.
2. Colour consultation to better know the individuals personality and have a clear understanding of who they are.
3. Once we have their colour palette, we measure their home and office for Feng Shui and combine the colour and positive corners in the space to create a positive and balanced follow around the person.
4. Once the person is relaxed in their environment and wears the right colour palette for each mood or occasion they notice the change.The need to clear your mind, to be more productive and shine at your
best can be achieved through these simple steps.
How much importance is given to the concept of aesthetics and colour coordination in today’s day and age?
It has been taken very seriously in Europe for decades; I have seen it being acknowledged more in the past few years in the Middle Eastern region. However people are still skeptical, as they do not understand the concept and benefits and need to be educated more.
You also specialize in interior designing for corporate spaces?
I work with interior designers to use the colours and textures of the furniture as per the personality of the business and the individual. Each section of a company has different purposes and we encourage the use of the right colours to stimulate the productivity in each space. In addition, the Feng Shui element is very important with the positioning of doors, furniture, plants etc., depending on the angles of the room.
• Never sleep facing a mirror
• Do not have electronics where you sleep.
• Make sure you do not have your fridge and cooker next to each other in the kitchen.
• Always have a solid wall behind you when placing your desk.
• Make sure you know your wealth corner in the office and make sure it is clear from clutter. In addition, have something red on your desk to stimulate success.