What was it like growing up with a Feng Shui master for a father? Do you feel you were kind of fated to follow in his footsteps?
Having a dad who was a Feng Shui master was my normal. While I was growing up, the furniture was constantly being moved around or rearranged and, to me, that never seemed strange or out of the ordinary. Once I started hanging out with other kids, though, – ones whose parents were doctors, lawyers or something – that’s when I realised that my family was a little bit different.Despite that, as a child, I had no interest in taking up the same vocation.
So, where did your passion lie?
I was very creative and very artistically inclined. I simply loved painting, drawing, fashion design… anything to do with the world of art in fact.And that was what dominated my academic career, right until I graduated in Fine Arts in Canada.
Given your initial disinterest, what ultimately drew you back to Feng Shui?
When I was about 24, I suddenly realised it held a fascination for me. That was when I returned to Hong Kong after graduating. I was also going through something of a rough time emotionally, while the culture shock of returning here after so many years away also sent me reeling.
I really needed something to get me off the bad place I found myself in. One day, I just turned to my dad and said:“Can I learn Feng Shui from you?” It was the result of something of a ‘Eureka’ moment for me and I knew immediately it was the right choice. I also instinctively felt I could integrate my own passion for art and fashion into Feng Shui. Since then, I can honestly say I have never looked back.
Was there any one thing your father taught you that proved particularly transformational?
Studying under my father truly opened my mind. Prior to that, I’d seen his calling as somewhat antiquated. Once I started learning it for myself, though, it changed the way I saw the whole world, giving me an entirely different perspective on life and making realise the endless possibilities that are out there. I knew then that I could never again box myself into some safe little world. It was a real paradigm shifting and I’ll always be grateful to him for that.
And how did that revelation change the way you saw Feng Shui’s role in the contemporary world?
As it’s such a traditional discipline, many people find it hard to reconcile with modern life. Through my training, though, I came to realise that, essentially, it’s all about the relationship between people and their environment. It teaches us how to arrange the space around ourselves in order that we can truly fulfil our potential, while still optimising our health and wellbeing.
What is the best way then to boost your Feng Shui?
A focal point of my Go Lucky Method is that if your space is draining you, there’s something wrong with it. Any environment that makes you feel sluggish – rather than energised – is in need of adjustment. This doesn’t always have to be drastic. It can be as simple as adjusting your lighting or adding a splash of colour. It is, however, often best to replace any needlessly flashy decorations with objects that have personal connection.Rather than opting for an expensive centrepiece, for instance, it might be better to put the focus on a dish your grandmother gave you. Basically, if you have something associated with a positive memory, that’s always the way to go.
For Hong Kong in general, how do you see things going in the Year of the Rat?
For 2020, it’s all about the water and metal elements. This means we can look forward to good things within spheres influenced by such elements.Metal governs thinks likely jewellery and, by extension, finance, while water would relates to drinks, hotels, travel…These, then, are the sectors that will thrive over the next 12 months….
What about the negative things?
Broadly speaking, the past year has been dominated by trauma and heightened emotions. As a consequence, people need to focus on their mental wellbeing. They need to ask themselves what they need to trigger the healing process and restore their positive state, of mind.
With regard to more finite matters. as it is a water-element year, people may want to take more care when it comes their engagement with bodies of water, such as ocean or pools.
You’ve just now launched your own proprietary take on Feng Shui – Go Lucky by Thierry Chow…
I always wanted to put a truly modern spin on traditional Feng Shui techniques and beliefs and this fulfil that’s vision. It is an approach that draws heavily on the Go Lucky method, a very simple series of steps that people can follow in order to get the maximum benefits from their immediate environment. As part of it, Feng Shui consultations and design analysis is also on offer. There are also three different Feng Shui decorations that can be purchased, with each one representing something different and bringing different influences to bear on any given space.
Aside from Feng Shui, you are also known – and admired – for your personal sense of style…
I love fashion and I always have. It’s also something I have always wanted to integrate into my Feng Shui offer. With this in mind, I started attending a lot of fashion events in my professional capacity and tough people how to dress in compliance with the principals of Feng Shui.
So Feng Shui has a bearing on fashion?
Absolutely. Feng Shui is all about changing your environment and clothes definitely help shape your demeanour. The five elements used in Feng Shui, as well a yin and yang, all come from The Book of I Ching, which guides things like birth-chart readings. While it’s not exactly Feng Shui per se, I use it as a means of determining which colours or patterns that can help you balance your will optimise the balance of your chi…
On top of all that, is there anything else on the horizon?
Well I recently worked on new collection with Samuel Kung, the renowned master of jade. I’d already fallen in love with jade and, when I met him, we were both keen to collaborate. Jade and Feng Shui are actually quite interlinked – it’ a material that absorbs a person’s energy and, as a result, changes colour over time. Looking to build on this, we launched the Samuel Kung x Thierry Chow Jade Collection. Comprising three jade rings and available from Lane Crawford, every item incorporates Feng Shui elements. Our next planned project, however, will be on a far grander scale…
Away from all your many commitments, how do you like to relax?
I am a fanatic for anything spiritual, so I really enjoy reading books on meditation and any that add to my understanding of the wider universe. I also love to meditate and to give free rein to my artistic side – and, of course, some retail therapy always goes down well too.
What is the key item on your bucket list?
Denmark. It’s somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit. Although my husband is Canadian, that’s where his ancestors came from. I’ve seen so many gorgeous photographs of the country and I want to experience it all on a first-hand basis.
Finally, if you could meet any person, past or present…
I’m fascinated with reincarnation, so I would love to be able to meet one of my former selves. In terms of other people though, someone I would love to chat with would be Deepak Chopra, the famous author and renowned expert on alternative medicine. I’d love to be able to pick his brains about wellness techniques and the benefits of meditation.
Text: Tenzing Thondup
Photos: Jack Law
Styling & Art Direction: San Wong