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How to give your home an energetic makeover


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Photos: Tim Gibson for Well+Good
1/11

You know those places that just make you want to linger? The nook in your local coffee shop where you somehow always end up having deep, heartfelt, hilarious conversations (no matter who you’re sitting with). Or the spot in yoga class that seems to make savasana that much sweeter—so you arrive early to make sure you can roll out your mat there.

According to Rashia Bell and Elizabeth Kohn, the design duo behind The Cristalline, it’s all about energy flow. Best known for creating Taryn Toomey’s dreamy, crystal-embedded, New York City studio, they’ve taken the nebulous idea that a space has “good energy” and turned it into a (very intuitive) science. With more than 32 years of experience between them, Bell and Kohn have bona fides in architecture, interior design, and fashion—but they’ve embraced a holistic approach. Basically, these interior gurus are also like energy healers—only instead of bodies, they work on spaces.

home makeover crystals plants
Rashia Bell, left, and Elizabeth Kohn.

“When you have energetic blocks in a room, you’ll know: Basically, no one wants to spend time there,” Kohn says. “But that can actually affect your whole life; we want to create balance that resonates beyond just the space.”

To give us a peek into their process, a few members of Team Well+Good joined Bell and Kohn at the Upper West Side home of Alexia Brue (who happens to be W+G’s co-founder and CEO)—and the design duo showed up with several crates-full of plants and crystals (cue the heart-eye emojis). Brue’s apartment was renovated just three years ago by Jayne and Joan Michaels of 2 Michaels Design, so the “before” was already pretty darn stunning. But in a couple of hours, The Cristalline’s crew pulled off an energetic upgrade that was palpable—and there was a lot of lingering. (Seriously, I was ready to move in.)

How did they do it? Scroll down for tips from Bell and Kohn that you can use in your home—plus, a tour of the vibed-up apartment.

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home makeover crystals plants

Thanks to its minimalist aesthetics, the living room had some seriously good mojo before the high-vibe designers got started: “With clean surfaces, you don’t have that energy of chaos that an over-accessorized space can have,” Kohn says. To take things even higher in this gathering place, the duo added a terrarium with a river of tiny quartz crystals running through it. Plants oxygenate any space, they say, and as with crystals, they can clear stagnant energy. “Having them together is a nice way to cleanse the crystals and vice versa, because you have nature with nature,” says Bell.

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And it’s not just terrariums that benefit from crystal pairings—on a sideboard, an aloe plant in a Melissa Maya Pottery planter gets a sparkly upgrade with barite stones, known for their gentle power in promoting balance and healing . Pro tip: The next time you go flower shopping, ask your florist to pot it with crystals you’ve brought from home. “I love doing that because it shifts the color palate and brings new energy to keep the room from getting boring,” Kohn says. Adds Bell, “I prefer clear quartz, but you can use any crystals that don’t compete with the plant, color-wise.”

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home makeover crystals plants

This is the first sight you see when you walk into the living room from the apartment’s entryway—and with very small tweaks (adding a petrified wood bowl, extra plant power, and a variety of textures), the vibe instantly felt more magnetic and insanely welcoming. “You want to see something in another room that invites you in,” Kohn explains.

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A few ways to give your bedroom more of a snuggly-oasis feel: Ground the space with a rug under the bed, include touch-me textures like this Holly Mueller macrame wall hanging, and, most importantly, banish the electronics, Bell and Kohn say. “The biggest thing you can do to change the energy of your bedroom is: Don’t have your phone by your bed,” Bell insists. “I put my phone across the room and put a black tourmaline on it.” Here, a combo of white calcite and pyrite, which reputedly blocks electromagnetic frequencies, and a dendritic jasper bowl help to balance out the bedside iPhone and Alexa.

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And on the other bedside is kyanite, which is said to enhance communication (hello, relationship saver), stacked on top of selenite (AKA that crystal wand your yoga teacher has stashed in her bag—it’s said to promote clarity of mind and consciousness expansion). Kyanite, in particular, is straight-up stunning. Its striated sky blue-and-white color and super-smooth surface made it one of the favorites of the day—everyone felt the urge to touch it. And hey, it’s never a bad idea to wake up to something beautiful.

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home makeover crystals plants

This small grouping triggered a big shift in the feeling of the already-cozy bedroom, adding a sense of lightness and luminosity to a spot beneath the flatscreen TV. The white onyx pieces are styled as a trio (“It’s always good to do accessories in odd numbers,” Kohn says) with a succulent. And since white onyx is said to enhance psychic connections and strengthen the crown chakra and third eye, they just might make bedtime more interesting. Sweet dreams!

Scroll down for more inspo from this energetic makeover: home edition.

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energetic home makeover crystals plants

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energetic home makeover crystals plants

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energetic home makeover crystals plants

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energetic home makeover crystals plants

Another crystal tip: Miranda Kerr sleeps with this gem under her pillow every night. And the healing stones are making waves in beauty as well, with celebs obsessing over this blue sapphire- and aquamarine-infused facial oil.