If you are building a home and want to add a spiral staircase -- but you also want to make the feng shui of the place excellent -- you'll find your plans at odds with one another. Spiral staircases can be beautiful, but they aren't looked upon that nicely in feng shui for a few reasons, ranging from perceived safety issues to metaphorical imagery. The spiral staircase, according to feng shui, is like a corkscrew boring into the house. However, it doesn't have to act like that. It is possible to have a spiral staircase and good feng shui, if you pay attention to a few features.

Historically One-Sided

First, keep in mind that the perception of spiral staircases as bad per feng shui is historically one-sided. Spiral staircases have existed for centuries in countries that had never heard of feng shui and that didn't fail miserably. In other words, many, many people have lived with spiral staircases and thrived happily. However, if you really want to cover all your bases, read on.

Give Yourself Some Space

Spiral staircases are fantastic for containing stairs in a compact space, but you don't want the space to seem crowded. This really is a basic design principle that you should follow regardless of feng shui. The staircase you choose should be wide enough for two people to pass each other easily, and you should not feel like you're being squeezed into a corner as you travel up the stairs. Give the staircase some space.

Enhance the Safety Factor

Whichever style of spiral staircase you choose, enhance anything that would make the staircase safer. Ensure there are balusters and a handrail (there are spiral staircases that don't have any sort of handrail, and these can look fashionable, but they aren't as safe as ones that have a handrail, obviously). Ensure the steps are wide enough so that your feet fit comfortably on them and aren't caught by the step above as you move up the staircase. Ensure there are risers between the stairs. And most of all, ensure the staircase is installed very securely -- no shaking allowed.

Now It's Time for the Cures

Once you have those features added, start in on the feng shui cures. What you want to do here is move energy up, to counteract the image of a corkscrew, and to make the staircase seem as natural as possible with plants and wood materials. Add a lovely, healthy plant next to the bottom of the staircase; paint the top and bottom steps different colors (or, if you install grip tape for safety, make the strips of tape different colors) to represent reaching the end or a goal; intertwine vines or ivy (fake will work) among the balusters of the staircase; install lights at the bottom that point up, though you should ensure the lights don't blind people trying to walk down the stairs.

Spiral staircases are a great way to save space, and while feng shui experts may have concerns about them, it is possible to turn the staircase into a healthy addition to your home.