Metal coins have been used in China since the 7th century BC and are thought to bring good luck. The round shape corresponds to the energy of the heavens (yang) while the square hole in the center allows earth energy (yin) to enter.
Frequently, nine coins on a string signify uninterrupted good luck. Good luck coins were often worn for protection or to bring good luck. They were also thrown at the bride and groom during wedding ceremonies – the bride had to catch them with her skirt.
In feng shui coins are also used to symbolize good luck or as protection charms. Several coins (three, five or nine) are strung on two red (the color signifying joy) silk ribbons. The ribbons are fed through the square holes in the coins’ center and tied together to make a good luck ribbon that is hung near the entrance to attract good luck and defend against harm and evil. Additional applications include:
- Placing a large coin in a glass bowl lined with red or blue velvet.
- Stringing 8 coins on a red silk ribbon and hanging it near or above the cash register.
- Stringing 5 coins for good luck outside the entrance of a building – hanging them either vertically or horizontally.
Source: Feng Shui Symbols by Christine M. Bradler & Joachim Alfred P. Scheiner.