Capitalizing on Downsizing
Moving into a smaller home can be a challenge. But a can-do attitude paired with a little creativity will make the transition a smooth one.
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Graves makes good use of the living room, the heart of the home. Two jade green armchairs and a camel-colored sofa surround a round ottoman-turned-coffee table. It’s also the occasional poker table for Will and his friends, who watch football on a flat-screen TV tucked in an alcove.
When the teenagers take over the living room, Graves retires to a small sitting room, where one closet holds her work files and another holds coats. Here she reads the paper, watches the smaller TV or writes letters—a lost art she still practices.
All the rooms are laden with rich fabrics. The living room chairs, for instance, have a checkerboard pattern with a raised finish that invites a touch. A lush fur throw is tossed over the back of the sofa. A profusion of needlepoint and velveteen pillows tumbles from the sofa corners in both rooms.
There is no dining room, which might present a problem for a hostess who once thought throwing dinner parties for 18 was fun. That, however, was in her 30s. Graves sold the mahogany dining room table before the move. Now guests gather in the living room, plates on laps. Or they collect around a makeshift dining room table, which is created by placing a 40-inch top on a tea table, then draping it with white linen.
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