When Lesli DeVito stopped by a yard sale this summer, she fell in love with an avocado green twin bed. It might be a knockoff of a 1960s antique, she thought, and at $25, it was a steal. Never one to pass up a project or a bargain, DeVito told the seller to load it into her truck.

It wasn’t until she glanced into her rearview mirror on the way home to Greenwood, Va., that she realized she had bought two beds. Her 14-year-old daughter, Phoebe, was the first person she thought of.

“I mean, these beds scream slumber party,” she said.

Last spring, Phoebe asked to have her bedroom redecorated for her 13th birthday. DeVito, an artist, happily obliged and wrote about the makeover on her blog, My Old Country House. But she was never quite happy with the bed, a petal-pink four-poster queen that took up a lot of space.

The twin beds were the perfect solution. She painted them pebble gray and upholstered them with a sunny yellow fabric to match the neighboring hutch.

The resulting look earned first place in our 2012 Kid’s Room Contest, beating out 59 other entries to be chosen by Local Living editor Liz Seymour, home writer Jura Koncius and local designer Nancy Twomey. Online voting resulted in the readers’ choice award.

But even though the room was decorated by mom, it is decidedly Phoebe. The principal colors, navy, yellow and pink, are Phoebe’s favorites, and a bohemian chandelier ($175 from Urban Outfitters) ties them all together. The art includes a pink plaque that reads “Keep Calm and Eat a Cupcake,” a framed print of Audrey Hepburn and a poster of singer-songwriter Eric Hutchinson, a staple in many teenage girls’ rooms.

Displayed on the hutch are two pairs of shoes: tiny ruby red slippers (Phoebe’s first fancy pair) and pearl-toned heels that she planned to wear on a recent evening (she’s on the homecoming court of her Charlottesville area high school).

“The room has really grown up with her,” DeVito said. Phoebe doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up, but she can’t wait to have her first apartment to decorate with her mom.

“I think it would be fun for us to have a business together someday,” Phoebe said. “She’s really inspiring.”

DeVito swears she didn’t tell her to say that.

The readers’ choice

With 4,160 votes, Mary Derderian of Arlington won our readers’ choice award for her 6-year-old son Clay’s bedroom. We love the varied shades of blue and green paint paired with the maps and nautical decor. Check back next week for more photos and to find out how Mary’s husband, James, decoupaged the dresser using maps he found in a neighborhood trash bin.


PHOTOS | Phoebe DeVito’s winning room

Kid’s Room Contest 2012

PHOTOS | View the six finalists’ rooms

Chat Thursday at 11 a.m. Designer Nancy Twomey, a Kid’s Room Contest judge, joins staff writer Jura Koncius for our weekly online Q&A on decorating and household advice. Submit your questions.