10 Ways to Hack an IKEA Billy Bookcase

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IKEA's Billy bookcase is one of the brand's most well-loved products. It's a mainstay of the collection, and one of IKEA's most adaptable lines, coming in multiple finishes and sizes and having plenty of options for doors. On its own, the Billy is one of the most universal pieces of decor, making it prime for hacking. And one of the most impressive ways we've seen people hack the Billy is to actually make a series of them look like built-in bookcases. Let's take a look at the different ways you can make a Billy look like a legit built-in:

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1. Add task lighting.

The most important step in hacking Billy bookcases to look built-in is to make them seem like they're one cohesive unit. Here, you can click through Instagrammer @marnieparkerdesigns to see how Billy bookcases of different widths were evenly spaced to create this effect. But to make the end product look truly library-like, task lamps were added to the top of each shelf, and the bookcase got a rolling ladder to finish it off.

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2. Create a built-in look.

Claire Douglas really transformed the Billy bookcases into something magical. Get the built-in look with Douglas' tutorial, which includes using IKEA's Oxberg doors for a finishing touch.

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3. Display art and accessories.

Bisola, aka @ideallyorganized, turned a drab office into this stunner thanks to the right combo of Billy bookcases. We especially love the open space in the middle to show off your fave items. You can get all the details here.

4. Make the most of an awkward angle.

This monotone look by @caramiadk not only embodies chic design, it also serves as a clever way to take advantage of a unique corner. The varying heights also help to accommodate a nearby window, proving you can fit the DIY to lots of specific needs.

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5. Add some chic arches.

What can't you do with a Billy bookcase? This project is proof that the possibilities are basically endless. The arches and monochromatic paint really give this display a luxe look.

6. Hit the ceiling this way.

The best way to make your Billy look like a built-in is to have the unit appear to extend from floor to ceiling. If you've got a gap between the top of the bookcase and your ceiling, you can attach paneling to achieve a flush look.

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7. Or hit the ceiling this way.

Depending on your space, it might make more sense to build your Billy on a base (a desk or counter-like space or a row of drawers) to get the shelves to reach to your ceiling.

8. Float it.

One of the most impressive Billy hacks we've seen comes from @designsixtynine, who had the brilliant idea to raise the Billy off the floor.

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9. Use color contrast and cohesion.

Look at how clever this Billy hack is: The fronts and moulding are painted in the same hue as the moulding around the rest of the room, making the unit seamlessly fit in. A totally optional but equally smart move would be to paint the interiors of your shelves a darker color to add depth.

10. Get crazy custom!

Adding curved panels of plywood and topping them with mouldings or flourishes will definitely fool anyone into thinking your unit is way more fancy than it actually is.

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