15 Best IKEA Bookshelf Hacks to Inspire You.

best ikea bookshelf hacks

Whether you’re looking for a way to add more storage to your space or just want to give your living space a fresh new look, Ikea bookshelf hacks are an easy way to update your home decor.

Whether you’re looking for a way to add more storage to your space or just want to give your living space a fresh new look, Ikea bookshelf hacks are an easy way to update your home decor.

One of the most useful ways to decorate our living spaces is with a bookshelf. A bookshelf is not just for holding books. It can be used to display decorative accessories, art, dishes, and photographs. It can become a major focal point in a room.

As we near the end of our living room update, I’m now focusing on a new bookshelf. I’ve been looking for a few months.

I have shopped at some local decorating shops for bookshelves, including consignment stores, estate sales, and antique malls. I’ve come up empty. New products were way more expensive than I wanted to spend. Unfortunately, I didn’t find anything that even warranted a possible update. In the end, I just didn’t find anything I liked. 

To get exactly the size and style I want, I’ve decided that using IKEA bookcases for a custom bookshelf is our best option.

There are many ways to transform these simple shelves into something truly special. Whether you’re looking for a way to add more storage to your space or give your space a fresh new look, there are plenty of IKEA bookshelf hacks out there to choose from.

Why an IKEA Bookcase Hack?

I’ve always had the idea of an IKEA bookshelf hack in the back of my mind. I have had three basic Billy bookshelves in my office for years and love them. 

First, I had to convince Sweet Shark that this was a viable option. So he agreed to a trip to IKEA. We had been there a couple of years ago to check out redoing our master closet (still on the to-do list), so he knew what he was getting into.

After seeing the beautiful displays, he agreed that designing and creating a new living room bookshelf using IKEA products was a great idea.

BUT . . .  Sweet Shark can do a lot of handyman stuff (He did help me put those Billy bookcases and my IKEA storage carts together for my office.), but measuring wood, sawing wood, and building a bookcase is not in his wheelhouse. 

Also, we don’t own any of the major tools, like a jigsaw or circular saw, that this type of project requires. 

BUT . . . We have a brother-in-law who can do anything with his hands. He taught shop in high school for years. He’s retired but still works, building fences, roofing, and other home construction projects for others. He’s kind of a workaholic and he loves to stay busy. 

At Easter, we asked him if he would be interested in constructing a new living room bookshelf using IKEA products. He said he could build me anything I wanted. Then, he said, “What’s IKEA?”

I briefly explained what I had in mind – a beautiful custom bookshelf that would add function and style to our living room. He told me what to do before he could start work:

  • Decide exactly where on our living room wall the bookcase should go.
  • Decided exactly the width and height.
  • How many bookshelves?
  • What type of crown molding and wood trim?
  • Did I want cabinet doors? Did I want glass doors?
  • Would the bookshelf need to be painted? (I told Danny he was off the hook on that score. Painting I can do.)

So my first job is to search for the style I want. The best place to do that is to scroll through Pinterest for inspiration. 

Bookshelf Inspiration – 15 Ikea Hacks to Inspire You

You will see from the IKEA bookshelf hacks I chose to share that I primarily focused on IKEA furniture that functioned in living room spaces. 

I know that IKEA bookshelf hacks can be used in living rooms, bedrooms, offices, kitchens, pantries, and as room dividers.

They can be made into cabinets, desks, bar carts, and sideboards. The possibilities are only limited by what function you need and how you want it to look.

I’ve gathered together some of the very best IKEA bookshelf hacks. From adding custom lighting to creating a cozy reading nook, these ideas are sure to inspire you to get creative with your own bookshelves.

Whether you’re a seasoned DIY pro or just starting out, there’s something here for everyone. So grab your tools (or your brother-in-law) and let’s get to hacking!

As you will see, you can use multiple types of IKEA bookshelves in your custom design. Although all the designs use IKEA bookshelves, every project approaches the work with different goals, tools, and design goals

So here are the 15 best IKEA bookshelf hacks I found – the ones that made me pause, click, read, and save. I also made sure that they included clear instructions and process pictures that I could share with Danny. 

Welcome to 10 or More Fabulous Finds at Bluesky Browsing #90.

Think of Fabulous Finds as a home decor/DIY/Craft/recipe Readers’ Digest.

If you are new to Bluesky at Home, what fabulous finds do I share at Bluesky Browsing?

  • ideas to help you in your home decor efforts
  • fun holiday decoration ideas
  • ideas for better organization and efficiency
  • a yummy recipe or cocktail
  • fun DIY projects
  • the latest trends in home decor
  • a quirky new find or two

Get Inspired with these 15 Best IKEA Bookshelf Hacks

Focusing on finding new projects, resources, tips, new ideas, and inspiration for you is my main task. I’m constantly discovering fabulous finds to inspire us. My goal is to help you find ideas for your home decor, your crafting, your home organization, and anything about home.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Bookshelf with Storage, Wallpaper and Glass Doors

Lia of Southern Yankee DIY shares this beautiful hack. She used solid cabinet doors on the bottom and glass front on the top – best to appreciate the stunning wallpaper on the back wall.

What I love? The storage cabinets on the bottom.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Built-In Bookshelf with Cabinets and Lighting

This version from Kaari of The Sommer Home is very close to my vision.

What I love? Enclosed storage on the bottom and open shelves for display on top. I love the idea of lighting.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Simple Billy Bookcase DIY

This simple version of an IKEA hack has a sleek, modern style. Allison of Designed Simple‘s project shows off her pretty accessories.

What I love? The clean lines and spare display.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Beer Cupcakes with Chocolate Drizzle

Dana of House of Navy uses a wide divider between the IKEA shelves to create a symmetrical arrangement. She also included lighting for a dramatic look.

What I love? The interesting way the shelves are spaced out. And the lighting.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Beautiful Bookshelf Hack for Storage

Mel of More of Mel uses her IKEA bookshelf hack to create a gorgeous pantry for dishes and serving pieces. It’s not in a living room, but still has a unique style going for it.

What I love? The tall glass doors and dramatic hardware.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Prettiest Pantry Bookshelf Hack

Kellie of Breakfast at Kellie’s also designed her IKEA hack to serve as a place in the kitchen area for culinary and serving tools. It shows IKEA shelves can be tucked right into existing spaces.

What I love? That the shelving looks like it was always here.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Ladder Bookshelf Hack

Kathy of Stylish Revamp shows how a library ladder fits perfectly with an updated IKEA built-in bookshelf. It looks like it was always there.

What do I love?
The simplicity and classic style. It seems the closest to the vision I have for our living room bookshelf.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Bookcase Fireplace Update

Aniko of Place of My Taste (who was my mentor one year at Haven Conference) turned underutilized space on both sides of her fireplace into useful space, allowing for more accessory display.

What do I love? How perfectly this IKEA hack bookshelves fit perfectly in the given space.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Classic Built-In Bookshelf

This built-in custom bookshelf from Amy of 11 Magnolia Lane looks like it has always been a part of this living space. 11 Magnolia Lane was the first home decor blog that I discovered on Pinterest in 2015. It’s a beautiful tribute to the skills of Amy’s father and the versatility of IKEA bookcases.

What do I love? The classic style and craftsmanship of the project.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Bookshelf Hack with Lighting

The first time I saw an IKEA bookshelf hack with lighting was this project from Landyn of Living with Landyn. This project is so classy and traditional, it would fit in any space.

What do I love? The beautiful lighting and how it is incorporated into the design.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Billy Bookcase Library Hack

Mysha of Remington Avenue is proud of this IKEA hack and with good cause. This design is really close to my vision for our living room since it is somewhat free-standing. Oh, and those light fixtures!

What do I love? The light fixtures, the beautiful use of wood moldings, and the lovely use of accessories.

Ikea bookshelf office hack

Besta and Billy Office Bookcase

Kate of Centsational Style (also one of my former mentors at Haven) created a gorgeous bookshelf unit for her office. She used a pink backdrop for a delicious pop of color on the back walls. She mixed open and closed storage for a nice contrast.

What do I love? The brilliant use of bright colors and the combo of closed and open shelving.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Built In Library Wall

Give Abby of Making it with Abby extra points for painting the entire IKEA custom built-ins. The extra wide moldings, shelving, and ladder add a classic style touch. What a focal point!

What I love? Abby’s bold use of color and the bookshelf design.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Very Tall Library IKEA Bookshelf

Ashley of At Home with Ashley must be the nicest sister. She helped create this gorgeous built-in IKEA bookshelf for her book-loving sister. The ladder adds easy access for this design using two stacked sets of bookshelf extensions.

Ikea bookshelf hack

Library Hack with a Ladder

On a smaller scale, Kelly of The Lily Pad Cottage creates a stunning library bookshelf with a ladder and simple design.

What do I love? The easy way Kelly fills the bookshelves with a mix of books and accessories.

My takeaways from looking at these (and many more) 15 best Ikea bookshelf hacks?

  • You can do just about anything with Ikea bookshelves.
  • You can make the bookshelves tall with one or more multiple extensions.
  • You can make the bookshelves as wide as you need with varying widths, spacing the bookshelves, or a combination.
  • Wood molding at the base and top adds a custom flair.
  • Adding beautiful lighting is doable.
  • Adding moveable ladders is doable.
  • Bookshelves can be painted.

If you want to take a look, here are all the bookshelf possibilities at Ikea.

I’d love to know what subjects you are most curious about. Let me know in the comments and I’ll search browse for them. Be sure to PIN to keep these spring recipes handy.

PIn graphic for now for later
best ikea bookshelf hacks

I’ll be browsing away between writing posts, listening to podcasts, reading, doing various blogging tasks, playing tennis, and walking Nola.

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One Comment

  1. Oh wow, lucky to have a BIL handy to help out. Fortunately, my husband, Son, and SIL are very handy so between the three of them they can manage basically anything needed.
    Thank you from your Vroom Vroom Team for sharing your links with us at #264 SSPS Linky. Please check back weekly to see if featured on the blog post or by any co-hosts.

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