Getting Started with Ikea’s Billy Bookcase System

Find out what the Billy Bookcase system is, and how it has helped our townhouse living room function and feel so good!


When I first published this post years ago, we had just moved into our townhouse and were going through the process of figuring out how to set up our space. We agonized over whether we should spend the money for a set of Billy Bookcases.

Now 8 years have gone by and I can say without hesitation that they are the best money we spent in furnishing this space! Since this post was written, we have finished off an entire Billy Bookcase wall – adding moulding to ikea billy bookcase to make it look like a fancy custom built in.

But, you may enjoy seeing our little place soon after we moved in, and the thought process we took as we carefully thought through the details of our living room space.

Here’s the original post:


One of the main challenges of downsizing is storage space. There’ve been moments in the unpacking process where I’ve felt very overwhelmed and discouraged.

Where in the world was I going to put all. the. things?

Since we first viewed the townhouse, I’ve been pondering the big wall in the Living Room area where the tv sits.

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

The Entryway closet forms a bit of an alcove there, and I’ve been wondering about adding in some sort of floor to ceiling shelving system in that area.

I had ideas gallore, but the reality of budget curbs many of them…

I was feeling quite discouraged before going on a little shopping trip to Ikea.

Walking into their showroom was a turning point for me.

Bless Ikea’s sweet Swedish heart.

It is genius at small space storage. Not only is it extremely practical, it’s pretty, too!

It was there that I met Billy…

and fell in love.

Billy’s a bookcase, and the answer to my storage woes.

What is the Billy Bookcase system?

The Billy Bookcase system has many different components that can be mixed and matched to customize your specific needs. It comes tall:

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

It comes short.

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

Doors are sold seperately that fit each model, if you choose.

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

Some doors have glass. Some are solid. They come in a variety of colors, and the price is so reasonable!

You can add a Billy Bookcase system in one part at a time

We had an great idea, but discovered the tall Billys just wouldn’t fit in our car.

Instead, we came home with two short Billys and 4 doors.

It know this is going to sound dramatic, but honestly, they completely changed my outlook on life ~ and made me realize this little townhouse can feel like home!


Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

(After…with the Billys!:)):

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

Not only was I able to finish unpacking boxes since I finally had a place to put things, but they also helped our lighting dilemma!

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

Placing  lamps in front of mirrors bounces the light around the room and makes it feel so much brighter and cheerier.

Ikea's Billy Bookcase system

Hmm…These just might not be the last Billys you see in this house…

{Just FYI, I wasn’t compensated in any way, shape, or form by Ikea for promoting their amazing, life changing Billy bookcases. I am just so thrilled to discover them…and discovered I can also assemble them all by myself!}

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  1. Wow! They look sharp AND they’re so functional. I love them in your space. I’ve been to IKEA once and would love to go again. You’re doing such a great job, Rita. I know if hubby and I downsize, I’ll be coming back to your blog posts for ideas.

  2. Thanks goodness for the Ikeas storage units. We have started using this furniture and it has saved the day for us. I love the versatility, (in height, width, with doors, without, with glass doors, you name it). It is worth the trip. Excited for you Rita. Enjoy this season and your stay at the Settling Inn! HB

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