Easiest Ikea hack ever! Try these upcycle ideas on your bookcases

We love an Ikea hack – and these upcycle ideas will transform shelving in just an hour or two

Upcycle ideas: Ikea hack with shelving
(Image credit: Ikea/Lina Ikse)

Looking for an Ikea hack or upcycle ideas to keep you busy this weekend? Here's a great one for your bookcases. Designed for the Billy bookcase by Ikea, this is a hack that will work on all types of shelving. 

So if you have plain shelving units hanging around your house (probably a leftover relic from your first house share), ruining the chic, Insta-vibes you've been going for, why not try this easy Ikea hack... It's that or put it on Facebook Marketplace so that it can live its life out in yet another house share... Find more living room ideas on our dedicated hub page.

You will need:

Ikea Billy bookcase hack

(Image credit: Ikea/Lina Ikse)

Step one: measure your shelf and iron your fabric

First iron out your fabric so there are no creases, and lie it flat. If you are working with a Billy that you have already put together you will need to take out the shelves and pegs and measure the four inside walls and the back and each shelf, adding 5cm to the depth. If you are working with a flatpack Billy, measure the inside of the top, back and two sides. 

Step two: cut your fabric 

Use tailor's chalk to mark out the rectangles using the measures you took from each surface of your bookshelf. Neatly cut out the pieces with fabric scissors. 

Step three: cover your bookcase 

You are best doing this step outside as it involves spray mount.

Start by lightly misting one surface with spray mount and spray the edges of the matching piece of fabric. Place the fabric onto the piece of the bookshelf smoothing it out as you do so, fold under the extra fabric, 

Repeat this for all the shelves, the back of the bookcase and each interior wall. Once it is stuck and the glue has had some time to dry, staple every few centimetres along the edges to make sure it's secure.  

Ikea Billy bookcase hack

(Image credit: Ikea/Lina Ikse)

Step four: put the shelf back together 

Before putting the Billy back together use a scalpel to pierce the fabric at each screw hole. This will stop the screws from tearing or ruching the fabric when you fasten them. Then you can just put the bookcase together using the original instructions. 

Ikea Billy bookcase hack

(Image credit: Ikea/Lina Ikse)

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