The Great Billy Bookcase Fake-out

It all started about a month ago. My husband went to Ikea on a mission to pick up the two Billy bookcases I had told him about. He borrowed my dad’s truck so he could transport them home, while the kids and I stayed behind. I get a phone call…

“Hon, are you sure  these are the right bookcases? ‘Cuz what I’m looking at look super cheap and cheesy. The back’s made out of cardboard…really? You sure?”

While going back and forth, I knew they were indeed the Billys, and I assured him that we could fancy ’em up and it’ll look awesome.

“Trust me, babe, I got this,” I said.

He believed me, paid the $120 for TWO bookcases (awesome!) and ventured back home. That day he put them together, and even in their cardboard-y/laminate/particle board ways, I knew they’d be somethin’ special.

Now, I’m going to do a MUCH more detailed post on how we transformed these blah bookcases into our fancy/built-in(ish) looking ones, but I couldn’t wait that long to show you;) It’s getting late, I still have a grocery list to make, so I’ll make it brief…

So here was the original wall (like pre-paint days, when I still had the paint samples on the wall and the fireplace was brown).

Painted the walls, the fireplace, and got the bookcases put together…

And then painted the backs with Olympic Sheffield Gray (I’m obsessed with this color, people. Love IT.)

See how skinny the top, bottom, and all the sides are? We fixed that.

(Again, I’ll go into all the deets when I write that post – measurements,what types of molding, all that good stuff. ~aka, all the stuff my dear husband knows that I haven’t a clue about;).

Then it was time to just paint it all a crisp white to match the fireplace. Chalk paint to the rescue! Yep, even goes on that cheap laminate stuff! Now it looks like wood!

Ta da!


So that’s the tale of the Great Billy Bookcase Fake-Out. Looks a lot more than $60, right?! Granted, we paid for some molding, but even with that extra cost, doesn’t compare to what we’d have to pay for some built-ins. Can’t WAIT to get in there and style it all up! Could have waited until then to show you, but I was way too excited to show you the progress;)

Keep ya posted!


  1. Georgia says:

    Where can I find the details. Measurements. Type of molding? Etc

  2. Hi Georgia! I’m sorry, my old blog site was hacked a few years ago and some blog posts were lost forever – this was one of them:( And it’s been so long, I don’t remember.


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