Sunday, March 3, 2013

Ikea Billy Closet Hack

My closet has been a work in progress for almost two years. When we first moved in we started out with this very silly classic old house closet problem:

The two feet of space wasn't cutting it (and the closet kept going behind the wall so I was forever losing clothes) so when we moved the wall to expand the kitchen we also opened up the closet.

Eventually everything got trimmed out and painted,

but for the longest time the inside looked like this:

Don't get me wrong, I loved my cork jewelry holder and shelf space, but it really wasn't the best use of the area. I knew I wanted to have less shelving and more hanging space so I went to Ikea and did a little research. I already owned the fully sized Billy bookshelf, and I knew they made a smaller version, but I wasn't about to shell out another $50 for a slightly smaller version of something I already had. Herein lies the hack.

What I love about hacks is that you get to customize. No more money spent and now I have more hanging space and plenty of shelving. It was about as easy as you can get. I took the things apart, hacked the three stabilizing bits (bottom, middle and top) down to 18 1/2 inches (exactly 2 baskets wide) and then put it back together. On the side I cut we just used some nails and glue to re-attach things.

We added one more feature to the closet too:

Interior lights! I gussied the whole thing up with a new paint job (something off of the oops shelf of Home Depot) and some trim to hide the seam between the shelving and the long top shelf.

I also took a little Pinspiration from this California Closet image and hung one dowel width-wise across the back corner.

I don't own many long dresses so it is the perfect solution. Now Daniel's clothes have their own space below and nothing gets in the way. I still need to pick up a few shelves from Ikea to finish add more shelving to the bookcase and the doors need paint but two years in we are getting close. Sometimes you just have to live with something to really know what you need.

How do you keep your closets organized? Clothes are easy, I just sort by color but I'm still looking for a better solution for purses and shoes.



  1. Great job! Much more efficient use of space. I just cleaned mine out this weekend. I don't know why it makes me feel so good, but it really does make a big difference.

  2. Did you make your shoe cubbies? I love that piece!

    1. The cubbies are from Target from a few years back. I found them in their closet section.

    2. thanks! Your closet looks wonderful. You've given me hope!

    3. Thanks! Your closet looks wonderful. You've given me hope!