Dollhouse Bookcase: A style as you wish Billy hack

By adding a roof, chimney, wooden details, paint, fences, walls and even windows, the BILLY Bookcase becomes a chic dollhouse bookcase.

You can decorate it into a beach house, or a fab urban row-house. Use as a dollhouse or as a bookcase … you get to decide!

IKEA Dollhouse Bookcase

  • BILLY bookcase

How to make your own dollhouse bookcase

First, design your dollhouse and decide where you want the windows or doors to go.

Before assembling the BILLY bookcase, use a pencil and mark on the outside face of the bookcase where these will go.

Using a jigsaw, cut out the window holes.

Putty the insides of the windows for a more finished look. Glue picture frames on the outside of the windows to finish it.

BILLY bookcase dollhouseTo make the roof, cut 1” x 12” in two pieces, one at 24” long, one at 23 ¼” long. Form these planks into a roof and secure them with screws. You can use some glue at the butt-joint to make it more secure. Remember to pre-drill pilot holes before screwing in. Next, prime and paint the roof.

Then, assemble the IKEA BILLY bookcase. Screw the roof onto the top of the bookcase from the inside corners of the bookcase.

For the back panel, I used beadboard. (You could also use MDF). Lay the BILLY bookcase with roof on top of the beadboard and trace out the entire shape. Next, cut along the outline. Then, affix the board to the back of the BILLY.

The structure of the dollhouse is basically done.

Now comes the fun part.


This is when you adorn and style as you wish. Add dollhouse furniture to fashion your dollhouse bookcase. Add scrapbook paper to the floor and walls. I used craft sticks for the picket fence.

Just for the fun of it, I also made another dollhouse in a Brick Cottage style. It’s a bit more rustic and I twirled bits of ivy on a wooden trellis.

front view
brick wall

See the full tutorial of the BILLY dollhouse bookcase here.

~ by Tamara

Andrew’s version

BILLY bookcase dollhouse
  • BILLY 3′ bookcase
Step by step:

1. Buy a 90cm x 90cm Billy bookcase, and buy a few spare shelves (or find them on a nature-strip like I did.)

2. Cut some of the spare shelves to fit vertically between the original bookcase shelves, and set them there with double-sided mounting tape.

3. Cut two of the same length of spare shelves at 45 degrees to make the roof, attach them to each other with steel right-angle brackets.

4. Attach them to the case with hinges to allow for the 45 degree angle. If you mess this bit up, chalk it up to “Modern Art” or something, and proceed to Step 4 without guilt.

BILLY bookcase hack

4. Repeat Step 2, but this time for the “attic” created by the new roof.

5. There is no Step 5.

All you need to do next is fill it up with dollhouse furniture.

~ Andrew Saffer, Melbourne, Australia

Originally published on July 16, 2010.