3 unique ways to use the IKEA BILLY bookcase for toys & storage

ikea billy bookcase toy storage

If you’re looking for a creative and functional way to maximize space in your kid’s playroom, look no further than these IKEA BILLY bookcase toy storage hacks. These hacks not only provide ample storage for toys but also serve as an integral part of playtime. They create a stylish and practical space-saving and fun solution.

We’ve seen loads of IKEA hacks for the BILLY, and you can browse them all here. But in this post, we zoom in on three unusual BILLY bookcase toy storage hacks your kids will love.

Industrial BILLY bookcase with hidden toy bed

My son’s room is tiny, and he wanted a toy bed, so I tried to think of a way to make one without too much space. I came up with the idea of an industrial-style BILLY bookcase. The bottom pulls out into a bed during the night, similar to a Murphy bed, but for a teddy.

industrial billy bookcase toy storage bed 3
industrial billy bookcase toy storage bed 2

I painted the unit black and applied pins and metal wax to the front for an industrial look. I made a custom door for the front. I used Liquid Nails to attach one side of the door hinges to the wood while the other side was screwed in place to the bottom shelf of the bookcase.

The door was then painted over, and I made cute bedding for Teddy. To support the “bed,” I added an industrial-style handle to the door. It was just the right height, so the bed was level when open. There is still space for books and other toys on the first two shelves of the BILLY.

You can see more details and further pictures here.

~ by Medina Grillo

Horizontal BILLY bookcase toy storage

ikea bookcase toy storage


  • IKEA Bookshelf (likely the old discontinued Flärke). You can do the same with a BILLY bookcase.

I bought an IKEA bookshelf, and it didn’t match my home decor.

ikea flarke

I wondered what I could use it for and came up with the idea of using it for toy storage in my kid’s room.

The first thing I did was turned the bookshelf on its side and reinforce the shelves with screws. With this step, they are no longer adjustable.

Then, I bought a 1x10x8 board and cut it into different size pieces, and screwed them into the shelves sideways. You can play with the size of the compartments to fit your books and toys, baskets and bins that can go in.

ikea bookcase sideways and added cubbies

I primed, painted, and hung the BILLY bookcase toy storage unit on the wall. Use secure fixings meant for your wall type. You can also place it on the ground to minimize any tipping incidents. Either way, it is recommended to secure the unit to the wall.

Another idea I had was to add caster wheels to the bottom of the bookshelf. With casters, you can wheel it around the room and turn the side of the bookcase into a play surface.

It turned out adorable and was a very cheap flip. This BILLY bookcase toy storage hack works well in my kid’s playroom for books, bins, and toys. I may even make another one for the craft room.


The divided compartments let us store many more toys than the regular bookshelf. And it’s horizontally placed so the kid can get to it and pick her toys and books.

~ Kristi Boes, Rockford, MI

BILLY Bookcase doll house and toy storage

ikea bookcase toy storage doll houses

The BILLY bookcases transformed into beautiful doll houses. After adding the structural bits like the roof and cutting out windows, decorate as you wish. A beach house, an urban row house, or a cottage. Click for the dollhouse bookcase tutorial.