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Get inspired by this IKEA Billy bookcase hack

Library study room painted in Lick paint Red 01

WordsNina Bragg


Annem is 31 years old and works for PlayStation, but also runs her own cheese business – hence her memorable Instagram username - @ahousebuiltoncheese.


She lives in North London with her husband Mike and they own a 1930s semi-detached, which required a lot of love and renovation when they bought it back in 2019. Sadly, in January 2020, a huge water pipe burst meaning they couldn’t move in until all the damage had been repaired. This meant they were only able to officially move in last September, but we are so glad they are finally settled and able to begin enjoying their home renovation journey.


Annem has chosen to share the recent makeover of their home office, which has become a busy hub of activity as they now both work from home. It was important to create a space that allowed them both to comfortably work alongside one another, as well as create a large storage space for all their books and files.

Before the IKEA Billy bookcase hack

Annem described this room as bland, confused and small – telling us that the previous owners had placed big, bulky items in this space and it really didn’t do the room justice. They were ready to give it a brand-new look, and ensure that the design suited their new-found WFH needs.

Bedroom before makeover and billy bookcase hack painted in Lick paint Red 01

Planning & inspiration

“Since buying the house, we knew that we wanted a wall in the office to be made entirely of bookshelves. We scaled Pinterest and found a lot of built-in bookshelves painted the same colour as the walls, and knew we wanted to recreate the look. In terms of colour, our old flat had a rusty red piece of space-themed artwork, so we may have subconsciously fallen for this colour because of that!


We chose Red 01, as it’s a gorgeous rusty red with chocolatey notes! I couldn’t think of a better room to get snug and read a book in”.