I wanted to create custom looking built-ins around the french doors in my house. I started with Ikea Billy Bookcases and customized them to make a to make a unique, built-from-scratch look. By adding trim moulding and paint, I was able to add an update to our home on a DIY budget!
Step 1: Assemble and Paint the Bookcases
I started by buying 3 Billy bookcases from Ikea. One is the smaller model and the other two are the extended shelf versions.
I found it easiest to paint the back of the bookcases before assembly. The color I chose was Mocha Accent by Behr for the back of the bookcases. To make sure the finish lasts longer, be sure to use primer.
The bookcase going across the top needed to be evenly spaced, so I cut off the bottom using this saw. So I just traced a line that marked the excess, and trimmed it off.
Step 2: Install and Secure the Bookcases
To install the upper bookcase, I bought 5 of these L brackets and two corner braces.
In order to add dimension, I added 2x4's behind the upper bookcase so it would sit further out than the surrounding bookcases. These were drilled into the studs. We then added the L brackets to the 2x4's so the bookcase can sit on those.
For some added security, we used two corner brackets to secure the top of the overhang to the wall.
Using my Kreg Jig I built a small base for the bookcases to sit on. This will make them flush with the upper bookcase. By doing this, the tops are level and ready to be trimmed out!
Don't forget to use the wall attachment pieces that come with the Ikea set to secure the bookcases to the wall. Just for added security.
Step 3: Trim, Caulk, and Paint
In order to cover up the L brackets under the upper bookcase, we added 1x4's, the cut a board that is about an 1/8th of a inch thick to the underside. I used this brad nailer to attach it. I can't recommend this nail gun enough - I have used it in so many projects.
For the top, I added baseboard in order to add more height and detail. After that, I installed crown molding. I also added trim to the front of the shelves. I used the coping method around the baseboard. This was especially useful so I didn't have to rip out existing baseboards.
Then, begin to caulk all the gaps. Once that dries, you can paint everything. I found the Parchment White by Glidden is a really close match to the Ikea white.
Step 4: Step Back and Enjoy
That's it! By using Ikea as a starting point, you can create beautiful built ins.