IKEA is famous for providing the best home furnishing, and when it comes to great prices the customer is never disappointed. One of its best-selling products is the Billy bookcase, but many people, in their pursuit of the perfect bookcase, wonder if they should buy it and what makes it special. Let’s know about ‘IKEA Billy Bookcase’.
The Billy bookcase is inspired by the classic American bookcase, featuring a simple yet fresh design and constitution. IKEA customers love it because of this interesting mix, but also because of its affordable price. All of this has led the Billy bookcase to achieve more than 60 million units sold in the world.
Billy Bookcase’s Creation
A bookcase is meant to be more than a piece of furniture that keeps your books and magazines secure; it’s a chance to create a collage of your life, where everything you care about can be found, transmitting an image of yourself to everyone who sees it. This opportunity is exemplarily provided by the flexibility of the Billy bookcase.
Gillis Lundgren designed the Billy bookcase in 1979. His idea was to create a bookcase that could fit the needs of every home, that’s why he imagined Billy flexible, but also, timeless, as he hoped that his design wouldn’t fall out of fashion.
The original model was 90cm wide, but IKEA changed it to 80cm in 1988. Years later the bookcase was discontinued but it was reinstated back before 2009 (when more than 100,000 units were produced per week).
Its Design and Construction
The Billy bookcase’s design can be described in two words: Practical and simple. Nowadays multiple sizes and colors can ensure the bookcase will fit and match in every household. Also, a part of its construction is adjustable, meaning that you can accommodate the shelves as desired.
This bookcase was also imagined as a furnishing piece that could be expanded, so different sizes and shapes of the same Billy bookcase can be acquired to blend with the original piece as if it was a single large model.
The piece is made with particleboard (not real wood) and it’s covered with plastic, including the edges. Shelves stand on metal support and the buyer can choose between different colors and widths. Because of this, the Billy bookcase is cheap, but it is also sold unassembled, which saves money for both the company and the customer.
Billy Bookcase Sizes and Costs
The standard Billy bookcase is 31.5 x 11 x 79.5” and costs only $49.99, although IKEA offers several sizes like:
- 15.75 x 11 x 79.5” for $39.99.
- 63 x 11 x 79.5” for $99.98.
- 31.5 x 11.75 x 79.5” with glass doors for $199.99.
- 15.75 x 11 x 93.15” for $59.99.
- 94.5 x 11 x 41.75” for $104.97.
- 63 x 11.75 x 79.5” for $399.
- 31.5 x 11.75 x 79.5” with panel/glass doors for $149.99.
- 31.5 x 11 x 41.75” for $34.99.
- 31.5 x 11 x 93.15” for $74.99.
Every model comes in two or three different colors, like white, beige, and black.
You can also find pieces that are part of a Billy bookcase variation, such as the Billy / Oxberg bookcase, which includes doors, also in the sizes of 31.5 x 11.75 x 79.5” ($179.99) and 31.5 x 11.75 x 41.75” ($159.99).
What to consider before buying it?
Although the Billy bookcase has infinite possibilities to match with other pieces and fit in every home, you may want to consider its purchase if:
- You wish for stronger support
The Billy bookcase is not rugged, this means that sometimes the shelves can fall over others if they’re holding heavy objects.
- You’re looking for a high-quality furniture piece
This product is made with cheap materials. It’s not meant to last like a bookcase made of real wood.
Disregarding this valuable insight, the Billy bookcase is still very attractive, with high decorative potential, and it’s more affordable than other bookcases too.
The Billy bookcase is a product that meets IKEA priorities: fits every need for an affordable price. Its simple and practical design makes the bookcase timeless, with huge possibilities to make your home a more special place. You can buy multiple sizes of this product and get a new large furniture piece that no one else has. However, it’s important to consider its fragility before buying it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why was the Billy Bookcase discontinued?
It was due to a problem regarding the formaldehyde vapor released by some Billy bookcases. IKEA was obligated to discontinue the model until the problem was resolved.
Is Billy’s Bookcase hard to Assemble?
Surprisingly, no, because it’s a simple construction. You also get assembly instructions when purchasing it.
What is Particleboard?
It’s a material made of pressed wood chips and resin that’s used instead of wood to save costs while keeping wood’s appearance.