Published on January 12th, 2011 | by Jules Yap


Horizontal Floating Billy

Billy Wall Shelf

Description: I loved the floating Billys, but for our apartment we needed a horizontal line, not vertical one.

The Billy Planner let us conceive of lots of different options, but we ultimately settled on this.

It is made entirely of Billy wall shelves which are typically used with the Billy book cases, but we used them alone.

The open space between each is equal to one Billy wall shelf for 3 reasons. 1. Aesthetics; 2. Ease of installation (I could use a spare Billy Wall Shelf as spacer), 3. It allows me to fill in with new Billys if I get more books. Once I set the bottom one at right height, it was easy to build it up.

Note that the side walls of Billy Wall shelves extend a little above the top horizontal and bottom horizontal which creates a space between the units. I was going to shave them down first, but figured I’d %*#(@ everything up, so then I thought I’d add trim after the fact, but ultimately, it didn’t bother me.

I did lay a piece of painted wood over bottom unit to give more finished look.

~ DJ, Harlem, NYC

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

8 Responses to Horizontal Floating Billy

  1. Amanda says:

    I’m attempting to create a closet in the corner of my room and have an idea to do a horizontal floating BILLY bookcase with some kind of hardware to hold a rack of clothes. I see you used LANSA handles, but I’m thinking more along the lines of a curtain rod, am unsure if it will be strong enough to hold clothes AND whatever’s on the bookcase itself. What hardware would you suggest?

  2. Stephanie says:

    The Billy bookcase appears to have “feet” at the bottom. Has the design changed since you constructed this, of did you alter the bookcase to remove the “feet”? (

  3. Anonymous says:

    Didn’t realize people commented on this. I built it. Christopher: The reason I wanted horizontal had to do with aesthetics, not room. Rest of room has strong horizontals. @Anonymous: Hasn’t fallen yet, but I am worried, especially as it is loaded up with books now. @Deb: Photo was right after I built it. It will be loaded with tons of heavy books (and I hope it doesn’t collapse.). These are made for horizontal suspension (not to say they won’t bow, but they’re not supposed to). I did add some extra brackets. @Anoymous: I hit studs where I could and used molly’s where I couldn’t. We’ll see.

  4. Anonymous says:

    How did you hang these? What are your walls made of? Do you have to drill into studs? I am worried about hanging these since they are so heavy (I also want to put mainly books in them!) and don’t want to use any brackets. I have horizontal molding on my walls that I want to put a row of these on top of, which is why I can’t use any brackets. How do I hang these like you?

  5. Deb says:

    The little pieces on the bottom cupboard (phone, etc.) look cute. The other shelves either need something more substantial on them or nothing at all, otherwise it isn’t to scale and looks like clutter. Or even to use a spicerack shelf in one of your bigger shelves and place those little display items there.

  6. Anonymous says:

    My only fear would be the pieces coming apart under the weight of gravity and the books. Upright, you have the advantage of the inherent post/lintel structure, this way you are relying on the little ikea-standard screw/bracket thingy, which based on my malm dresser drawer fronts, loosen over time.

    Just a thought, I am all for the horizontality of it all.

  7. Laurel says:

    Very nice!

  8. Why did you “need” a horizontal line? Looks to me like you have all the space you’d need for regular Billys.

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