billy bookcase: stronger, tougher and ready for your hacks

7740 Colourcheck: Paulina P

Raise your hand if you have a BILLY bookcase in your home. Yeah, that’s what I thought. Who doesn’t have one of these insanely useful, crazy affordable, easily adaptable bookcases in their place, somewhere. We only recently got rid of the one in Isadora’s room. After six years of being jam packed with kid’s books, the shelves were bowing and the back panel continuely popped out of its track. Up in our attic, we have a whole wall of them, lining our knee-wall and housing our most beloved reads. Needless to say, we were pleased to hear the news last week that Ikea has finally toughened up its best seller. Coming to stores this August, the new and improved BILLYs will have more scratch resistant veneer (with a new wood look available – above), stronger shelves, rounded edges to be more child friendly, fewer visible drill holes and more customizable options. That means that all you creative types, like Simplified Bee who customized the lovely blue and honeycombed BILLY hack, above, will be able to really let your imaginations go.


A quick Pinterest search reveals that BILLY hack ideas are numerous, but some of our favorites include this elegant yellow stenciled BILLY (above) found via Hometalk, and the chic ombre pattern (below) from Star_Hungry via Flickr. All you need is $99, some paint, stencils, wallpaper, and a dream!


Have you done a BILLY hack? We’d love to hear about it!

Here’s another IKEA Hack idea — see what we did to our PS2012 wool felt rug!

From our partners

this mod pink crib almost makes us want to have another one… almost


When we were looking for a crib over six years ago (gulp), finding one that had a small profile and suited our modern sensibilities was not easy — especially if we didn’t want to spend over a thousand dollars. We end up getting one from an Australian company called Baby Mod. It was low enough for a short mom like me to bend over comfortably, was a mix of white and birch wood and drawers underneath. It was nice, but nothing like this gorgeous Caravan Crib from Kalon. Now, we are not the kind of parents that doused our daughter in pink, but even we admit that this pink and maple beauty is an exception to the rule. Wouldn’t it look lovely in a room painted a pale grey? I picture a cute little felted elephant in one corner. Naturally, it’s made from green, non-toxic materials (Note: All cribs will get chewed on eventually.) and is made right here in the U.S.A. $695 at Kalon.

From our partners

#totallyrad: we’re loving the zio ziegler collection for pbteen


We love it when some of our favorite decorating sources introduce us to artists and the process behind their work (Paola Novone, for example). When we saw the new Zio Ziegler collection at PBTeen we immediately took notice. Zeigler is a graffiti-inspired San Francisco painter, whose amazingly intricate doodles swirl and fill large canvases to create punky, tribal patterns of snakes, skulls, masks and such. His collaboration with PBTeen includes bedding, backpacks and a few accessories, and honestly, you don’t have to be under 20 to appreciate it. Who wouldn’t want to tote around a backpack that looked like this? One item we think is totally Father’s Day gift-worthy are these aluminum skull bookends, $79.


Check out the collection at PBTeen or watch the video below to see Ziegler at work.

From our partners

a peek into a prop stylist’s closet


Ever wonder how those images you see in catalogs always look so wonderful, with just the right mix of accidental treasures next to season’s new collection? Imagine a walk-in-closet, organized with a selection of colorful plates, one-of-kind vases and the most eclectic selection of curios you’ve ever seen. That’s what it looks like inside of Sandy Chilewich’s prop closet. The designer, founder and creative director of Chilewich — our go to source for gorgeous yet practical placements, runners and rugs — Sandy’s studio features floor-to-ceiling shelves filled with objects collected over the years from around the world. When a stylist wants to use something that is too rare or precious to own, they often dip into the vaults of other collector heavens to borrow or rent pieces. Some of Sally’s recent finds, above, came from a small shop in Greenwich Village, called the Porcelain Room. For more of an inside look at the creative process behind Chilewich, check out Sally’s board on Pinterest.

From our partners

rug shopping? check out #dsnicerug on instagram for inspiration


I don’t know about you, but I’m not always “selfie” ready when it comes to sharing photos on Instragram. Who is? That’s why you’re more likely to find photos of people’s shoes and their pets on the addictive photo sharing stream than you are faces. Shoes and pets? What could be better than that? I’ll tell you what: Shoes, pets and rugs! That’s what you’ll discover when you browse #dscnicerug, a hashtag started by Design Sponge Grace Bonney. You’ll see Moroccan Berbers, Southwest Navajos, 70’s style shags and lots of lots of cute pooches and cats. I especially love this one from @fionzone, above. (Seriously, I want that rug.) Grace has selected some of her favorites on her site, but it’d be shame not to check hashtag often. Who knows? You may even find some Shelterrific feet, pets, and rugs there soon. ;-) Follow #dsnicerug and let us know if you share one of your own!

From our partners