People know IKEA for names like BILLY, POÄNG, and MALM. IKEA furniture has graced the halls and living rooms of most of the homes I’ve visited, punctuating exits with a simple, but endlessly convenient entryway table or organizing offices using no-frills bookcases with shelves as deep as IKEA’s pot of Swedish meatballs. Revamping her BILLY bookshelf to give it a new use, Dubai-based interior designer Kathryn Hawkes latched some cane-webbed cabinet doors onto both sides of her BILLY bookshelf, giving it a Boho twist.

The iconic Swedish brand, IKEA is famous for its easy-to-assemble, Scandinavian-inspired furniture and its minimalist approach to design. Pieces of IKEA furniture are like blank canvases ready to be reinterpreted for each individual’s home. Fronteriors, an interior design business built by Kathryn Hawkes and fellow interior designer Linda Dekkers, constructs a unique and stylish collection of doors, tops, and sides to fit IKEA furniture frames. The business was born from Dekkers and Hawkes’ shared love for what they call “#ikeahacking” – a way of reinventing classic IKEA furniture like the BILLY bookshelf to give it a whole new look and function. Hawkes’ bookcase initially started as a blank white canvas filled with deep pockets of shelves that could cradle items much heavier, and larger than mere books.

Upon connecting with a carpenter to build the cane-weaved rattan doors, Hawkes painted the BILLY bookcase a shade of beige to match the new doors. The rattan cabinet doors on Hawkes’ redesigned BILLY bookcase open up to reveal ample storage room where Hawkes decided to keep her linens and tableware instead of books. The subtle differences between what was previously IKEA’s BILLY bookshelf and Hawkes’ reimagined storage cabinet make the piece of furniture look hardly recognizable after the redesign. With an entirely new paint job and boho-chic rattan doors, this BILLY bookshelf was successfully #ikeahacked.

Designer: Kathryn Hawkes and Linda Dekkers

Attaching cane webbing to door frames fit for the BILLY bookshelf, Kathryn Hawkes gave the iconic piece of IKEA furniture a whole new personality.

Hawkes also coated BILLY in a different shade of beige to match the new rattan doors and warm it up from its previous shad of optic white.

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