Bookshelves from IKEA Spice Racks

Have you seen all the cool ways people are using the IKEA spice racks as bookshelves?! I found so many fun examples on Pinterest and just had to get some for our house too. I love the size~ they aren’t overbearing and hold a decent amount of books. And I love that they can display the front covers of the books~ so much more inviting for little readers. Best of all, they are natural wood which looks nice on it’s own, or lends itself to so many ways to be decorated!

I decided to leave our first set as natural and hung them by our nature table in our main living room. We had been keeping our seasonal books in a basket near the nature table, but this is so much more welcoming.

The second set was destined for Lucy’s room. She’s been in desperate need of a place to keep books in her bedroom, and this seemed perfect. I thought it would be fun for her to be active in every part of the project to really encourage her pride and ownership and to just have fun!

So, step one was building the shelf. Lucy was able to have her first experience building an IKEA item with the help of her dad (and baby brother). She loved it!

Then we had to decide how to decorate them. We had some leftover non-toxic paint we had used to paint Lucy’s bedroom furniture. I thought it would be perfect to paint the shelves the same white to match her furniture and then, later,  let her paint her own designs on them. Here she is getting the first coat of white on the shelves. (I had to do a little smoothing later on~she really lathered on that paint!)

The next week we got out some paints and set up a painting area on the kitchen table. I put out all the materials she would need, and let her begin painting.

The first day she painted two and half of the shelves, but then got tired. Here was her progress at that point~

The next day she finished the remaining shelves. I sprayed a few coats of an acrylic sealer over them to keep the paint from chipping off.

Finally done and reading to be hung!

We hung the first two shelves in her reading corner, right above her beanbag chair.

The second two we hung closer to her door. I would have loved to put them altogether, but her room is quite small. I kept running into the problem of them either being so high she wouldn’t be able to reach the books, or so low she’d bump her head on them as she was sitting on her beanbag.


I think they look absolutely adorable in her room. And, best of all,  she is so excited that she created them all herself!

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23 Responses to Bookshelves from IKEA Spice Racks

  1. What a great idea! Thanks for linking up to The Children’s Bookshelf.

  2. Angela says:

    Great project! Definitely going to have to make some to go by our nature table.

  3. They look great – love the idea to have the kids paint them!

    • buggy & buddy says:

      Thank you! I know Lucy really enjoyed it and is so proud. She shows everyone her shelves now when they come over!

  4. Leanne says:

    What a great idea and creative way to have the kids be involved in organizing their books!

    • buggy & buddy says:

      Thank you! It really has helped with book organization. Lucy loves knowing where the books go~ it makes cleaning up so much easier!

  5. Hannah says:

    We live 2.5 hours from Ikea and only manage to get there 2X a year.. last time they had NO spice racks (darn that Pinterest lol) But one day I WILL have these cute bookslelves! Well done on letting your child decorate her own!!

    • buggy & buddy says:

      That is exactly what happened to me (although we are only 1.5 hours away.) Made the drive and all the spice racks were gone. So bummed. But, second time was a charm for us. I will keep my fingers crossed for you! 🙂

  6. That is such an awesome idea, absolutely love it!
    Thanks for sharing on Tutorial Thursdays, much appreciated.

  7. So, so, so wonderful. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen these spice racks used as bookshelves but never have I seen kids paint their own- I just love it…..and will be kindly ‘borrowing’ the idea.

    I’ll also feature this on my Children’s Bookshelf round-up tomorrow. Look out for it on

    • buggy & buddy says:

      Thank you so much, Jackie! So grateful to be featured. I would love to see how yours turn out~ art by kids is always so fun!

  8. Jamie J says:

    I love that you let your kids paint their own book shelves! And the shelves themselves look like they would be the perfect size for a bedroom – not too cluttered. Thanks for sharing!

    • buggy & buddy says:

      Thanks, Jamie! They did turn out to fit just perfectly in her bedroom, and any time you can get storage going on a wall of a small room, that’s a plus!

  9. Robyn says:

    Your bookshelves are fantastic! Beautifully done- so so cool to hand the artistic ownership over to your daughter. I love it!

  10. Carrie says:

    Oh, how beautiful!! I love it! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!!

  11. Christy says:

    This is so adorable. My kids have made their own artwork for their walls, but I never thought about painting other things. Thanks for the idea. I hope we see you this week at tip-toe thru tuesday!

  12. enchantedhomeschoolingmom says:

    The shelves turned out so beautifully! I love the colors and different looking patterns/textures. What child wouldn’t find those shelves inviting to grab a book to read! Thanks for linking up this week to my Enchanted Thursdays Blog hop!

  13. Pingback: Learning to Read Series: Part 5- Maintaining Interest in Books | Buggy and Buddy

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