We can personally attest to experiencing that bowing effect with the Billy line with any modest amount of weight placed on the shelving over a period of time. So unless your library consists of paperback books and rice paper documents, we normally don't recommend the IKEA Billy line for heavier tomes. We've posted about Top 10: Modular Shelving Systems and an affordable bookshelf option, but none of these would give you that seamless look you've mentioned the simple Billy does. Anyone out there with experience with any of more affordable furnishing retailers' modular shelving options?
Can anyone recommend a modular bookcase option besides IKEA's Billy that we can use to help create a seamless (nearly built-in) look? Preferably, something that can be built around a corner. I like the look of the Billy but I am worried about the shelves bowing under the weight of the books. Having someone custom build shelves into the space is not an option; custom shelving is a little rich for my blood and given it's a rental, I'm not sure my landlord would be too thrilled. -Yasmin
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