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6 best modular shelving units for organising your home in style

Choose a flexible storage system that works around your walls

Kayleigh Rattle
Thursday 21 October 2021 12:18 BST
We looked for high-quality shelves that were pleasing on the eye as well as being functional
We looked for high-quality shelves that were pleasing on the eye as well as being functional (iStock/The Independent)
Our Top Picks

Whether you use shelves to tidy away clutter or to display your most treasured possessions like photographs and books, they’re indispensable items in our homes – especially when they can be configured in multiple ways, too.

Shelves have come a long way when it comes to design. No longer solely just planks of wood affixed to a wall, you can now find all manner of styles to suit your tastes, from extravagant wall-filling displays that can be fixed together, to innovative units filled with cubby holes of all shapes and sizes.

These days, shelves also have a place in every room of the house, and they can be used for storing everything from plants and ornaments to kitchen utensils, clothes and shoes, or even TVs.

Of course, shelves have always been a popular option for storing books, and we came across plenty of modular shelving sets that would make great homes for book collections.

For the purpose of this piece, modular shelving describes shelves – or the items on them – that can be organised in a number of arrangements. Not only do these cleverly designed shelves provide you with the opportunity to create a customisable display that suits your home, but it also allows you to switch things up, whether that’s refreshing rooms during the changing of the seasons (candles, we’re looking at you) or making space for festive decorations come December.

How we tested

To address different needs and requirements, we tested an array of shelves in all manner of shapes, sizes and styles. Overall, we looked for great quality, that was pleasing on the eye as well as functional, but didn’t break the bank.

We were also after durability and robustness – the shelves needed to withstand a number of items including hardback books and vases. Most importantly, they needed to be customisable, or offer a number of options for configuration. Because who doesn’t love mixing things up every once in a while?

The best modular shelving units for 2022 are:

  • Best modular shelving unit for bathrooms – BTFY Vonhaus modular wall shelving: £29.99,
  • Best modular shelving unit for displaying keepsakes – Homebase Morgan shelving unit: £380,
  • Best modular shelving unit for nurseries – Boori tidy rectangular modular box: £95,
  • Best modular shelving unit for displaying your plant collection – Koping metal shelf 6 tier: £89,
  • Best modular shelving unit for home offices – Made Jory modular shelves in walnut: £325,
  • Best modular shelving unit for those on a budget – Ikea Kallax shelving unit: £40,

BTFY Vonhaus modular wall shelving

Vonhaus modular wall.png
  • Best: For bathrooms
  • Dimensions: H 49.5cm x W 61cm x D 15cm
  • Weight: 3kg
  • Require assembly: Yes

Looking for a way to display your myriad lotions and potions in style? This is the wall shelving for you. Made from powder-coated steel, these dusty pink shelves are ideal for displaying your favourite bathroom wares, and each shelf can withstand up to 5kg.

Bathrooms aside, these would make a great addition to any room, especially if you were to place a number of them next to each other. At £29.99 for three shelves, this is an affordable set that offers plenty of options and is straightforward to put up. Each set also comes with screws and wall plugs.

  1. £29 from
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Homebase Morgan shelving unit

Homebase Morgan shelving unit.png
  • Best: For displaying keepsakes
  • Dimensions: H 185cm x W 90cm x D 35cm
  • Weight: 30.8kg
  • Require assembly: No

This striking combination of mango wood and metal will appeal to those looking for a set of shelves to instantly transform their space. Ideal for making a statement in a hallway or living room, this stylish set consists of six shelves in a combination of shapes and sizes – ideal if you’d like something that will house a variety of books, vases, photo frames and more.

While the shape can’t be changed once built, we loved the preset modular sections of this unit, meaning that all we had to ponder was which of our favourite things we wanted to display.

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Boori tidy rectangular modular box

Boori tidy rectangular modular box.png
  • Best: Nurseries
  • Dimensions: H 40cm x W 34cm x L 60cm
  • Weight: 8.5kg
  • Require assembly: Yes

This Australian furniture brand specialises in kids’ furniture, but has a number of modular storage options too. We particularly love its Tidy Rectangular Modular Boxes that come in a choice of four colours - white, cherry, blueberry and white & oak - and contains two shelves.

These can be used on their own to store books and toys, or there’s the option to add castors or additional fixings so you can affix more than one together. Made from solid European beech wood, these are well-made, sturdy and super cute.

  1. £95 from
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Koping metal shelf 6 tier

Koping metal shelf 6 tier.png
  • Best: For displaying your plant collection
  • Dimensions: H 190cm x W 41cm x D 33cm
  • Weight: Not specified
  • Require assembly: Yes

This tidy and functional six-tier shelving system is perfect for slotting into unoccupied spaces in your hallway or living room. As the shelves come flat-packed, there’s the option to decide on the configuration, and whether you want to stick to six shelves, or have fewer with larger sections.

We particularly liked how the natural pine shelves sit alongside the metal frame, and the amount of storage it gives in spite of not taking up too much space. It’s straightforward to assemble too, which is always a winner.

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Made Jory modular shelves in walnut

Made Jory modular shelves in walnut.png
  • Best: For home offices
  • Dimensions: H 180cm x W 95cm x D 30cm
  • Weight: 24kg
  • Require assembly: Yes

Not only is the wood finish on this set so gorgeous it will add a sophisticated touch to any room, but it also offers a number of mix-and-match configurations. The set comes with four individual shelves, plus brackets, and can be affixed to the Jory Modular Desk (£400, to create a fantastic home office desk and storage solution. This shelving set would also work well in the living room, with the Jory Modular Desk a great place for a TV to sit.

Although the Jory shelving unit is currently out of stock, you can sign up to be notified when it's available again.

  1. £325 from
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Ikea Kallax shelving unit

Ikea kallax shelving unit.png
  • Best: For those on a budget
  • Dimensions: H 147cm x W 42cm x D 39cm
  • Weight: 15.2kg
  • Require assembly: Yes

We can’t talk about shelving without mentioning Ikea, and Kallax is an incredibly design popular for a reason. This crowd-pleasing set of shelves is available in five colours (black-brown, grey/wood, oak effect, white and white-stained oak) and a number of sizes and configurations.

This particular model contains four 42cm x 33cm sections for storage, and can be placed horizontally or vertically. Handily, the Ikea website offers a nifty tool where you can pick and choose the number and style of Kallax units you’d like along with the type of display you’d like to create. A quick search for “Kallax hacks” on Pinterest will also leave you with no shortage of inspiration for how to customise these versatile and affordable sets. Just to note, white is the cheapest style at £40, while the oat-effect, white-stained oak and black colours cost £45 and the grey/wood will set you back £50.

  1. £40 from
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The verdict: Modular shelving

While it’s hard to pick an overall winner, the BTFY Vonhaus modular wall shelving comes out top for us due to its affordability, design and beautiful pastel pink hue. A special mention also goes to Made’s Jory modular shelves in walnut – with a finish this beautiful, we’d happily cover every wall of our house with them.

For more interiors reviews, read our round-ups of the best desks, the best wall hangings and the best dressing tables

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