Every gingerbread house needs a Billy bookcase.

By Jelisa Castrodale
December 04, 2020

Ikea's Vintersaga (Winter Story) collection has everything you need for a tasty—and tastefully designed—holiday season. The Swedish retailer is offering a gingerbread house-making kit, thin and crispy ginger cookies, saffron rolls, Santa-shaped soft candies, a seasonal soda called julmust, and glögg, the traditional sweet mulled wine.

"So do the holidays like a traditional Swede—gather together, make your home cozy and spend time enjoying good things to eat," Ikea suggests. "Whether you make all treats yourself or buy ready-made Vintersaga products doesn’t really matter. The important part is being together. Loved ones and good food. That’s the true taste of a traditional Swedish Christmas."

Credit: IKEA

Ikea also seems to take that "make your home cozy" thing seriously—even for gingerbread houses. Ikea Canada has released a set of downloadable, printable instructions for "building" a half-dozen pieces of gingerbread furniture to be tastefully arranged inside your gingerbread house, including tiny Billy bookcases, a Jokkmokk dining table and chairs, a Malm bed, and a Strandmon armchair.

Because it's Ikea, you're going to have to assemble each piece of furniture yourself, but the cookie dough versions don't involve a single Allen wrench. The instruction sheets have been created in that unmistakable Ikea style—you'll recognize them from your last frustrating attempt to build a Brimnes storage bed—and that eternally smug cartoon man is still there, wordlessly shouting a list of things you'll need to put the pieces together. (Warmed sugar and icing are a thousand times better than a giant pile of screws, nuts, and washers though.)

Credit: IKEA

If you're not totally confident in your gingerbread baking skills, Ikea also sells frozen gingerbread dough. (It's not sold online, obvs, so you will have to live within driving distance of an Ikea.) Regardless, after making or unwrapping your dough, all you'll have to do is roll it out, print the furniture templates, and then carefully cut out the pieces that you'll need for assembly.

Credit: IKEA

If you're feeling good about the results, Ikea is encouraging everyone to share their best edible bookcases and bedframes on social media, using the hashtag #IKEAHOLIDAY. If you're not, you can either eat all of your mistakes, or claim that the owners of your gingerbread house decided to furnish it with nothing but Rens rugs.