Steps to Take When Packing and Moving Your Artworks

If you are an art enthusiast and the time has come to move to a new home, you will need to take extra care of the artworks that give your home character. For some people, making sure that costly pieces arrive undamaged is equally as crucial as moving the rest of the furniture.

Protecting the piece and padding the box you’ll be placing it in are the two main processes of packing artwork.

A mirror box, also known as an artwork box, may hold all your paintings, prints, statues, and even mirrors. China cartons can be used to pack smaller things, and they are made of two layers of cardboard to protect your artwork. However, a wooden container may be necessary for larger, heavier items.

Below are helpful guidelines on how to pack your artwork for moving day.

Checklist for Packing Artworks

Your art pieces and framed photos will require additional protection before being loaded into the moving truck in order to arrive safely at your new home.

If you enlist the services of professional packers, they will appropriately pack paintings and framed art with the extra protection they require using the necessary supplies.

The sections below are steps for packing and protecting your artwork. Continue reading to learn how to pack all of your framed artwork and wall art.

Make an “X” with Tape on the Pieces

Take some masking tape and make an X across the glass cover of your painting or poster. If the glass breaks, this will keep it from sliding about as much. If your painting doesn’t have a glass or is a canvas piece, you’ll naturally skip this stage.

Use Plastic Wrap

It’s vital to safeguard the painted face if your painting isn’t protected by glass. Wrapping the painting in multiple layers of plastic wrap from your kitchen is an excellent alternative. You may also buy palette wrap sheets, which are essentially the same thing.

If the artwork moves around inside the box, the wrap will stay in place and avoid friction damage. Glass-covered watercolor art and art prints are also a good choice.

Guard Pieces with Cardboard Corners

If the painting’s frame is costly or unusual, you might wish to buy or build cardboard corner guards for it. If you do this step, this will put over the cling wrap and provide an extra layer of protection.

Use Bubble Wrap

Be generous with the bubble wrap, covering both the horizontal and vertical dimensions and securing it with tape. To prevent warping on a canvas painting, place a piece of cardboard on its front.

On the other hand, crumpled newspapers are a more time-consuming but environmentally beneficial alternative to bubble wrap.

Safeguard the Bottom of the Box

Cover the bottom of your box with wadded newsprint. After that, you can put the artwork in the box and begin filling the sides and top. When packing photos, your moving box should be somewhat larger than the art item to avoid damaging the frame.

Test its durability. Close but do not seal the box. Gently shake the box back and forth to observe whether the painting moves inside. If this is the case, you should open the box and add more padding until everything is secure.

Seal and Label the Artwork Box

After everything, tape the box shut and label it “fragile” and “art” so the movers know to take extra precautions. You can also purchase rolls of brightly colored stickers to label your fragile boxes.

Use a Flat Picture Box

Purchasing a flat picture box will also protect your paintings and prints. They will be more expensive, but they are well worth it. Try to pick one three to four inches larger on each side than your artwork. If it’s bigger, you’ll need more padding materials; if it’s smaller, there won’t be enough room for padding, and you’ll risk harm.


Packing pieces of art can be quite burdensome, especially if they’re expensive or have sentimental value. With the steps above, you can ensure that your art is protected and can brighten your new space. Of course, working with a reliable moving company is also best.

If you need movers in Alexandria, Division 1 Moving & Storage is your guy. We’re trusted and experienced local movers that also provide the best storage in Alexandria, Virginia. Contact us today to get a quote.

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