6 Tips To Packing Your Artwork So It Arrives Safely

Posted on: 8 June 2015

Moving can be stressful. You have so many items to pack that have both monetary and sentimental value. Ensuring that everything arrives safely is of the utmost importance. Packing a box of holiday ornaments is pretty self-explanatory, but packing artwork can be complicated. There are several key things that you must do when packing both artwork and mirrors to insure their safe arrival. 

1. 'X' Marks the Spot: Securing a big 'X' across the front of the glass or mirror with masking tape may seem a bit odd. It is not there to prevent breakage as one might expect, but rather to prevent the remaining shards from doing further damage. Loose glass can quickly tear artwork to shreds and a shattered mirror can easily ruin a nearby sofa. 

2. Corner Guards: Picture frames are usually made out of wood or metal and are fairly sturdy. If their corners are hit at just the right angle, however, the structural integrity of the entire frame can become compromised. Purchase special cardboard corner protectors for all your framed pieces to protect against this type of collapsing.

3. Special Boxes: Ask your movers for special artwork boxes. These cardboard boxes are similar to the ones used to pack plasma television sets and offer exceptional protection during long moves. As an added bonus, they can often be re-sold on local 'garage sale' sites online, allowing you to recoup most of the cost. 

4. Keep Upright: Transport artwork upright. Not only does this prevent something being placed directly on the fragile glass, but many limited edition and original pieces are secured with a hinge method. This means that, instead of being permanently glued to the backing, valuable pieces of art are loosely hung with archival tape. This preserves the value of the piece, but can easily get knocked loose of stored upside-down.

5. Soft Wrapping: If you decide against purchasing boxes for your artwork and mirrors, wrap them well in soft wrappings. You can rent mover's 'blankets' or you can use some of your older comforters to wrap frames. This is particularly important for frames with a shiny, lacquer finish, as they can scratch very easily.

6. Back-to-back: When packing framed pieces, large or small, always bundle them 'back-to-back' or 'front-to-front'. This method results in minimal damage to the frames. The hanging hardware on the back of each piece can damage the frame of another if they are stored front-to-back.

These simple tricks take very little time and will help eliminate the heartbreak of damaged artwork and broken mirrors—not to mention seven years of bad luck.


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