How to Pack Art for a Move

by Dusty Rhodes on Jun 03, 2021  in 
how to pack art

If you are an art lover, chances are you have accumulated a number of beautiful pieces over the years. As you prepare for your move, you might be wondering how to safely pack and transport your special art. Moving artwork does require special care and attention, but there are steps you can take to ensure these valuable pieces arrive safely and intact at your new home.

Start with the Right Packing Materials

It is important to make sure that you start by gathering the proper packing materials. Artwork is fragile and framed or glass pieces are susceptible to breaking so you want to be sure it is well padded. You want to keep your art well protected so it doesn’t get damaged in the moving process. You will need the following supplies:

Moving boxes of various sizes

●Bubble wrap

●Painter’s tape

●Packing paper

●Glassine paper



*** It is very important to stay away from packing peanuts and newspapers. Newspapers can transfer ink onto your delicate artwork and packing peanuts can deposit tiny pieces of styrofoam that are difficult to remove. Also, if packing peanuts get wet, they can turn to glue and ruin your artwork.


*** You also want to be selective about the boxes you choose. We recommend sturdy, high quality moving boxes that are new. You also want to be sure that your artwork fits snugly into the moving box, so look for moving boxes that are the appropriate size. When choosing a size, be sure to consider room for bubble wrap and packing material.

Step One: Choose the Right Size Box

You want to be sure you choose the right size box for your artwork so it doesn’t get jostled around during transport. If you are moving smaller pieces of art, they can be grouped and packed together in a box. Large or specialty artwork should be packed separately in it’s own box. You want to be sure the box is slightly bigger than the frame.

Step Two: Mark Glass with an ‘X’

Be sure to handle any glass framed art with special care and attention. Start by making an ‘X’ across the glass with painter’s tape. This tape will help prevent the glass from breaking during transport and if it does break, it won’t shatter and completely damage your artwork. If your artwork does not have a glass frame, you can skip this step.

Step Three: Wrap the Artwork

If you are packing artwork that does not have a glass covering, you will need to protect the face of the artwork by wrapping it with several layers of glassine paper. You can secure the paper using painter’s tape. Next, you will need to lay your artwork face down and wrap the entire piece with packing paper. Be sure to wrap around the edges of the frame both lengthwise and widthwise to ensure the paper stays in place during the move.


Now you are ready to wrap the entire piece with bubble wrap, securing it with painter’s tape. If you are packing smaller pieces together, you want to wrap each piece in packing paper and then wrap them together with bubble wrap. You can also provide additional protection for the corners of your frames by using special cardboard corner protectors.

Step Four: Pack the Artwork

Carefully slide your artwork into the appropriate box. Remember that you want the piece to fit snugly into the box. Once you have packed the piece, you want to seal the box with packing tape. Be sure to mark the outside of the box on all sides with the word “fragile” as well as which piece of art is inside.

Step Five: Placing it on a Moving Truck

When packing artwork onto a moving truck, you want to be sure it remains on its side and not flat. You always want to pack artwork in a place on the truck where it will not fall over and avoid placing other objects on top of it. Rather, wedge your artwork between heavy objects that will not shift during transport.



Dusty Rhodes