Packing Your Dining Room
The dining room will generally include your most fragile china and crystal stemware. Each item should be carefully wrapped in paper and placed in dishpack cartons; cellular dividers are recommended for stemware.
China & Glassware:
Wrap all pieces of china and glassware individually. Using several sheets of newswrap, start from the corner, wrapping diagonally and continuously tucking in overlapping edges.
- A generous amount of paper padding and cushioning is required for all china and glassware.
- A double layer of newswrap serves well as outer wrapping.
- Label cartons with room, contents and "FRAGILE—THIS SIDE UP."
Flat China & Flat Glassware:
Place cushioning material in the bottom of a carton. Wrap each piece individually with clean paper, then wrap up to three in a bundle with a double layer of newsprint. Place these bundled items in the carton in a row on edge.
- Larger china and glass plates, platters and other flat pieces are excellent as the lowest layer in a dish pack.
- Surround each bundle with crushed paper, being careful to leave no voids or unfilled spaces.
- Add two or three inches of wadded paper on top of the bundle to protect rims and make a level base for the next tier.
- Horizontal cardboard dividers can be helpful in keeping layers level.
- Smaller plates, saucers and shallow bowls could make up a second layer. Wrap and pack in the same way as larger items.
If not using cellular dividers, wrap cups individually first in a double layer of paper and place them upside down on rims in a row on an upper layer with all handles facing the same direction. Top off the layer with wadded newsprint. Even when using a dish pack and cellular dividers, wrap china cups individually first, protecting handles with an extra layer of clean paper. Then, pack cups upside down.
Silver & Flatware:
To protect silver pieces from tarnishing, they should be completely enclosed in newswrap.
- Hollow ware—including bowls, tea sets and serving dishes—should be wrapped carefully like fragile items and packed like china.
- Loose flatware may be wrapped individually or in sets, and in paper, clear plastic or small gift boxes that are then secured with tape.
- Even if silverware is in a chest, consider wrapping the pieces individually and reposition them in the chest. Or, fill all voids in the chest with newsprint to prevent shifting. The chest can be wrapped in a large bath towel.
Figurines, Curios and Other Delicate Items:
Be sure the items are well-protected with plenty of cushioning.
- Wrap first in tissue paper, paper towels or facial tissue. Then, wrap carefully in newswrap that has been wadded and flattened out.
- Small mirrors, plaques and pictures should be wrapped individually in tissue paper with an outer layer of newswrap.
- A bath towel or small blanket makes an excellent outer wrapping and padding for glass.
- Place flat items on edge in a carton.
Consult with your moving professional on the packing of exceptionally fragile items. If an item is extremely valuable as well as delicate, it might be wise to have it packed for you. Special materials might be needed for maximum protection.
After removing the light bulb and lamp harp, wrap the base, harp and bulb separately in newsprint. Place them together in a carton, filling voids with wadded paper.
Never wrap lamp shades in newspaper, as the ink will soil the shade. Instead, carefully wrap each shade in three or four sheets of tissue paper, a pillowcase or a large lightweight towel.
- Use a sturdy carton at least two inches bigger all around than the largest shade. Line it with clean paper, using crushed paper under the lamp shade to create a protective layer, but not around the shade.
- A smaller shade may be nested inside a larger one, provided they do not touch.
- Only one silk shade should be placed in carton to avoid stretching the silk.
- Do not pack other items with shades.
- Label cartons "LAMP SHADES—FRAGILE—TOP LOAD ONLY."
Chandeliers and Leaded Glass Shades:
It's best to have your moving company crate large leaded or other glass lamp shades or chandeliers.
Glass Table Tops, Marble Slabs, Large Mirrors, Paintings, Statues & Large Vases:
It's best to consult with your moving company about custom-made cartons and crates for items of this kind. Paper should never be permitted to touch the surface of an oil painting.
Table leaves are best wrapped in professional moving blankets (Note: never place tape on the surface of wood.) Don't use plastic wrap, as moisture may get trapped and damage wood.
Draperies & Curtains:
Wardrobe cartons are ideal for moving curtains and drapes. Fold them lengthwise, place over a padded hangar, pin securely and hang in the wardrobe. Draperies and curtains also may be folded and packed in cartons lined with clean paper or plastic wrap.
Leave area rugs on the floor for the moving company to handle.
- You may want to consider having your area rugs professionally cleaned before your move—you'll get them back from the cleaners wrapped, rolled and ready for shipping.
- Area rugs should be loaded last and unloaded first so the furniture coming off the truck can go right on top of the rug.
Your van operator will stretch wrap large, upholstered items.
- Talk to your moving professional beforehand about any leather items.
- Table corners can be protected with cardboard.
- You may want to consider packing couch pillows in large boxes.
Check out the following links for more packing tips.