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Tips on how to pack framed photos and paintings when moving

It can be daunting to properly take care of your artwork, framed photos, paintings and other valuable pieces when moving. Preparing them for removal is not that hard but you need to know few tips and tricks to avoid damages during handling and transportation. Here are some of them.

Packing material

When packing artwork, you need to have proper packing material. You can use brand new or used moving boxes of different sizes for packing smaller pieces. First of all, make sure that the boxes and clean and dry. Second, try to utilize used boxes in order to save money and reduce the waste and negative impact on our environment. However, if you have larger pieces, it is the best to use specialty boxes designed for this purpose. You can rent or buy these boxes in the stores or ask professional moving companies.


If you cannot find specialty box or you just want to save money, you can use ordinary used boxes. Make sure you use bubble wrap or towels and other clothing to protect the frame and the corners. After you wrap it, use tape to secure the wrapping. This way your valuables will remain safe during transportation. If you are packing a small picture, you need to wrap each of them to protect the glass. For larger pieces, after you lay out a packing paper flat on the working surface, lay the frame glass side down against it and wrap the ends. Secure everything with a tape both lengthwise and width wise.


pictureYou need to have a box that will fit. Whether you are using a specialty box or regular one, make sure you have no empty space after you put it inside. If the box is too large, cut off the extra material or bent it around the frame and secure with the tape. If it is too small, use individual cardboard pieces and use it to protect the remaining parts. Also, make sure you protect the glass side with cardboard pieces as well. After you are done packing, use a marker to write a “FRAGILE” sign on a visible place.

Additionally, do not try to do this by yourself. Ask a friend to help you out, especially if you have many large pieces.


When loading your artwork on the truck, never put the picture flat, but on its side. If placed flat, it will absorb pressure harder than on its edge. Also, make sure they do not shift during the move.

Additional tips

In order to maximize protection of your frames, use cardboard protectors. They can be purchased in the stores or online and they are not very expensive. Additionally, after you are done with packing them, you can use wardrobe boxes and stack them up on their edges. Make sure there are no empty spaces in between.

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