How to Pack
There are a few harder-to-pack items and from our experience, we know it's better to leave some things to the more experienced. If you have opted to self-pack for your move, here are some packing tips you might find useful:
Start the packing process as soon as you can. Start with items (books, etc.) you hardly use. Protect your items with packing material. Using old Newspapers is an effective, cost-effective approach.
Separate your breakable items from your non-breakable items, so the boxes marked “FRAGILE.” are handled with extra care.
Buy an assortment of quality boxes in standard sizes. We can help you order the right type and amount.
Pack all boxes as tightly as possible, however try not to put too much weight into one box. Load heavier items on the bottom, to maintain balance. No box should ever weigh more than 50 lbs/23 kg, and 20-30 lbs/9-14 kg maximum is preferable.
Preferably use PVC packing tape, not masking tape – it’s not strong enough.
Label boxes clearly, on several sides. They should be legible, even if stacked in a corner. Start an inventory list, on paper or on your computer. Try to be as consistent as possible with your labelling method. Go as far as to list the general contents on the outside of the box for quick reference if you like.
For a box that contains items you’ll need immediately (cooking utensils, toiletries, remotes, etc.), mark “OPEN FIRST” on the outside of the box.
Where possible, keep irreplaceable items along with immediate necessities like cell-phone chargers and personal items, in a special suitcase or bag.
You will need the Original packing box, foam forms and PVC Tape, or a large enough new box, foam forms and PVC Tape.
Lay the TV on its side and slide the foam forms on either end. Then slide it into the box, set it upright, tape shut the box and mark "Fragile – TV."
If you do not have the original box, you can obtain dense foam forms from a number of sources online. Lay the TV on its side and tape the foam forms on either end of the top and bottom of the TV. Then slide it into the box, set it upright, fill all sides with foam forms and tape shut the box and label it "FRAGILE TV."
Ideally you will be packing food items last, after all other packing has been completed.
Try not pack perishable food items, even for local moves.
Seal all boxes with PVC tape.
Place small spice jars and containers into a small box first, and then into a bigger one. Remember to use PVC tape where necessary with spice containers.
It is good practice to limit the amount of canned goods and heavy objects you place into each box, to maintain a reasonable weight.
Lay books flat in the box. Alternate the spine and open-end, as you stack them, to keep their weight evenly distributed.
Place a clean piece of paper between books to prevent them from sticking to each other.
Keep the weight of the box manageable (pref. between 20-30 lbs/9-14 kgs).
Photos, videos, and film negatives are best packed separately from other household items. They may be irreplaceable.
Protect your framed photos with padding, standing each on edge within the box.
Label containers clearly to easily identify their contents.
If the item is truly irreplaceable, carry it with you.
Consider taking photos of your wired connections and label the cables. Sometimes using coloured ties helps keep cables more organised making reassembly at the end of your move a bit easier.
Disconnect all wires and cables. Bundle these items together with their components, for quick reassembly.
Place the item in the prepared box, and pad heavily on all sides, underneath and on top to prevent damage.
Before packing china, cushion the bottom of the box with plenty of crumpled industry packing paper.
Carefully wrap each larger piece of china individually with packing paper sheet, and bundle up to three similar pieces together with one large enough sheet of packing paper.
Place each bundle into the box, standing them upright to form a standing row. Do not lay them flat. Surround each bundle with plenty of crumpled paper.
Level 2-3 inches of crumpled packing paper on top of the bottom row, to support the next row of bundles.
The upper row should be comprised of smaller articles—cups, saucers, etc. – to keep the box properly weighted with heavier items at the bottom.
Each piece of stemware should be wrapped in industry packing paper.
Gently stuff packing paper into each goblet and then wrap it around the stem.
Cushion stemware with a final thick wrapping of paper, and place the item in preferably a container STEM UP.
Wrap statuary and figurines with bubble wrap. Consider packaging some items with smaller bubble wrap first. Then layer the outside with larger bubble wrap. Exceptionally fragile items may require additional protection. Pack foam/chip peanuts tightly around the piece, as added padding and to ensure the item remains in place. Industry wrapping/packing paper is an alternative here, wrap paper around the item until it is well cushioned.
Seal all bottles by wrapping tape around their lids.
Wrap bottles in industry paper. Prepare boxes with crumpled wrapping/packing paper, at the bottom, and place your bottles on top. Add more packing paper, padding the sides and top.
Choose a right size or an adjustable size picture box. Prepare it for packing up of art work by putting wadded industry wrapping paper on the bottom. Do not close the top and end of the picture box. Wrap each individual artwork or painting using enough layers of wrapping sheets or bubble wrap. You can also wrap item in industry wrapping paper. Put the item inside the box. Fill empty spaces with lightly wadded packing paper or other padding supplies, if needed. Seal the box shut securely with PVC tape. Label the box – "FRAGILE ARTWORK".
Firstly, put a lighter than PVC type tape across the face of the mirror like an X to keep the pieces in place in case the glass breaks or cracks on transition. Choose a right size of picture box. Prepare it for packing up of art work by putting wadded wrapping paper on the bottom of the box. Do not close the top end of the box. Wrap each individual mirror correctly with enough layers of wrapping paper sheets or bubble wrap. Now, put the mirror inside the box carefully and smoothly. Fill empty spaces of the box with lightly wadded wrapping paper, if mirror fit loosely in the box. Seal the box to close firmly using PVC tape. Mark the box – "FRAGILE MIRROR"
Where possible, separate the lampshade from the lamp base.
Handle a lampshade by its wire base only. Surround the lampshade with industry packing paper. Lampshades can be nested inside each other, separated by wrapping/packing paper. Keep them at the top of the box and well padded.
Shoes are best packed into shoeboxes or clear zip lock bags. Then group them into a bigger box.
If shoeboxes are not available, wrap each shoe in industry wrapping/packing paper to minimize abrasion.
Just like our fragile items of value, moving plants need special attention. Tall plants should be bagged or wrapped in plastic. Then make some holes in the plastic to let your plants breathe. Get some sturdy boxes, line them with plastic and place your plant inside. Gently stuff bubble wrap or foam cushioning between the pot and the box to make sure your plant doesn't shift or tip during the move. At the end of your move remove the plastic immediately, take them out of their boxes and give them some water and plant food.