How To Pack A Painting, Artwork & Mirrors Safely


One of the frequently asked questions professional movers ask me is how to best pack a painting or how to pack artwork for moving? Given the liability involved with moving art and how easy it is to injure the glass, the picture frame and/or the painting itself — not to mention the importance art holds to people, it is important to use the best possible methods as well as the best possible packaging materials. Best way to pack picture frames is to pack them in the most fit and quality packing boxes you find in the market.

In short, when packing and moving art, it is not the time to take short cuts. The quality of the moving materials and equipment you use as well as the techniques you employ are vitally important in ensuring a safe move.

There are several basic steps to take

1) Set up your Artwork Wrapping Station, usually in the living room, or if this is a commercial move, in a conference room. Lay out all of your materials. Then identify all of the hanging art and mirrors that need special wrapping. Also identify which pictures, if any, are oil paintings—as they will need special care (see #3 below).

2) Step one when wrapping hanging art is to wrap your painting in Paper Pads. New Haven’s Paper Pads are made especially for the professional mover and the design consists of Kraft outer sleeves with special inner-ply layers. New Haven offers 2,3, and 4 ply Paper Pads based upon the level of protection you need.

3) If you are wrapping an Oil Painting, it is very important to first wrap the oil painting in Glassine Paper, which is like a wax paper, and second, to then wrap the painting in Paper Pads. This is because the paint from Oil Paintings can actually bleed onto paper if they come into direct contact with regular paper. Glassine Paper, which is similar to a wax paper, is acid free, serves as a barrier and will protect the oil painting from bleeding and losing any of its color.

4) For many hanging works of art, wrapping the painting in multi-ply Paper Pads provides just the right amount of protection. However, if you feel that the painting necessitates additional protection, you have several options. These include the following:

A) After wrapping in Paper Pads, wrap the piece additionally with Bubble Roll. New
Haven offers many styles of Bubble Roll including 3/16, 5/16 and 1/2 inch.

B) After wrapping in Paper Pads, wrap the piece additionally with Micro Foam.
New Haven’s Micro Foam is light weight, provides superior cushioning and comes in

several widths including 1/16, 1/8 and 1/4 inch.

C) After wrapping in Paper Pads, wrap the piece additionally in our new product
designed for wrapping high end art, New Haven’s Cushion Pack. Our Cushion

Pack is composed of a Kraft Paper Backing and comes with 12 layers of

extra soft material

4) Build your corrugated moving boxes being sure to use just the right box. The size, shape and quality of the box makes a significant difference in the safety of the packing and moving. One excellent option is New Haven’s Mirror Cartons, which are specially designed for moving high end art. They come in a one-piece model as well as an adjustable 4-piece set, and in a variety of sizes, so that you can tailor the choice of your box to your specific needs. Another great option is New Haven’s TV Carton which comes with an adjustable Foam Insert.

5) Layer the bottom of the Corrugated Box with White Newsprint to create a soft and protective layer.

6) Now that you have protected the painting in its wrapping, carefully slide the painting into your corrugated box, and then fill up all the voids and empty space with crumpled up Newsprint.

After sealing the box, be sure to label the box as Fragile and Art.

From hanging posters to the most high-end art, New Haven has just the right products to ensure that you will pack and move safely. We have been designing products for movers, museums and galleries for decades and we are happy to provide you with the support you need to make every move a success. Call any one of our fifteen nationwide locations for outstanding customer care, or visit us on our website at