How to Pack and Store Picture Frames and Paintings  

Framed picture of a bird that requires proper storage

Ah, moving. A clean slate. A fresh start. A chance to start anew. It can be a time full of excitement and anticipation but also stress and anxiety. So much to do… so much to plan… so much to pack! If you’re freaking out about how you’re going to manage to get your entire life neatly sorted into a big pile of boxes, don’t worry, Mini Mall Storage has your back. From our complete moving guide to our post about moving trucks vs. portable containers, along with our moving, packing, and storage supplies—we’re here to help you break the “big move” into more manageable steps. Today, let’s focus on one of the simpler tasks: packing up your pictures and frames. Let’s go! 

woman taping packing boxes shut

Step 1: Gather Supplies  

Before you start taking all the Picassos and Van Goghs off the wall, gather some essentials first to treat each of your creative treasures with the care they deserve. Some supplies we recommend include:   

Packing paper or bubble wrap  

Packing tape   

Stretch wrap  

Cardboard or foam corners  

Sturdy moving or picture boxes  

Marker for labelling boxes  

a father and two children get a framed picture ready for storage

Step 2: Assess your inventory   

Take stock of your paintings and frames to strategize your packing approach. For frames with glass, plan for separate packing or, at the very least, individual wrapping. For canvases of differing sizes, nest them together for added reinforcement and protection and to save space.   

framed photos wrapped in bubble wrap for storage

Step 3: Wrap Each Frame Individually  

Even if you are packing them within a larger box, glass frames should be wrapped individually to give them a nice layer of protective padding. Simply lay down a sheet of acid-free packing paper or bubble wrap on a flat surface, place the picture or frame face down on the paper, and tape to secure.   

a picture frame and other pieces of art to be stored

Step 4: Protect Corners and Edges  

For frames with delicate or ornate edges, use cardboard or foam corners to provide a little extra protection. Don’t forget to wrap with additional bubble wrap or packing paper before securing the corners with tape.  

painting being packed

Step 5: Choose the Right Box  

Opt for sturdy boxes appropriate in size. Rather than stacking them on top of each other, which can increase the risk of breakage, stand pictures or frames upright. Larger frames can be packed individually. Smaller frames can be packed together in a box; just make sure it’s snug to prevent shifting. Consider adding a towel or blanket for extra cushioning and filling in any gaps in the box.   

labeled moving boxes

Step 6: Label the Boxes  

Labelling is vital if you want to be able to find what you’re looking for later—and it can also provide good info for the movers to know too. Use arrows or “this side up” labels to indicate the correct orientation of the box and write “fragile” for anything you’re worried might break if handled too roughly.   

large storage unit with a car parked in front

Step 7: Store in a Climate-Controlled Environment  

If storing pictures or frames for an extended period, choose a climate-controlled storage unit to prevent damage from humidity, temperature fluctuations, or pests.  

By following these steps, you can rest easy knowing that your pictures and picture frames have been packed safely and are ready for the big move. Then you can go back to worrying about the 1001 other little details you have to take care of. Just remember, Mini Mall Storage is here to keep your valuables safe, secure, and ready for whatever direction you take. Find a self-storage unit near you!  

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