It needs to be immediately pointed out that it’s never advised to pack your antique furniture yourself, but there are those who forego professional packing services for a variety of reasons that might have a lot to do with cutting corners to save on moving expenses. When you choose to pack your antique furniture by yourself you should be aware of the risks that are involved, and we want to make sure you are decreasing your risk of damages as much as possible by offering the following advice:
1) Create an Inventory
Take pictures and note damage of any kind. A picture inventory will be far more useful than a listed/written inventory when it comes to evaluating your antique pieces after the move. Go the extra mile and thank us later.
2) Get an Appraisal
Some antiques may have only sentimental worth, while others may be high-priced items. Before any sort of packing begins, you will need to get your antiques appraised to verify their value so that you take out the appropriate amount of insurance.
3) Get Insurance
Take the appraisal value you were given and insure your items so that should any damage occur it can be repaired or replaced.
4) Disassemble Furniture
First step: Make sure all items are removed from the piece that aren’t actually apart of the antique. For example, if you are moving an antique dresser, then remove all the clothes that may be stored inside.
Second step: Detach any of the removable features like doors, legs, handles, knobs, etc. This will allow for much better security when you begin packing as well as decrease the risk of damage if there aren’t any bulging pieces to get potentially caught on door jambs.
All edges, legs, bottoms, and sides of antique furniture should be padded with sheets of foam, bubble wrapped, and then draped with moving blankets secured by cord rope or mover’s tape. DO NOT use tape directly on the antique pieces. These three layers will act as shock absorbers in the moving van and then as protective casings while the pieces are being relocated into the new home.
Ideally, you will have custom crates as your final protective barrier, but many people use cardboard secured with tape in the same fashion as the moving blankets. If you go the cardboard route, then make sure it is a thicker cut and not the flimsy kind that will easily tear—that won’t do you any good.