How to Ship Art Across Country

Moving household items can be done without much hustle if planned and organized properly. But moving art is another category altogether. Because it is valuable and fragile, it requires very careful handling and some experience. Take extra care when you ship art across country, mirrors, canvases, antique items, sculptures, or framed photographs. Keep reading to find out how to ship art across country.

Things to do before shipping fine art

Make inventory

Make a very detailed list of your valuables. Write all of your art details, including the item’s name, description, and condition. Download a free inventory app on your phone or tablet to make it easy, or use pen and paper if it works better for you.

Take pictures

To support the inventory list, take a picture of each artwork. You can also make a video if it works better for you, and make sure you get all sides of the piece to make its condition visible. It will be a great tool in case you have to show it to the insurance company. It’s much easier to have proof that shows exactly how the condition of the item was before shipping.

Get insurance

Insurance policy is extremely important to have, especially when moving long-distance. Make sure your policy is still valid and if not, get one before you hit the road. Get an appraisal to know the value and to make sure your cost is covered in case any incidents occur.

Fine art movers NYC

Moving DIY is generally considered a more affordable option. However, it’s not always the case, especially when moving valuables. Consider time, effort, and potential damage. There is a chance that damage will happen if you don’t have experience with packing and transporting delicate items. If any incident occurs you will have to deal with it yourself, which can get pretty pricey when it comes to art.
Hiring fine art movers is always your best choice during relocation. Because those pieces are of importance to you, you should search for a professional moving company that has experience in this specific area. Many art handling companies NYC will offer full-service, but do research and choose only the one that has credentials. They should provide the following things:

Packing materials

Packing Art for Shipping

Whether your pieces are glass, porcelain, or canvas, they must be protected with the best quality wrapping.

Custom crating

Not all pieces of art are the same or standard size. Most often they are uniquely shaped and oddly sized. That requires a custom-made crating to fit perfectly your specific piece.

Climate control

Climate-controlled Storage Unit

A fine-art moving company will provide a climate-controlled vehicle. It keeps the temperature at an optimum level and helps avoid damage due to extreme temperatures, dust, and debris.

If you opt for full-service, your company will take care of protection, loading, transportation, and unpacking art.

DIY art shipping across country

If you decide to do the art shipping NYC on your own, remember that it will include certain costs, such as:

  • Taxes and duties
  • Custom fees
  • New country’s port fees

Art packing process

Make sure to handle the packing process with the utmost care because fragile and valuable items need to be extra protected. Here are a few tips:

Boxes

If You Ship Art Across Country, Pack Moving Boxes Properly

Find the right size box after taking measurements of your item. A moving company can provide a customized one to fit your artwork. Don’t use any damaged or used boxes, but rather get a brand new one for fragile items.

Paintings

Shipping Paintings Across Country

It’s important to prepare your paintings for moving. Use corner protectors on each side of the piece. You can purchase specialized ones or you can download a free template and make it yourself. Cover the surface with paper, and cover its face with another piece of cardboard. Add layers of cardboard all around the piece and use tape to keep it in place. Place the painting in the upright position when putting it in a moving truck. It’s less likely to get damaged in this position than being flat. Put paintings between heavy items to prevent them from falling during driving.

Glass

It's Important to Pack Glasses Wisely for Shipping Art Across Country

For art made of glass, use glassine which is a type of packing paper with the wax-like finish. Wrap it and make sure all its surfaces are covered. For mirrors add corner protectors. Use bright masking tape and make an X across the glass. It will minimize the damage in case an accident occurs and glass gets shattered.

Smaller art pieces

If you are moving several items of smaller size, you can use one box, just make sure they are protected and each one is packed individually. Get a sufficient amount of bubble wrap and packing paper.

Bubble wrap

Use Bubble Wrap for Shipping Art Across Country

Use it as the first layer of protection, to make a soft cushioning inside the box.

Fill in voids

After you place an item inside the box, you will notice some empty spaces. Fill in any voids by using bubble-wrap or packing paper. If there is no space between objects, they will not giggle and scratch each other or get broken.

Seal the box

Use tape on all edges of the box to make sure it’s sealed completely.

Label the box

Labeling Moving Boxes Before You Ship Art Across Country

Use bright colors and clear letters of big size to mark fragile boxes. If you chose a consolidated move it means you will share moving truck space with someone else. A good idea is to also write your name on the box to prevent it from getting mixed up. If you hired help to do the loading, remember to communicate to them that some boxes are extremely fragile.

Are you searching for NYC fine art movers?

Dorothy and Martha Moving NYC is a Brooklyn based moving company that has the experience and passion necessary for handling fine art. We understand the importance of your artwork and our team is well-trained and highly-efficient. You can reach out to us anytime and we will gladly take care of your belongings.

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