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Packaging Tips

Keep In Mind...

  • As an incentive, you can choose to offer free shipping on individual artworks to potential buyers.
  • Remember, you can add the cost of packaging & insurance into the price of your artwork.
  • Insurance will not cover inadequate packaging.
  • Take a good quality photo of the artwork & the package (if possible with the date showing)  before you dispatch it to the buyer.
  • It’s in your interest to package your artwork in a professional manner
  • Know the size & weight of your artwork.
  • Always have enough packing materials at hand when an artwork is sold.

Handy tips!

  • Ensure that your artwork is dry before shipping.
  • When packing 2 paintings, they should be placed back to back.
  • Please keep in mind that in transit other objects may be placed on top of your package.
  • Package your artwork to prevent damage from being pressed against, bent or dropped.
  • Use a box that is slightly larger than your artwork to allow enough room for packing material on all sides.
  • Pack your artwork so it will not shift within the box.
  • Allow easy access from at least one side of the package for inspection by customs.
  • Don’t use polystyrene beads or peanuts. They cause a mess when the package is opened.
  • Pipe insulation tubing is ideal for protecting frames.
  • Don’t place bubble wrap directly next to the surface of a painting as it may leave marks.
  • Before you tape the parcel, close & shake it. If the artwork  moves you will need to add more packing material.
  •  Use reinforced packing tape at least 5cm wide. Only use waterproof tape. Avoid using sellotape, masking tape or string, which may loosen in transit.
  • Tape all openings and seams.
  • Reinforce the corners with corrugated cardboard pieces.
  • If you are reusing a box, cover or remove all previous labels or information.


On the inside of your package…

Attach a label to the back of the artwork stating the artist’s name & title.

On the outside of your package…

Label your package using permanent marker

FRAGILE          (on all exterior sides of the package)

THIS WAY UP (With arrows pointing up)

OPEN HERE     (Showing where parcel is to be opened)

YOUR NAME & ADDRESS  (in case your package is lost, delayed or returned.)

  • Never cover the scanning label with tape, as it may cause difficulty for the scanner in picking up the code.
  • Cover paper labels with clear tape to protect against moisture.
  • If desired, tape unpacking and packing instructions onto the outside of the package.

Shipping with Glass

Please think carefully before you ship artwork with glass. Although your artwork may be insured against glass breakage, shattered glass can completely destroy artwork.

If you choose to ship with glass, apply tape in a criss cross pattern over the glass. (Don’t apply tape if the glass has a UV coating.) This should help minimise damage to the artwork if the glass breaks.

Special products may be purchased to protect artwork against glass breakage: Air Float Glas-Skin


View fedex advice on packaging:

How to safely pack & ship framed artwork - Fed Ex


Tips for packing Unframed Artwork

  1. Use tissue paper or photography white cotton gloves when handling unframed artwork.
  2. Wrap the artwork in acid-free tissue paper. You can wrap your artwork with plastic for additional protection against moisture.
  3. To protect the corners of your unframed artwork, you can fold four sheets of acid free tissue paper into triangles, leaving one side open & then slip the open side over each corner.
  4. These corner protectors can then be secured to a backing board or foamcore, giving strong protection to the back of the artwork.
  5. Use strong, clean cardboard to protect both sides of the artwork & tape securely.
  6. For the outer cover, use two sheets of corrugated cardboard to cover the artwork & tape them securely together.
  7. A mirror box can also be used for further protection.

Tips for packing framed Artwork

  1. Use a box that is the correct proportion for your artwork.
  2. Allow at least 3 inches of space on all sides of the artwork for packing material.
  3. Wrap your artwork in acid-free tissue paper.
  4. Completely wrap your artwork with bubble wrap.
  5. Pipe insulation tubing is ideal for added protection of the frame.
  6. Lay a solid piece of foam or other packing material inside one wall of the box & place the frame on it.
  7. Fill all internal spaces to prevent movement within the box.

Tips for Large & Irregular Artworks

  1. For heavy artworks, a wooden pallette will aid loading & unloading.
  2. Some shipping companies add handling charges for irregular shaped or oversized artworks & artwork which is not fully enclosed in it’s package.
  3. Cover any sharp or protruding edges with cardboard and tape.
  4. Tape your labels flat against the package.

Tips for packing Sculpture

  1. Line up the bubble wrap so the top half of your sculpture is covered, with excess at the top. Wrap around the top half of the sculpture at least twice & tape securely.
  2. Fold down the excess bubble wrap at the top & tape securely to protect the top of the sculpture.
  3. Line up the bubble wrap so it overlaps with the top section, also allowing for excess at the bottom. Wrap the bottom half of your sculpture in bubble wrap & tape securely around the overlap & along the edges.
  4. Fold down the excess bubble wrap at the bottom & tape securely to protect the bottom of the sculpture.
  5. Use a box that is the correct proportion for your sculpture & fill with packing material until it is at least 1/3 full.
  6. Make a hole in the middle to set your sculpture into. Place your sculpture so it sits steadily into the hole & pack securely around it, ensuring there is no movement of the sculpture within the box.
  7. Close the box & tape securely.

Tips for making Wooden Crates  (for large or fragile artworks & sculptures)

  1. Cut lengths of wood to fit the dimensions of your artwork. Screw the lengths of wood together, except for the length which covers the opening at the top of the crate.
  2. The wooden lengths should be wide enough to contain the depth of your artwork & bubble wrap on all sides. The crate should be a snug fit to reduce movement of the artwork in transit, while allowing enough room for easy insertion & removal.
  3. The top of the crate should be an access point for easy packing, unpacking or customs inspection. This top piece should be wide enough to cover the sides of the crate.
  4. Cut 2 boards of plywood or similar material to fit the frame.
  5. Use wood glue & screws to secure one of the boards to the frame.
  6. Lay bubble wrap against the inside surface of the board & place the artwork inside. To help protect against moisture & dust, place a sheet of acid-free tissue paper over the painted surface of the artwork.
  7. Cover with enough bubble wrap to ensure there is no room for the artwork to move inside the crate.
  8. Secure the second board with wood glue & screws.
  9. The top length of wood will act as a lid. Secure onto the crate with screws & write ‘OPEN HERE’.

Note: These tips are to be used as general guidelines. We cannot be held responsible if your item is damaged in transit.