Whether you are an avid collector of artwork, a participant in auctions for fine art or an exhibitor in paintings galleries, most probably you wondered what is the best way to pack a painting for shipping to have it delivered to the right place.

Given the sensitive nature of a painting and sometimes high value, packing and shipping an artwork might be a little troublesome. But with a little care, you can properly prepare the paintings for shipping.

What do you need?

Packaging Material and Supplies

Glassine– for covering the painted side of the canvas;

Bubble Wrap– for wrapping the painting and the frame;

Foam pad– for cushioning or for filling the empty space on reverse side of the painting;

Soft blanket – as a substitute for bubble wrap;

Cardboard corners – optional, for framed paintings to cover the corners;

Cardboard box– for placing the painting inside;

Cardboard sheet – Hardware stores, any stationary shop;

Duct tape – for sealing the box;

Cloth gloves – to avoid any stamps in the painting due to handling.


Where to get supplies?

Glassine – any stationary shop or any shop specialized in art supplies and painting accessories

The glassine is the type of wax paper, resistant to water and grease, which makes it perfect for oil paintings.

Bubble Wrap – Any stationary shop or hardware store;

Foam wrap – Any hardware store;

Soft blanket – Any soft cloth material;

Cardboard corners – Hardware stores shop specialized in art supplies;

Cardboard sheet – Hardware stores, any stationary shop;

Cardboard box – Hardware stores, supermarkets;

Duct tape – Stationary shop, supermarket.

Cloth gloves – the ones you use during winter.


How to pack a painting for shipping?

Place the glassine on a flat surface. Place the painting on it with the painted side down. Then fold the glassine around the edges of the artwork. Fold it nicely around the corners and use a small piece of duct tape to secure it. Make sure the duct tape covers only the glassine and is not stuck directly on the canvas.

After you attach the glassine to the painting, place a piece of bubble wrap on a flat surface, with the raised side of the bubble wrap facing the surface (in this way you will avoid the stamps that the air bubbles might leave on the painting). Then, place the painting, having the painted side down and wrap it in the foil.

Take the foam wrap and try to cut a piece that could fit in the empty space left between the frames and the canvas, left on the reverse of the picture.

Cover the painting with bubble wrap and secure it with duct tape. Alternatively, you can use a soft cloth.

Take the cardboard box – even though you might not find the perfect cardboard box to allow for a snug fit, make sure you choose a box long enough and not very wide in the interior. Slide the painting in the cardboard box.

If you have two or more paintings, just place a cardboard sheet between them.


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