Inevitably there will be items that are not so straightforward to pack for your home move

If you love a big challenge, packing for a home move will fill you with joy.

But for most mere mortals it is the worst part of any home move and most people wisely choose to leave the packing to professional packers.

However, with a bit of knowledge and guidance, most items can be packed safely and securely yourself, although it is extremely time-consuming, expensive, and monotonous, not to mention that you will be living amongst piles of packing materials and boxes for weeks on end.

Things like books, clothing, and crockery are fairly straightforward to pack, and by clicking on the links you will find detailed instructions on how to pack those items.

But what about packing irregular, awkward, and odd-shaped items that won’t fit in a regular-shaped box?

Well, you don’t need to be an origami master, but some creativity is called for, so let’s find out what the tricks of the packing trade are.

You may also like to read: The Top 10 Packing Mistakes to Avoid. In this guide, we look at the most common mistakes people make when packing for a home move and how you can avoid those mistakes.

General Advice for Packing Awkward & Irregular Shaped Things

For certain items, a furniture blanket is better than a cardboard box
  • You will often have to make your own cardboard boxes from multiple other boxes or pieces of cardboard to pack odd-shaped items.
  • The boxes should safely encase the item, which with protective cushioning, will not allow the item to move about inside the box.
  • Depending upon the fragility of the item you are packing, a box approximately 10cm bigger than the item on all sides is best.
  • Always pad the bottom of the box with about 10cm of padding such as bubble wrap, crumpled newspaper, or old blankets.
  • Protect any protruding or delicate parts with extra padding.
  • It is essential that you fill all the empty space in the box with bubble wrap or crumpled newspaper so the item is securely nestled in the box.
  • Add a 10cm protective layer of bubble wrap before closing the lid of the box.
  • Tape the box securely shut.
  • Label the box clearly as to which room it must go into and whether the items are fragile or should be ‘this way up’.
  • Not all large and awkward-shaped items require boxing and often being wrapped in a furniture blanket is sufficient protection.
  • For very valuable items such as antiques, a good removal company will be able to supply bespoke wooden crates to pack them in.

You may also like to read: How to Pack Fragile Items For Moving Home. Packing fragile items can throw up their own unique challenges. In this guide, we offer some tips on how to safely pack and move all the fragile items commonly found in a home move.

How to Make a Long or Tall Cardboard Box

  • Cut along one corner edge of a sturdy cardboard box (at least 3 ply) to allow you to flatten out the box.
  • You may need to use two flattened boxes, just tape them securely together so that the cardboard is long enough to cover the entire item.

You can also make a tall box using the top-and-tail method

  • Take two cardboard boxes which are each half the height of the item to be boxed.
  • Pack your item safely into the bottom box
  • Raise the lid flaps of the box and tape the edges so that you have an open-topped box
  • Slip the second box over the top of the item
  • Slightly compress the top edges of the lower carton so that the top carton can slip over the bottom box.
  • Seal the two boxes together so that they create one tall box.

And of course, there will be some things that won’t fit in any shape or size of box at all, or just need a bit of extra care and thought to pack.

Firstly you will need to gather together some packing materials:

  • Bubble wrap
  • Packing paper
  • Packing peanuts
  • Strong cardboard boxes
  • Good quality packing tape
  • A tape gun
  • Craft knife
  • Furniture blankets or old towels
  • Industrial shrink-wrap
  • Multiple colours of tape for labelling the boxes

You may also like to read: Alternative Packing Materials for Moving Home. Packing for a home move can be expensive if you buy proprietary packing materials. So in this guide, we look at items commonly found in the home that you can use to protect your things during a home move.

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How to Pack Long-Handled Garden Tools for Moving Home

  • Gather all your long-handled tools of similar length into bundles that are manageable to carry easily.
  • If the tools have sharp edges or blades, have these face inwards, towards each other, to prevent any injuries.
  • Secure the handles together in a tight bundle with tape or zip ties.
  • Then wrap the ‘working end’ in blankets, old towels, or bubble wrap.
  • Wrap the protective material securely in tape to prevent it from slipping off.

You may also like to read: The Epic Guide to Decluttering for a Home Move. Decluttering, and getting rid of all the things you no longer need or love is essential for a cheaper and easier home move. In this guide, we share the best tips for decluttering your home, shed, and garage.

How to Pack Garden Heaters when Moving Home

  • Remove the gas bottle – your removal company will be unable to transport this for health and safety reasons
  • The hood or heat deflector should then be removed, which is normally just a bolt.
  • Put the bolts in a zip-lock bag to prevent them getting lost
  • Pack the heater hood and bolts in a cardboard box ensuring that they cannot move about and get damaged during the move
  • Working from the base of the heater upwards wrap in bubble wrap or old blankets and tape securely in place.

You may also like to read: How to Move a Garden to Your New Home. From plants to garden furniture, this guide provides step-by-step instructions on how to safely pack and move items from your garden.

How to Pack a Chandelier

Using packing peanuts will ensure that your chandelier has the best protection and cannot move around inside the box
  • Take several photographs to record the condition of the chandelier before packing. This will help in the event of an insurance claim should you need to make one.
  • Remove all the light bulbs.
  • Select a box at least 10cm bigger than the chandelier on all sides.
  • Double-tape the bottom of the box
  • Pad the bottom of the box with at least 10cm of protective padding such as bubble wrap or blankets.
  • Gently place the chandelier into the box
  • Fill all the space around the chandelier preferably with packing peanuts so that there is a SLIGHT protrusion of peanuts above the walls of the box (so that when you close the lid the peanuts compress SLIGHTLY and hold the chandelier in place)
  • Ensure the chandelier cannot move about inside the box
  • Take some more photos to demonstrate how well the chandelier was packed.
  • Securely seal the box with packing tape
  • Clearly mark the box as ‘fragile’, ‘glass’, and ‘this way up’

You may also like to read: How to Pack and Move Antiques and Collectibles. In this guide, we look at the best ways to pack and move antiques and collectibles when moving home.

How to Pack Rugs

Ensure you roll the rug with the backing facing to the outside
  • Run your hands over the pile (the fibers) of the rug to find out which they run. This will help you get a tighter roll and will prevent the backing of the rug from cracking or splitting.
  • Lay acid-free paper across the entire face of the carpet (pile side)
  • Do not use plastic sheets or bubble wrap as this will make the rug sweat and can damage it
  • When rolling the rug ensure the backing is outer-facing
  • Fold the carpet in the direction of the pile
  • Take a corner of the rug and fold it to the center of the rug. Do the same with the opposite side, so that you now have a rug folded into 3 layers.
  • Fold the top and bottom of the carpet towards each other
  • Roll the carpet into a tight cylinder shape
  • Wrap the roll in acid-free paper and secure the roll with twine in the middle and at each end.

You may also like to read: Are Packing Services Worth the Cost? Reading through this guide you are probably wondering whether it would be easier and less stressful to just hire professional packers. In this guide, we look at what packers do, how much they cost, and whether it makes sense to hire packers for your home move.

How to Pack Surfboards

  • The safest way to transport a surfboard is in a heavy-duty surfboard bag
  • Ideally, this should be about 10-15cm bigger than your board so that you can add extra protection
  • If the fins are detachable remove them and wrap them in an old towel to pack inside the bag
  • If the fins are not removable, purchase some fin blocks or use polystyrene packing blocks to protect them.
  • Remove all the wax from the board to prevent any damage to the bag
  • Wrap the nose cone and tail end in old towels or bubble wrap to protect them
  • For added protection wrap the whole board in bubble wrap or old towels
  • Place the protected board inside the bag.

If you are still concerned about any damage to your board, cover the entire bag with cardboard as in the instructions on how to make a tall box above.

How to Pack Skis

  • Remove the bindings from the skis
  • Wrap the bindings in bubble wrap
  • Wrap the tips and tails of each ski in an old towel or bubble wrap
  • Now place the ski’s base to base and cover it in bubble wrap or old towels
  • If you have a ski bag they can now be placed in that
  • Alternatively, flatten a 3 ply cardboard box or two by cutting one of the sides
  • Now wrap the ski bundle in a protective layer of cardboard
  • Securely tape the package so that the skis cannot move about and so that the cardboard does not come away from the skis.
  • Mark the box as ‘fragile’ ‘this way up’ so that the tips point skywards.

You may also like to read: How to Declutter Your Loft When Moving Home. Most people will store seasonal items such as skis and surfboards in their loft. The loft can be one of the hardest places in the home to declutter, so in this guide, we look at not only how to declutter a loft but also how to detach yourself emotionally from the items often stored up there.

How to Pack Artificial Flowers

  • Keep the flowers in their vase
  • Use a box at least 10cm deeper than the arrangement but snug enough around the sides that the arrangement cannot move about.
  • Pad the bottom of the box with at least 10cm of crumpled newspaper or bubble wrap
  • Now add more padding around the box walls so that you create a well for the vase to sit in
  • Gentle lower the vase into the box so that the vase sits snugly in the crater you have created
  • The vase should not be able to move about within the box
  • Seal the box with tape and label it as ‘fragile’ ‘this way up’

You may also like to read: How to Label Moving Boxes. It is essential that you label your boxes so that you know which room they go into at your new home and which boxes contain the things to unpack first. In this guide, we suggest a simple method to label your moving boxes for easy identification.

How to Pack an Aquarium when Moving Home

Always seek professional advice before packing an aquarium
  • Drain the aquarium of water (seek expert advice regarding the transporting of fish and aquatic plants)
  • Select a minimum 3-ply box that is at least 10cm bigger than the fish tank on all sides.
  • Pad the bottom of the box with at least a 10cm protective layer of bubble wrap.
  • Place the fish tank in the box and pad it all the way around with crumpled newspaper, bubble wrap, or old blankets.
  • Ensure the fish tank cannot move around inside the box.
  • Place several layers of very stiff cardboard across the entire width and length of the top of the tank, like a lid.
  • If the cardboard layers do not fill the box to the brim, use more bubble wrap or an old blanket to fill that space.
  • Seal the lid securely.
  • Clearly mark the box that it is a fish tank and which way up it should be at all times.

You may also like to read: How to Pack and Move a Fish Tank. This is a comprehensive guide on how to prepare your fish and tank for packing and moving to your new home. We also look at how to settle your fish and how to set the tank up when you arrive at your new home.

How to Pack Floor Lamps for Moving

For very fragile and expensive items a bespoke crate may be required, which many good removal companies will be able to supply
  • Remove the shade and light bulb which will be wrapped separately
  • If the lamp is in sections that can be unscrewed, do so, then wrap each part in bubble wrap or a blanket before putting it into a cardboard box. Ensure the box is well padded to protect the pieces and to ensure the contents cannot move around in transit. Be sure to mark the box as fragile.
  • For a solid one-piece floor lamp, wrap the entire item in a blanket or bubble wrap and tape it securely.
  • Place into a tall box as described above to protect the lamp.
  • Be sure to label the box clearly that it is a floor lamp, fragile, this way up, and which room it should go into.

How to Pack Decorative Candles

  • Wrap the candle in tissue paper or bubble wrap if they are delicate
  • Insert the protected candle into a toilet roll tube
  • Ensure that the candle cannot move about inside the tube
  • A number of the tubes can then be packed within a smaller box, such as a shoe box, before being placed in a more protective outer carton.

How to Pack a TV for Moving Home

TV boxes can be expensive but there are a few cheaper alternatives
  • Pack your TV in its original box if you still have it
  • Ask your local TV store if they have any suitable spare boxes
  • Find a cycle shop that may be able to give you a bicycle carton. This will accommodate most sizes of TV
  • Take photos of the cable connections so that you know exactly where each cable will need to be reconnected.
  • Ensure the box is at least 10cm bigger on all sides than your TV set to allow for protective cushioning
  • Tape the bottom of the box securely with quality packing tape
  • Next, layer the bottom of the box with bubble wrap or old blankets to a depth of at least 10cm
  • Cut a piece of cardboard large enough to cover the entire TV screen
  • Then wrap the entire TV in bubble wrap or blankets
  • Secure the wrapping in place with tape or shrink-wrap
  • Then slide the entire thing into the box
  • Add extra padding to ensure the TV cannot move about inside the box
  • Be sure to keep the TV set upright at all times as laying it flat will cause the set to flex and the screen to break
  • Add a final layer of protection to the top of the TV before closing the lid of the box
  • Tape the lid securely
  • Label the box clearly which way up it should be kept, that is a TV set, and which room it should go into in your new home. Be sure to label each side of the box.
  • Pack the cables and remotes in a separate box to prevent damage to the TV.

You may also like to read: How to Pack and Move a Computer. This is an invaluable step-by-step guide on how to prepare, pack, and move your computer equipment to your new home.

You will find comprehensive packing instructions for every room and every item in your home in our home moving blog, as well as tips on how to make your move cheaper and easier, be sure to check it out.

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