The Ten Step easyStorage Guide to Packing Glasses

Glasses are an obviously a concern when packing them away for storage. Here’s our ten step guide to packing them safely.

1. Prepare the packaging

Gather together the wrapping materials, storage box, tape, scissors, and a marker pen before starting. You don’t want to leave ‘fragiles’ lying around while you go searching for things, increasing the chances of them being knocked and broken or chipped.

You may want to add shredded paper, empty plastic bottles, and old cereal boxes to the list. Read on to find out why.

The key to proper packing is to cushion both the top and bottom of the box and to wrap each piece individually for the best protection. We suggest that you take a few moments to read this guide through before starting so that you get the best kind of materials together.

Set up the paper on a table close to the box, with the other things close to hand. You’ll be glad you did, it will speed things up and prevent the accidents that can be caused by moving things around.

2. Prepare the glasses

Wash and dry the glasses that need packing and put them on a steady surface close to where you’re working, and you’re now ready for packing.

It will help to place things to be packed in size order. You will ideally start packing your carton with the heaviest, strongest glassware or glasses (like glass serving plates or pint mugs), and keep the most fragile pieces for the top half of the box. Anything with a stem will be more fragile, and generally the longer and finer the stem is, the more fragile the glass will be.

3. Use a good quality box

Most of us keep our good wine glasses, vases, and glass treasures away from every day things to avoid them being chipped or broken. When packing them, give them the same VIP treatment and provide them with their own dedicated box.

Make sure, as well, that it’s a good quality box. A good quality professional one is great, but at very least a new one: used ones tend not to be as rigid. Try and pick a relatively small one, even if it means using more boxes. Whilst glasses don’t weigh a lot compared to say metal or wood, make the box as easy and secure to carry as possible.

4. Taping the box

Make sure you set up the box or boxes well by taping the bottoms securely using strong, wide packing tape rather than masking tape or duct tape. (A tape gun can make this easier.) The tape should go across the bottom and about a third of the way up the sides.

5. Packing paper

Whilst you can use newspaper for packing news ink. White packing paper is widely preferred (which is why we supply it). Many movers can supply this.

You can find our water and tear resistant packaging paper here

6. Cushion the box

You need to create a cushion at the bottom of the box. Crumpled paper tends to be best, rather than folded paper, as it will be more shock absorbent. Be generous, use as much as six inches.

Some people will recommend towels. They are a fair alternative, but if any glass breaks during moving, the towels will need discarding.

If you own a paper shredder, you can use shredded paper to cushion blows.

To avoid mess, put the paper shreds into plastic bags to pad the boxes - but remember to tie each bag well to prevent spillage.

7. Wrap glasses individually

Working on top of the stack of wrapping paper will provide more cushioning as you wrap. Always wrap each item individually to offer more protection.

Start the wrapping and packing with large glass items (plates, vases, beer mugs). If hollow, using a full, single sheet of paper, crumple some up and poke into the open end to fill it.

For glasses with a stem such as wine glasses, wrap the stem first with half a sheet of paper. Do the same for glasses with handles. Then, using a full, single sheet of paper, screw some up and poke it into the open end of the glass to fill it, as for the larger items.

Lying the glass object on its side, roll it in the paper to form a smooth shape. Many people suggest that this is done diagonally. Fold or tuck the sides of the paper up and over the glass rim, tucking the sides in as you roll each glass.

It’s not a beauty parade: it’s far more important to ensure protection with plenty of crumpled paper and the more layers, the better protection. Double wrap any crystal or very thin glass, and don’t leave hollow spaces if you can avoid it.

8. Start filling the box

Place the wrapped bundles individually into the box. Line everything up, side by side, layer by layer, and add more crumpled paper to the corners and sides of the carton where the impact is greater.

If you find that things won’t fit reasonably tightly, try filling in with the smallest glass items, but try to keep them well inside if they are particularly fine glass.

And this is where your clean, empty plastic drinks bottles may help, by providing a ‘filler’ that won’t break and which is unlikely to create an impact if banged. (A reminder not to leave any hollow spaces.)

9. Protection

An optional extra is to put thin pieces of card between items as protective dividers - hence the cereal boxes we mentioned.

Once each layer is completely filled with wrapped glasses, cover with more sheets of packing paper before starting the next layer.

Leave room for an extra layer of cushioning at the top of the box, around the same size as the cushioning at the bottom. You’ve guessed it – use crumpled paper! You could, of course, use towels, shredded paper or bubble wrap as well. As with at the bottom, be prepared to have to throw towels out if they get broken glass into their fibres, but they’ll be protected by a layer of paper and are less likely to get broken glass on them than at the bottom.

10. Seal the Box

Close the box without sealing, and very gently move it back and forth. If you can hear any glass clinking, or can feel the glasses shifting, take a look at where it’s happening and stuff with more crumpled paper. Repeat before moving on to seal.

Seal the box closed with packing tape once you're happy that the packing is sound (no clinking). To seal, use at least one strip of tape along the centre join, and another strip over each flap.

With a good marker pen, mark the box "FRAGILE" so that anyone who moves it knows to be extra careful when handling.

Always also mark the box with its contents, partly for you to access later, and partly because lots of people write fragile on everything, so sometimes others don’t pay much attention. Seeing that it’s genuinely fragile should make them handle with care.

Here to help

If you want somewhere to store belongings, we’re always here:

And if you’re looking for good quality packaging materials at reasonable prices, we also sell these here: