How to Prepare Your Kitchenware for Moving and Storage

Jon Fesmire |

Packing kitchenware is far from intuitive. You may be tempted to buy ordinary packing boxes, to stack your plates the same way you do in your cupboard, to simply wrap up your cups and put them in a box. However, these methods aren’t the safest.

Whether you’re packing up kitchenware to put in storage or for a move, it’s important to do it right.

Flatware and Cutlery

To pack ordinary flatware, you’ll need sheets of blank newsprint and a small storage box. Separate pieces by type. For example, matching forks, matching spoons, and so on. Wrap each group in several sheets of newsprint packing paper. Label each bundle after you have wrapped it, and place it in the moving box.

Silverware needs to be packed differently from other flatware to avoid staining. Pack each individual piece in acid-free paper.

Mugs and Glasses

Mugs, teacups, and glasses need a lot of cushioning. For mugs, bundle up the end of a piece of newsprint and place it through the handle, then wrap it completely around the cup. Bundle up some newsprint and place it inside. Finally, wrap it completely in another sheet of newsprint. Place each piece in a small box together.

For glasses, purchase glass packing boxes. These boxes come with a cardboard grid that goes in each box and provides a space for each glass. Put some newsprint into each cup and place it in the box upside down. Then, push some packing paper into the free spaces to keep the glasses still.

Plates

The first mistake most people make when packing plates is to stack them. The problem with this is that the bottom plates receive pressure from the plates above. This pressure, combined with jiggling while in transit, can crack the lower plates.

Instead, pack the plates on their sides. To do this, wrap each plate in two sheets of blank newsprint and place them in the box on their sides. You may want to measure the diameter of each plate and look for a box with one square side that is slightly larger for a good fit.

For more fragile plates, like china, wrap each plate in soft felt and then in newsprint. Have a cardboard separator between each plate.

Pots & Pans

Pots and pans are the most awkward to pack kitchen items due to their variety of shapes and sizes. Small boxes aren’t big enough to pack pots and pans, while large boxes will end up too heavy. So, put together a medium box and tape it securely on the bottom.  Bunch up some blank newsprint to make a soft layer on the bottom of the box. Wrap each pot or pan in your newsprint paper. If this paper isn’t large enough, you can use towels. Once you have several pieces wrapped together, put it in the box. Paper more and arrange everything in the box.

Appliances

Each small appliance, such as a microwave, coffee machine, or blender, should go in its own box with each piece that goes with it. Do not put the pieces in a separate box. This will make it easier to put each item back together later. If you don’t have the original packaging, measure the appliance and purchase a box for it. Wrap each piece in newsprint and put it in the box, and fill in the extra spaces with more newsprint.

If you’re storing a large appliance like a refrigerator or an oven, disconnect it and clean it. Make sure it’s thawed, dusted, and that all food particles have been removed. In storage, pests could make their way into these appliances. One good way to keep them out is to cover open spaces in plastic kitchen wrap that pests cannot get through. Also, always store appliances upright. Follow this advice and your kitchen items will be ready for storage or for a safe move. Just don’t forget to handle the boxes with care!