A Ship Smart employee carrying antique furniture.

How to Ship Antiques

How to Ship Antiques

Whether it's a one-of-a-kind family heirloom or a gem you discovered in a flea market, antiques often carry immense monetary and sentimental value. For this reason, proper packaging should be your number one priority when it comes to moving antique furniture.

Most antique pieces are several generations old and not as sturdy as they once were. It's fairly common to hear cases of people who suffered immense losses while shipping antique furniture due to a lack of proper packaging measures. If you are considering shipping antique furniture, whether hereditary or just valuable, the care given should be unquestionable. The objective should be to avoid breakage and maintain quality.

If you are afraid to lose, break, or lower the quality of your antique, read on for expert tips to safeguard your antique items. Expect to find valuable information that will help equip you with the best practices when shipping antiques.

Tips on Shipping Antiques

There are several ways to shipping antiques including hiring shipping companies for antiques, but it doesn't hurt to learn how to do it yourself. You should always consider all the risks associated with moving. For example, you may experience a bumpy road causing damage to your items or run the risk of exposure to moisture.

Start by coming up with imaginary or hypothetical causes of damage during transit and attempt to find their possible solutions. This way, you get to be prepared for the unexpected. And remember, put more effort into packing your antique items, even more than you put towards shipping, although both are important. Here are the steps you need to follow while shipping your antiques:

Keep Everyone on the Loop

Before anything else, it's important that you communicate with your shippers and provide accurate information on the dimensions, condition, and value of your antique furniture. This includes:

  • Taking photos: This is a relatively simple yet effective method of collecting and sending information on your antiques. Photos provide proof on the condition of your valuables prior to shipping for comparison once they're delivered to their destination. It's also a good way of keeping track of everything you packed.
  • Labeling: In case your antique is a put-together item, then there is a dire need for labeling each part. But ensure that you're precise, accurate, and neat with your labeling. Neatness can help maintain the quality of your antiques. Thinks about it; you can't just pick a marker and start drafting numbers all over a piece that is several decades old. Instead, consider wrapping the piece in paper before labeling.
  • Create awareness of fragile items: Of course, antiques are delicate items by default?but some require extra care. Informing the shippers about some of the more fragile antiques can help reduce the risk of damages. The best shipping companies for antiques such as Ship Smart come up with the best solution based on their experience and industry standards.


Once you have taken photos, labeled, and created awareness of delicate items?and you are feeling assured?then get to packaging your antiques. The packaging technique depends on particular items. But generally, here are some of the best practices to observe for maximum safety while shipping antique furniture:

  • Avoid furniture tapping: Tapes are meant for holding things together?but not your furniture. Since your antiques will be dismantled in the end, you should avoid taping them. If you tape them the clear varnish applied to them may peel off when you decide to get rid of the tape. For this reason, you should consider hiring shipping companies for antiques. This is because they are professionals in such techniques?hence reducing the risk of such easy-to-miss incidents.
  • Use crating services: This is the best way to protect your valuables. If you are doing the shipping on your own, you can order crates from shipping companies. If you decide to hire professional antique shippers such as Ship Smart, all your crating needs are often taken care of.
  • Use boxes: If you cannot afford the crates, boxing is also a good idea to pack your antiques. But take caution in choosing the box size. You will have to find a slightly bigger size than your furniture to allow for padding. You can also consider taking measurements of your furniture to precisely know the size you require need.


After you are done packing your antiques?and of course you feel satisfied with your work?it's time to ship. This process typically begins when you start loading your items in the means of transport you intend to use. These are the various ways of shipping your furniture antiques:

  • Consolidated freight: Also known as a multi-stop truckload. It entails sharing the same means of transport with other movers. This method is good for people shipping fewer items. It is also a very affordable method to use since you only pay for the space your antique occupies. However, consolidated freight may be a bit time consuming since there are several other stops and items to be delivered on the way.
  • Ship yourself (DIY Style): You pack your antiques, rent a truck, and ship them yourself. Wondering why you should do this? Well, some people love being in control of their environment?which we solemnly respect. But there are so many disadvantages to using this mode of shipping, including having full responsibility for any damage incurred either to your antiques or even the rental truck. It can be also very expensive for long-distance moves.
  • Hire professional movers: This is arguably the safest and most convenient way of shipping antiques. Your antiques are handled by professionals who have experience in shipping. From packaging to shipping, they do it with expert-level care. The only downside to this method is its relatively high cost, especially for long moves. But you can never compromise on the safety of your antiques, right?

Ship your antiques the Smart Way

Now that you're fully equipped on how to ship antique furniture, partner with a shipper that has your best interest in mind. Take time to find the best shipping companies for antiques. The company should come with the best intentions for you and your antiques. With this in mind, Ship Smart guarantees you of a safe shipment of your valuables. We major in providing the best care to your antiques, from packaging to shipping?all hinged on wide-spanning experience. Choose Ship Smart and ship your antiques the smart way.

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