Packing Different Types of Collectibles
When people talk about collectibles, they’re usually referring to a few different type of things: those things kept in their original boxes (often toys); fragile items like ceramics, pottery, and glass figurines; paper items like posters, stamps, documents, and books; and coins or currency.

So today, let’s take a look at some tips for how to pack each of these. And if you have collectibles that I haven’t touched on here, be sure to check out our general packing tips to make sure you cover all the basics!

How to Pack Boxed Collectibles: Vintage Toys and Dolls

As you know, collectibles in their original boxes are more valuable because, well, they’re still in their original boxes. Doing these things will help protect them in transit:

  • Wrap each box individually in acid-free packing paper. Be careful to tape only to the paper because taping to the box could damage it.
  • Next, wrap the box in bubble wrap, paying special attention to corners and edges.
  • Prepare a larger box to pack them into. Place a layer of crushed paper at the bottom to pad the bottom of the box.
  • Place the wrapped boxes into the larger box.
  • Make sure there’s no wiggle room.Use crushed packing paper to fill any gaps within the box.
  • Place a layer of crushed packing paper on top.This will help protect boxes from getting cut when opening the moving box at the destination.
  • Mark the box “FRAGILE,”and avoid stacking heavy boxes on top of it in the moving trailer.

How to Pack Fragile Collectibles: Figurines, Pottery, Ceramics, and Glass

  • Wrap each piece in bubble wrapor several sheets of packing paper. If you have smaller items, you may also want to consider using dish protector sleeves.
  • As you wrap, take care not to tape to your collectibles, as it could damage the finish or paint.
  • Prepare a box to pack them into. Place a layer of crushed paper at the bottom to pad the bottom of the box.
  • Place the items in boxes. If they are heavier, use a small box(we recommend 40 pounds max in a box). Or if they are smaller, you could use a dish pack box (pictured in the image below).
  • As you pack, keep items upright.Fragile items travel better standing upright than laying down.
  • Place crumbled packing paper around each item to pad them.Give the box a gentle shake. If items shift, pad with more paper.

Mark boxes “FRAGILE.” Take care when loading not to place anything heavy on How to Pack Paper Collectibles: Stamps, Posters, and Documents

Most of the time, paper items are in some sort of album, frame, or book; if your items are loose, I recommend putting them into an album with acid-free pages to protect them. If they’re in albums, just wrap the albums in acid-free packing paper and place them in the moving box. To pack posters, roll them, place them in poster tubes, and pack them into boxes.

How to Pack Coins and Currency

We recommend keeping these types of high-value items with you during transit. It’s also important to check with your homeowner’s insurance company to determine whether the collection is covered while it’s in transit. I recently read a thread online about coin collectors moving their collections (often worth $25,000+) and being nervous about traveling with them. If that’s you, you may want to follow the suggestion mentioned in the thread – hire an armored transport carrier, like Brinks or Loomis, to move your coin collection for you.

As for packing your collection, whether you choose to transport it yourself or use another method, they will need to be wrapped in packing paper and boxed for transport.  Boxes over 40 lbs. may be difficult to carry, so it’s wise to use smaller boxes to make them more manageable.

What If I Don’t Want to Move My Collection?

Though it’s sometimes hard to do, sometimes moving a collection just isn’t an option. As a matter-of-fact, we’ve explored alternative options for my Barbie® collection – specifically selling or donating it. Here are some ideas you may want to consider:

  • Sell your collection.Local antique shops, eBay, online collectors, Amazon.com, and trade shows are great places to unload your items. Just be prepared: when selling an entire collection, you will get less money than if you part it out. So while it may take more time, you may want to sell pieces individually to maximize your earnings.
  • Donate your collection.There a couple ways to go about this.
    • First, if there a museum specializing in your collectible (like a toy museum for my Barbies®), they’ll often take donations of items that match their galleries.
    • Second, some charitable groups will take these types of donations. If there’s a group who would use your collection (like a women’s shelter where you could donate quilts), or a group who could resell your collection for donation money, you may want to check into causes that have meaning for you.

Bunk Bed

A childhood staple, bunk beds are the ultimate space-maximizing solution (and a sleepover favorite!).

There are four main styles to choose from:
1. Standard: Two stacked beds.
2. Loft: One raised bed with a workspace underneath.
3. Trundle: A standard bunk bed with a pull-out trundle bed.
4. Futon: A lofted bed with a futon underneath.


This multifunctional option doubles as a sofa (so they’re twin sized only) and is meant to be placed against the wall.

The headboard and footboard of a daybed act as the sofa arms, and some styles also have a sideboard that stands in for a sofa back.

Some daybeds come with a trundle bed that fits underneath and offers additional sleeping space.


The sister of the four poster, canopy beds feature the same rising posts but with crossbeams that connect them at the top.

Classically outfitted with a canopy of fabric, which can be pulled closed or tied open, modern versions of this bed trade that romantic aesthetic for the crisp look of straight, unadorned lines.

Given their grand scale, canopy beds look best in rooms with tall ceilings—and should leave at least six inches of breathing room.

Four Poster

Dating back to the 16th century, four poster beds are defined by the decorative posts that rise up from each of the corners. These beds typically include a headboard but no footboard.

The height of the posts varies by style and ranges from just clearing the mattress to almost ceiling height.

The four posts usually feature detailing in some manner, be it decorative finials adorning the tops or carved accents spanning the entire length.


The distinctive arched shape of the headboard (and footboard, if there is one) evokes the curves of an old-fashioned sleigh, giving this bed its name.

Sleigh beds are one of the more substantial options, as the shape claims additional floorspace.

Traditional styles feature the classic hefty headboard and footboard, while modern interpretations streamline the look with just a headboard and


A staple of mid-century modern design, the platform bed has clean lines and is most often seen in rich natural woods.

This bed sits much lower to the ground than traditional styles and typically has a headboard but no footboard. It can have a solid base or the delicate legs that epitomize this period of design.

Platform beds utilize slats for support instead of a box spring, which adds unwanted height for this style.

Headboard and Footboard

This basic framework comprises a vast range of iconic bed styles—from metal trundle beds to wood panel styles and more.

The headboard is almost always taller than the footboard, and any detailing is usually reflected across both.

This type of bed can be found with storage-friendly additions, like bookcase headboards or under-bed drawers.

Headboard and Side Rails

This ubiquitous type lets the headboard take center stage, with simple rails composing the other three sides.

The no-footboard style is most often paired with upholstered headboard and matching rails, but is prevalent in wood as well—especially in modern designs, which favor its simple lines.

The continuation of the material from the headboard to rails differentiates this style from the simple headboard-only option, and makes for a complete, cohesive finish.

Headboard and a Basic Frame

This two-part option starts with a no-frills metal bed frame that’s coupled with a separate headboard. It doesn’t have rails of any kind on the sides or foot of the bed.

Popular as a flexible and economical option—the parts can be purchased at different times and at any price point—this bed style is easy to change up at any time.

There are three installation options for the standalone headboard: wall mounted, bed-frame mounted, and freestanding.


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