Packing for Your Move - The Basics


Packing for Your Move in Wichita Falls - The Basics

Packing and purging go together--while you're purging, you should be packing, at the same time. If you are overseeing your move yourself, you're in charge of accumulating all the packing materials you need. Your local big-box store, self-storage company or the mover you've hired are all good resources for your supplies. If you purchase from your mover, ask if you can return any unopened or unused boxes, tape, bubble wrap, or paper.

Here's a checklist to help you get going:

Small boxes for books, heavy items, toys, appliances, fragile items

Medium boxes for the kitchen, accessories, lampshades, linens, shoes and boots

Large boxes for lamps, window treatments, pillows--items that are bulky but lightweight

Packing tape and tape guns

Newsprint, bubble wrap, packing peanuts or your shredded paper

Markers and labels

Small tools--screwdrivers, hammer, box cutter, scissors

Camera or smartphone

For a more comprehensive list of tools to make your move easier, click here.

Where to Begin

Last utilized, last packed is the rule of thumb for the packing process—generally speaking, the coffeepot and microwave are the last things to be put in boxes. Since you're packing in unison as you purge, start with the low-hanging fruit in chests and cabinets; you can knock out several of those in an hour. When you've purged enough for a donation or trash run, do not exit the house until your packed boxes are taped and labelled. You can use specific color-coded labels (blue for the kitchen, green for the master, etc.) or use masking tape with a heavy black marker; just be sure you label each side of the box and note if it is delicate. A couple of moments spent listing the contents are very important later when you can't lay hands on your shoes in all the boxes marked "master closet".


Purging helps you get organized, and so does tidying up the closets, attic, and garage at the beginning of the process. You will need a storage location for all your packed boxes, and the garage is the perfect place as it's going to be near to the moving truck. Of course, the garage has to be clutter-free for this to work, so get to work on the garage project early on—carve out at least a couple days for the garage purge. Once you've got the space cleared, sort your boxes so that the movers can get to them easily on moving day; they will load the truck so that the weight is adequately distributed and so that the first things that you need at the destination are the last put on.

If you are the kind of person who saves boxes, you may now congratulate yourself. Electronics are fragile and if you have the original box, you can re-use it. If not, put everything connected to the device in a box--power cords, modems, power strips, instructional CDS--and label it all. Take photos of the cords before you pack them in case something gets misplaced.


It's bewildering how many things you use regularly are very breakable. Dishware, glasses, light bulbs, lamps--all need a little special handling when you're packing them. Wrap dishes and glasses in newsprint, and place the plates in the box on end like records. A layer of bubble wrap protects them more, and stuff the empty spaces with some sort of shredded paper or packing peanuts. Don't overload the the boxes of delicate, and don't use big boxes for delicate items. Boxes from the liquor store work wonderfully for fragile things; they come in odd sizes and may not have tops, so with a box cutter and tape you can customize boxes.

Don't just toss your lamps into boxes, unscrew the shade and harp and take out the bulb. The bases can be put in a large box with the harp taped to the base, the shades can nest in another box, and the bulbs need to be packed separately (an ornament box is great for this) and marked fragile.

In our next post, we will look at packing dos and don'ts.