Handling Special Furniture Items: Piano Removals, Artwork, and Delicate Pieces

Blog / Handling Special Furniture Items: Piano Removals, Artwork, and Delicate Pieces

When transporting delicate furniture and other fragile, precious items, the truth is the only sensible answer lies in allowing professionals to step in and handle the move on your behalf. They have all the requisite experience and knowledge to get the job done quickly and efficiently, minimising risk to the items in question and the individuals charged with lifting and transporting them. Some items creating major issues and stresses when considering how to pack delicate items when moving locations include:

  • Unusual, heavy items like pianos
  • Fragile artwork
  • Delicate objects like glassware and crystal

Damage and/or injury are a huge risk in situations like this, so take our advice and let a reputable removal expert take the weight off your shoulders if at all possible. However, for those determined to take control themselves, here are some tips and tricks from the experts at Adlam Transport to give yourself the best chance of success.

Find the right packing materials

Start looking for packing materials months in advance if you can and gather yourself a nice stock of the following:

  • Strong cardboard boxes in various shapes and sizes
  • Rolls and scraps of bubble wrap
  • Foam peanuts and polystyrene balls
  • Newspaper and packing paper
  • Towels and soft cloths
  • Rolls of masking tape
  • Scissors and box-cutters
  • Permanent marker pens
  • Plain paper

You can also purchase furniture blankets designed for this exact purpose. They are excellent at protecting larger items and easily damaged surfaces.

Pack the boxes carefully and methodically

Tend towards grouping items of a similarly fragile nature and protecting them appropriately rather than mixing them in with the general mass of more robust ones.

  • Select appropriate boxes for each set of items
  • Create cushioned bases with soft materials
  • Wrap items individually where necessary
  • Pack with care, adding support from all sides

Make an inventory of your items

Creating a list of contents for each box as you pack it, will make it so much easier to locate certain items on arrival and identify those filled with fragile items. If possible, make a copy of each list, taping one to the outside of the box and keeping one together with the others. For even greater ease of identification, number the boxes and mark them accordingly.

  • Use a permanent marker to number the boxes and indicate which ones need to be treated most carefully

Protect larger delicate items

When transporting delicate furniture and other easily damaged larger objects like paintings and mirrors, they need to be protected just as carefully as smaller ones. In fact, the chances of larger items getting damaged in transit are much greater, so they probably need even more care and attention to detail.

Consider creating custom-made boxes for items where possible, taping sections of strong cardboard together and double or even triple-boxing when necessary. Use the furniture blankets and any other soft cloths, towels, blankets, and bubble wrap you can find to protect corners and sensitive areas. Strap the finished packages into the transport vehicle carefully in order to prevent movement during transit.


Moving a piano is not a task for the faint-hearted and really requires an article all to itself, so research and plan carefully before attempting to do so. Pianos are exceptionally heavy and cumbersome but must still be handled with extreme care as they are also fragile internally. This makes them a nightmare to move without enough capable people and the right equipment, and a potential injury risk if not taken seriously. Even if you prefer to move all your other items by yourself, think very carefully before deciding to transport a piano without professional assistance.

Before you do anything, get a feel for the weight you are about to encounter and be honest with yourselves as to whether you can handle it. Pianos can weigh up to 400 kg and are awkwardly shaped with it. Underestimate them at your peril. At the very least, ensure the following steps are taken:

  • Assemble a moving team of no less than 4 people, none with existing injuries or health issues.
  • Wear loose, not baggy clothing, rubber-palmed gloves, and sturdy shoes with good tread
  • Plan your exact movements and route to the vehicle
  • Clear a path
  • Put ramps in place where necessary
  • Prepare a dolly or other wheeled device if you have one
  • Use a spotter to guide your movement to the vehicle
  • Secure the piano firmly before the vehicle sets off
  • Repeat the process in reverse

How to pack delicate items when moving

It might seem laborious, but the only way to really minimise the chances of breakage when dealing with glassware and crystal is to individually wrap each piece. Packing paper or bubble wrap will do the trick nicely, and the outer box should be similarly stuffed with packing materials, leaving no space for movement within.

  • Fill the space inside hollow items and glasses with other soft items like socks or use crumpled newspaper to give increased support from inside.

For bespoke items or unusual shapes, the best solution is to keep wrapping as many layers as possible, adding material in vulnerable places to thicken the support and lessen the chances of breakage. Consider individual boxes for awkward items, packing them carefully and supporting them from all sides. It will be much easier to stack the finished box with the others and transport it rather than trying to fit an odd, fragile shape inside a box with other objects.

Contact us

We hope by following this guide, packing and transporting delicate furniture and items can be achieved with confidence, ensuring both you and they remain undamaged during your move. With the right preparation, care, and attention to detail, your chances of delivering prized possessions to the new location intact are greatly increased. If you would like more information or the opinion or services of a reputable, highly experienced removal expert in Perth, please do not hesitate to drop us a line here at Adlam Transport today.