View Full Version : How do you Ship Fragile Pastels?

11-02-2008, 10:59 PM
I sold some pieces in my first gallery show to folks from out of state. How would you recommend I ship them safely? They are matted and glassed in metal frames. thanks!

11-03-2008, 12:28 AM
I remember reading in another thread that if you criss cross tape on the glass of the frame, then even if it breaks there's less chance of pieces falling in and cutting or smearing the art. Makes a cleaning job for the buyer getting the tape residue off, but if it does break that would possibly help. Especially if it was clean big cracks.

I think the tape was supposed to go at two or three inch intervals on a diagonal. I think it was supposed to be masking tape.

Also you can get cardboard corners to put on the frame itself. I think packing companies have them. Put some on the frame inside the box. Lots of bubble wrap. Get a flat shallow box from the post office or the shipping company sized a little larger than the framed art and a little deeper than the frame's height and make sure there is enough bubble wrap and packing stuffing to have some cushioning on all sides and stuff the box solid.

Insure the package for the value of both the art and the frame.

I'd be real scared to send out framed art with glass, when I posted on this question it was how to send unmatted unframed art. You've got a lot of work to do it right but it can arrive safely if you're real careful. It's just that the real careful part seemed to involve a lot of running around and carrying things and going places that is beyond me usually.

Another thought: you could ask a local framer about packaging and sending framed art. Most of them would love to get a local artist's business and be happy to help answer questions and may even sell the supplies. That's who would have the most experience shipping frames with glazing and framed pictures.

11-03-2008, 07:15 PM
There was a thread on this back in July


Richard McKinley also talks about it on his blog at Pastel Jouranl's site. Look at the May 2008 entires.

11-03-2008, 07:26 PM
I don't know where you live but where I live I have a retail shipping outlet, who will box and ship and insure your package. It's a bit expensive but they ship in a mirror box with lots of bubble wrap. Bubble wrap is the secret. Lots of bubble wrap.

I have had good success.

11-07-2008, 09:55 PM

You might want to speak with the people who purchased your images because they may not care if you ship glass at all. Probably about the only thing you might need to consider is if you used museum glass, and you wind up not sending it, you might want to send funds so that your client can buy that glass at their location or arrange something else equitable.

If I had to make my own decision, I would take the glass off and put glassine over the images for protection. You could substitute plexiglass or foamcore for rigidity, but I would still place the glassine directly over the pastel surface. You could include the glass in its own bubblewrap package if you need to send it. I would probably sandwich the glass in between two rigid, protective boards - like rigid foamcore. If you do use glass, I've seen adhesive sheets that can be applied to the glass that will keep your artwork safer in case the glass does break during transit. You could probably use multiple pieces of tape applied over the surface too. (I wonder also how well Glad's Press n Seal might work if it was applied to the glass to hold it in case of breakage.) I've sent pastels through UPS from Kansas City to Cologno Monzese, Italy (so that's about as far as you can get around the globe) packed in glassine, foamcore, mats and backing board sandwiches, then wrapped up tightly so there's no shifting in bubblewrap and packing tape, and I have had no complaints. Hope this helps and gives you some ideas.

11-09-2008, 10:34 AM
I recommend against masking tape. If too much time elapses, it will be difficult to remove it. Instead, choose either Glas-Skin (from www.airfloatsys.com (http://www.airfloatsys.com)) or a low-tack tape. Low-tack tape can be hard to find, but you can get it from HBM Supply (http://www.hbmsupply.com/html/products.html#specialty).

If you do use tape, to minimize damage if the glass should break, the ENTIRE surface of glass should be covered. Lay down the strips parallel to and overlapping one another. Ends should be folded back so they don't damage the frame.

(I'm writing an article for The Artist's Magazine on this very subject - shipping works on paper. This is all from my research.)