1. Plastic bags will scratch a rouge finish; wrap work in "soft" tissue or flannel bag first. All other finishes can be wrapped in acid-free tissue paper.
2. After wrapping your work, put it in a polyethylene plastic bag, dispel as much air as possible, and close with a twisty. Plastic bags are always easier to find in a large carton amid the packaging material. This will help eliminate tarnish from forming during transit. You may also want to coat your work with Renaissance wax and enclose a 3M Anti-Tarnish strip for added protection.
3. Use of second hand cartons is fine, providing they are structurally sound and are rigid enough.
4. Use styrofoam peanuts, crumpled newspaper, or bubble-wrap when packing and double box when necessary. Shredded paper can be messy to deal with, plus it generates clouds of fine dust. Be sure there is enough cushion between the individually wrapped pieces and the carton wall/s.
5. Be sure pieces don't rattle before sealing cartons.
6. Always insert a packing list or invoice with your return address should the shipping label be destroyed during transit. Include special handling concerns if your piece is fragile.
7. You may want to enclose a pair of cotton gloves for sales people. Museum personnel generally know how to handle silver.
8. On used cartons, mask any return addresses other than your own. Remember, image is everything. If you received the package you're shipping, what would your impression be?
9. Heavy duty plastic shipping tape can be used, but is easily tampered with during transit. Kraft reinforced tape is preferable. Do not wrap the package in paper or use string.
10. Stamp "FRAGILE" on all cartons, regardless of size or content. Stamp on any carton flap seams to prevent pilferage and overtaping afterward.
11. Stamp "SIGNATURE REQUIRED" next to the shipping label on all cartons.
12. Print or type the address lable. Some carriers offer on-line services that will generate a lable through your printer. Do not place the lable over a seam in case the package must be inspected. Cover the lable with pressure-sensitive tape in case the lable is exposed to rain.
13. Don't forget to insure your work for either it's wholesale value or its retail value if the piece is being sent to a customer.
14. Maintain accurate shipping records should you have to file a claim.