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Dining Room

Guide to Packing and Moving a Dining Room

How to Move a Dining Room Table

Start by taking a picture of your table from all angles. This documents the status of your table before moving it, so you can see any existing damage and to provide proof if you have to make a claim because additional damage occurred during the move.

It's easiest to move a dining room table with the legs off, so unbolt or unscrew the legs first. Tape the hardware, in a re-sealable plastic bag, under the table. Wrap the legs in bubble wrap for added protection.

Remove the table leaf and wrap it in a moving blanket, using tape to secure the blanket to the leaf. For drop-side tables, put the sides down before wrapping the tabletop in a moving blanket. Otherwise, wrap the table in as many moving blankets as needed to cover the surface, overlapping the blankets by at least one foot. Use packing tape to secure the blankets to the table. If the blankets don't wrap all the way around, it's okay to tape the underside of the table, but do not use tape on the table's surface, as it could leave a residue or even peel the paint or wood surfacing.

Load the table top against the wall of the moving van and secure with rope or bungee cords, or lay it flat on the floor of the moving truck. Place the legs in a position where they won't roll and risk damaging other items.

Glass top tables should be wrapped in several layers of bubble wrap and at least two layers of moving blankets, with a layer of cardboard taped over the blankets, to help protect the glass from damage. You can use flattened moving boxes for cardboard, giving a double layer of protection.

If you can, sandwich the glass top table between two mattresses. Otherwise, secure it against the wall of the moving truck with bungee cords, after adding another layer of padding between the van wall and the glass tabletop.

How to Move Dining Room Chairs

Take photos of your dining room chairs to document existing damage, in case the wood or upholstery is damaged in the move. There are two ways to wrap dining room chairs for protection.

1. Wrap the entire chair in a moving blanket and secure with tape.
2. Wrap the legs and back in bubble wrap, and use stretch wrap over the fabric upholstery.

Move the chairs by picking them up from the bottom of the seat. Do not move chairs by lifting up from their backs or by dragging them across the floor, as this could damage the chair or the floor.

On the moving van, stack chairs in groups of two, laying one chair's seat upside down across the chair of the other seat. Secure them together with bungee cords or rope, and then secure them to the side of the moving van or to larger furniture that won't shift during transport.

How to Move a China Cabinet/Hutch

Large china cabinets can sometimes be taken apart for moving. You'll need at least two people to remove the hutch from a china cabinet. When you remove the hutch, lay it directly on top of a moving blanket to prevent damage to the floor and to make wrapping it up easier.

Secure hutch doors with zip ties, if possible. Wrap two or three moving blankets around the hutch, and secure with packing tape around the entire cabinet. Use a bungee cord or rope around the door area, to ensure the doors stay shut, especially if you were unable to use zip ties.

Tape cardboard to the moving blankets in front of any glass on the china cabinet for added protection.

Two people should help lift the china cabinet hutch onto a moving dolly/sliders, lifting only one short side at a time. After mapping out your path through the home, move the china cabinet to the van or truck. Carefully bring it up the loading ramp with a supporting hand on top, as it may be top heavy, and secure the hutch to the sides of the truck using rope or cords.

How to Move a Buffet/Credenza/Sideboard

A buffet table, credenza, or sideboard may be a standalone piece in your dining room, or it might be the lower half of your china cabinet. In either case, it probably stores silverware and china reserved for special occasions.

Transport the silverware in its tray by wrapping paper around the silverware, and securing it with moving tape or rubber bands. Place the entire tray and utensils in a bag, tie it shut, and pack flat in a moving box with other kitchen or dining room items.

Carefully pack the dishes in corrugated cardboard boxes designed for china. Plates should stand upright, with cardboard dividers between them. Cups and bowls should be individually wrapped with plain newsprint, bubble wrap, or tissue paper. China should be packed snugly, but not too tight, to prevent breakage. Fill in extra space at the top of the box with packing materials or towels.

Mark the box containing your china as "fragile," with the contents listed, as a reminder to yourself and others to handle the box with care and not stack other heavy items on top of it.

To move the buffet, credenza, or sideboard, either remove the drawers and pack them separately, or remove the hardware and put it back on facing the inside of the drawers. This helps prevent the knobs or handles from getting damaged or from damaging other items during the move.

If you're keeping the drawers and doors on your buffet for the move, wrap the entire piece in stretch wrap to keep the drawers and doors from opening. Then wrap the entire thing in moving blankets to protect the piece against chips and scratches.

If you're removing the drawers, wrap moving blankets around the entire credenza and secure them with tape. The moving blankets and tape will help to keep the doors closed during the move.

Lift the credenza onto a moving dolly/sliders by lifting one corner at a time. Depending on how heavy your sideboard is, you may be able to do this alone. But for pieces weighing more than 100 pounds, make sure you have someone to help you move the credenza through the house.

Because a buffet is so heavy, it can be loaded onto the floor of the moving van amidst other furniture pieces and is likely to stay in place as long as there are other heavy items around it to secure it. Feel free to pack boxes on top of the sideboard to save space — just make sure the boxes won't fall off during the trip.

How to Move a Curio Cabinet

Similar to a china cabinet, a curio cabinet is a pricey, fragile piece of furniture designed to display valuables in your home. For this reason, it's important to take photos of your curio before packing it, so you can make a claim if the furniture is damaged during transport.

It's also handy to take a picture of the curio before emptying it, so you remember where everything goes — although moving is also a good reason to rearrange your curio to create a new look.

After photographing the cabinet from all angles, remove your collectibles and wrap them carefully in bubble wrap or plain newsprint. Sectioned boxes, like the kind used to store Christmas ornaments, are perfect for packing items from a curio. You can also use pieces of cardboard to separate items, or simply use bubble wrap or packing peanuts to help ensure the pieces don't touch. Pack items securely, so that if you shake the box gently, you can't hear any items shifting or moving.

If your curio cabinet has a light, wrap the wire and secure it with a twist tie or zip tie. There's no reason to remove the lightbulb from the curio, as it should be just as safe inside the curio as it would be anywhere else.

Wrap the glass portions of the curio in bubble wrap. Then wrap the entire cabinet in multiple layers of moving blankets, securing them with lengths of packing tape that surround the entire curio, placed eight inches to one foot apart so you know they'll all stay in place. Place cardboard over the glass portions of the cabinet, on top of the moving blankets, and tape the cardboard on as an added layer of protection.

Moving a curio cabinet is a two-person job, as the piece is top-heavy and extremely fragile. Carefully load the curio onto a tall handcart, with one person always supporting the top. Pull the hand truck and curio to your destination, with your friend supporting the top of the curio and guiding you.

Once in the moving van, secure the curio to the van wall using bungees and surround the cabinet with heavy furniture so it can't move during the trip. You can pack pillows or cushions around the curio for added protection.