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How to store your antiques properly

Proper packing and storage are crucial to safeguard your delicate items. And we’ll walk you through the steps of preparing your antiques for storage.

Your antiques hold both sentimental and financial value, making them priceless treasures worth preserving. A self-storage unit offers a safe haven for your beloved artefacts, freeing up space in your home while keeping them secure. However, proper packing and storage are crucial to safeguard these delicate items.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps of preparing your antiques for storage. By following our advice, you can ensure that your cherished collectables emerge from self-storage in pristine condition, ready to be enjoyed for years to come.

Things to consider when choosing antique storage

Ensuring the proper storage of your beloved antiques involves more than just finding a spot to stow them away. Let’s delve deeper into the key factors to consider, starting with the location of your storage unit.

Storage unit location

Ease of access to your self-storage unit is paramount, especially when dealing with delicate antique furniture. You wouldn’t want to risk damaging your prized possessions by lugging them across a sprawling storage facility. Here’s what to look for:

  1. Drive-up Outdoor Unit: Opting for a drive-up outdoor unit allows you to park right by your storage space, making loading and unloading a breeze. This convenience minimizes the risk of accidents or mishaps during transport.
  2. Ground Floor Access: If a drive-up unit isn’t available, prioritize a storage unit on the ground floor. This eliminates the hassle of navigating stairs or elevators with bulky and fragile items, reducing the likelihood of accidental bumps or drops.
  3. Elevator Accessibility: In cases where an upper-level unit is unavoidable, ensure the facility is equipped with a reliable elevator. This feature simplifies the process of transporting large or heavy antiques, minimizing the potential for damage.
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Security measures

Preserving your antique collection goes beyond physical protection; it extends to safeguarding them against theft and vandalism. Here’s what to look for in terms of security features:

  1. 24/7 Security Surveillance: Choose a self-storage facility with round-the-clock security monitoring such as Keep It Self Storage. This constant vigilance deters unauthorized access and provides peace of mind knowing your treasures are under watchful eyes.
  2. Perimeter Security: Opt for a facility with comprehensive perimeter security measures, such as high fences or walls. Combined with controlled access points, this fortification adds an extra layer of defence against intruders.
  3. Advanced Security Technology: Look for facilities equipped with alarm systems, CCTV cameras, and electronic pin code access to individual storage units. These high-tech features offer enhanced protection against theft and unauthorized entry.

Insurance coverage

While sentimental value may be priceless, ensuring your antique items are adequately insured is a wise precaution. Here’s what you need to know about securing insurance for your valuable collection:

  1. Purchase Storage Insurance: Invest in storage insurance to safeguard your antiques against unforeseen events like theft, fire, or natural disasters. While the likelihood of such incidents may be low, the peace of mind it offers is invaluable.
  2. Document and Appraise: Document your antique collection thoroughly by photographing each item and creating a detailed inventory. Include estimated replacement values to streamline the insurance claims process. For particularly valuable pieces, consider obtaining professional appraisals to accurately assess their worth.

By prioritizing accessibility, security, and insurance coverage, you can ensure your cherished antiques are not only stored safely but also protected against potential risks. With these considerations in mind, you can rest assured that your precious treasures will remain in pristine condition for years to come.

3 steps to properly store your antiques

Clean your antiques

Taking the time to clean your antiques before packing them away is a simple yet crucial step in preserving their beauty and integrity. Here’s a breakdown of easy-to-follow tips to ensure your cherished pieces stay in pristine condition:

Close-up of woman wrapping bottle in paper and packing it in cardboard box at table for delivery
  1. Dust Off Dirt and Grime: Start by gently wiping away any dust, dirt, or grime accumulated on your antique furniture. A soft cloth or feather duster works wonders in removing surface debris without causing damage.
  2. Protect Timber Furniture: For wooden furniture, consider applying a high-quality furniture polish or wax to nourish the wood and prevent it from cracking or drying out. Consult with your antique dealer to determine the best treatment for your specific piece. Once polished or waxed, wrap the furniture in a protective furniture pad and secure it with twine or tape for added cushioning during storage.
  3. Condition Leather Surfaces: Leather furniture requires special attention to maintain its suppleness and prevent cracking. Use a leather conditioner to moisturize and protect the leather from drying out over time. Apply the conditioner evenly and allow it to absorb before wrapping the furniture for storage.
  4. Preserve Metal Finishes: Brass, metal, or nickel accents on your antiques can benefit from a generous polish to restore their lustre. After polishing, wipe the surfaces with oil to create a protective barrier against oxidation and corrosion.
  5. Prevent Tarnishing of Silver: If you’re storing silver antiques, consider placing camphor blocks near them to inhibit tarnishing. These blocks help absorb moisture in the air, reducing the likelihood of tarnish formation and keeping your silver shining bright.
  6. Gentle Fabric Cleaning: Treat fabric-covered antiques with care by using an antibacterial cleanser to gently remove any stains or odours. Avoid harsh chemicals that may damage delicate fabrics, and allow the fabric to air dry completely before packing it away.

Adhering to these simple cleaning guidelines will help maintain your antiques in pristine condition while stored, ensuring they can be appreciated and cherished for many years ahead.

Get ready to pack

After sprucing up your antiques, it’s essential to shield them properly for safe storage. Here’s how to get organized with the right packing materials:

  1. Gather Essentials: Collect all the packing supplies you’ll need, including boxes, tape, clear plastic wrap, bubble wrap, felt fabric, thick blankets, cardboard corners, and ‘Fragile’ stickers. Having everything on hand streamlines the packing process and ensures your antiques are adequately protected.
  2. Check Material Safety: Before wrapping your antiques, double-check that your packing materials are safe to use. Some papers and wraps may contain acids that could harm delicate surfaces over time. Opt for acid-free options to prevent any potential damage to your precious items.
woman opening parcel indoors. woman opening and unpacking cardboard box parcel in living room at home. good delivery service

Packing your antiques properly

Packing your antiques carefully is essential to ensure they remain safe and intact during storage. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you protect your cherished items:

  1. Horizontal Storage for Mirrors and Artworks: Lay antique mirrors and framed artworks flat to prevent them from tipping over or collapsing under their own weight. This reduces the risk of damage during storage.
  2. Avoid Stacking Antique Furniture: Refrain from stacking antique furniture on top of each other, especially for long-term storage. Stacking can lead to unnecessary pressure and potential damage to delicate pieces.
  3. Disassemble Lampshades and Lamps: Before packing a lampshade, remove the light bulb and separate the shade from the base. Wrap each component in bubble wrap to prevent breakage during transport and storage.
  4. Empty Nooks and Drawers: Ensure that any antique furniture with compartments or drawers is emptied completely. This not only makes moving easier but also prevents damage to both the furniture and its contents.
  5. Protect Fragile Items: For fragile items like vases, stuff the interior with soft material and wrap the exterior with bubble wrap to provide cushioning and protection against impacts.
  6. Use Protective Wrapping for Mirrors and Pictures: Carefully wrap mirrors and framed pictures in protective materials such as bubble wrap to shield them from scratches and breakage during handling and storage.
  7. Bubble Wrap for Table and Chair Legs: Wrap the legs of tables and chairs with bubble wrap to prevent them from knocking against other objects. Secure the bubble wrap with packing tape or twine to keep it in place.
  8. Avoid Plastic Wrap for Timber: Refrain from wrapping timber furniture in bubble wrap, as plastic can trap moisture and lead to condensation and mould growth. Instead, use clear plastic wrap to protect against dust and termite damage.
  9. Consider Disassembling Large Furniture: If feasible, carefully dismantle large or heavy furniture to make transportation and storage easier. Wrap and label each part for easy reassembly later.
  10. Label Boxes as Fragile: Clearly mark all boxes containing fragile items as “Fragile” to ensure they receive careful handling during transit and storage.

Organise your self-storage unit

Organizing your self-storage unit is essential for maintaining the condition of your antiques. Here’s how to set up your storage space effectively:

  1. Avoid Stacking: Resist the urge to stack items on top of each other, especially fragile antiques. Stacking increases the risk of items toppling over and causing damage.
  2. Weight Distribution: Place heavier items at the bottom of your storage unit to provide stability. Lighter items can be placed on top to prevent crushing or distortion.
  3. Allow Airflow: Ensure there’s enough space between furniture pieces to allow for proper airflow. This prevents moisture buildup and minimizes the risk of mould or mildew.
  4. Label and Catalogue: Label each box and item clearly and maintain a detailed inventory. Taking photos of your stored antiques can also help you keep track of their condition and location.
  5. Cover Upholstered Items: Protect upholstered items from dust and debris by covering them with sheets or tarps. This extra layer helps to keep your antiques clean and free from damage while in storage.

With these tips, you can set up your storage space in a way that keeps your antiques safe and easy to get to for future enjoyment.

In conclusion

Just a reminder to take good care of your antiques every step of the way, from cleaning and packing to choosing the right storage unit and organizing your belongings. By following the advice in this guide, you can make sure that your cherished antiques stay in great condition while in storage at Keep It Self-Storage, ready to be admired and enjoyed for generations to come.

Remember to prioritize accessibility, security, and proper packing techniques to protect the beauty and value of your precious treasures. With attention to detail and thoughtful preparation, your antique collection will keep bringing joy and fascination for years to come.

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