How to Pack Plates for Moving

Moving can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to packing fragile items like plates. The fear of breaking or damaging your precious dinnerware can add unnecessary stress to an already challenging process. But what if there was a way to ensure your plates reach their new home in one piece?

At Friends Moving, with our 15 years of experience in the moving industry, we’ve mastered the art of packing plates safely and efficiently. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll share our expert tips on how to pack plates for moving, ensuring they remain intact throughout the journey.

Whether you’re moving across the street or across the country, these insights from our seasoned professionals will give you the confidence to pack your plates like a pro. Dive in and discover the best practices to keep your dinnerware safe and sound.

Why Proper Packing is Essential

how to pack plates for moving

Moving is more than just transporting items from one place to another; it’s about ensuring the safety and integrity of cherished belongings. When it comes to dinnerware, proper packing is not just a recommendation but a necessity. Here’s why:

  • Financial Implications: Damaged plates can lead to unexpected replacement costs, adding to the expenses of moving.
  • Sentimental Value: Many dinnerware sets carry memories of family gatherings, special occasions, or heirlooms passed down through generations.
  • Safety Concerns: Broken plates can result in sharp edges, posing a risk during unpacking.
  • Aesthetics: Scratched or chipped plates can diminish the beauty of a dinner set.
  • Resale Value: If you ever decide to sell your dinnerware, intact sets fetch a higher price.
  • Environmental Impact: Broken items contribute to waste, whereas proper packing promotes sustainability.
  • Peace of Mind: Knowing your plates are securely packed can reduce moving-day stress.

Read More: How to organize a stress-free move in Vero Beach

Materials: You’ll Need

packing dishes dish boxes dish box

Packing plates requires more than just placing them in a box. The right materials can make the difference between a plate arriving in one piece or in shards. Here’s a breakdown of what you’ll need:

  • Boxes: Opt for dish-pack boxes or medium-sized moving boxes. These are sturdy and designed to handle the weight of plates.
  • Packing Paper: This provides an initial layer of protection, preventing scratches and chips.
  • Bubble Wrap: Ideal for wrapping individual plates or for added cushioning, especially for antique or expensive plates.
  • Cushioning Materials: Apart from bubble wrap, consider foam peanuts or crumpled paper to fill void spaces in the box.
  • Tape: Strong packing tape ensures boxes remain sealed during transit.
  • Markers: For labeling boxes with contents and handling instructions.
  • Labels: Pre-printed labels can be useful for marking boxes as “Fragile” or “This Side Up.”

Step-by-Step Guide to Packing Plates

pack dishes for moving packing peanuts wine glasses

Packing plates for a move is an art that requires precision, patience, and the right technique. While plates might seem sturdy, they are susceptible to cracks, chips, and breaks, especially during transit.

To ensure your plates arrive at your new home in pristine condition, follow this comprehensive step-by-step guide:

1. Preparing the Box

  • Choose the Right Box: Begin with a sturdy dish-pack box or a medium-sized moving box. These are specifically designed to handle the weight and fragility of dinnerware.
  • Reinforce the Bottom: Use strong packing tape to seal the bottom flaps of the box. For added security, tape both horizontally and vertically, creating a cross pattern.

2. Layering the Bottom

  • Cushioning Base: Before placing any plates inside, create a cushioned base using crumpled packing paper or bubble wrap. This layer acts as a shock absorber, reducing the impact on the plates during transit.

3. Wrapping Individual Plates

  • Use Packing Paper: Lay out a sheet of packing paper on a flat surface. Place the plate in the center and fold the edges of the paper over the plate, ensuring it’s fully covered. For extra protection, use two sheets for each plate.
  • Bubble Wrap for Extra Safety: For antique or particularly fragile plates, consider wrapping them in bubble wrap after the packing paper. Secure the wrap with tape to keep it in place.

4. Stacking Plates in the Box

  • Vertical Placement: Instead of laying plates flat, stack them vertically (on their edges) in the box. This reduces surface area pressure and minimizes the risk of breakage.
  • Heaviest First: Start with the heaviest plates at the bottom, working your way up to the lighter ones. This ensures stability during the move.

5. Filling Void Spaces

  • Avoid Shifting: Once all plates are in the box, fill any remaining spaces with crumpled packing paper, foam peanuts, or additional bubble wrap. This prevents the plates from shifting and provides added cushioning.

6. Sealing and Labeling the Box

  • Secure the Top: Close the flaps of the box and seal it securely with packing tape. Again, consider using the cross pattern for added strength.
  • Label Clearly: Using a marker, write “Fragile – Plates” on the sides and top of the box. If you’ve used a dish-pack box, it might already have markings, but it’s always good to add your own for clarity. Additionally, use pre-printed “Fragile” labels if you have them.

7. Final Check

  • Shake Test: Gently shake the box. If you hear or feel any movement, open the box and add more cushioning material. A well-packed box should feel solid without any noticeable shifts inside.
  • By meticulously following these steps, you can be confident that your plates are packed with the utmost care, ready to grace your new home’s dining table in perfect condition. Remember, the key lies in the details, and with Friends Moving’s expert guidance, you’re well-equipped for success.

Read More: Preparing for a Long-Distance Move from Vero Beach

Common Mistakes to Avoid

same box wrapping paper moving truck

When packing plates for a move, even the smallest oversight can lead to significant damage. While the process might seem straightforward, there are common pitfalls that many fall into.

Being aware of these can save you both heartache and money:

  • Overloading Boxes: A box that’s too heavy is not only challenging to lift but also more prone to breaking. Distribute the weight evenly among multiple boxes if needed.
  • Skimping on Cushioning: Never underestimate the importance of cushioning. It’s better to use more than you think you need, especially at the box’s bottom and top.
  • Stacking Plates Horizontally: Laying plates flat increases the pressure on individual plates, making them more susceptible to cracks or breaks.
  • Using Newspaper Directly: Newspapers can leave ink marks on plates. Always use them over a layer of packing paper if needed.
  • Ignoring Box Quality: Reused boxes might have weakened structural integrity. Always check for signs of wear or damage.
  • Forgetting to Label: Without clear labeling, boxes with plates might be mishandled. Always mark them as “Fragile.”
  • Neglecting the Shake Test: Always perform a gentle shake test to ensure there’s no movement inside the box.

Special Tips for Antique or Expensive Plates

Antique or expensive plates are more than just dinnerware; they’re treasured possessions, often with significant sentimental or monetary value.

Packing them requires extra care and attention to detail:

  • Double Cushioning: Use both packing paper and bubble wrap for each plate, ensuring they’re cocooned from potential shocks.
  • Specialized Boxes: Consider investing in dish barrels or custom crates, which offer enhanced protection for valuable items.
  • Insurance and Valuation: Ensure your plates are adequately insured. Obtain a professional valuation if unsure of their worth.
  • Cell Dividers: Use boxes with cell dividers, providing each plate its compartment, reducing the risk of them clashing.
  • White Glove Service: If extremely valuable, consider hiring a white-glove moving service that specializes in handling antiques.
  • Avoid Stacking: If possible, avoid stacking antique plates, even vertically. Give them ample space in the box.
  • Climate Control: For plates that are sensitive to temperature or humidity, consider climate-controlled storage or transport options.

By giving your prized plates the special attention they deserve, you can ensure they remain a cherished part of your collection for years to come.

Read More: Understanding Moving Insurance in Vero Beach

How Friends Moving Can Help

cooking utensils pack cups pack dishes vertically

In the midst of the hustle and bustle of relocating, Friends Moving stands out as a trusted partner, ensuring that your move is smooth, efficient, and worry-free.

Our commitment to excellence and customer satisfaction is evident in every service we offer. Let’s delve deeper into how we can assist you:

1. Full-Service Packing

At Friends Moving, we understand that packing is more than just placing items in a box. It’s about safeguarding memories, valuables, and the little things that make a house a home.

Our full-service packing offers an end-to-end solution, ensuring each item, from your delicate dinnerware to bulky furniture, is packed with precision and care. We use high-quality packing materials and techniques tailored to each item’s needs, ensuring they’re ready for the journey ahead.

2. Professional Expertise

Our team is our strength. Comprising professionals who are trained in the art of packing and moving, they bring a wealth of experience to every job. This isn’t just about physical packing; it’s about understanding the nuances of each item, recognizing its value, both monetary and sentimental, and ensuring it’s handled with the utmost care.

With Friends Moving, you’re not just hiring movers; you’re partnering with experts who treat your belongings as their own.

3. Time and Effort Saving

One of the significant challenges of moving is the time and effort it demands. With work, family, and other commitments, managing a move can be overwhelming.

This is where Friends Moving steps in. Our comprehensive services mean you can delegate the demanding task of packing and moving, allowing you to focus on other essential aspects of your relocation. We handle everything, from packing to transportation, ensuring efficiency at every step.

4. Benefits of Hiring Professionals

While DIY moving might seem cost-effective initially, the potential risks and challenges can outweigh the savings.

By hiring professionals like Friends Moving, you benefit from efficiency, safety, and peace of mind. Our team is equipped with the right tools and knowledge to handle unexpected challenges, ensuring your move is smooth from start to finish.

5. Customer Testimonials and Success Stories

Our reputation is built on the trust and feedback of our valued customers. Over the years, we’ve had the privilege of serving numerous clients, each with unique needs and challenges.

Their testimonials and success stories stand as a testament to our dedication, professionalism, and commitment to excellence. Whether it’s a family moving across the state or a business relocating to a new city, our success stories reflect our ability to deliver exceptional service consistently.

6. Tailored Solutions

Every move is unique, and at Friends Moving, we recognize this. Whether you’re moving to a one-bedroom apartment or a sprawling mansion, we offer solutions tailored to your specific needs.

Our team takes the time to understand your requirements, ensuring that our services align perfectly with your expectations.

7. Commitment to Customer Satisfaction

At the heart of Friends Moving is our unwavering commitment to customer satisfaction. We believe in building lasting relationships, and this is reflected in our approach to every move.

From the initial consultation to the final delivery, our focus is on ensuring that our clients are delighted with our services, making us a preferred choice for many.

With Friends Moving by your side, you can be assured of a moving experience that’s efficient, reliable, and, above all, stress-free.


Packing plates and other fragile items for a move is not just about ensuring their physical safety but also about preserving memories, values, and the essence of what makes a house truly a home. Proper packing techniques, combined with the right materials, can make all the difference in ensuring your belongings reach their new destination intact.

And while the process might seem daunting, remember that you don’t have to go through it alone. Friends Moving is here to assist, guide, and ensure that your move is as seamless as possible. We encourage you to reach out to us, leverage our expertise, and let us be a part of your moving journey.


How many plates can fit in a standard dish-pack box?

Typically, a standard dish-pack box can comfortably fit a set of 8 to 12 standard-sized plates, depending on their size and the amount of cushioning used.

Is it safe to use newspaper directly for wrapping plates?

While newspapers can provide cushioning, they might leave ink marks on plates. It’s advisable to use them over a layer of packing paper.

Do I need to empty my china cabinet before Friends Moving packs it?

Yes, it’s recommended to empty the china cabinet. Our team will then pack each item individually to ensure its safety during transit.

Can Friends Moving provide packing materials if I choose to pack myself?

Absolutely! We offer a range of high-quality packing materials for purchase, ensuring you have the best resources at your disposal.

What if I’m unsure about the best way to pack a specific item?

Don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Our team is always available to provide guidance and recommendations based on our extensive experience.

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