How to package our dolls and fragile art items is a big question that many doll artists have. When I first started shipping my cake toppers I knew the packaging was crucial in order for them to arrive at their destination intact.
I've had some trials and errors with packaging, and here are the key points I've learned:
1. Choose a box that is at least twice as large as the piece you are shipping.
~You want to pick a box that has plenty of room for packing material
2. If your item is extremely fragile I recommend double boxing. Placing your well packed inner box inside a slightly larger box with packing peanuts surrounding it is a great way to insure your item will arrive safely. Did you know that the USPS requires 4" of packing peanuts around an inner box in order to pay a claim on an insured package? If you are paying extra to insure your packages, make sure your package meets your shipper's packaging criteria.
3. After trying several more advanced techniques such as wiring my sculpture to a base before shipping, I learned that the very best packaging for my items is bubble wrap. Lots and lots of bubble wrap!
4. You do not need to spend much money on packing material! Find a local business who receives lots bubble wrap, and you can save them money by taking it off of their hands. I found an endless supply of bubble wrap by posting on Craigslist. The same is true for boxes. Find a local store who will give you their boxes and you are in business.
~Be sure to inspect your boxes for damage, and never ship in a box that has been dented or ripped. Make sure when reusing bubble wrap that the air is still in the bubbles, and check to be sure the packaging is clean.
Taking a few extra steps today while packing your art will save you lots of time, effort, and money in the long run.