Step-by-Step Guide to Packing Fragile Glassware

Tissue paper in wine glass
Juice Images Ltd / Getty Images
Project Overview
  • Total Time: 2 hrs
  • Skill Level: Beginner

You keep the good wine glasses, vases, and other treasured glassware in a special place for a reason: if they get mixed in with everyday stuff, they'll get chipped and broken. So when it's time to move, don't just lump everything together and hope for the best. Give the good pieces the VIP treatment they deserve, starting with a dedicated box made for glassware.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • A pen, for labeling


  • Cell boxes or used bottle boxes
  • Cardboard dividers (optional)
  • Plain white or brown packing paper and tissue paper
  • Packing tape


  1. Use a Cell Pack

    Purchase cell boxes from specialty packing supply stores, or ask for used bottle boxes at a grocery store or liquor store. You can also purchase the cardboard dividers (cells) separately and use them in boxes or plastic bins.

    cardboard partition for beverage or spray bottles. packaging concept.
    Ratchat / Getty Images
  2. Prepare the Box

    Prepare the cell box by making sure the cell dividers fit snugly, with minimal movement in any direction. Also, gather plenty of plain white or brown packing paper and tissue paper for packing the glassware. Plain newsprint is a good option, but don't use regular newspaper with printing, as the ink can stain your glassware.

    Pattern of Paper crates for bottles texture background
    Chalongrat Chuvaree / Getty Images
  3. Stuff the Globe

    Select a glass or another piece. Take several sheets of packing paper and gently stuff the interior of the glass's globe. Keeping filling the space until there is no space left. Be gentle. Don't press on the sides of the glass or push the paper in too tightly. Pushing outward from the inside of a glass can easily break a thin glass wall.

    Thick bottom glass half packaged with transparent bubble wrap on a checkered tablecloth. Material for packing fragile items for safe transportation.
    Veni vidi...shoot / Getty Images
  4. Place the Glass on Its Side

    Lay out several sheets of tissue paper and place the glass on its side, perpendicular to the corner of the paper.

    Transparent glass goblet lies on a white blue checkered tablecloth during a packagin with cellophane bubble wrap. Material for packing fragile items for safe transportation.
    Veni vidi...shoot / Getty Images
  5. Wrap the Glass

    Take two to three sheets of tissue and pull the corners around the glass, then gently roll the glass forward, carefully tucking the tissue over the globe and around the base until the glass is completely wrapped.

    Woman hands package transparent glass tea cup with bubble wrap on a white blue checkered tablecloth. Material for packing fragile items for safe transportation.
    Veni vidi...shoot / Getty Images
  6. Fold the Ends

    Gently fold the excess paper around the globe and stem, carefully molding it to the glass.

    Gentle Fold Paper Around Ends
  7. Insert the Glass

    Place the glass into one of the cells, stem first. It should fit snugly but not too tight. If the glass is loose inside the cell, roll it up in a few more sheets of paper, then re-insert the glass into the cell.

    Use the same techniques to warp and pack the remaining glassware. Be careful not to force the pieces into the cells. Alternate small and large pieces as needed so that any one area isn't too tight.

    Put Glass in Cell Pack
  8. Top up the Box

    Gently pack tissue paper or bubble wrap into any open cells that don't have glassware or to fill the top area of cells that hold short glassware pieces. When the box is full, lay bubble wrap or tissue paper on top of the packed stemware to ensure there's no room for movement.

    open empty cardboard box and bubble wrap
    Akintevs / Getty Images
  9. Secure the Box

    Close the top flaps of the box, then gently shake the box. If the contents rattle at all, some gaps need to be filled. Open the box and fill the gaps with tissue paper or bubble wrap. Close the flaps again, and secure them with packing tape or sealing tape. Use at least one strip of tape down the center, plus one extra over each flap.

    Man's hands packing box
    Tetra Images / Getty Images
  10. Label the Box

    Mark the box "FRAGILE!" Also, note all of the contents and where they go. For example: "Crystal red wine glasses and water goblets/Dining room hutch."

    Young couple moving home, young woman labelling cardboard box, mid section
    Gpointstudio / Getty Images