Whether you’re sending iconic film posters to a friend, a piece of art you’ve sold online or perhaps a stunning landscape print to a family member, it can sometimes be tricky working out how to properly package and post your artwork. It doesn’t matter whether you’re someone who only posts prints every now and then, or you run a small online business and post art more regularly, it’s always handy to know how to safely send artwork in the post or by courier.
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Preparing your artwork before posting
For artwork which can’t be folded or rolled up, the first thing to do is wrap your print or painting in plastic shrink wrap. Then, get a larger piece of cardboard and measure it so that it fits snugly when folded around the front and back of the print or painting. Use strong packaging tape to secure the protective cardboard in place. This creates a secure ‘inner box’ for your picture/painting or drawing.
Before packaging your artwork, wrap your cardboard protected artwork in several layers of bubble wrap for added protection.
To prepare prints and posters which can easily be rolled up, make sure you measure them and make a note of the length and width – this is so that you choose the right size packaging later. Then roll them up carefully (inside an additional sheet of paper/plastic for added protection) and use a piece of masking tape around it to keep it tightly rolled up and to stop it from unrolling during posting. It is recommended not to use elastic bands as an alternative as this can crease your artwork.
Choosing the right packaging for your art or prints
For smaller pictures, you can buy corrugated cardboard boxes with foam cushioning already inside. For your larger artwork it’s important to buy a box only slightly larger than your wrapped picture. You can add extra cushioning by using additional bubble wrap to plug the gaps – this will stop your painting moving around on its journey.
If you’re sending a rolled up poster or painting, you’ll need to use a cardboard tube. We recommend you use a triangular tube rather than a round tube when sending by courier to prevent it from rolling off the conveyor belt at the postal depot. Some couriers, like UPS, do not allow you to send round tubes at all, they will only accept triangular tubes . It’s important to choose a tube with walls ¼ inch or thicker for the required protection your poster may need on the way to its destination.
Remember to put a little bit of bubble wrap inside both ends of the tube to cushion your poster or print during transit. Other good cushioning materials
If you’d like more information on different types of packaging, you can also cast your eyes on our helpful packaging guidelines.
How much does it cost to post artwork, prints or posters?
You can send art, prints, paintings and posters by courier but we only recommend you use My Parcel Delivery for artwork which can be rolled up into a triangular tube. For any other type of artwork, including framed items, we’d advise you use a specialist art courier better suited for larger canvases, framed paintings and other expensive pieces of art work
If you’re sending paintings or artwork on canvas or in a frame:
As mentioned earlier, you can’t send valuable artwork via My Parcel Delivery – however there are specialists you can use which may be able to help you. One service is AnyVan, a delivery comparison company who specialise in extra-large or super-heavy items, categories which framed paintings often fall under.
Or, you may wish to use a dedicated art courier. Some notable examples include Aardvark Art Services who specialise in fine art, and Art Move, who package and deliver paintings, sculptures and other delicate objects.
If you’re sending posters or prints in a tube:
Once you have your posters or prints packaged up and ready to go, it’s time to bring out the tape measure and scales because you’re going to need them to find out the cost of posting posters or prints. Head on over to My Parcel Delivery and enter your mailing tube’s dimensions into our delivery price comparison form. In just a few clicks you’ll be able to see which courier service offers the cheapest or fastest way to send your rolled up print or poster. If you’re unsure of the exact weight or size of your tube and will be estimating, have a look at our handy guide to weighing and measuring.
You can get next day delivery from just £6.75 + VAT with UPS (max tube length 170cm and remember that UPS will only accept triangular tubes). If you don’t have a triangular tube, then Parcelforce (max tube length 200cm) will accept round ones. Prices begin at £9.99 + VAT.
If you’re still in need of some advice on the best option for posting artwork, prints and posters, our customer service team are on hand to help, get in touch now.