Tips to Storing Antiques, Art and Jewelry in a Storage Facility

By Dermound Becker
Special to UStorage

Treasured items sometimes must be kept in a storage facility. In order to keep them in pristine condition, you are going to have to take some serious steps before you store them. Their value depends on their condition and you want to keep them in perfect condition. Here are some tips on just how to do that.

The first step is to find just the right storage facility. You will need to find one that is climate-controlled. It is very important to control the temperature and the humidity in your unit so that your treasures will not be ruined by heat, cold or humidity. You need to find a facility that keeps the units between the temperatures of 50 to 80 degrees, and controls the humidity as well.

You most likely will want to find a facility that will allow you to have a unit on the first floor. When you are moving your treasures is the time when damage is likely to occur. If you must get a unit that is above the first floor, ask for one with an elevator.

Packing your treasures is also extremely important. You need to take the greatest care when you are preparing things for storage.

  • Treat leather items with a good leather conditioner before you pack them.
  • Wipe down the metal items with a little oil. This will help prevent rust during the storage.
  • Use a good quality furniture polish on all wood items for added protection.
  • Upholstered items should be protected with plastic, sheets, or bags.
  • Wrap mirrors, paintings and pictures in bubble wrap or thick blankets.
  • Never store paintings or mirrors with frames flat, but always stand them up.
  • Artwork, mirrors and framed photos can be stored in boxes especially made for this.
  • Never stack antique furniture, always leave each piece free-standing.
  • Disassemble furniture as much as possible. Wrap legs in bubble wrap┬« to protect them.

Tips for storing jewelry:

  • Always clean your jewelry pieces well. Jewelry can be ruined by dust, and the metals can tarnish.
  • Consider buying a jewelry armoire for storage. They are specifically built for this.
  • Never store diamond jewelry loose in a box, as one diamond can scratch another one during moving.
  • Put earrings on individual earring pads.
  • To avoid tangling and knotting, store jewelry that have chains on them in individual bags.
  • Watches should be stored in watch boxes that provide a round form for the band.
  • Because some gemstones are very soft and can be scratched or broken if they rub against another piece, store each one in its own pouch.
  • Pearls should be stored lying down. Pearls can be damaged when they come in contact with other pearls. Hanging can stretch out the cord they are strung on.

Taking care and time with your treasures will insure that they are undamaged when they are placed into a self storage facility and during moving.