When it comes down to planning your cross-country move, far too often, folks do not make the proper preparations or planning for moving items of clothing. We simply figure all you have to do is fold them up and throw them in a box and they are ready to go, right? Well not so fast. There is a method to the madness known as moving your wardrobe from one coast to the other. And as with so many other elements, a little judicious planning can save you innumerable headaches going forward.
Of course, it goes without saying that folded clothes can be packed differently than hanging items, and specialized garments such as formal wear or wedding dresses may require specialized packaging and handling. Carve some time out of your packing schedule to allow for your clothing items. This will reduce stress related to the move and make unpacking on the other end all the more effective and efficient. Always remember…plan ahead. Then work your plan.
Here are eleven tips for getting your clothing ready for a cross country move.
- Organize and Declutter. Few things streamline the moving process quite like decluttering and getting rid of those items you are not likely to ever use or wear again. Determine which items of clothing are worth transporting cross country and selling or donating or throwing out those items you no longer want or need. This is especially true if you are moving into a smaller space as you will soon find that you need every available inch to make things work. Then organize your clothing by season and by family members.
- Pack Off Season Wardrobe. If you are moving in the summer, then long wool sweaters and heavy coats really have no place of importance in the movie. Pack them away together and properly label them for when you need to locate these items a few months down the road. There is no need to unpack them immediately following the trip. Be sure they are securely packed to protect them from moisture and undesirable odors.
- Leave the Dresser Full (No, we are not kidding). If your dresser contains lighter items of clothing such as undergarments or socks, there is no harm at all in leaving them where they are, especially if you are using a moving service. This saves a ton of loading area in the moving truck, and everything is in place once the dresser is moved into your new home. Just be sure to tape the drawers securely shut and cover the dresser with blankets or other protection to prevent any damage such as knicks or dings during the move.
- About Those Special Pieces. We mentioned wedding dresses and tuxedoes. You will want to take the proper steps to protect these items, and garment bags are the way to go. These are basically soft sided suitcases and they drastically reduce the chance for these items getting damaged or dirty or wet.
- Packing Your Shoes Separately. It is ideal to separate shoes from other apparel in order to avoid the clothes getting soiled as a result. Shoeboxes are ideal, but plastic bags will suffice in a pinch. You can also stuff socks and undergarments in the shoes in order to maximize packing space. If you choose not to pack in such aa manner, have some packing paper on hand to stuff the shoes with, as this will prevent the shoes becoming warped or malformed during the cross-country trek.
- Pack Essentials for The First Week. Every moving project and scenario is different, but there is always the chance that you may not be able to get to everything to unpack right away. Create a bag of essential items, changes of clothes for at least a week, toiletries, etc., and have that bag either go with you in your vehicle or go on the moving truck last (so it is off the truck first). That way, you are able to have what you need for those first few hectic, fretful days in your new location.
- Use Wardrobe Boxes for Hanging Items. Garments that spend most of their time on hangars are the ones that tend to wrinkle easily. Storing and moving them in wardrobe boxes is an efficient way to manage them and will save you much ironing and straightening when you get to your new place. Most wardrobe boxes can hold up to half of a standard sized closet, and they contain metal hangars that can be moved from the closet to the box. Some also come with compartments for wrapped shoes.
- Vacuum Sealing Bags. These bags, once packed, allow you to remove the air, which shrinks the bag and its contents down to a much more manageable size. Space saving is always a plus, especially if you plan on having to move a large number of bulky items. Vacuum sealing bags also protect against odors, and they are moisture resistant.
- Pack As Many Boxes as You Need. Some folks think the fewer boxes the better, but a large box full of clothing can become quite heavy and cumbersome. Bigger boxes can also be crushed or damaged much more easily. The better solution is to pack a number of smaller boxes that can be easily carried and moved from one area to another.
- Use Suitcases and Duffels. Look around your closet and home to see what you already have that may serve as transportation items. You will be surprised how much you can squeeze into a suitcase or a duffel bag.
- Use Plastic Garbage Bags. These are another great substitute for boxes as they provide protection from dirt and dust.
Of course, your best bet for any moving project is to make use of a professional and experienced relocation company. California-New York Express Movers know how to get you and your belongings from one coast to the other in a timely and efficient manner, and they stand ready to make your relocation experience a pleasant, exciting, and memorable event.