How to Bubble Wrap China for a Move

Packing china in bubble wrap is a good way to prevent damage to your favorite plates, bowls, cups and other items during a move.

You don't want to skimp when it comes to your good dishware because china is easily broken. People have traditionally wrapped dishes in newspaper for moving, but newspaper is not as reliable as bubble wrap for protecting fragile items. It also can leave ink stains that are difficult to remove.

Pack items in medium-size cardboard boxes instead of very large ones. You may need to use several boxes, but larger ones can lead to breakage. The more weight in a box, the easier fragile items can break.

Place a layer of packaging material in the bottom of a box for at least 3 inches of cushioning. You can use bubble wrap, newspaper, plastic store bags or stretch wrap that grocery stores accumulate when they receive wrapped pallets.

Begin with your plates. Wrap two layers of bubble wrap around each plate and then wrap each plate in a kitchen hand towel, dish towel, newspaper or packing paper (inkless newsprint).

Place the plates vertically in the box on top of the layer of packing material, as you would place dishes in a dishwasher rack. Pack them snugly and leave at least 2 inches of space on the sides and 3 inches on top of the box.

Pack the remaining space with packing material to prevent the plates from moving around even a little.

Repeat this method with china bowls.

Pack cups, creamers, sugar bowls and any other lighter items separate from plates and bowls. Bubble-wrap these items with a double layer and be sure the handles are well-protected. Use home and office tape to secure the bubble wrap if necessary. Place them on top of a layer of packing material in the bottom of the box, stacking them upright. You can add another layer of cups on top as long as you place 2 inches of packing material between the two layers.

Use a double-box method for extra protection of fragile items if you think it may be necessary. All you do is place the box of china into a larger box and pack two inches of packing material all around the inner box. This can be your regular packing material or even be a blanket.

Seal all your boxes with packing tape and then shake them to be sure you don't hear any loose items. You should feel confident that if you drop the box on the floor, nothing will break.

Things You Will Need

  • Medium-sized cardboard boxes
  • Bubble wrap
  • Newspaper
  • Plastic bags
  • Stretch wrap
  • Kitchen or dish towels
  • Packing paper
  • Home-and-office tape
  • Packing tape


  • Avoid using packing tape or other strong tape on the bubble wrap. Removing it is very difficult and could cause you to break some of your china while doing so.

About the Author

Shelley Moore is a journalist and award-winning short-story writer. She specializes in writing about personal development, health, careers and personal finance. Moore has been published in "Family Circle" magazine and the "Milwaukee Sentinel" newspaper, along with numerous other national and regional magazines, daily and weekly newspapers and corporate publications. She has a Bachelor of Science in psychology.