In my current lifestyle of travelling around Europe, I seldom get to hand over a piece in person any more. 99% of what I do now gets put through the postal system and I had to come up with a way to ensure they would travel intact. Velour is known for being a bit delicate, but usually only if you fill the paper too much or it gets heavy knock. I have a few other tips for making your work more stable on velour at http://www.emmacolbertart.com/2016/04/15/pastel-tips-using-velour/

But in this blog I want to speak about how I package the pieces and the materials I use. I buy sheets of self adhesive foam board for backing the velour with to begin, this firms the finished painting up and makes it easier to handle.

But I also buy sheets of regular 5mm foamboard. The cheapest I can find it, colour doesn’t matter. This makes a firm but lightweight outer casing for the piece. Foamboard isn’t cheap, but I find it’s cheaper to post due to weight. Also I just can’t scrimp on packaging materials when the contents are so valuable. Depending on size I spend on average €8- €15 on packaging one piece. When I can send two to my framer at home, this works out better as doubling them up strengthens the package and uses less packaging.

This blog shows the packaging of two recent pastels being sent in the same package.
I cut two pieces of foamboard, both a couple of inches larger than my pastels on each side.

The first pastel gets taped to the bottom sheet of foamboard. When I tape my painting to my workboard it leaves a clear edge of paper around the work. I use this area to tape the painting down.

A sheet of paper cut to the size of the piece is then taped down the left side meaning it can be lifted to view the painting.

The second pastel is taped directly on top of the sheet covering the first piece, but taped to the foamboard base.

This pastel also gets a sheet of paper taped over it to protect the pastel underneath. I also tape some info inside here. Some general information about pastel, how to care for the piece while it’s unframed etc.

Now they are ready to be squished together with both outer pieces of foamboard. The trick is to tape is all as tightly as possible. You want to squeeze the paintings tight to keep all pastel in place. The better I do this part, the better they travel. I’ve seen them dropped like this and not a speck moved. I suggest placing the tape along the top edge of foamboard, then while squeezing those 2 edges together, bring the tape around the bottom at it’s tightest place. Do the same on all edges so it really feels snug in there.

I’ve reinforced the corners too, making sure it won’t pop open at any point. I also write on the front here that it’s simply opened by carefully taking a sharp knife or scalpel and running it around the taped edge.  It’ll pop open for the client easily.Next I wrap the whole thing tightly in a few layers of bubblewrap.  The leftover wrap at each end gets folded in around the corners to reinforce them and make the whole thing light on impact. Softening any inevitable impact is your priority.
You can see the corners are really fat and I’ve wrapped the whole thing in tape.

 

Try to keep the piece inside facing up when you put the address on. This is how the package will be handled a lot of the time, so they might as well be the right way up!

And that’s it ready for posting. I post from all over Europe and price of postage varies wildly for me. Here in the South of Spain it is cheapest and fastest, so thankfully I’m here for a while!

Hope you enjoyed this blog and found it helpful. Check out some of my other blogs in my ‘Pastel Tips’ category to the right for more help.