1. Fill the item with packaging peanuts i.e. polystyrene chips.
2. Wrap the vase in tissue (never put bubble wrap directly against glass....some types of glass will get permanent round impressions from the bubbles) If the vase has a lot of decorative elements like handles, etc, make sure to use extra tissue on those parts, very gently, before bubble wrapping.
3. Wrap the vase in the bubble wrap and tape it very gently with masking tape....don't use too much tape or it will be too hard for the buyer to get it open.
4. Place the vase in the smaller box that has been filled with 2" of packing peanuts. Insert the foam pieces in each of the four corners to hold the vase directly in the middle of the box. Overfill it with more packing peanuts so that you have to VERY SLIGHTLY crush the packing peanuts to get the box closed.
5. Shake the box vigorously. If you hear NO MOVEMENT, go to the next step.....if you hear movement, start over.
6.Tape the inner box shut.
7. OPTIONAL: This step is only if the vase is very expensive: BUBBLE WRAP THE INNER BOX!
8. OPTIONAL: This step is only necessaryif the vase is very expensive: Place dowel rods in each of the four corners of the outer box. Tape them so they stand straight up and they will prevent the box from getting crushed in any way.
9. Lay the box on a bed of packing peanuts at least 2" thick, inside the outer box. (You might want to layer a sheet of newspaper on the packing peanuts to prevent shifting.)
10. Overfill all the sides and top with enough packing peanuts that you have to SLIGHTLY crush them in order to close the box. (You could also place foam pieces on each corner to be extra careful, but that is optional)
11. Shake the box vigorously to see if you hear movement....if you do, start over. If not, then tape the box shut and reinforce all of the seams of the box with 2" packing tape. Label and you are done!
But it doesn't matter how well you pack at the end of the day a couple of cardboard boxes and some bubble can't make a box idiot proof.
Always try to recycle old packing material!
Special thanks to John.T.Coll for taking the pictures and writing this article.
Click the image to see John's extremely well packed Ebay items.
And thanks to Steve Leslie and David Fletcher for their assistance.