I got a question over the weekend asking about how to store framed needlework.
When you store needlework, you need to consider whether it’s short term storage ( for moving) or long-term.
When we moved our framed needlepoint was either wrapped in bubble wrap, taped and put in boxes, or just put in boxes. This is fine if the stuff won’t be there long.
But what if you want long-term storage? There are several things to consider.
First, is the needlework properly framed so that moisture and bugs won’t get inside? If it isn’t the storage method won’t be your problem, the framing is. Consult people (not me) who know about framing needlework on what to do here.
Second, does the needlework have glass over it? If it does you will need to store it so the glass won’t break. That means you’ll have to wrap or cushion it.
Third, you will need to cushion the corners of the frames, so they won’t poke holes in the other pieces.
Having said all this, here is what I would do. I’d use plastic bins with no holes on the side for gripping and with solid one-piece tops. This is what museums use for archival storage and they will keep out bugs and moisture as well as anything.
Then I’d go to a moving supply store and get rolls or sheets of the thin foam used to store and wrap china — not bubble wrap. Bubble wrap could trap moisture, the foam will let air through.
If there is no glass, I’d just put a few sheets of foam between each piece to protect the needlework. If there is glass, I’d loosely wrap and tape each piece.
Then I’d put it all in the bin, label the bin and tape a paper with the contents on top.
I’d don’t know if the foam is acid-free, so if you want long-term archival storage, replace the foam with lots and lots of acid free tissue paper.
One note, I’m not trained in preservation, so I can’t vouch for this, so if people with this expertise have other suggestions, chime in!