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Our move is about a week away, and the house is in total chaos! For an organization freak like me, this is just about enough to make me crazy. I’m soothing myself with plenty of color-coding, and using this move as some great blog post material. I can’t be the only one out there who wants to have an organized move! If you are planning a move, go ahead and pin the image above to your Pinterest board so that you can easily find them when moving day approaches, or send it to any friends who are moving soon. I’m sharing with you the contents of my “moving kit,” a few packing tips, and some lovely labels you can use in your move!
What’s in My Moving Kit?
There are oodles of articles on the interwebz with moving tips, and most of them say that you should have a “moving kit” with items that you’ll need either for packing or for use during the move. Most of them don’t really say what to put in them, other than tape (duh) and box cutters. Since this is not my first rodeo on the moving front, today I’m sharing all the items I put in my moving box.
Some of them I use while packing, and some I will use when I’m unpacking. There are also a few items to help during the move. (There are no cleaning supplies because I make a separate “cleaning” box for cleaning up at the old place once the movers have left.) I use a cute box with a label, and then most of the items specific to moving are stored there long term as well, waiting for the next move.
Here’s what’s in my moving kit:
- Shipping Tape – I use the “shipping” kind because the “moving and storage” kind doesn’t stick very well. Who wants boxes flying open in the middle of a move?
- Scissors – More than one pair if you have ’em! Usually there are two or more people unpacking, and you don’t want to have to keep trading them out.
- Box Cutter – I don’t use this unless a box is being really stubborn, because I’m afraid of accidentally slicing the things inside, but it’s always a good idea to have one handy.
- Clear Plastic Baggies – Get an entire box of baggies in each size — gallon, quart, sandwich, and snack — so that you can easily store small items. Just put the extras in the drawer once you’re done!
- Garbage Bags – The unscented “force-flex” ones, preferably. You’ll need these for packing pillows, and throwing out trash as you unpack and declutter.
- Paper or Styrofoam Plates – Use them between your nice ceramic dishes when packing to keep them from breaking, and use the rest for eating pizza on the first night in your new place.
- Bubble Wrap – You can usually find bubble wrap for relatively cheap at office stores, but if possible, save the packaging from your Amazon boxes and whatnot to make this a free item.
- Furniture Sliders and Felt Pads — The sliders can help position furniture, but the felt pads are also important to protect your floors. Stick them on as soon as the item gets to the new house.
- Screw Driver, Hammer, and Level — You’ll need these both for removing nails and hanging pictures, and you definitely want them handy for taking apart and putting together furniture.
- Permanent Markers – I sprung for the Sharpie Assorted Colors 24-Pack, and even though they’re pricey, they hold up well and fulfill all of my color-coding fantasies.
- Painter’s Tape – You can use painter’s tape for marking areas of your new home, or on anything that might be harmed by regular tape, like furniture or walls.
- Wire Ties – I love my pack of Q Knot Reusable Wire Ties, which come in a pack of 25 in three different sizes. These are great for tying up cords so you don’t trip over them during the move.
- Printable Moving Labels – I made some lovely color-coded moving labels for each room of your house, which you can download for free below and print onto name badge stickers. These make it super easy to stay organized and label boxes as you’re packing. They even match the 24-pack of Sharpie colors. #ThatsOnPurpose
- Printable Moving Signs – Along with the labels, you’ll find a color-coded sign for each area. Use your painter’s tape to tape the signs to the door of each room, and the movers can easily put your boxes in their new locations.
- Fragile Labels – Download these below too, and print them on Avery Print-To-The-Edge Round Labels (#22830). Keep them handy when you’re packing breakables!
Moving Tips and Tricks
In many ways, moving is moving, and there are only so many “hacks” out there that can make it easier. It’s still a grueling process! That being said, here are a few of my tried-and-true tips for getting your shiz from the old place to the new place in one piece.
Pack by drawer – If you already have well-organized drawers, you don’t want to have to figure all that out again at the new place! Pack each drawer (or two or three) into a box, and write on the label which drawer (or drawers) it belongs in. Then when you have the furniture in place, you can just open the box and put the stuff into the drawers. I don’t use this method for clothes in the dresser drawer though, because I leave my clothes in the drawers and just bring the drawers over to the new place in my car. This method is more for little things that would shake around in drawers, or things that would make the drawers too heavy to carry.
Pack pillows and comforters in garbage bags – I like to volunteer to carry these because they are the light! Since I hate wasting an entire box on pillows, these can just go in the bags.
Use old towels to pack breakables – Save the bubble wrap for really fragile, precious items, and use old towels, guest towels, beach towels, and sheets to pack breakables. I wrap my beach towels around large pictures as padding!
Weave bubble wrap – When using bubble wrap, weave it between bottles or glasses, rather than wrapping it around each one, to make it go further.
Those are my basic tips, along with the classics like “put a styrofoam plate in between plates when packing” and “use press-and-seal wrap to keep jewelry from tangling.” I use those too, but I’m guessing everyone already knows those! Okay, time for some color-coded label fun…
Free Printable Color-Coded Moving Labels
I will be so happy when we are all moved in and I can start putting things away in their new “homes.” To make that process a little easier on myself, I have created a labeling system to help get our boxes to the correct room in the new house, and today I’m sharing it with y’all! Wahoo!
Each room or area has a colored label for boxes, with a matching sign in the same color that we can tape up on the door or wall of each room in our new house. There’s also a space on each label to write the contents of the box, and then I just stick it on the left corner of each box. No more bending at weird angles trying to write in marker on the sides of boxes. I know most people write on all the sides of the boxes, but I really don’t think that’s necessary unless you plan on living out of boxes for weeks. I try to get it unpacked asap, so I don’t need a label on each side. You can also stick them on furniture once it has been wrapped with the protective blankets and plastic, so that the furniture will end up in the right areas too.
These labels can be printed on most “name badge” label sheets, but the ones I used are Avery Adhesive Name Badges #88395, which are 2 1/3″ x 3 3/8″ and eight to a page. For the round “Fragile” stickers, I printed them on Avery Print-To-The-Edge Round Labels #22830. Simply download the PDF of the labels and signs (everything is in one PDF, including the “Fragile” stickers), and then print the pages that apply to you! I made labels for every kind of room or space I could imagine, but I didn’t print them all because we won’t have a playroom or 5 bedrooms or a basement (I wish!). Don’t forget to also print the matching signs that correspond to your labels. Hang these in your new house so that the movers will know where things belong.
Hope these tips and printables help you have a smooth move <– (Yep, I went there. Ha!) and get unpacked and settled in record time. If you didn’t catch my post announcing the move, check that out for some free printable “We’re Moving” postcards, and keep your fingers crossed for us that all goes smoothly!