Moving kitchen items -- knives, pans, dishes
We are going to be making a short move in the next couple of weeks. Since it is so short, Mrs. JS and I will be moving most of the non-furniture items ourselves, especially the kitchen contents.
Are there any suggestions about how to pack the kitchen knives, the pots and pans, and the dishes? When I last moved, I didn't have anything nice enough to worry about, other than a few good cook's knives, which think I wrapped in a few sheets of newspaper and nestled in with clothes. That's probably not going to be as practical this time because of the logistics of this particular move. Mrs. JS was in pretty much the same boat when we moved her in after we got married last year.
For the dishes, we're dealing with not only the day-to-day dishes, but also our (read: her) wedding china. The china is in those cotton bags with the foam inserts between each piece. Good enough for 10 miles down the road, or not?
As for the pots and pans, I'm not concerned about the cast iron, but I'd like to avoid as much cosmetic damage as possible to the good cookware I've acquired over the years, so any advice on how to package and pack it is appreciated. Same for the knives.
Last time I moved, I moved less than a mile away. I took the kitchen drawers out, left the kitchen tools in them and drove them to the new place. I unloaded them and drove the empty drawers back to the old home. I think I either left the knives in the knife block or wrapped them in towels.
There weren't many dishes left to move (thank you San Andreas fault).
Kitchen towels and bath towels make great padding for enameled cast iron and other easily dinged items, and they're things you already have and would be moving anyway. They're also easy to remove from the moved items and re-use in your next schlepping trip. They create no waste or need for recycling.
For the last three or four Thanksgivings, that's what I've used to pack up my basic batterie de cuisine in a big wicker basket, and it's ridden safely for a 1200-mile round trip.[Elderly mother-in-law's kitchen so ill-equipped and chaotic that it's easier just to work from my go-box.] You might want to spring for a plastic blade guard for your most-used chef's knife ($5-$8) if you ever take it out of the house between moves (potlucks, etc.)
The china in its soft-cover container will be safer if you sit it on a folded bath towel in a box -- the biggest danger is bouncing, or sliding against something as a result of a sharp curve.
I've done some long-distance moves and I packed my dishes, cookware, and knives in towels, newsprint and clothes. Sweaters and the like do a fine job of protecting items. For the good stuff, I used a LOT of clothes! I had to make sure my stuff was well packed, not only to keep it from breaking, but because I was using ABF's U-Pack service, I wanted it as compact as possible. They charge by the linear foot on a trailer.
Like everyone said, newspaper and towels are good methods to protect these cookware.
I would worry less about knives. Yes, you can ding and chip the knives, but those are about the extend of damage. You can always resharpen the knives. I also won't worry too much about stainless steel cladded cookware. As for cast iron, I won't worry about regular cast iron. Enameled cast iron cookware are another matter. Despite some people suggest they are durable, enameled cast iron cookware in fact very fragile in the big picture. I would definitely pack them with care -- with a lot of newspaper or cloth towel, especially between the lids and the pots. Same thing with your wedding China. These things when damaged cannot be repaired.
Ten miles down the road isn't a big deal. I wrap everything in sheets of newspaper. Or you can buy sheets of unprinted newsprint at Lowe's or Home Depot. Use the paper as a wrap and cushion; don't skimp. You need to get boxes of course. Lowe's or Home Depot carries boxes. Lowe's has a better selection. You can buy dish boxes with dividers there.
I'd wrap my knives in kitchen towels and place them in a box so they don't slide around.
I think the cases with squares of foam would keep your good dishes fine for a short trip. You can buy the foam squares at Home Depot, if you need more, by the way.
Me, I'm packing for a long distance, cross country move. I'm mailing kitchen stuff ahead, because I won't be in a house for a couple or three months. I need my kitchen gear.
Good luck on your move.