Time to send off a quilt!
Committees try to find ways to make the transit from your home to hanging in the Exhibition beautifully and hassle free as possible.
Packaging a quilt for posting has basic concepts:
1. As previously mentioned it must be clearly labeled and identifiable. Your name, phone number, email address and any other identifying information should accompany the quilt in such a way that you can be easily re-united with it. That means your information on the quilt, bag, velcro strips etc.
This also includes any packaging you post the quilt in. If you tape a packing label onto a box, ensure you also have the information written on the box itself.
2. The quilt needs to arrive looking tidy. You have put a lot of effort into your quilt, so make the effort to ensure the judges see it at it's best.
Purchase a box that fits the quilt without crushing it. Place crumpled sheets of acid-free paper between layers helps to prevent sharp creases (if needed). Ensure that the quilt is in a protective case. For New Zealand major symposia, a labeled fabric bag is requested.
If a fabric bag is not requested for an exhibition, it is still a good idea, or folding the quilt along with a clean sheet. Layers of protection are beneficial.
3. The quilt needs to be kept dry. In the event your postal box is caught in sudden deluge, it is a good idea to place the fabric bag or sheet wrapped quilt in a plastic bag. Do this just before mailing, as quilts should never be STORED in plastic. If you decide to write on the bag with marker or pen, cover the ink with packing tape to prevent any chance of ink transfer.
I have been told never to put the quilt in a rubbish bag as it might end up at the tip. Apparently a transparent bag is suggested. It's your gamble.
4. Return postage and or packaging must be included if the quilt is to be returned. I often provide a prepaid postal bag, as the quilt will be 'home' and doesn't have to arrive uncreased.
Although exhibition volunteers will handle your quilt with care, they are handling many quilts so plan on unpacking the quilt as soon as it arrives to reduce stress caused by tight folds or awkward packing.
5. Insurance is your responsibility. In the very unlikely event your quilt is damaged or stolen, you will have to be the one to approach your insurance company. Some home and content insurances will cover a quilt in transit, others require an extra fee. Do your homework before sending a quilt away if you are worried. .
Most exhibition committees take every possible precaution to be responsible with their handling of your pride and joy, but are unable to guarantee the safety of any quilt in transit.
In all my years of posting quilts about -including overseas -there have never been any mishaps. (It is still a good idea to plan ahead.)