In a world where everything seems to be mass produced and no longer made with as much care, there’s an enduring charm associated with having vintage and collectible items. Whether it’s rare vinyl records, antique furniture, or carefully sought after comic books, these treasures not only hold monetary value, but also a sense of nostalgia and history, especially if they are items that have been handed down within your family.
Preserving and safeguarding these items demands careful consideration to ensure their longevity and value. Continue reading to learn tips and insights on how to store vintage items and collectibles so you can continue to enjoy them for years to come!
1. Choose the Right Environment
One of the primary factors influencing the condition of collectibles is the environment in which they are stored. Extremes in temperature and humidity can quickly lead to irreversible damage. Avoid storing your treasured items in damp basements or scorching attics, as these conditions can encourage mold growth, warping, and deterioration. Instead, opt for an environment with a stable temperature and humidity levels to maintain the integrity of your antiques and collectibles.
2. Use Proper Packaging
The way you package and display your vintage and collectors’ items is also crucial. For paper-based collectibles such as posters, comic books, and magazines, use acid-free, archival-quality sleeves and folders, which will prevent yellowing and deterioration over time.
For items like action figures or porcelain, try to use a display case to shield them from dust and physical damage. Otherwise, you can use bubble wrap, tissue paper, and soft cloth to wrap items for storage in a sturdy container. Egg cartons also work well to hold delicate items.
How ever you choose to package your items, make sure they are packaged individually and stored away from items that could cause damage, such as candles or liquids.
3. Store Antique Furniture Properly
A little extra care should be taken to make sure your antique furniture is stored correctly. For wooden furniture, you’ll want to apply a coat of wax or furniture polish before storing to prevent cracks and splits. Any glass parts should be removed and stored in bubble wrap. Keep all wooden furniture off the ground and keep it covered with breathable fabric such as cotton sheets.
Cushioned furniture can be a little tricky, as it provides the perfect environment for mold to grow. First, you should use an antibacterial cleaner to make sure it is bacteria-free before you put it into storage. You’ll want to make sure it is fully dry before you put it into storage, and make sure to store it where there is plenty of airflow (no stacking stuff on top!).
4. Pack Vintage Clothing Like a Pro
Vintage clothing can be particularly delicate and require a higher level of care. Before you put your vintage clothes in storage, inspect them to ensure they are free of pests, dust, dirt, and stains. It is best to store vintage items in garment bags, which will help keep them lint-, dust-, and pest-free, as well as protect them from light. Lastly, do not use wire, wooden, or plastic hangers to store your clothing; instead, use conservation hangers to ensure your garments will last for years to come.
5. Handle with Care
While it may seem obvious, proper handling of antiques and collectibles can be overlooked. Wear clean gloves to avoid transferring oils from your skin to your items while you’re handling them, which can lead to corrosion or discoloration. Stay mindful of sharp jewelry or accessories that could inadvertently damage items. Overall, don’t rush and take the extra time to ensure your items are handled properly.
6. Insure Your Items
Now that you know how to store vintage items, consider insuring your valuable collection, especially if it has significant monetary or sentimental value. Insurance can provide peace of mind in the unfortunate case of a theft, fire, or natural disaster. Additionally, maintain detailed documentation of your collection, including purchase receipts and appraisals. This documentation not only helps when filing an insurance claim but also adds to the overall value of your collection.
7. Conduct Regular Inspections and Maintenance
Don’t let your collection gather dust, both literally and figuratively. Schedule regular inspections to ensure your items are still in good condition. Check for signs of deterioration, mold, or pests. Dust and clean your collection gently using appropriate tools and mild cleaning products. Regular maintenance will not only keep your collectibles looking their best but will also allow you to catch potential issues before they become irreversible.
8. Use Climate-Controlled Storage
If you have an extensive array of items and lack suitable storage space at home, getting a climate-controlled storage unit is a great choice. Climate-Controlled units maintain optimal temperature and humidity levels, protecting your items from the elements.
Storage City Self-Storage provides secure climate-controlled storage to safeguard your valuable collection. We are a locally-owned and operated facility that offers storage facilities in Rapid City, Box Elder, and Belle Fourche. All of our units are fenced in and secured by a gate with code-entry access. Call us at (605) 394-9442 today to secure your unit!