When you’re moving, some rugs might be fine to just roll up quickly. But whenever you have a rug with large dimensions or structural concerns, you’ll want to take a little more care. Making your larger rugs more compact and covered up will help keep them secure during the move.

How to Roll Up Large Area Rugs

Maybe you have an oriental rug that’s a family heirloom, or a nice vintage area rug that you invested in just the other year. Either way, these types of large items are often more fragile. Oriental rugs, especially Persian rugs, shouldn’t be rolled up like regular area rugs. You’ll need to keep them protected, and the right prep work can make it a lot easier and safer to move them around—and easier to lay down in your new home!

First off, it’s a good idea to vacuum the rug to remove any dust and dirt. Then you can take a closer look at the rug’s pile. The fibers of an area rug follow a certain direction, and you’ll want to figure that out to get it rolled up the right way.

To check the pile’s direction, slide your hand along the surface of the rug. If your hand glides smoothly, that means it’s going with the grain of the rug. But if you feel a little resistance, that’s going against the grain of the rug. Once you know the direction of the nap, turn the rug upside down so that the fibers face the floor. Turning the rug upside down like this will help keep the backing of the rug from stretching or cracking as you roll it up.

For the next step, you’ll start folding the rug onto itself and into thirds. Grab one corner of the rug, and then fold it toward the center, following the same direction as the grain. Then fold the other side over the part that you just folded. Make sure you have straight lines for these folds. Once that’s in order, you’ll be ready to roll up the folded section and create a tight carpet roll.

The rug should be rolled against the direction of the nap. This will help prevent any damage to the fibers. The tighter the roll, the easier it will be to carry and move the rug. Take your time, and maybe get an extra set of hands to help you out!

Protecting Your Rugs During the Move

A few other precautions will help ensure that your large rugs arrive at your new home in great condition. For example, instead of securing the rolled-up rug with packing tape, use twine. If you’re moving delicate rugs, you don’t want packing tape to be directly on the rug’s fibers when the pile is on the outside of the roll.

Also, avoid using plastic wrap. While shrink wrap can be great for securing other types of large furniture and décor, it can trap moisture and cause mold to develop within your rug fibers, especially when you’re packing up a rug for long-term storage.

To physically protect your rug during the move, wrap it in hard packing paper, like brown craft paper, for extra protection. Then you can secure the paper with packing tape.

That’s all it takes! Strategic rolling, a little twine, a few layers of durable paper and a couple pieces of tape. Whether you decide to do it yourself or hire professionals, packing a rug for moving isn’t too complicated. But if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of packing up your rugs, or anything else around the house, you can always hire professional packers. The best movers in your area will know how to protect rugs and other fragile or heavy items. Then you can rest easy that everything will make the move safe and sound!