Sewing-Room Affairs… IRONING

I’ve found myself overtime trying to  explain to my fashion students why they need to iron. One secret to having that ‘Store-bought’ look is, good ironing while sewing.


In the Tailor’s workshop, we should draw that line to separate Ironing from Pressing. They are 2 different terms that give different results. Using the wrong one at the right time could cause more harm than any good.


Ironing is what you do when you want to get the wrinkles out of something that has already been made, When you iron, you press down with the iron onto the fabric and move it slowly back and forth until the wrinkles are gone while Pressing is what you do when you’re making something out of fabric and it isn’t finished yet. When you press your sewn pieces, you lift the iron and place it gently down over the area to be pressed (usually a seam), then lift it and move it again. It’s an up-and-down motion , just as the name indicates, (Press) rather than a side-to-side motion.
Benefits of Pressing—:


Pressing makes Your finished garments look more professional. You’ll be hearing more of “where did you buy that”  when you or your clients wear it.  That store bought look will speak volumes. 👌

Pressing gives your seams well finished look and feel; – polished, and professional looking.

Pressing helps blends your stitches neatly into the fabric, flattens and smoothens out bulges and bulks that may have occurred during sewing.


How To….✔

Lift and press your iron into the fabric with a gentle motion, applying pressure only for stubborn seams or bulks.

You should sometimes press your fabric on the back (wrong side) whenever possible or required, due to fabric texture to prevent the iron from damaging or altering the right side of the fabric.

Important– If you have to press on the right side of the fabric,  you may choose to place a pressing cloth or have a Calico piece on the fabric surface before you place your iron for an added layer of protection.

You should always Start  your iron at a low heat setting and gradually increase it as needed to get a professional-looking finish in your pressing. Check the texture/feel of your fabric and use the heat setting recommended.

Avoid pressing over pins –  pin heads can cause dents in your fabric, scratch your iron or melt the pin head onto the iron or the fabric.

When you’re making something with a curved seam, such as a sleeve or princess Styleline, place pressing ham or sleeve board underneath the seam as you press. This helps to maintain the shape of the curves.


Practice pressing a small piece of the fabric before you press the actual one you’re sewing, just to pre-test and  be sure that you are using proper settings and your iron won’t alter or damage the fabric.

Keep your iron and ironing board near as you sew, don’t be tempted at any point to skip the pressing step as you sew. Press every seam to make them look as professional as possible.

Pressing and ironing are two very important techniques in the sewing world. Every tailor needs to take time on this Always. In the end, the time you take to press as you sew is time well spent because pressing yields professional results in all your finished sewn items.


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