Tools of the Trade

My Ironing Set Up

Where to begin…. I actually find ironing relaxing. Yes, I know that that may sound odd but I can quite happily crack through a pile of laundry while listening to Audible or a podcast. Similarly, it has been engrained into me to set my seams after each stitch line. Today, I’m going to tell you about my somewhat complex ironing set up.

Ironing Boards:

I use two different ironing boards in my workshop. The ironing boards that I use are the Brabantia Ironing Board with Solid Steam Unit Holder, Size C, Wide – Ice Water and a mini ironing board from IKEA. I also have a few other tools that I use to help with pressing which I’ll talk about later. For storage at home I use the Minky Chrome Iron Storage System. It slots onto the back of my airing cupboard door and keeps my basic iron and ironing board safe from being knocked around.

Irons:

I have 4 irons… I feel like that’s a fairly hefty confession!

I use a standard steam iron with a decent pressure steam shot which handily fits in my Minky organiser. My other large iron is a steam generator, a Polti Steam Generator. It sits in my sewing cupboard until I need it, the IKEA mini board hooks onto the cart my generator is on and although I do not use them specifically together it is handy for me storage wise.

Smaller iron wise I use a Prym Mini Iron for seam setting on my mini ironing board or sleeves with either my Tailor’s sleeve roll or sleeve board. It’s also really handy for working with and making bias tape. It is a perfect size for my hand and sewing set up. For specialist pressing, for example pressing quilt detail, EPP projects or my doll making projects I use the Clover Mini Iron. It has a small plate but you can buy a larger plate attachment for bigger areas, a ball attachment for 3D effects or a slimline attachment for really small, fiddly jobs like doll’s clothes.

For on the go ironing, I like to use my Prym mini iron and a pressing cloth like this one or this one. Or a good pressing matt which doubles up as a handy space saver for classes. you can find a small one here and a larger matt here.

Tools:

I use a variety of tools to help in my pressing depending on the job that I am doing.

Something I use constantly is my pressing cloth. A pressing cloth keeps your iron from contacting with your fabric and in turn avoids scorching, shiny spots and little stains. It also protects your iron when you use any type iron-on or fusible interfacing.

Another handy tool for ironing anything that is fusible is an applique mat. This is a reusable sheet which is the perfect tool for ironing on appliques using bondaweb, when you’re using 606 spray or heat transfer vinyls is non stick.

A really nice to have tool is a Hot Hemmer or a Hot Hemmer: Long, they’ve really added a level of efficiency to my hemming and have become my go to for when I hem garments, mitre quilt corners and make handles.

Another handy tool is this set of Loop Pressing bars, they are heat resistant and designed for making 3D applique but I often use them for garment straps to get a really strong and consistent press.

My favourite all round ironing tool is the Iron Finger, I take it to classes to help me maintain a professional finish and I have one in my drawer at home. It’s designed to replace your finger when ironing. You can use the spatula end for finger pressing, point turning and gripping fabric to hold in place. You can also use handle as seam roll to press seams open and press with or without an iron.

Yay for saving fingers!

Lastly, are my garment pressing aids. As a tailor I really like to get into the seam to shape and press those seams in and the following tools are in my must have kit.
Tailor’s Pressing Ham: no it’s not tasty. A Tailor’s Ham is named as such because it is shaped a bit like a ham joint. Instead of being a potential for sandwich filling, it is a shaped aid that is ideal for pressing sleeve-heads, curved seams and shaping collars. It also helps prevent seam turnings from showing when pressed.

Sleeve Roll: So called because it slips easily into sleeves and narrow garment sections for perfect pressing of long or difficult to reach seams. Excellent for pressing gathers and preventing seam edge imprint on cloth face.

Sleeve Board: Similarly to a sleeve roll, the board lends itself to pressing sleeves and smaller garments but it can be locked into place.

 

 

 

 

Finally, my pressing mitt. My good old trusty pressing mitt has helped me time and time again on shows, let alone when nothing else can quite get into a specific space that I need to press. This tool means that you can press using your hand (inside the mitt of course) and perfect for last minute touch ups.

The only other thing that I can think of that is useful and sometimes smells amazing is ironing water. Click here to learn what I use and take notes in my free tutorial of how to make your own ironing sprays and spray starch.

Thanks for reading, what is your ironing set up? Do you love it or hate it?