Pressing Techniques and Tools

How To Iron

How to Press Your Clothing

Improving your pressing techniques is very important when you are sewing. Know how to press your sewing project and having the right tools, can make a big difference in how your project looks in the end. 

You won't regret getting into the habit of pressing each time you sew a stage of your project.

Pressing Techniques

Ironing is when you glide along the fabric to remove wrinkles.

Pressing is lifting the iron up and down on the seams, pleats and darts to flatten the seam. Lifting the iron up and down will create a finished flat seam.

The stitches are being pressed to even them out. Your project will look much more professional and you will take more pride in what you have made.

I recommend after every seam you have stitched, take the time to press the seam flat, before you sew the next seam. The reason I do this, is to get in the habit of pressing and it makes the task of getting into tight corner easier.

Below I have listed some very handy pressing tools and what their specific use is.

Steam Iron

Most of us already have an iron around the home for pressing and ironing our clothes.

However, I have found it is helpful to have an iron exclusively in my sewing area. My iron is always at my fingertips. If you purchase a new iron for sewing, think about choosing an iron that has steam on all the settings.

Steam is crucial when your pressing, but not all fabrics can handle the high temperatures.

Mini Iron

This is a mini iron, not for to be mistaken for a travel iron, but used to press small areas while you craft or sew. I have a mini iron and I love it for tight areas that my regular iron doesn't fit into. 

Clover Roll & Press

This pressing tool is small easy to carry and great for quick and easy pressing.

This pressing tool is very handy when you can't use heat for pressing your seam allowances. Suppose your are working with vinyl or leather or any fabrics that are heat sensitive. 

Pressing Clothes and Pressing Pads

Pressing cloths or pressing pads are at times very important. I can't tell you the times I have scorched a delicate fabric with my iron when not using a pressing cloth. You can use a cotton fabric piece from your fabric stash or purchase pressing pad like the one above. Either way using a pressing cloth when sewing delicate fabric is a really good idea. 

Ironing Board

An ironing board is a must have in your pressing area. If you don't have a lot of space consider a collapsible board.

Tailors Ham

A tailor's ham is used for pressing darts, sleeves caps and shoulder area, and hip areas.Any rounded seams. This tools looks soft, but it is quite hard, to give a stable pressing surface.

I found when I first tried my pressing techniques out on this tool it was awkward, but the more you use it, the better you get.

Press Cloth

Press cloths protect the fabric. They eliminate iron shine on finer fabrics.

Be sure to test your pressing techniques on scrap fabric. Pressing cloths are good tools to keep fabric safe, but they are not always necessary on all fabrics. Use this cloth when you are applying fusible interfacing. The tacking substance from the the interfacing can leave a residue on your iron.interfacing can leave residue on your iron.

You do not have to purchase a pressing cloth, although they are very easy to find at your fabric stores.

You can use a clean old white flannel sheet or thick cotton cloth, or white towel.

Sleeve Roll/Seam Roll

A sleeve roll is a cylindrical padded tube, used for sleeves and pant legs. This pressing tool comes in very handy when you have tight spaces to press and you don't want creases. 

Steam Press

You can also use as an alternative for this pressing tool, a wooden dowel or pvc pipe wrapped in a towel. A steam press is expensive, however, this is a very handy tool.

Using one of these tools can make light work in the laundry and sewing room. I don't own one yet, only because I don't have the room in my sewing area. It is on my list of "have to have's" though.

Have a well equipped pressing area in your sewing room is a must have. If you don't have a designated sewing room, then dedicate a small space that you can set up your pressing area. It will make your sewing tasks much nicer.

If you have any pressing techniques, questions, or tips, please share them with me and your fellow visitors. Fill in the form below and give as much info as you can. We all can learn from each other when we share.

Happy Sewing

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