Vital Signs Secrets of Care-Free
(Forget the Iron - Invest in a
Unless you love to iron as I do
because I have a commercial steam iron that I still love after all
these years. But even if you do iron the linen for some
Mist the garment after ironing
and give it a shake.
Ironing drys and flattens the
fibres of the fabric which causes it to crease terribly. When you
mist after ironing you plump up the fibres again, softening the
hand and letting it go back to its gentle crushed linen
texture. I often iron out the packing creases from shipping
and storing but my iron belts out a lot of steam and either give it
a steam only afterwards without iron contact or I always mist
afterward. It's very satisfying to see what happens!
Forget the iron all
In the field, when traveling,
and at home we "iron" with the mist bottle. Just hang up the
garment, mist well and smooth and flatten. You can lay the piece on
the bed say, to smooth out large areas. I'm forever fixing collars
and hems by wetting and tugging and flattening. Remember that you
can stretch the fabric this way so don't be overly ambitious unless
you are trying to ease out the fabric. (Another secret - see
Linens dry out quickly after a
misting. You don't have to saturate the fabric unless you have
quite a problem area.
wrinkled linen in the dryer for 10 mins with a damp towel
I tend to throw all my personal linens in great piles. So another
excellent way to "iron"out linen is with a damp washcloth. I often
will put on a pair of pants and smooth out my messiness with the
washcloth method. Great for
Put your Linen in the Dryer!
You've seen how linen gets
crunchy when air dried. If you air dry you can always soften later
with the mist bottle.
Something else that works for
linen is using fabric softener in the final rinse, which also softens and improves the
crushed linen look. There is a Downy Dewrinkling
Spray But you can make your own by adding just a touch of regular Downey to the water in your spray bottle..
Clients often complain that
their pants have gotten much too big to wear anymore. I then
find out that they were afraid to put them in the dryer.
But Linen loves the dryer! It
softens the fibres of the medium weights to buttery smooth and
flexible softness. Just don't overbake. An exception is black of
course. It is my understanding that it's the dryer that fades
black. What do you think? I'm not sure, but the clients I've seen
with my pieces that are still jet black after years of wear say
they stay from the dryer. Oh Well. I suggest cold water for black
and dry just to damp dry.
This is why
I'm always trying to get clients in the smallest comfortable size.
Linen eases when pressure is applied. Just like cotton denim jeans
they get bigger with wear. You throw them in the dryer and they go
back to the original. Which introduces
Secret #4 CUSTOM SIZE YOUR LINENS
You can size your linen. One of the
reasons I've stuck with linen for my clients is its moldability. If
the dress fits perfectly through the hip but is pulling at the bust
you don't want to go up a size. You can mist the pulling area well
and do a nice bias pull the ease the fabric right where you need
it. Only do this between the seams. You don't want to tup on the
Look at the grain of the weave.
See where the threads are up and down and crosswise over that. Bias
is on the diagonal to that crosshatch. That is how you get the
ease. I will often mist a pair of pants and have the client sit
down for a moment. You can feel the ease immediately. You can mist
across the back and pull your arms across the chest to ease through
the back. We wet the fabric first so that the pressure applied does
not pull on the seams. ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT WITH THE HANDKERCHIEF
Any ideas and techniques you'd
like to share? I would love to hear them and I'll post them with