Author Topic: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?  (Read 1573 times)

Igelfreundin

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Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« on: April 30, 2018, 11:43:54 AM »
My name is Igelfreundin and I iron my clothes. I think I need to confess this, Alcoholics Anonymous style, since practically no one else irons anymore. I don't really enjoy it, but I've thought carefully and i like the alternatives less (wearing more knit or non-natural fibers, looking rumpled, using the dryer more). Given that I spend ~1 hour per week ironing, would a steamer help?

I bought a steamer at a garage sale to try it out, but it's turning out to be not much faster than ironing. I have to hold each part of the shirt taut and move the steamer head slowly over each area. Did I just buy a cheap steamer, or is this as good as it gets? I would gladly pay a few hundred dollars IF I knew that it I would reduced my ironing time by 50-75% for the next ten years.

Has anyone tried a steamer advice? (Details: I mainly iron cotton and wool, such as collared shirts and flat sweaters. Hardly anything has frills, where steamers might be a particular advantage.)

catccc

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2018, 12:13:24 PM »
Just stick with your iron.  I have used a commercial steamer when I worked in retail clothing and they aren't that great.

Sibley

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2018, 09:54:32 AM »
Nope. stick with the iron. Steamers are a godsend with certain fabrics. Cotton and wool aren't on that list.

chasesfish

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2018, 09:09:13 PM »
I iron my own shirts, hell I even titled a blog after not ironing shirts soon....

Pass on the steamer, stick with the iron

dragoncar

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2018, 12:23:48 AM »
It's not really faster.

Other options - not sure if man or woman, but men's dress shirts often come in "wrinkle free" fabric coatings that work pretty well -- you might still need to iron but it will be much faster.

If you don't enjoy ironing, you could hire it out, depending on your salary.  I know around here we like to insource, but the math can work out if you are able to use the extra hour working at a high rate of pay.  Hiring out can include using a cleaner service or a more amateur home laundry service if available in your area.   

I know when I was working I could work an extra hour one day and easily pay for a month's worth of shirt cleaning with the resulting bonus.  Shirts were like $1/shirt for wash and press (not dry cleaned)

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2018, 02:25:33 AM »
What you need is a commercial press iron. It's like a cross between a giant George Foreman grill and an ironing board. You position your clothing, bring down the heated top and the entire clothing item is pressed in one go. You also need to get enthusiastic about the joys of starch, so you don't have to iron as often.

BookLoverL

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2018, 02:46:48 AM »
Pretty sure a steamer isn't necessary. It's only 1 hour a week that you're spending on the ironing anyway - if you listen to a podcast, an audiobook, or some music while you iron, that's not that much time at all. Maybe if you were ironing 10 hours a week...

Also, I know you said you're not willing to give up ironing all together, but do you at least prioritise which clothes to iron? Shirts and trousers and the like, fair enough. But my grandma irons handkerchiefs and socks, which I've always found to be rather baffling since both those items immediately get crumpled up on use. So perhaps consider if you could reduce the time you spend ironing by ironing more selectively and/or efficiently.

Freedomin5

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2018, 03:43:33 AM »
I used to hang my wrinkled clothing on hangers in the bathroom after taking a shower. The steam from the shower let out the wrinkles. No ironing. No steamer.

Trying2bFrugal

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2018, 05:42:23 AM »
I used to hang my wrinkled clothing on hangers in the bathroom after taking a shower. The steam from the shower let out the wrinkles. No ironing. No steamer.

That's an excellent idea. Will try it when I do iron today.

Rosy

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2018, 09:23:21 AM »
The steam press Anna mentioned works wonderfully, you'd cut your time in half or less.
I followed my SIL advice and I no longer own anything that needs to be ironed, except some old household linens, which I don't mind ironing.
I tried a couple of steamers and found they don't do the job - so continue to iron or invest in a steam press so everything looks top notch plus you saved yourself a good chunk of time.

shelbyautumn

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2018, 09:52:41 AM »
My mom gave me her old Jiffy steamer. It works really well for my tops and dresses, but doesn't work at all on my husband's dress shirts.

If you're ironing shirts I'd say skip the steamer. If you're ironing flowy women's tops, the cheap steamer should already work.

Jouer

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Re: Will a clothing steamer make my life better?
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2018, 09:18:23 AM »
I'm the ironer in the family (I'm a guy) and I must say ironing women's clothing is way worse than guy's stuff. So many weird angles and dainty materials. But I do find it works better than steaming.