Do you own a press cloth? Would you like to?
For ages, I didn’t bother, only to learn the hard way when I scorched some wool. If you prefer not to ruin your fashion fabric, follow this guide to making your own press cloth.
Silk organza is extremely strong but fluid, which means it can stand high temperatures and drape nicely over whatever your pressing. Its opaqueness also means you can just about still see what it is your pressing.
If you’re UK based and want high quality silk organza, I strongly recommend English Couture.)
So here’s what I did.
I cut myself a square approximately 16 x 16 inches (40 x 40 cm). I used the selvedge for one side, knowing it wouldn’t fray, and pinked the three other edges. Please note – experience has taught me that pinking alone isn’t enough. See here for a press cloth update.
Why are we using a press cloth? Because pressing the right side of a make can leave shiny marks or scorches that can be impossible to remove. But when making lots of darts with ends that you don’t want to bubble, you’ll be doing a lot of pressing. A lot. Using lots of steam. So that’s why you use a press cloth.
What’s that cute little cat button, Karen?
Well may you ask! It’s a good idea to have a right side and a wrong side for your press cloth. One side that always goes face down. This is because you may also use your press cloth when sealing fusible interfacings to your fabric, and there are always those odd bits of glue that want to stick to your iron. To save your iron, use a press cloth. And to ensure that all that cumulative ickiness stays on one side of your press cloth, have a wrong side. Mark your right side. I marked mine with this cute little button bought from Ray Stitch!
I added a velvet ribbon hanging loop to my press cloth. This means I can hang the press cloth up when I’m not using it, so that it doesn’t become crumpled at the back of a drawer. Also, it means I can hang the press cloth loosely from my wrist when using it, yet the ribbon is long enough to pull the cloth over the next detail that needs pressing.