Epic Ironing Fail!!!

Hello Blog Buddies, hope this Tuesday finds you well??

Apologies for the lack of posts recently. Real life has got in the way (like it should). Not only in the way of blog posts but also of craftiness in general. Not a lot going on here. I haven’t even picked up the crochet in the evening much, my head is elsewhere right now.

Last Tuesday I finally got round to ordering some new background fabric for the patchy houses. I had searched about and found a local Yorkshire weaving mill where I could buy  some untreated calico for a good price. I had ordered a load of samples to check which was right so I ordered 11m (to cover their minimum order requirement). I thought it might take up to 10 days for delivery but it came on Thursday – yay! I should have taken a photo at this point so you could have seen it in all its glorious perfectly flatness – it was like it had been run over by a steamroller, perfect except for the folds when it was packed, but I didn’t expect what followed.

Did you notice the word before calico?? Yep… untreated. That means not preshrunk. So I thought I would stick it in the washing machine before getting stuck in to sewing. Don’t want anyone getting upset when they have to wash something in the future. I did that on Friday morning. It was hideously creased when I got it out of the machine but I decided to dry it slightly then iron it when damp. I managed to get it on the line for a while in between showers then brought it in for ironing. Have a look at how bad the creases were….

I got out the ironing board and started. After twenty minutes it looked like this…

Looking better but still with some very stubborn creases. Not bad eh?? Oh but it is bad… very bad. That ironed piece you can see on the right of the above picture is only about a foot wide and just over a metre long… and it took TWENTY minutes to get it to this state. There are ELEVEN metres of the stuff….. Sob!

Right there and then I gave up. Nope. Not going there. Not ironing it all in one go. I have better things to do with my time. So wish I hadn’t washed it! Mr P found me a piece of left over shower rail and I rolled it all onto that. I will iron it as I need it. Can you tell that ironing is not my favourite thing???

After a lovely, busy, ordinary, family weekend I was itching to cut into it yesterday but I had some bags to finish first. Here they are..

Inspiration from Eclectic Gypsyland. Apologies for dingy photos. You can see the shoots are there but the button plants have not yet flowered! Here’s the other…

They really do look unfinished and lacking something without their buttons. That will be corrected very soon.

So once they were all sewn I could get on to my new calico. With 11m to play with you might think I would go large. No. Mrs Patch always has to be contrary. I wanted to see how small I could go. I’m thinking card size?? Here’s my effort…

Left the scissors and pencil so you can get an idea of scale. Buttons awaiting attachment again. Just look at those evil, stubborn creases. Grrrrrrrr!!!!! Just need a card blank to mount it on. Might try a teeny three house village next, so the houses will have to get smaller still. Less detailed I think.

If anybody has any amazing ideas for crease removal I would LOVE to hear them. One of my friends suggested putting it under the mattress and i might have to try it! Enjoy your day everyone.

34 thoughts on “Epic Ironing Fail!!!

      • Ah well then, I have absolutely no idea what to do! I don’t suppose underwater ironing is advisable! Could you talk to the mill where you bought it and see what they suggest?

  1. The card sized picture is great!

    I’ve been where you are now and have some lovely fabrics laying unused because I can’t be bothered to iron something for ages knowing that the creases won’t ever come out completely. I haven’t found a solution I’m afraid 😦 I’ve tried re-wetting and ironing when damp which helps a little but wasn’t 100% successful. Sorry not to have anything more positive to say.

    Personally though, I like the creased calico look – very natural.

    • Lol!! Let’s hope everyone likes the creased calico look!! That’s my worry, that I will be reluctant to use it because it needs ironing. I will handle it much better in small bursts than all 11m in one go – I would lose the will to live if I had to do that!

      • My mum used to iron her sheets by having them on the ironing board under other items of laundry as they were ironed – perhaps you could try that? The more often it’s ironed hopefully the easier the creases will go?

  2. I would have thought that steaming as you go would get the creases out? But then I’m not an ironer either, and in fact don’t even know where my iron is – I never iron a single thing! What about one of those magic press things that you see on tv ads?

  3. The only thing I can suggest re ironing is to iron the pieces as you want them. i.e small. Wash them in plain water without wringing, dry a bit with a towel and then iron them on a nice flat ironing board until dry. When I am ironing my linen (cotton?) Christmas cloth, if I iron in a crease, I soak the bit in question and then keep ironing it till it’s dry. Haven’t done it for a while but I think it worked. I hate ironing too!

  4. Ask a laundry if they would put it through one of their special ironing machines, ie: one that deals with hotel sheets etc?

    Oohh I really like the new design. Like the second carvan best, it’s the spotty yellow material I think.

    How about a mini village including a church tower?

    • I like the spotty too. I think I will keep my eyes peeled for more spotty fabrics in other colours and sizes of spots. It mixes well with other patterns but isn’t too much.

  5. I did this once with some linen I bought! I was totally new to the whole sewing thing. I nearly cried after I washed it.. it’s still in my cupboard of fabric, wrinkled. I only ironed out what I needed for the project and decided that I would iron as I needed it.. I haven’t needed it since, so there it sits, a wrinkled mess of linen. I like you abhor ironing!!! Love your little house and wagons!

  6. Oh you poor thing, I hate ironing too and I think I would go with the iron as you go method!! Those creases have made me go all funny. Hope you are having a great week? xx

  7. Ha! Snap! I did a screen printing workshop last week, and bought some extra calico to take with me. I did exactly the same as you – washed it first, ironed when damp, and it looks terrible! I got as far as you did with trying again 🙂 what a pain! I cut it into smaller pieces and have gone over them quite a few times now (which is kind of hilarious as I don’t iron my clothes) and they look a bit better… Just iron it when you need it I guess.

    Love the little house – and it’s little daffodil!

    • It seems to be a common problem judging by everyone’s comments. Think the iron and board might have to move upstairs to my little workspace. Screen printing workshop sounds good.

  8. Hi Patch, Your designs are gorgeous! I always used to have trouble ironing the crease out of the centre of cotton fabrics. Why they put them on the bolt folded in half I’ll never know. Anyway, I bought a spray called Easy Iron from Ebay. I think you can get it in large supermarkets in the laundry section (where else?) if you want to avoid p+p charges. The one I use is by Fabric Magic and it works really well on 100% cotton. Does what it says on the tin…..”Removes stubborn creases without effort. Can be used on all cottons and linens. Not to be used on dry clean only fabrics.” It is in a bright orange aerosol can if you want to look out for it. I hope this helps 😀
    P.S. The only thing I iron is patchwork 😆

      • It goes quite a long way if you keep shaking it. Otherwise it comes out wet instead of a mist. I’m still on my first can and I’ve made 10 quilts so far. I think it was about a fiver. Good luck!

  9. oh i feel like we’re living parallel lives! (but with different ironing board covers)

    i use calico as the base fabric for all my work… but i can only stand to wash 3metres (twice. sometimes 3 times) at a time – due to the ironing – and it never comes up like when my mum does it!
    i think she hot washes it 4 times and dumps loads of fabric softener in – when she sends me one of her parcels of calico, it’s really white, so very soft and really really flat. ❤

    • Lol! It is a bit parallel… except I think you are the better sew-er and your designs are MUCH cooler 😉
      Does all the washing help with the ironing?? I can see that the fabric softener might help. I might give it a go, otherwise I might have to borrow your Mum!!!

  10. my mum is here *right here* and i’m quizzing her on behalf of us both…
    she says she’s sometimes washed it SIX TIMES, and puts in double fabric softener (!!)
    and she brings it in when it’s still damp, and rolls it rather than folding it until she irons it.
    she’s saving me a fortune in washing machine, clearly!

    also her face did this: :0
    when i said you were trying to do 11 metres at once

    • Awww thanks. I have cut a piece off today, about 3m, and washed it three more times with softener. Ironed it while wet and it’s still not good. Have given up for now and put it on the aga to dry, hoping that the creases might magically disappear! It’s evil.

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    • Hi Pete, thanks for the comment. Having had a browse, I know you write about all kinds of stuff…. but another blogger who writes about ironing… who’d have thought it!!! Bizarrely this post seems to still get a lot of interest too….. I wonder if its the words ‘Epic Fail” that do it???

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