Shirts that need ironing

copperfishMay 4, 2005

My Problem: I have several nice shirts that I didn't realize had to be ironed before wearing. I know, I could wear them wrinkled but I see them hanging in my closet, all fresh and smooth and I don't want to wear them because I'll have to iron them after they are washed! What would you do? Should I wear them wrinkled? Should I give them away? I have promised not to buy anything else that needs ironing but what do I do with these shirts?

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If you really like them and don't want to iron them yourself, take them to the laundry (dry cleaners). My DH takes all of his dress shirts and slacks to them and gets them done once a week. Depending on what area of the country you live, the cost is anywhere from 99 cents to 4.00 each. To me it's worth every penny!

    Bookmark   May 4, 2005 at 6:28PM
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I don't iron any more, but I do have a fabric steamer that I use for ordinary clothes. For good shirts, though, I agree with Marsha_OK - nothing beats having them done at a laundry.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2005 at 9:12AM
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I wear them if I know I don't have a lot going on in the next week. Like right now, I have a garage sale coming up, and lots of other activities for end-of-school-year, so I avoid the ironable clothes. :-) Glad I'm not the only one who thinks like that! LOL

DH still has some that need ironing. I just try to do them right when they come out of the dryer before I put away the clothes. Because if I let them sit, they just end up accumulating.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2005 at 9:34AM
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Back in the "olden days" when MOM had lots of ironing to do, she would wet the clothes with her sprinkle bottle, wad them up, and stick them in the fridge or freezer, (whichever had the most room) until she had time to iron them. She did keep them in a plastic bag, which kept them damp, and it works fine. I hate to iron, and will NOT buy anything that has to be ironed. I don't even have an ironing board. Lucky me! :)

    Bookmark   May 8, 2005 at 10:43PM
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What I did was buy some linen shirts for "dressing up"..that's about the best I can do when I have to take off my old tee shirts and bagged out pants to go somewhere. I have heard that linen looks fine wrinkled. It say, "I am linen" and everyone is supposed to think, "wow" or something. But I was wrong !! wrong wrong wrong I have decided I can look just as nice in something wrinkle-free but/and I'll just wear these a lot until they wear out. LOL

    Bookmark   May 12, 2005 at 4:08PM
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I have not owned an iron for years, and mostly own nothing that needs ironing (aside from dry-clean only stuff). I have a few shirts that need ironing, and take them to the cleaners with the dry-clean stuff for a wash and press.

However, I warn anyone considering this not to bring in women's blouses that are wrinkle-resistant treated, or stretch or otherwise not all cotton. They never fit right on those mans-shirt presses, and I have a couple that I brought in together that now have permanant creases in the shoulders and elsewhere that break my heart. I actually just wear them from the dryer now, but in response to this experience, I am actually considering buying a (cordless) iron. I have also started buying the no-iron and wrinke-resistant shirts from Land's End. They are great!!! Even left overnight in the dryer. Eventually I'll weed out the shirts that need ironing.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 10:14AM
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I'm so frustrated lately, bcs my DH does the laundry during the day, and all the knit shirts I wear for work end up in the bottom of the laundry basket wrinkled! Stuff that SHOULDN'T need ironing, does

I have one shirt I love that looks GREAT ironed, and just "OK" rumpled. I had no idea it would be that rumply; I'm going to have to be more careful in the future, and avoid 100% cotton.

I have a mini ironing board, and I wear that shirt on the days I get up early enough to have 10 minutes to iron it.

Joann23456, what kind of steamer do you have? I want to get one (esp. since it's a pain to iron T-shirts), but I want a good one.

I keep seeing the ones w/ the stand, and think they might be nice (mostly bcs it would give me a place to hand the clothes while I steam them; though I could do it in the bathroom, I s'pose).

But a handheld could be OK, too.

Any recommendations?

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 11:06AM
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Tally Sue -

I have the fabric steamer in the link below. The steamer is great, and works perfectly. The hanger is less than useful. It's held together with a sort of pin that only goes through one side of the pole, so it's always lopsided. I end up just hanging the clothes on a hanger that I put on a hook that goes over my bedroom door. If I had it to do again, I probably would just get a handheld.

I got the steamer at Bed, Bath & Beyond.

Here is a link that might be useful: fabric steamer

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 11:48AM
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Thanks, Joann23456. Bummy about the hanger; that's the biggest reason I'd want a floor model. I guess I could check it out at the store, and hope you go ta bum pole?

I don't really have anywhere I can hang clothes for steaming in my bedroom; can't hang a hook over the closet door w/o scarring it (thick wood); don't want to steam something right over the wooden door itself; etc.

I was hoping for a unit I could roll into and out of the closet.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 5:41PM
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Maybe a different unit would work better with regard to the hanger. I keep thinking that I'm going to get out my drill and try to fix the one I have, but I never do. Probably because hanging the clothes over the door works fine. I don't worry about the steam getting to the door (I have old oak doors) because I don't think it's strong enough. It gets into the fabric and leaves it a little damp and fairly cool.

Good luck! I'm just sorry I waited so long, as I find lots of uses for it.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 11:38PM
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Try taking your shirt out of the dryer a tad sooner than it's completely dry and hanging it immediately; it helps minimize wrinkles.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2005 at 6:50AM
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that works great, mitchdesj, if you're the one doing the laundry.

When I do laundry, I don't have as much of a problem.

(although, my pink satin-stripe shirt will STILL need at least a touchup, esp. on the placket)

And can we complain about the hem on twill skirts, which rolls so sharply after it gets washed?

I'll have to experiment; is it less likely to roll if you don't put it in the dryer?

    Bookmark   June 16, 2005 at 11:44AM
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Talley Sue - Hang your skirts to dry and the hem won't roll. I do this with my daughter's skirts. It works!

I'm very spoiled by our local dollar dry cleaners. I keep a small basket in my closet for my things to be dry cleaned and when the basket is full I take a load in to be cleaned. I mostly wear dockers and cotton shirts to the office and sleeveless cotton tops on weekends - all of which I like to have pressed and starched. I figure the small amount I spend on dry cleaning each week is worth not having to iron!

    Bookmark   June 17, 2005 at 9:12PM
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In college, I worked at a dry cleaners. I was allowed to have 15-20 items cleaned (either dry cleaned or starched and pressed) a week. It was heaven! I NEVER ironed anything and hardly had to do any laundry besides intimate stuff. I like to iron shirts and skirts, but if the item has legs--forget it! This post has reminded me to just get the stuff to the cleaners and pay THEM to do it all. janetwilson was right about the "cost analysis" compared to the time it takes and the frustration I experience as a perfectionist! Hmmm...I think I will get my basket together right now!


    Bookmark   June 19, 2005 at 7:59AM
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Thanks, Janetwilson. We'll try that the next go-round.

I'd take stuff to the cleaners, but they'd probably charge me $4 to iron something.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2005 at 1:49PM
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I LOVE the Downey wrinkle-release spray. I don't know what I did witout it-- I never iron anymore thanks to the spray. You can dilute it with water and it works almost as well as full-strength, when you get toweards the end. I also use the Downey-ultra wrinkle reducing fabric softener that goes into the final rinse in the washer. It helps a ton as well. None of the other brands I have tried work nearly as well. And the wrinkle-reducing fabrics are wonderful, too. Thanks for the tip on not taking THEM to the cleaners-- great tip.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2005 at 10:17AM
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TallySue: if your husband is going to do the laundry you have the right to ask him to neatly fold your knit tops and stack them. That's not unfair at all. Or if he refuses to co-operate, put the shirts in a special bin that only YOU wash. then you have total control over them.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2005 at 12:37PM
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I've started asking him to hang them up on hangers--that helps a lot. At least, it worked last week.

I fold them later, after they've cooled down, but at least they're not wrinkled! (he couldn't fold them neatly to save his life, which is why I picked hangers)

I thought about putting them in a special bin, but a load of laundry takes 11 quarters, so it's a bad idea to try to do half-loads.

So far, the hanging is going OK. I've had to educate him that ANY shirt of mine goes on a hanger--if it's knit, he thinks they're just T-shirts and don't matter. And he misses one now and then; assumes it's pajamas or something. And it means more hangers running around the house than I'd like (I hate those things--when they're employed, they're great. When they're idle, they're a PITN!)

    Bookmark   June 28, 2005 at 3:02PM
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The Wrinkle Release stuff is just fabric softener diluted with water. Huge savings can be had by remembering this.. But you have to remember that you're only re-wetting them again... just take them out of the dryer before they're competely done. Works the same.

When I do laundry, it's taken out and put on hangars asap. Only my gym clothes don't get that treatment.

Anything that can't go into the washer can't come into my house. Haven't had to go to dry cleaners (for my clothes) in 35 years.

Anyone else who lives there can either pay for dry cleaners or just not sweat.

I had a few shirts that needed ironing at one point in my life. I just did them all on Sunday night.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2005 at 12:44AM
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well, DH is doing pretty well hanging stuff up.

I bought a Scünchi steamer, figuring I could use in the bathroom AND on clothes (plus, floor space is at a premium), but it spit black stuff all over my clothes, and it did NOT remove any wrinkles.

DO steamers work? I know I've seen them work in clothing stores, but those aren't "washed and dried in" wrinkles, so maybe they fall out easier?

    Bookmark   July 13, 2005 at 10:15AM
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I have a conair stand steamer that I bought for my ebay business. It's on wheels and can be stored in the corner of a closet. I think it works great. It does spit water every once in a while though. The secret for me is to insert the wand inside the item I'm steaming - it seems to work better that way.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2005 at 11:35AM
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I hate to iron long sleeved shirts but think ironed shirts make one look tidier, crisp and sharp. Ironing makes me hot but I just got an ironing board cover made by Corning and shirts get done in less time than it takes me to take and retrieve the shirts at the laundry. At the most DH wears 5 per week plus trousers that I must press (to make sharp creases) and I had the whole weeks work done within half an hour. Shirts cost 1.50 to launder at the cleaners, trousers 2.75. I'll use the cleaners when I get behind in laundry which I normally never do any more. I got the cover at a stall at the county fair last week. I had seen them on TV but it's better if you can try things out before you buy.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2005 at 7:19PM
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A link for Tally Sue's DH. These really do work well.


Here is a link that might be useful: folding board

    Bookmark   July 24, 2005 at 3:38AM
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Terrapots--how does the ironing-board cover make a difference--what features does it have?

I think I ought to look into it; I have Martha Stewart Everyday ironing boards, and the covers are beautiful, but they're plain cloth, and I can't slide the shirt across it easily--it's a pain.

Is your ironing-board cover smooth, so the clothes slide easily?

Wings2W, thanks for the link!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2005 at 10:30AM
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Tally Sue - if your DH starts to falter on the hanging thing, you could have him do what I do when I'm in a rush - grab T shirts by the shoulders and shake them out flat, and then lay them down on the bed or couch. I just lay them one on the other, and fold them later (this is usually a 'on the way out the door to work' and 'when I get home' process). You could give him extra points for hand-smoothing after laying them out.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2005 at 2:44PM
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My vote:

Wear the shirts once more, and wear them all the same week. The next week, iron them all at once while watching your favorite TV show.

If that works OK for you, keep the shirts. If it doesn't, get rid of them.

P.S. I had bad luck with the JC Penney brand of wrinkle-free shirts. They come out of the dryer looking like they need ironing. On the other hand, Liz Claiborne wrinkle-free pants are WONDERFUL!

    Bookmark   September 24, 2005 at 9:03PM
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Thirty years ago, I decided tro buy only clothes that don't need ironing. Works for me.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2005 at 5:22PM
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I hate ironing more than I can say. It stacks up until the stack all but falls over and then I might break down and do some of it.

However, I hate being wrinkled, go figure! LOL

My husband's work dress shirts are all sent to the laundry, I just refuse to do it. We have a home delivery dry cleaning service. I put the stuff in a bag on my front porch and they deliver it back the next day, hanging it on a wreath hanger on my front door.

Yes, it's costs more, but because it's the task that I hate the most, it's my perk.

I do my stuff. I do my daugther's things. I try to avoid anything that needs to be ironed if possible.

One thing I do if my husband has done the laundry (rare) and my stuff is wrinkled because it hasnt' been folded is to throw the item into the dryer with a damp cloth. Will take away a lot of it.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2005 at 1:06PM
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I just wish I had a way to have an ironing board out all the time. Then I could iron as needed.

We were going to a party on Saturday, and I spent nearly all *my* 1/2hour of getting-ready time ironing other people's shirts.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2005 at 5:10PM
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The DH's dress shirts all go to the laundry. Otherwise, I just hang things up right out the dryer. Clothing which needs ironing doesn't live in my house. It tried, but I kicked it out.

Luckily, I can wear really casual clothing to work.


    Bookmark   October 3, 2005 at 9:01PM
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Sorry, Talley Sue, I just checked back and saw you asked a question. The ironing board cover has a foil reflective lining underneath that reflects heat back into the corning cover so it's supposed to iron from underneath also, at least that's supposed to be how it works. My friend whobought a small cover for her smaller built in board doesn't like the cover because she claims clothes slide off too easily. I don't seem to have that problem, however. Also, I used to keep my ironing board inside a utility closet (hot water heater/furnace room) but decided to keep the board up at the end of the hall between bedrooms. When company comes is when I fold it up and put it away. My laundry room's walk space is a doorway between garage and kitchen and I just didn't have anyplace to build one in that could be folded up. Works for me but then I try not to be too self-critical about ironing boards, it's just part of life for me. Aren't I fun?

    Bookmark   October 10, 2005 at 10:05PM
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