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Pressing surface firmness- what do you use?

Pressing surface firmness- what do you use?

Old 12-05-2014, 03:26 PM
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Default Pressing surface firmness- what do you use?

Hi ladies and gents… I've been working on tuning my basic skills (I think I've developed some bad habits along the way) and I had a question about pressing surfaces. I've seen several tutorials about using a bit of board and covering it with a layer of batting and then canvas or similar to create a firm pressing surface. The people in the tutorials have stressed the importance of a firm pressing surface. I've always just used my ironing board, but am beginning to wonder if it's a source of distortion or other such undesirables during pressing because of it's layer of soft foam. Have any of you tried both and have a preference? Have you seen a difference in your patchwork? Thanks!
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Old 12-05-2014, 04:11 PM
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When Mother taught me some 60 years ago, on her old wooden ironing board, she taught me well. I have 4 brothers and I did most of the ironing. When I went to tailoring class, my teacher said I really knew how to press and iron. Her board had 2 or 3 layers of flannel from an old blanket, then a later of cotton batting, then the silver looking ironing board cover. She pulled it very tight with those spring/hole making clamps. We would take it off occasionally to wash or change the top. I still have the ironing board at my cottage. It never wobbles like the one I have here. I do use the little table top one with short legs when I am piecing a quilt.
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Old 12-05-2014, 04:12 PM
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I do have a firm pressing surface. I have a piece of plywood with one layer of batt and fabric cover. I made it big enough to sit on the open drawer by my sewing machine rather than using a regular ironing board.
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Old 12-05-2014, 04:50 PM
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I definitely prefer a flat, firm surface and usually take my ironing surface to workshops I teach so students can feel the difference from the regular ironing boards they supply.

I make mine with a thin sheet of plywood or pressboard, covered with a large plastic bag, then a layer of cotton batting, then a layer of the silver ironing board cloth which one can buy at Joannes. Mine is about 36" x 28" and sits on one of my sewing tables.

Jan in VA
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Old 12-05-2014, 05:45 PM
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I like a fairly firm pressing surface. My board has one layer of batting and a cotton duck cover. I really like the grippy surface of the cotton duck.
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Old 12-05-2014, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Jan in VA View Post
I definitely prefer a flat, firm surface and usually take my ironing surface to workshops I teach so students can feel the difference from the regular ironing boards they supply.o

I make mine with a thin sheet of plywood or pressboard, covered with a large plastic bag, then a layer of cotton batting, then a layer of the silver ironing board cloth which one can buy at Joannes. Mine is about 36" x 28" and sits on one of my sewing tables.

Jan in VA
the large plastic bag surprised me. it is for ???
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Old 12-05-2014, 05:51 PM
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I swiped my husband's drafting board from college. It's 36 x 28 and covered with batting and duck cloth and its firmer than my ironing board. I've distorted more quilt blocks then I like to admit to by ironing rather than pressing.
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Old 12-05-2014, 05:51 PM
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I use a Steady Betty. I thought it was silly until I used it. What a difference it makes. I thought the same about a clapper too but won't press seams without it now.
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Old 12-05-2014, 07:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Scissor Queen View Post
I like a fairly firm pressing surface. My board has one layer of batting and a cotton duck cover. I really like the grippy surface of the cotton duck.
This is exactly what I have on my homemade "big board". The batting I used was a layer of Warm and Natural. The cotton duck was very inexpensive at Walmart.
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Old 12-05-2014, 09:41 PM
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I only press using my ironing board when I am doing yardage for smaller pieces I use a firm surface by June Taylor that you can take to classes and also very easy to change the cover if it gets damaged. I was taught never to press on a soft surface because you can get tucks in the fabric.
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