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To Steam or Not to Steam, that is the question!

To Steam or Not to Steam, that is the question!

Old 08-17-2013, 10:09 PM
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Default To Steam or Not to Steam, that is the question!

I'm on the lookout for a new iron. I like the one I have now, a cord/cordless Oreck but it doesn't get quite as hot as I'd like it to when I used with the cord.

I've never come to a conclusion regarding the steam debate- is steam recommended when ironing quilt fabrics? or isn't it?

Please share the news about using steam on quilting fabrics, is it harmful? I'll make my decision on a new iron based on the findings.
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Old 08-18-2013, 12:38 AM
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I'm not sure steam is harmful to the fabric per se, but it is very easy to stretch a block out of shape with steam. I am a big lover of steam for ironing clothes (I have an iron with a standalone water tank) but have switched to using an old dry iron for pressing when quilting to minimize distortion opportunities. I have to use a dry iron, because apparently pressing the button for steam is an involuntary action
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Old 08-18-2013, 12:47 AM
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I press patchwork with a cordless steam iron but don't fill with water. It is the best iron for patchwork I have used so far. I iron with steam . If I wish to change or pin a shape out I tend to dip in a starch mixture and then pin leave to nearly dry then dry press using the iron plus the old wooden press. Works great.

Ps I only buy cheap irons because I am always breaking them.
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:43 AM
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I always use steam, except on applique. I bought a dry iron for applique, because I did'nt like to see the little circles from the steam holes. But I press, not iron, my pieced blocks ( lift the iron, then set it down ) no stretching of fabric that way.
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:59 AM
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I just bought a new iron at Aldis. They had it marked down to $12.99 and boy does it ever have the steam when I want it. Mary
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Old 08-18-2013, 03:01 AM
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Steamer, here. It, for me, makes everything flatter. And while I sometimes have distortion, I think that has more to do with my inaccurate sewing than it does the pressing/ironing. I just square up/trim and move on.
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Old 08-18-2013, 04:12 AM
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My iron has wonderful steam, but I don't use it very often. I think I'll try it on the next project and see if it makes any difference.
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Old 08-18-2013, 04:50 AM
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I've found using steam to PRESS seams, either to one side or open, makes the seams lay flatter.
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Old 08-18-2013, 05:33 AM
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Where quilting is concerned, I'm a no steam girl. I use starch to iron my fabric before cutting, and I rarely need to use anything more than a hot iron after that while working on blocks. If I have a stubborn (thick) seam (like when PP), or if I accidentally iron part of a seam the wrong direction, I'll give the seam line only a little spritz of starch and iron.

I keep a second iron that I use when I need steam. Working with wool applique is a good example. Also of course my clothes.
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Old 08-18-2013, 05:35 AM
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I always use steam. if you are careful the fab does not distort
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