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Forum > Quilters' Corner > Steam iron or no? ( Moderated by Sharon1952)

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Steam iron or no?
conflicting recommendations
SouthernStitch
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SouthernStitch  Friend of PR
USA
Member since 8/24/02
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Date: 1/17/12 4:01 PM

I thought I'd ask because some quilting books and teachers say no way to steam, and others say yes! The BOM at Craftsy right now, the teacher does use steam to press her seams to one side. Just wondering what you guys do.
I am making a kitchen table topper and have not used steam.

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Bernina 780, and 530
Babylock Evolution
Singer 403a

When life gives you green velvet curtains, make a green velvet dress.

Learn To Sew
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Learn To Sew  Friend of PR
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In reply to SouthernStitch


Date: 1/17/12 4:20 PM

I do not know. I will start my quilting class in 3 weeks and then I should know the answer. So many questions and I have to wait for classes. It could just be a persons prefence I think.

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Bernina 630, Bernina embroidery module, Pfaff 2036, Bernina 1200DA serger, Unique Sewing Cabinet 450L

CM_Sews
CM_Sews
California USA
Member since 9/18/04
Posts: 1859
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Date: 1/17/12 4:39 PM

It is pretty much a matter of preference. However----

Whether you use steam or not, the important thing to remember is to not distort the fabric as you press. Too much pushing or back and forth ironing motions can sort of "stretch" and distort the weave of the fabric and distort the seams -- especially seams sewn on the bias.

Some of the TV quilting instructors I've watched claim that using steam makes it more likely that you will distort the fabric -- although it is quite possible to distort fabric and seams with a dry iron -- I've done it.

On the other hand, Eleanor Burns uses steam (she says she prefers it; it's not required), but if you watch any of her videos, you can see that she's gentle and quick with her pressing, and she doesn't iron seams to death.

You can watch some of her videos for free HERE on the Quilt in a Day website.

CMC

Jennifer Hill
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Jennifer Hill
Alberta CANADA
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Date: 1/17/12 4:47 PM

I'm definitely a steamer. Nothing like it for really flattening seams and intersections. As has been mentioned, you can distort your patches if you use it unwisely. But, you can also use it to your advantage to restore the desired shape to your patchwork.

I'm currently working on some little Lone Stars, and each star has 200 pieces in it. No way do I want to trim anything away, as the individual pieces are so small that any trimming will be noticeable. So, once pieced, I pin each section to shape on the ironing board, and hit it with all the steam I can generate. It works!

Jennifer in Calgary

quiltingwolf
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quiltingwolf
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Date: 1/17/12 9:24 PM

steamer here also and remember press not iron like your ironing a shirt

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quiltingwolf.blogspot.com

a7yrstitch
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Texas USA
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In reply to SouthernStitch


Date: 1/17/12 9:30 PM

I'm a steamer, but, I am also a pre-washer. I would presume that my friend that does not prewash would also not steam.

Being a steamer, I really appreciated the idea that someone posted for filling a vertical refrigerator water dispenser with water to keep on a shelf in their sewing room instead of traipsing back and forth for refills.

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Warbler
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Warbler  Friend of PR
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In reply to SouthernStitch


Date: 1/17/12 10:52 PM

Steam! But I also keep a travel iron near my machine that is dry heat. Because it is a Rowenta which is notorious for leaking I don't dare put water in it, I don't want it peeing on my quilt blocks!

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Janome MC6600 Bernina 240 Juki MO735 Singer 201-2 Singer 221-1

PattyGee
PattyGee  Friend of PR
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Date: 1/17/12 11:14 PM

I use steam also. One thing though, on a two color quilt I scorched the white, I really think my rowenta was leaking. Maybe use a pressing cloth on the lighter/white fabrics. When you have points it is most helpful to have steam, press don't scrub and let you piece cool down before moving if you steamed heavily. Hope this makes sense.

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Patty
Bernina 530, Bernina 200e with upgrade 730, BL Enlighten Serger, BL Coverstitch and Juki TL-2010Q.

PattyGee
PattyGee  Friend of PR
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In reply to Learn To Sew


Date: 1/17/12 11:21 PM

Learn to Sew: Your going to have to keep us all posted on your quilting class. Please

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Patty
Bernina 530, Bernina 200e with upgrade 730, BL Enlighten Serger, BL Coverstitch and Juki TL-2010Q.

CJ Tinkle
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CJ Tinkle
Arkansas USA
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Posts: 1062
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Date: 1/18/12 7:02 AM

I use a steam generator... LOTS of steam!

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