21 September 2008

How to iron a shirt

I am one of those people who actually enjoys ironing. I send out my laundry every week, but I have yet to find a shirt presser who can do as good a job as I can when it comes to my shirts. So I iron my own shirts, mes chemises, as I like to call them,  and I say that not as an indication that I'm some kind of a martyr. I enjoy it. Shirt ironing is my me-time and besides, the ability to iron is what separates us from the animals.

My pals over at Apartment Therapy turned me onto a blog from Sweden called Chez Larsson. It's written by a woman named Benita Larsson and she has some great stuff on it. Click here to go to her blog. 

She irons shirts the same way that I do, so I'm using her photos and paraphrasing her instructions in my shirt pressing tutorial. Few things make as good an impression as a well-ironed shirt and nothing makes as bad an impression as an un-ironed one. Bad impressions are something we avoid like a contagion, so all you new people --watch this.

Step One: Lay the collar flat and iron it from the inside since that's the part that will be showing.

Step Two: Fold the shirt forward and make sure that the yoke is flat. Then iron the yoke. Ironing the yoke in one fell swoop makes all the difference for some reason.

Step Three: Lay the first sleeve flat with the button side out then iron.

Step Four: Turn the same sleeve over and iron it.

Step Five: Lay the sleeve flat and then flatten the cuff. Iron the cuff so that it's round when it's worn. A creased cuff will make you look common. Repeat steps Two through Five with the other sleeve.
Step Six: Start with one side of the shirt front and iron it flat.

Step Seven: Slide the shirt forward and iron the seam where the front and the back of the shirt meet.

Step Eight: Continue sliding the shirt forward and ironing until you've reached the other side. If the shirt you're ironing has a back pleat, take the extra time to fold it and iron it into shape for the entire length of the shirt. A half-ironed or un-ironed back pleat tells the world that you don't care enough to do a job properly and that you have a lazy mind to go with that poorly-ironed shirt you're wearing.

Step Nine: Hang your freshly ironed shirt on a proper hanger. Use a real, wooden hanger that will help your shirt keep its shape until it's ready to be worn. Take the wire ones back to wherever you got them. All they do is ruin the shoulders and collars of everything they touch. But then again, much better minds than mine have held the same opinion.

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