I am not one to iron. I’m the type of person who pulls the laundry out of the dryer as soon as it buzzes so that wrinkles can’t set into the fabric. If I forget, I will admit that I tend to wear wrinkly clothes rather than bust out the iron. My poor husband always has to iron his own dress shirts and pants when they need it, but thankfully it’s not very often.

That being said, I knew in the back of my mind that pressing is an important part of the sewing process. Actually, I thought I knew that ‘ironing’ was an important part, but I just recently learned that ironing and pressing are not the same thing.

Unfortunately I did not know that before I ironed out the little bit of material that I have. You are supposed to run the iron along the grain of the fabric and not do circular motions so as not to stretch out the material. I’m sure you can guess, but I did circular motions instead of moving with the grain. Oops.

I don’t think it has been too terribly detrimental, especially since I am focusing on practice for now and using this time to learn things like the proper way to press. However, I do think it effected the purple material I have been using.

You can see that there is some slight bubbling at the seam where the purple fabric meets the floral material.

I would say it’s just a matter of me needing to adjust the tension, but you can see the grain of the material and it has a slight curve to it. It was definitely stretched when it was ironed.

I’ve learned my lesson.

I was able to press the seam which helped slightly, but it still doesn’t look as nice as it could. Or maybe I’m just not pressing the seam correctly.

I pressed from the front, keeping the material bent towards the dark side of the fabric. I know not to press the seam open unless you’re sewing an article of clothing. I also just used the front of the iron and held down then moved along the length of the seam without running the iron back and forth. Did I do it right?

I did sew a few squares together and pressed the seams while I sewed. I can see a difference in the square this week. To give you a visual, I took a side by side comparison of one square I did last week with one I did this week.

The seam is so much straighter on the left than it is on the right. Part of that has to do with the fact that I finally purchased a rotary cutter and so I was able to straighten out the strips I had previously cut. It made it so much easier to use the Ideal Seam Guide to have a perfectly straight edge to work with.
I have a feeling that pressing is going to be something I’m going to need to practice a lot to get the hang of it. Do you have any tips or tricks you use when pressing?