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How to press linen and cotton trousers

Jazzthief

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Greetings!

I was wondering: should I use a pressing cloth when pressing 100% linen and 100% cotton trousers? I have a habit of turning my cotton trousers inside out when ironing them - but is it necessary to use an pressing cloth when pressing or renewing the creases on linen and cotton trousers? For wool there really is no other way unless one has a special cover on the iron which I do not have.
 

Phileas Fogg

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I don’t think it would hurt but I wouldn’t make it too thick. Cotton and certainly linen require greater heat to press than wool. Make sure to use the steam feature also so the heat is distributed evenly.
 

keepondigging

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I wouldn't recommend turning them inside out when you iron the crease in. You get this strange inverted crease that causes the trouser to fold inward rather than outward. Use a cloth like you mentioned and you should be good.
 

breakaway01

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For sharp creases, get or make a tailor’s clapper. It really helps to set the crease.
 

Jazzthief

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I wouldn't recommend turning them inside out when you iron the crease in. You get this strange inverted crease that causes the trouser to fold inward rather than outward. Use a cloth like you mentioned and you should be good.
I actually meant wrinkles, not creases. When pressing creases I turn the trousers the right side out.

For sharp creases, get or make a tailor’s clapper. It really helps to set the crease.
My question is not about the sharpness, but about the damage to the cloth. When pressing wool withouth the cloth then the fabric becomes damaged and shiny. My question is: would such damage occur to cotton and linen?
 

Phileas Fogg

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My question is not about the sharpness, but about the damage to the cloth. When pressing wool withouth the cloth then the fabric becomes damaged and shiny. My question is: would such damage occur to cotton and linen?
you’re not going to damage it unless you leave the heat on too long. Wool, cotton and linen are different materials and behave differently to humidity, heat and pressure.

I think you’re fine just ironing them as is. Use a thin cloth and use the steam feature, you should be fine.

make sure to periodically clean the heat plate as well. That will keep from staining when ironing.
 

Jazzthief

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you’re not going to damage it unless you leave the heat on too long. Wool, cotton and linen are different materials and behave differently to humidity, heat and pressure.

I think you’re fine just ironing them as is. Use a thin cloth and use the steam feature, you should be fine.

make sure to periodically clean the heat plate as well. That will keep from staining when ironing.
Thank you!
 

ter1413

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I use a handkerchief as a buffer between iron and material. Has not failed me yet.
 

breakaway01

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I actually meant wrinkles, not creases. When pressing creases I turn the trousers the right side out.



My question is not about the sharpness, but about the damage to the cloth. When pressing wool withouth the cloth then the fabric becomes damaged and shiny. My question is: would such damage occur to cotton and linen?
Dark colors can be a problem with cotton as well. Starting with a slightly damp fabric and using a press cloth help.
 

alkydrinker

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One issue I tend have with cotton trousers is when they come back from the dry cleaner or tailor after being professionally pressed, you see marks on the outside of the pants where the extra internal seam material exists. Not sure if this reflects poor handling by the dry cleaner/tailor, or if it just can't be avoided?
 

Shen

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I use a cotton kitchen towel, works just fine!
 

breakaway01

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One issue I tend have with cotton trousers is when they come back from the dry cleaner or tailor after being professionally pressed, you see marks on the outside of the pants where the extra internal seam material exists. Not sure if this reflects poor handling by the dry cleaner/tailor, or if it just can't be avoided?
The dry cleaner uses a press to do the entire leg at once so there is pressure over the seams as well. I don’t think they can avoid this since they don’t iron by hand. If you iron yourself you learn to avoid this.
 
Last edited:

Brendon

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Greetings!

I was wondering: should I use a pressing cloth when pressing 100% linen and 100% cotton trousers? I have a habit of turning my cotton trousers inside out when ironing them - but is it necessary to use an pressing cloth when pressing or renewing the creases on linen and cotton trousers? For wool there really is no other way unless one has a special cover on the iron which I do not have.
Hi
I hope this helps
Pressing trousers cotton is fairly straightforward. The trouser is not going to retain its newness as long as a woolen pair so unless it it is navy or black, or other dark colours you can afford to be a little more cavalier.
Important things. Line up the side seams below the knee and start there. If you have something thin soft to put down the leg to stop the seam inlay coming through better. Press using a damp cloth or steam to set your front and back crease. Glance inside to make sure its seam on seam. If you are sure then use the iron dry this will set the crease. Moisture or steam is your enemy here. You will get a sharper crease one the moisture is taken away. a dry cloth like a pillowcase can be good for this if at home. If you have belt loops the front loop will generally be a fairly good line up for this. again steam then dry always. The seams will knot match up above the knee. Front crease first then use the iron gently to push across the fork to set up your back crease. Gently at first as this is easy to get wrong. You will need to move around the seat and pockets on the end of your board or form. If you have back hip pockets flip them out press them as high as you can to where they join. They will show through the trouser if you press on top of them. To set the seat crease above the fork base of the crotch. Gently pull the waistband up at the back of the trouser and this will bring the angle in slightly. ie the crease will look straighter on a curve of your seat. Just like a globe with straight lines. Just remember thickness is your enemy ( not mental) ie layers of cloth and steam. always take it away.
Pressing woolen trousers is far more complex to do well. Hams must be shrunk slightly cloth worked to the calf, linen used to close the seams. Best to practice on a pair that are going to the charity store as it is much easier to damage or shine up a pair of woolen trousers. But the basics are the same. a piece of linen for pressing will make a huge difference to the side seams presentation on woolen trousers. Good Bespoke tailors like Rory Duffy in his video series show you how to take away the steam with a dry cold iron. Same sort of idea, getting rid of the moisture. Always remember to iron with something else going on as it is seriously boring work.
Happy ironing if there is such a thing
Brendon
 

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