Learn How SIMPLE
Digital Patterns Really Are!

Sign Up to Receive
The Ultimate Guide to Digital Sewing Patterns eBook + a FREE Skirt Pattern!


“Well pressed is half sewn.“ This old tailor‘s adage is still true today. Proper pressing is just as important as correct sewing. As a general rule, the more delicate the fabric, the more carefully it must be ironed. Please consider the following when pressing your fabric…

  • If possible, press only from the wrong side. If you must press from the right side, use a pressing cloth.
  • The iron temperature depends on the fabric. Cotton and linen can be pressed at very high temperatures. For silk and wool, set the iron to moderate. Synthetic fibres such as nylon are very sensitive to heat and should be pressed with a warm iron. When sewing blends, the temperature of the iron depends on the more sensitive fibre.
  • Iron all of the fabric on the wrong side before cutting out. We also recommend washing cotton fabrics before cutting out.
  • Just to be certain, test ­iron a scrap of your fabric first or iron a corner of your fabric before iron ing all of it. Note how the fabric reacts to moisture.
  • Linen, cotton, wool, and some blends need steam to make them smooth. Steam­ press these fabrics or press under a damp (not wet) cloth. Continue pressing until the fabric and cloth are dry. Some fabrics may “bubble“ or “pucker“ if moisture remains in the fabric.
  • Fabrics with a textured surface should be pressed with only slight pressure on a padded surface to prevent the textured surface of the fabric from being flattened.
  • Dry­ iron silk, viscose/rayon, and acetate or use only very little steam. Never press these fabrics under a damp cloth as this might cause water marks.
  • Chiffon crinkles when it comes into contact with water and should only be dry­-pressed.
  • When sewing, you should press after each step of construction. For example: Press the darts before you join the side seams. Press the seams before you stitch the hem. Press the neck edge before top stitching it.

For optimal results, first press the seam (1), then press the seam allowances open (2)…

 photo Iron Step 1_zps4kch2vgm.png
 photo New Iron Step 2_zpskgozgtc5.png

Happy Pressing!


  • Simba_nov_06_large

    Jun 16, 2017, 04.32 PMby nrobson

    Very helpful! :)

  • Logo4957b_large

    Jun 16, 2017, 03.40 PMby jenss-1

    To prevent show-through on the right sideI it is also a good idea to use a seam roll underneath when pressing open a seam allowance. Also, some parts should not be heavily pressed – such as a hem on a draped skirt – when you want to keep a soft look.

  • Burdacom_logo_90_clip_large

    Jun 14, 2017, 07.26 PMby Stacyco

    Interesting idea! I will take this into account when sewing!

  • 2004_toni_large

    Jun 14, 2017, 06.47 PMby ndimi

    I always thought it was the heavier fabrics that needed pressing the most, yet you say it’s the delicate ones. Well, well, learn something new all the time on this site!

    Thank you!

    • This is a question
  1. Sign in to add a post


  • Editors' Pick
  • Pattern Collections
  • BurdaStyle Academy
  • Burda Challenge
  • Backstage Report
  • Fashion & Trends
  • DIY to Try
  • Tips & Techniques
  • Member Highlights
  • Sewing Projects
  • Outta Town
  • Contests & Competitions
  • Archive
  • Guest Columns
  • Videos
  • Meg's Magazine Mash Up
  • As Seen In
  • Podcast
  • Holiday