Finishing linen

3 September 2010

Linen needs a high finishing temperature (200C) that may be not be suitable for some garments as there could be a high risk of glazing on seams when using an electric steam iron. Cleaners using a scissor press or steam heated iron may not realise that these will not reach temperatures much over 120C.

Customers may also expect far higher standards of finish from the cleaner than the garment had when new. Many new linen garments have a less than perfect standard of finish and have random creases and wrinkles throughout the fabric – this is very often a feature of the fabric. So it is important to assess the garment’s condition before cleaning and discusss the standard of finish that can be achieved with the customer.

I have devised the method given here to address such problems. Retained wear creases can often be removed before the finishing process starts by misting lightly with water followed by ironing on a linen setting if an electric iron is available.

  • Finish the item to the best possible standard on the press or ironing table.
  • Steam in the rotor cabinet for approximately 9 seconds.
  • Remove from the cabinet and mist lightly all over with a top quality spray starch.
  • Allow the item to condition for around ½ minute.
  • Place the item in the cabinet and operate the normal automatic cycle. This should be around 15 seconds steam and 20 seconds air blowing.
  • Touch up with the iron as necessary.

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