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When I was a kid, my mother believed in freezing clothes before they were ironed. Pillowcases, shirts, pants, underpants, they all needed to be pressed. So I was curious and last week I asked readers, "Do you still iron some of your clothes? Or have you donated your ironing board in favor of using the wrinkle release sprays?"
Emails from Readers: Iron, wrinkle release and some childhood memories.
"I am one of the few people I know that still irons. I have a full size ironing board and two small table top models. I actually have a third small one that is for my craft room. I have even been known to use starch! Ironing was one of my Saturday morning chores too, and I must have been good at it because my first paying job was at a dry cleaners. I find ironing relaxing and love seeing my clothes all nice and crisp. I don't want to make you jealous or anything, but I have even shown my husband how to iron a shirt in a pinch. I look forward to reading your columns each morning and have gotten so many books to put on my wish list! Thanks for getting my day going." -- Anne W.
"When I was first married I continued the practice I learned from my mother, freeze the clothes then iron them. However, as a young mother with a full-time job I sometimes put off that ironing until one day my husband opened the freezer and seeing a bag of clothes, said, 'Either iron them or eat them.' With that background you can imagine how badly wrinkled clothes, especially on other people in a professional setting, still annoy me. I would never let my family or myself out the door with wrinkles, even in our casual clothes. I still iron a few clothes, but I must admit my laziness has nudged me toward letting most slip through without seeing the iron. I'd rather be reading than ironing." -- Jan F.
"I only buy wash n' wear and there are no wrinkles there. The wrinkles I wish I could displace, are the ones that I have upon my face!" -- Dorie F.
"I would love to get rid of my ironing board! But I've tried those wrinkle-release sprays. They don't work. I try to buy only clothes that do not require ironing. But sometimes that's not possible. So I still have to iron now and then, especially in the summer, with so much cotton." -- Beth V.
"My father was a military man and my mother ironed everything--underwear included. Never heard of the freezer thing though. I was raised in the polyester 70's and then onto punk 80's. So I've been pretty anti-ironing. If I didn't sew I don't know that I would own an iron. That's all I ever use it for. I do keep yarn in the freezer sometimes." -- Heidi K.
"OMG Suzanne you are too funny. You just brought back some memories. As a kid I don't think my mother ever took the ironing board down that weighed a ton. She ironed everything every day even my father's underwear. She still irons but only a few things. As for me I threw out the ironing board and iron a few years ago. Give me that wrinkle release all of the time. I always hated ironing. Thanks for the smiles." -- Cheryl G.
"I still iron my clothes. I hate wrinkles and I don't think the sprays do as good of a job as a real iron does. I do not iron my sheets; however, I do iron my tablecloths, placemats, and napkins. I have my grandmother's wooden ironing board hanging on the wall in my dining room along with a collection of antique irons. I am glad I don't have to put coal in an iron to use it!" --Janet K.
Thanks for reading with me. It's so good to read with friends.
* ICE, by Anna Kavan, is this month's Penguin Classics book. Enjoy a great Classics book and enter-to-win a Penguin tote bag. Click here to start reading.