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OT: Ironing a dry clean only dress

Discussion in 'Know Before You Go' started by Karry, Aug 6, 2005.

  1. Karry

    Karry Guest

    We are going to a wedding of a friend's daughter. They go on a lot of cruises with us and I want to wear something other than my "good cruise dresses" that they have seen. I found an old dress in the back of my closet I forgot I had that STILL FITS!!! :thumb Only problem is it has those dreaded words on the label: DRY CLEAN ONLY. There is a scalloped neckline that is "folded" but the rest of the dress is fine. Does anyone know if I would ruin the dress if I ironed the neckline? I thought I could put a damp cloth on it and press with a cool iron. Any help from ironing experts would be appreciated.
  2. iluvcruzin

    iluvcruzin Guest

    I iron dry-clean only items all the time with no problem. Just be sure that you start with a cooler temperature setting if you aren't sure of the fabric. I wouldn't use steam or a damp cloth as it could make a water mark on some fabrics.
  3. tw1nk1es

    tw1nk1es Guest

    I also iron my dry clean only things. (Wash them too.) Iron on the iside of the garment with a pressing cloth using the lowest temperature that seems to work. Test a small spot for discoloration from ironing and wait a few minutes before doing the rest of the garment.
  4. red stripe

    red stripe Guest

    yes.. test iron on the inside hem.. that way if anything bad happens.. it is on a double thickness area, so that should prevent damage going through to the dress itself..and it is on the inside, so will not show.
  5. Karry

    Karry Guest

    Okay, thanks! I never thought about the water mark from a damp cloth. Years ago I washed a dry clean only dress; hung it outside to dry and it came out the size of a child's t-shirt, :( so I always shake in my boots when I see those 3 little words on the label.
  6. red stripe

    red stripe Guest

    Karry, I have to admit to washing many things that say those three words.. in fact some time ago I had a nice long white dress (DCO)that had water spoil on it.. it left a brownish watermark. so I took it to the dry cleaners.. I go back to pick it up.. only to be told that the dry cleaners felt that due to the material.. this would take a special process that cost an additional $29.95 plus they wanted me to sign a release, as they would not stand behind the work.
    So I brought it home and figured that it was a goner anyway.. so I bought "woolite" and filled the sink with cold water and the woolite, and soaked the dress.
    I also rinsed it in cold water with softener.

    The stains all came out, and I ironed it but starting on that inside hem until I got a temp that worked well..

    The dress is perfect! and since then this is the only way I clean it :grin
  7. Karry

    Karry Guest

    What a great story red stripe. Every time you put on the dress you should say, if you want something done you have to do it yourself . I don't know what happened with the "little black number" that I washed and became a "littler black number." I work for doctors so since I wear a uniform, I don't buy dresses too much. I just have them for our trips or holiday parties. But if I see those words on a label I put the dress right back on the rack :lol I think a lot of manufacturers are catching on that people don't want to spend a fortune to have clothes dry cleaned. Go to any store and you'll see huge tags hanging off clothes that read: I'M WASHABLE. :thumb
  8. Ruchela

    Ruchela Guest

    Nothing will happen to it. Just put the damp cloth, on very low heat. I also wash many things that say those "three little words" -- I think they put them there just so you will be careful, and not blame the manufacturer.
  9. Rubysky

    Rubysky Guest

    Cripes, I find those 3 little words on things that are 100% cotton. Most of the time it is just the manufacturers protecting their own butt.
  10. maria

    maria Guest

    I just wanted to say "CONGRATULATIONS ON IT STILL FITTING" other then that ......good advice from everyone above.
  11. Karry

    Karry Guest

    Maria :lol I have about an inch of space "left over" in the dress. I think that will last until after the cocktail hour. I will be okay if I suck my stomach in. I told my future DIL who is also going to the wedding that if she sees me at the buffet or at the bar, do NOT tell me to breath!!!
  12. I also wash articles that say those 3 little words. They usually come out OK. However, I once washed one of my daughter's dresses which was made of acrylic and said Dry Clean Only. It shrunk enough that she could not wear it again. Another girl (friend) that was slimmer enjoyed it though. If the manufacturers would pre-shrink the material then we could wash it in cold water, but they do not like to do this extra step that is time and labour consuming.

    Many years ago, when I was very young, I washed a WOOL dress in cold water. The dress shrunk before my eyes and was the size of a large doll's dress. Materials have changed since then though. I will never forget that day. I was getting tired of the dress anyway.

    Lots of Sunshine
  13. TinaLee

    TinaLee Guest

    My favorite dry clean only story - I had a white dress with a dark polka-dots on it. It said it was dry clean only, but only about 20% rayon... so I thought I would risk it. Well, the 20% was the polka-dots. THEY shrank, but the rest of the dress didn't - talk about a MESS! The fabric was all puckered up around the polka dots - I still laugh when I remember what it looked like!

    That said, i avoid the dry clean only tag. I do have a few things that I do send to the dry cleaner still, mostly the DH's suits, formal wear, and (because I hate to iron them) his dress shirts to be pressed. But most things cool water, Woolite and a gentle iron will do the trick!
  14. Karry

    Karry Guest

    well, ladies, thank you for all your help. Wedding is this afternoon so I will iron the dress before I put it on and let you know! LotsofSunshine, I agree with you. I hate labels that say 100% cotton because you just know they are going to shrink and it's always a gamble-should I buy the next larger size in case it shrinks up on me? I want to send a thank you card to those companies that put that sweet little word on the label: PRESHRUNK. TinaLee, I can't even imagine what your dress looked like after you washed it! You should have made a slit in it and worn it as a shawl or something.
  15. red stripe

    red stripe Guest

    and another thing.. if you wash a sweater and it shrinks just a little.. we are not talking doll size..a;lol then you can soak it in a good fabric softener or a good Hair conditioner/water mix.. this relaxes the threads a bit, and you can then lay it flat to dry and ease it back into shape.

    oh yes.. when washing a sweater for the first time, it is a good idea to lay it on a piece of paper and draw the outline.
    Then cover the paper with a bit of plastic.
    When the sweater is washed.. you lay it out on this and check size.. if it has not shrunk..then no problem.. but if it has..... then do the conditioner thing and you have a good outline for how much you need to pull it to work it back into shape.

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