Hubby and I get excited over the strangest things these days.
Like, for instance, a shiny, brand new iron of awesome. Our new iron, the Black + Decker Vitessa is a specialty steam iron that works like magic. This has got us absolutely stoked!
When one of your biggest hobbies involves fabric.. lots and lots of fabric… things like irons become a really big deal. Especially when you work with such a broad range of fabrics that require a wide range of iron and steaming needs, which is inevitable in costuming.
If you sew garments, you know the importance of turning and pressing in the course of garment construction. And if you are a fashion maven, you know the importance of garment upkeep. So knowing when, where and how to apply heat and steam to fabric is essential.
Now I am all about cheat sheets.. so in a fit of ironing happy inspired by this lovely new iron, I decided to share the love and went ahead and made one for all you awesome sauce costumers and fashion gurus out there!
First off, if you have a professionally produced garment that comes with a care tag (and most do), just save yourself headache and potential heartache, and do EXACTLY what it says to do on the tag. No sense guessing or experimenting and ruining a good piece of clothing. Like, seriously. Just do what the tag says.
For a quick refresher, here are the universal iron and steam garment care icons, and what they mean:
1. Ironing required symbol
2. Iron, low temperature symbol
3. Iron, medium temperature symbol
4. Iron, high temperature symbol
5. Do not iron symbol
6. Iron, no steam symbol
7. Iron, no steam, low temperature symbol
8. Iron, no steam, medium temperature symbol
9. Iron, no steam, high temperature symbol
Now, if you are MAKING a clothing item, and your fabric does not come with a care tag, I have this handy dandy cheat sheet for you!
Now let me put forth this disclaimer: fabric fibers – especially organic ones – can be finicky. ALWAYS proceed with caution and respect toward fabric. This is especially important when you are dealing with a fabric blend. If uncertain, err on the side of lower heat or steam.
More about the BLACK+DECKER Vitessa Advanced Steam Iron
BLACK+DECKER is speeding up garment care with the Vitessa Advanced Steam Iron. The Even Steam soleplate design produces more consistent steam flow than other Black and Decker models from heel to tip for fast, professional results. SmartSteam Technology combines steam and temperature controls into one easy-to-use dial. The convenient cord reel unwinds and retracts in no time for easy use and storage.
Plus, this iron delivers powerful bursts of steam to aggressively take out wrinkles, and can even be used vertically to quickly touch-up clothes on the hanger! (This is such a plus when it comes to finished garments and costumes with delicate details or features!)
SmartSteam Technology – Take the guesswork out of ironing. SmartSteam technology was engineered to give you the optimal soleplate temperature and steam level for every garment in one easy dial
TrueGlide Nonstick Soleplate – The nonstick soleplate offers 2x smoother gliding over fabrics to quickly remove wrinkles big and small
Cord Reel – The spring-loaded cord unwinds and retracts quickly for easy use and storage
3-Way Auto Shutoff – Get peace of mind from motion-sensitive technology that shuts off the iron if it’s not in use for eight minutes on the heel and 30 seconds on the soleplate and sides
Burst of Steam – One button lets you quickly blast away tough wrinkles with the burst of steam function
Spray Mist – The push-button mister applies the right amount of moisture for quick wrinkle removal
Even Steam Soleplate Design – Engineered to provide a more even flow of steam from heel to tip, enabling you to quickly tame wrinkles anywhere on your garment
We used the steam feature of the iron on Jonathans Inuyasha cosplay hakama pants. While the cotton blend pants could certainly take the heat, we were interested in seeing just how effective the steam feature was. Initially I was disappointed that the burst of steam wasn’t comically large or of Yellowstone geyser proportions, but it quickly became apparent that the steam was enough to be effective while NOT running the risk of water damage or excessive moisture (which is important for silks and other delicate fabric types!)
Another major bonus, the nose of the iron is very narrow and can reach into very small areas to get creases out, which is a major plus, and one of best features!
It glides nicely, it is easy to use, and it is very stable when sitting on its heal. All that, AND it is very attractive for an iron! (Can irons be attractive…? WELL THAT CAN NOW!!!)
I am super thrilled with this iron. I have only EVER owned Black + Decker irons (no joke) so I cannot really compare this to other brands.. but I can say that Black + Decker has stepped up its game with this model! I would recommend to others, for sure!
[Disclaimer: There are no affiliate links in this review. I am an independent product reviewer. I only review products I am truly interested in. I don’t accept payment for reviews. The products I take the time to jabber on about are either items I have personally purchased, or the product has been provided for review after me initiating contact and incessantly nagging for a sample. All of my reviews are unbiased regardless of how the item was obtained.]