Friday, January 7, 2011

A Pressing Situation

A dependable iron is a must-have for anyone who sews or quilts. I guess some people actually iron clothes too, but that's just silly. I've been through my share of irons since I started quilting. And a love of vintage linens before that required that I have a hot, working iron as well as a can of starch ready for ironing marathons.

Enter the "pressing situation." My ironing board is avocado green and I believe was my husband's. It creeks and groans, but works perfectly well. When we combined households, my harvest gold ironing board went to the poor kids (aka Goodwill). As you can tell by the retro colors, our ironing boards have been around a while, but I don't like to be wasteful if I can help it. I can't remember what iron I had back then, but I can tell you it's not around. You see, I am an iron killer.

This oldie, but goodie is the exact same type of iron my mom had when I was growing up. Our maid ironed bed linens with the thing. Really. She watched soap operas while she ironed and my mom let me stay home with her if I was sick, so she was a babysitter too. I hope my mother gave her extra for that little "task." This GE iron is a workhorse, but it started boiling water, making weird buzzing noises and sputtering. I haven't tossed it yet, but its days are numbered. I guess I'm waiting for it to shock me or set my laundry room on fire or something. What I love about this iron is the heft and the fact that there is no mamby pamby safety feature like auto shut-off.

This sleek and modern beauty was a free gift with vacuum cleaner purchase. My mom's husband loves to vacuum (crazy, I know) and bought an Oreck. I got the old vacuum cleaner and this brand new iron. It's pretty fancy and worked like a charm...for a while. It's not heating up like it used to and the Teflon coating on the sole plate is wearing.

Now look at this little cutie. Since my ironing board is in the laundry room, I thought I'd buy a little mini iron and ironing board so I could save myself all those trips (exercise, really) from the machine to the iron. I use it sometimes, but it doesn't hold much water and weighs about as much as a cotton ball. It's cute and all but truthfully, I could use the back and forth walk from my sewing machine to the iron.

Not pictured is a newer iron that I tossed in the trash last week. I couldn't get it to heat up at all and it weighed about as much as a Twinkie. It was my spare to the heir and when King Oreck of Sleekdom started failing I drug it out. Into the trash it went. It wasn't like I didn't have three other irons.

But you know, three half-working irons (and a fourth in the trash) aren't enough for a quilter. I purchased this retro throwback Black & Decker from Amazon and it came Monday. It worked great the first day. The second day it wouldn't get very hot. UGH! I had to run and get the box out of the trash before the trash dudes came in case I needed to return it.

But then something magical happened. I tripped the ground fault breaker for the umpteenth time. It's on the same electrical circuit as the outlet I plug my iron into. To reset the breaker, I have to go into the garage, climb into the boat to get to the other side of the garage, climb out of the boat and use the jet ski as a ladder to get to the ground. Then I unplug all the crap Inspector Gadget has plugged into the outlet and reset the breaker. Then I climb back the way I came. Now that's exercise!

Being the daughter of an electrical engineer, I have zero knowledge of electricity, but this ground fault breaker thingy made a weird noise all of a sudden. Like it's faulty or something. Of course it didn't buzz when my husband reset it. Same as my car headlight working when hubby is around. I have of course decided the problem is not with faulty irons, it's with the stupid outlet. Oh, and did I mention Inspector Gadget has about a zillion things plugged into this particular circuit out in the garage?

So until he replaces that breaker, I'm ironing in my studio. And guess what? All the irons are working. Somewhere in a landfill, there's probably a working iron that I tossed. If you made it through this tome, I applaud you. It was nice to blow off steam, excuse the pun. I'd send you an iron, but I think I'm a collector now.


  1. I can totally relate. I bought a Digital Black and Decker iron when I started quilting 5 years ago and it worked for a while and started spitting water all over. Was a mess. Went out and bought a Flowenta (a Rowenta). That worked great for a while and then started leaking big time. As in all the water would come out the back end. but it only does that once I refill it. Strange. Am now looking a a Velocity, have read great things about this one. Will have to see.

  2. Lol, What a pain in the patootie! I wouldn't want to be in your shoes but I am glad that you shared as it gave me quite a chuckle. Just think, now once the circuit is fixed you'll never have an iron problem again, the universe owes you at least that.


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