Unexpected Benefits

My Consew Gravity Feed Iron had gotten fairly gunky the last week with all the fusing I had done. It’s kind of unusual, but I’ve also never done so much fusing at home. I tried the vinegar and salt trick I read about online and it got me nowhere. So, I thought I would try Dritz’s ย Iron Off Hot Iron Cleaner.

You squeeze a two inch squidge onto a cloth and rub the hot iron back and forth on it.

After several applications, it didn’t completely clean my iron but clearly got quite a bit off.

They warn you about the fumes, and they weren’t kidding. Wow. It was super hazy after.ย I had to open windows from my basement to the second floor (it’s a warmish/ not frigid mid 40s (6.6 C) ย here today).

Don't judge me. This is clean for the sewing studio / basement

But, look at how much steam I’m now getting from my iron!! I actually had been wondering if my iron needed replacing as the steam generation wasn’t all that great. Turns out, it was massively clogged.

It was such great steam I went back to re-press the collar on my coat!

Tomorrow (or Sunday) I’ll show you how I made my belt, sleeve tabs and loops for the coat. Hint: Not the Burda method.


  1. Wow! I just got the Consew for xmas, so it’s good to know what to do when I reach that point (I’m sure it’ll come). My basement looks far worse than that when I’m in the throes of sewing, so don’t worry about it! Oh, and isn’t Bones a great show?! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • It is the perfect background sewing TV show! I can usually flit in and out and tell what’s going on but don’t have to watch it the entire time lest I miss seeing something. You’ll love your Consew!

  2. Miss Celie,
    Did your Consew come with a teflon plate that can be secured to the iron? Mine did and it helps to keep the plate clean. You should be able to find one on ebay or where you purchased it from. You should look into it. It will give you less migraines. Trust me.
    Miss Muslin

    • Ah, yes. I have the cover and generally use it. But, I took it off to do some precision pressing and *voila*! I put it back on! I realized I took it off because I thought I needed it hotter when in fact I just needed my steam back.

  3. You can also try wax paper. Apply it to the iron when its warm and then iron it off onto a scrap of fabric just like with the iron off. I went to this method after one season with Dritz’s fumes. This works well for me but then again I do it as soon as I notice the gunk starting to accumulate on my iron.

    Oh and I don’t have a consew iron so I don’t know if that matters or not!

  4. I use cream cooktop cleaner on my Laurastar when it is cold…man that makes it like new. I read about this on another list and if it can get burned on food off my glass top stove….it can handle fused material. Also used to use Barkeepers Friend cleanser on a cold iron….works well too but there is more rinsing and wiping but it will be shining.

    • Um, I will be purchasing the cooktop cleaner for my stove! I was using oven cleaner on the outside overnight and didn’t know there was something for the cooktop ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the tip! I did read about Barkeeper’s friend somewhere, but, I’m totally looking out for cooktoop cleanser.

  5. Wow. My Hamilton Beach is jealous!Santa didn’t bring me an iron this year, but I hope he’ll make a return trip by July (or before I start working with linen).

    What color nail polish are you wearing? It’s beautiful.

    • Thanks! It’s my first time wearing it ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s “Tease-y Does It” from the OPI Burlesque themed holiday 2010 collection. It should still be in stores now

  6. Just a hint from a cyber sewing friend: Get Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. Wet the “eraser” a bit and rub on a cool iron. I have tried the cleaner you used and the Rowenta iron cleaner (better) but the Magic Eraser has them both way beat. You will have no fumes and be working with a cool iron. I guarantee you will be blown away at the job it does. Who knew???

    • I picked one up this morning at the grocery store and my iron is pretty much spotless now! Thank you! I think I’ll start using it once a week to keep it spotless. Thanks for the tip!

  7. I love that Dritz cleaner, but yea, it’s trippy with the fumes. My iron could use some TLC now that I’m thinking about it…

  8. The best iron cleaner I’ve found is a simple fabric dryer sheet. Just rub your hot iron over it. Yup, it works like a dream.

  9. Great shot of steam photo!!
    I use a Vilene waxy-stick-thing that gets everything off for me, but I go outside to do it! You smear it over the hot-as-you-can-handle baseplate and wipe it off with paper towels.
    It’s called Vilene Hot Iron Cleaner – there we go, I got out of bed especially to get you the correct name ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Happy New Year!

    • Thanks for the tip! And, for getting out of bed ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll definitely give it a try. I bought the Magic Eraser because it was at the grocery store this morning. It removed gobs, but there’s still a bit more to go!

  10. I have used the Dritz Iron Off for many years and have pretty good results. Reading through comments, I read about Magic Eraser. Never thought of using that, may have to give it a try. You really did get great steam results!

  11. Okay, I know you said not to judge you, but…Holy crap woman! That room is scary! Yikes!! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Glad your iron is de-gunked though.

  12. That is exactly what my basement sewing studio looks like, right down to the clogged iron, the flat-screen playing Bones, and the Kenmore 19233.

    Say, a post or two back you asked for links to blogs. I’ve been bad about updating mine for the last few months due to family stuff and work trips, but I do blog about my obsessive sewing here: http://dailyskirt.blogspot.com.

    My husband’s heading out of town this weekend and I am trying to narrow down my choices for 48 hours of uninterrupted sewing time.

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