Linen is a fabric spun from the fibers of the flax plant. Linen is one of the oldest known textiles: fabric dated from 8,500 years ago was discovered in a cave in Israel. This fabric is one of the strongest textiles and becomes softer with use. Linen clothing should be hung rather than folded.
Folding repeatedly at the same point breaks down the fibers of the fabric and creates permanent creases. To prevent mildew, store linen only after it is completely dry.
- Wash linen clothing in cold to warm water with mild laundry soap. Dry linen clothing in a dryer on low heat, or hang or lay flat. If using a dryer, remove linen clothing while slightly damp.
- Iron linen clothing while the clothing is still damp. Use a medium to high setting to press out wrinkles. Use a higher setting for heavier linen clothing. Steam or spray with water to keep the fabric damp while ironing. Iron the inside of lighter shades of the fabric then iron the outside to bring out the rich luster of the fabric. Iron only the wrong side of dark colored linen clothing. Hang immediately after ironing and allow to dry thoroughly. Use spray starch for crispness or use fabric sizing for a softer look to the linen. Protect delicate lace and cutwork with a press cloth. Use a press cloth over pockets, seams and hems to prevent press marks. Wrinkles in linen cannot be steamed out, they must be pressed out with an iron.
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