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The Evolution Of Ironing And Good Reasons Why You Should Care

By Expert Author: Mariela Doyle

Ironing in the "Old Days" versus today. - History of Ironing and Evolution

We like to look back at the history or ironing to see how far we have gotten. Most people have seen the old pictures of women ironing cloths in their apron with the 1950's car behind them in the window. Our perceptions have come clearly in many aspects, but has ironing cloths really changed?

Are there any advances in ironing boards or ironing board equipment? Have irons themselves progressed? Why is ironing still considered such a chore when it has been shown to increase personal perception so much again and again?

The historic ironing board vs the new ironing board

The ironing board has gone through a fair amount of progression since its beginnings.
In 1858, WILLIAM VANDENBURG and JAMES HARVEY patented (us19390) perhaps the first ironing boards in New York (in what is now the garment district!). It was the earliest furniture pieces designed for ironing. It was an ironing table that facilitated pressing sleeves and pant legs.

In 1892 Sarah Boone produced the first real folding ironing board that would be identifiable like the one today.
Ironing boards have also progressed as a ornamental item or part of the home. In-wall ironing boards have been a well-liked solution since the 50's and 60's. Wall-mount ironing boards are constructed into the wall like a cabinet or mounted directly to the wall and fold down for use and out of the way for storage. They came into common use when the home building boom soared after the war ended, cars became prevalent and the suburb was created. However, wall-mounted ironing boards were still incredibly well-liked, and remain so today in a city dwelling, as space is usually at more of a premium and inhabitants are still enthusiastic about style and keeping clutter to low levels.

The wall mount ironing board in the present day however, looks quite different from the past. Now, mechanisms alllow for quiet unfolding in seconds and materials for the wall mounted ironing board have advanced, making them much sturdier and lighter simultaneously. Wall mount ironing boards of today offer greater flexibility to blend in with their surroundings and are often not just placed in the laundry room.

The historic iron in comparison to the new

Old irons were often just flat pieces of metal that were heated and pressed on damp fabric. Advances were made in early china as they produced the metal plates joined to boxes that hot coals were placed in to create heat.

Henry W. Seeley patented the first plug in electric iron in 1882; the "electric flatiron" (U.S. Patent no. 259,054).
From there irons advanced and started to offer better heat regulation and irons introduced steam (1938 with the steam-o-matic). It has been a while since there have been swift advancements but the iron continues to do its job as we require it to.

Ironing board history and ironing history summary

We have evolved quite a bit in advancing ironing and ironing board technology in the past few decades, and it will be intriguing to see what advances in ironing board and ironing technology will bring us in the future.

For additional info on wall mount ironing boards visit: homepage

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