Taffeta, a tightly woven fabric made of silk or synthetic fibers, is used mainly for evening wear, bridal fashions and draperies. Yarn-dyed taffeta is rigid and stubborn when it comes to wrinkles while piece-dyed taffeta is soft and workable. No matter the type, taffeta requires special care to maintain its lustrous appearance. Follow these steps to iron taffeta fabric and eliminate wrinkles.
Know your iron's compatibility with fabrics. Read the instruction manual to get acquainted with the various settings for delicate fabrics, especially if you have never worked with taffeta before.
Set iron on a low (delicate) setting if you do not intend to use a pressing cloth. Taffeta will discolor and scorch easily at higher temperatures. When using a pressing cloth, set temperature to a medium heat or the lowest steam setting. Add distilled water to the iron's reservoir. Dry the area, iron cover and plate so that water does not directly touch the fabric.
Lay wrinkled fabric over the narrow end of the ironing board. When ironing draperies or long gowns, use a chair to hold the length of the fabric. This will help to prevent the item from constantly slipping off the ironing board.
Place pressing cloth over fabric. Apply heated iron with firm pressure, using steam function sparingly. Move iron back and forth over wrinkled area. Lift pressing cloth to check progress.
Iron with light pressure, moving in a circular motion, when you are not using a pressing cloth. Do not rest the iron in one spot and do not use steam or spray water directly on the fabric.
Place a piece of aluminum foil on your ironing board before placing taffeta on the board. This will help pull heat through the fabric, allowing both sides to receive treatment at once. Take vintage and embellished pieces to an experienced dry cleaner for treatment. While washing is possible, it may damage or distort to original appearance of the piece.
Water will cause permanent spots and markings on taffeta.