The greatest advantage of steamers is their speed in removing creases and wrinkles from a garment on a hanger. The process is far quicker than ironing and does not put in creases, or give that “ironed” look. The fabric hangs perfectly and always looks fresh and full.
With a steamer the presentation work can be done on the hangar at point of sale – on the shop floor- where it never fails to engage and fascinate the customer.
Steaming under pressure
One of the most challenging incidents presented itself in the very early days of Propress. At the time we were also importing fashion from Italy and Japan. One house was Kansai Yamamoto – the first Japanese designer to hit Europe. At the time it was a sensation – tickets to his show in Paris were as sought after as those for the Centre Court Finals. Harrods bought Yamamoto’s one off wedding dress for the promotional launch of the collection and it arrived from the Paris catwalk in a scruffy box in a large bin liner, looking like it was destined for a charity shop. It was no ordinary wedding dress, this one – it had layers that appeared to be designed to accommodate the entire family of the bride and groom. It was utterly impractical, it was gorgeous, it was sensational, but it was creased… very, very creased!
The buyer was apoplectic, the fallout was felt in Tokyo. It was down to us to sort it out – and we had 2 days. The main window of Harrods had been stripped bare, relit and was awaiting this designer’s sensation which came with a price ticket of £15,000 (and that was 1983!).
So we got to work. It took some doing, and time, but it looked perfect – and it filled that window! Harrods paid and ordered Propress steamers by the dozen.
That’s the advantage of using a garment steamer, you can safely steam any fabric from bolt to window display, from antique tapestries to suede and leather, and from silk to nylon, no matter how delicate, intricate or complicated its make up.
You can’t iron appliqué beading, sequins of any other type of adornment but you can steam them. You cannot get an iron under the waistband rushing, to fill it out, or into puff sleeves and shoulders – but you can steam them.