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Product Review: Prym Ironing Sheet by Victoria

Hi, I’m Victoria from Lightning Bolt to the Soul, and I’m going to review the Prym Ironing Sheet that was very kindly sent to me by Minerva Crafts to review.

Recently I’ve taken to watching sewing shopping channels – dangerous when you’re on a budget – and one of the products that really got me interested was the ironing mat everyone seemed to be using. For me, ironing and pressing is the absolute worst when it comes to dressmaking. But, I thought, wouldn’t life be easier if I had a heat-proof mat I could use, rather than lugging the ironing board around the house, leaving it blocking up the hallway while I pretend I’m going to finish that hem in the near future...

So when the team at Minerva contacted me to say they were looking for reviewers for the Prym Ironing Sheet, I almost bit their hands off. A couple of days later it arrived – it’s way too bulky to fit though your letterbox, expect a trip to your parcel depot if you’re not in – and I can honestly say I’ve barely stopped using it since.

All brand new in its packaging.

I’m going start with the only negative, as it was one of the first things I noticed; there is a complete lack of instructions with this product. I know it’s an ironing mat, and how many instructions do you need, etc, etc, but actually, I’m boring and I like to read the instructions. I wanted to know if there were any surfaces you could or couldn’t use it on, maximum iron temperature, laundering instructions, but there was nothing. There’s a teeny tiny wash label attached to it, and that’s all you’re getting!

Apparently it’s non-washable – I wonder what I’ll do when I inevitably spill a mug of tea on it?

However. If that’s the only downside, then we’re doing OK. Better than OK, in fact; I absolutely love this product, and it really has changed the way I sew. On to the positives!

Sorry for the wrinkly picture, it presses beautifully but I can’t seem to iron the wrinkles out of the mat itself!!

The product itself measures 36¾” x  19¾” (93cm x 50cm) which is a really good size. It’s small enough to lay out on the floor and not be completely in the way, and it’s large enough to press long sections of fabric at once, like curved hems. It’s also wider than my ironing board which makes it easier to press skirt panels and wider pieces; there’s less shuffling around. I used my ironing board at the beginning of the project to iron my 3m length of fabric, and then used the ironing sheet thereafter for all the seams, hems and details, and it presses like a dream.

The mat allows you to press lovely sharp lines really easily.

The product is made from 100% cotton, according to the teeny label, and it has a squishy feel to it which I know is the heat-resistance, but which also makes pressing super easy. On the top of the mat there are grid markings and angles like there are on a cutting mat, which are reasonably useful. One thing I did use these for was lining up the edge of my fabric with the lines printed on the sheet; this meant I had really crisp, straight lines which really helped show off the detail of the finished dress.

I lined up straight edges to make sure I was pressing accurately and not distorting the nice straight lines I had cut... except I had distorted it a bit!

I don’t think I would rely on these gridlines to measure anything too accurately, as the squishy nature of the fabric means that the measurements warp a little bit. It’s perfectly fine for a guide – I used it to double check my 1.5cm seam allowance (it doesn’t have inches, sadly) for reassurance, but I wouldn’t rely on it if I was doing intricate quilting.

The lines are really useful but can get a little bit distorted.

I mostly use this product on the floor. I have my sewing machine on a little TV-dinner table in my lounge, so that I can cut out on the floor and sew sat in my armchair, trying not to take up the entire lounge. When I had my ironing board in the lounge as well I would hop from station to station shouting  “CAREFUL!” every time my husband walked in, and it was a bit of a pain. Now, when I’m done with my cutting mats, they go back under the couch and my ironing mat comes out (don’t worry, the iron is kept on the mantelpiece, not lying around on the floor) so I can just iron pieces bit by bit, and it doesn’t take over the entire room.

The product is clearly designed to go on tables (although, obviously, there are no instructions!); there is a little flap on the long edge that has a pincushion, three pockets, and a removable Velcro bag to stuff your spare threads in. This hangs down the side of the table, making them much easier to use. I, on the other hand, don’t have an easily accessible table large enough for the mat to go on (I’ve put it on my kitchen worktop for the sake of this picture), so I didn’t really use the pockets and Velcro bag as they just lay flat on the floor, although I did use the pincushion quite frequently. I’m sure they’d be useful for people using the product on a tabletop, but they didn’t really make much of an impression on me.

Please excuse the fridge; I don’t have another table big enough to rest it on!

Overall, I have to say I love this product. I really recommend it, and I’m considering buying another one for my static caravan, where space really is at a premium. It’s seriously handy, and it actually makes me want to sew more; I’m lazy, and the thought of trudging through to my utility room to get the ironing board and set it up can be enough to put me off a short sewing burst. Whipping out the ironing mat from behind the chair, on the other hand, makes setup so much easier, and before I know it I’m away, pressing seams and hems. This product is lightweight, portable and space-saving; ideal for those who don’t necessarily have a dedicated sewing space. I am really enjoying using this product and I would recommend it to other stitchers in a heartbeat.

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