our everyday life

How to Get Wrinkles Out of a Silk and Wool Dress

by Grace Riley, studioD

A smartly tailored silk and wool dress should look fresh and crisp, and nothing hinders that effect quicker than wrinkles. Although the care label on the dress likely cautions you to dry-clean only, treating wrinkles at home in between professional cleanings is perfectly safe as long as you handle the fabric gently. Save yourself time and money by learning some straightforward techniques you can use to remove the wrinkles from that sharp silk and wool dress.


Place the dress on a hanger. Hang it somewhere other objects do not hinder your ability to handle the garment, such as on a shower curtain rod.

Fill your iron with water according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Preheat the iron to the steam setting.

Hold the iron up to the dress so that the steam hits the fabric. Hold the iron about 2 to 3 inches from the dress so that the steam doesn’t dampen the dress excessively.

Pull the fabric taut with your free hand so that the dress is smooth when the steam hits it. Keep your hand away from the steam, which can cause severe burns.

Wear a clean, thick work glove, like the kind of glove you wear for yard work, if you need to handle pleats or ruffles in the area you are steaming. The glove will protect your hand from burns.

Continue steaming the dress until you have removed the wrinkles.


Preheat your iron on the low or silk setting.

Turn the dress inside out and lay it on an ironing board.

Press the collar and cuffs of the dress first, if it has them.

Iron the body of the dress in smooth up-and-down strokes that follow the contour of the dress to ensure that you do not stretch the material.

Change the iron to the medium heat setting if wrinkles do not respond to low heat.

Continue ironing until you remove the wrinkles.

Turn the dress right-side out and hang it to cool.

Items you will need
  •  Hanger
  •  Iron
  •  Glove or oven mitt
  •  Ironing board


  • Read all clothing care labels on the garment before steaming or ironing it.

About the Author

Grace Riley has been a writer and photographer since 2005, with work appearing in magazines and newspapers such as the "Arkansas Democrat-Gazette." She has also worked as a school teacher and in public relations and polling analysis for political campaigns. Riley holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in American studies, political science and history, all from the University of Arkansas.

Photo Credits

  • George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images