The silk may lie for some time wrapped up in a cloth before ironing, but it must not be allowed to dry. Before ironing, smooth it out on the ironing-sheet, and place a piece of muslin over it. Iron with a moderately hot iron, remove the covering, and iron with the bare iron to give a gloss.
Note.-Some silks are improved by being slightly stiffened with a little gum water. This is especially necessary in the case of thin silk slips, or in any very soft silks, which would otherwise be perfectly limp, and liable to soil very quickly.
Fancy Work. Embroidered or fancy work may be washed in the same way as silk, but if there is any danger of the colours running into each other it will be safer to use bran water, prepared as follows:
Sew half a pint of bran into a muslin bag, leaving room for it to swell, and put in a lined saucepan with two quarts of cold water, simmering it gently for half an hour. Strain into the basin, and add an equal quantity of cold water. Add more cold water to the bran in the saucepan, and boil it up again for a second supply. Bran water is very soft and cleansing, and very little or no soap need be added.
Wash the work quickly in the bran water, squeezing it between the hands. Use a second bran water if necessary. Rinse in clean bran water, or in plain tepid water.
For sewn woolwork the bran water will give sufficient stiffness, and starch would spoil the appearance of the wool. Embroidered linen or cotton material should be put through very thin starch, or a little starch may be added to the last bran water. Wring well, shake out, and hang up to dry or wrap in a towel.
When nearly dry, iron with a moderately hot iron. Any embroidery must be ironed on the wrong side only, and with a piece of muslin over it. The material itself may be ironed on the right side to give a gloss if desired. The ironing must be continued until the work is quite dry.