* Prices may differ from that shown
For several years I owned a heavy metal ironing board that was quite small and difficult to maneuver. Despite replacing the ironing board cover a few times it was clear that it was on its last legs so eventually I decide to replace it last year and wanted something that would be both larger and more lightweight.
I bought this Minky Ideal Ironing Board in Asda for about £20 while it was on offer. I wanted something that would fit in my car (with my roof down!) so I could easily transport it home and it seemed easiest just to get an ironing board from the supermarket as part of my normal shop than make a special trip.
On getting the ironing board home and unpacking it the first thing I noticed was that it was extremely light. It felt a bit flimsy compared to my old ironing board but it was also a lot easier to move around and larger to give me increased ironing space.
It took me a while to work out how to set up the ironing board but I eventually worked out that there is a lever underneath the board that you press to raise the board up. One of the things I liked about the board was that unlike my old one there were no set heights that it had to be adjusted to so I could adjust it to any height suitable for me up to 92cm.
The ironing board has a rack at the end where you place your iron which is on a slant. I have found that this looks like it does not fit my iron properly and will not hold it safely and I have been worried at times about my iron falling off. However to be fair it never has fallen off, so it might just be a clever design that holds the iron in place without looking like it is going to!
The dimensions of the ironing board are 122cm long and 38cm wide, which is plenty of room for me to iron all my clothes and larger than I am used to. The ironing board is covered in an ironing board cover in a pebble design which is foam backed cotton and fits well round the board (unlike my old one) with no creases at all so there is a smooth and padded surface to iron your clothes on.
The only problem I have had with this ironing board is that the thinner end of the board (not the end where the iron rests) seems very flimsy and a bit unstable. Therefore when I am ironing at this end of the board it does seem to wobble a bit and does not feel like there is any support underneath it. However I have just got used to not pressing down too hard with my iron on this end of the board and again although it feels very wobbly it has never collapsed or fallen over.
Once I have finished ironing it is easy to collapse the ironing board back down again by depressing the lever underneath it and then it stores flat and takes up little space in my cupboard.
Overall I think that this is reasonable ironing board as it did not cost much money. There are probably more expensive models out there that will be more robust but I have got used to the odd wobble with this one and it does the job it needs to do. The board also comes with a 2 year guarantee which gives some peace of mind in case it develops a fault.
==Getting to the root of the wrinkles==
Around a year ago I decided I needed a new ironing board as the one I had owned for over 10 years was looking a little the worse for wear. I also blamed the ironing board for my complete lack of interest in ironing and surmised that a nice new one would spur me on.
The ironing board I purchased was the Minky Ideal Ironing Board, at the time it was on sale in my local Tesco Extra for £14.99. I chose the board with the pebble pattern cover as there were a few different covers to choose from.
==Ironing out the creases==
The board is a little lengthy for me (158cm folded) to carry about as I am only short (157.5cm) so I have to heft it up in the air when moving this in and out the cupboard. Happily for me the ironing board only weighs 5kg so is relatively light weight.
The Ironing Board is easy to put it up, just press the wire lever mechanism on the under side of the board and raise the board up to your desired height. I have the board at its highest setting of 96.5cm as this is most comfortable for me. The ability to adjust the height makes the board suitable for people of all heights.
Each of the four feet on the Ironing Board have rubber grips, this stops the Ironing Board from moving around when in use. When I first started using the board I felt that it was not the most stable of Ironing Boards as it tends to get a wobble on when vigorous ironing takes place. Over time I have got used to this quirk and take it in to consideration when ironing.
At one end of the board there is a rest for the iron to be placed on. The rest acts as a cradle for the slightly tilted iron. I do not use this rest as I do not feel it holds my iron comfortably or safely. Whether this is the fault of the iron or the board or just me being awkward I can not say.
The surface of the board measures 122 x 38cm. I find this to be large enough for the majority of day to day ironing. I use the rounded end to stretch out shirts so as to iron them correctly and can easily iron t-shirts and jeans with little need to manoeuvre the fabric.
The cover that originally came with the board is the cheapest nastiest cover I have ever seen. The foam backing and fabric parted company within a few weeks of purchasing the board leaving me with a saggy baggy wrinkled mess to contend with prior to ironing. I purchased another ironing board cover and it was a relatively easy process to switch covers.
My one major issue with this board is that the 'mesh steam flow system' sounds like a good idea in theory but is in fact the whole ironing surface is made up of a trellis type surface and is full of diamond shaped gaps. I agree it does help the steam flow but it also effects the quality of the finished ironing as despite replacing the original cover I am regularly left with a ironed in diamond pattern on a lot of clothes. I tried remedying this by using cooler settings on my iron but the diamond trellis pattern still shows through. My plan is to purchase an additional cover to go over the top of my replacement cover as I feel more padding could solve this issue.
==Oh the irony==
Aside from the wobble, cheap original cover, iron rest and the flawed 'mesh steam flow system' it is an ok ironing board. When this one reaches the end of its days or the extra padding does not solve the trellis issue I will not be making a replacement purchase from this brand.
Sorry Minky your cheap workmanship and obvious lack of thorough product testing shows through so I can not in all honesty recommend this Ironing Board. I give it 1/5 stars as it is marginally better than ironing on towel on the floor.
Thank you for reading.
After well over forty years of faithful service, my trusty ironing board collapsed with suspected metal fatigue so, after a suitable burial at the local tip, I had to begin the search for a replacement. The next one, of course, won't be required to last quite as long but I hoped to find one that would see me out. After a little bit of internet research and almost collapsing myself at the cost of ironing boards these days (the recently deceased cost less than a tenner if I recall correctly), I plumped for one on the Tesco Direct website and as we have a Tesco Home store in Bracknell, I decided to go along and buy it. Once there, however, I noticed that there was an absolute bargain on offer: a Minky Ideal Ironing Board reduced to £11.97. As the model I'd initially chosen was around the £40 mark, I couldn't resist the bargain, after all, my research told me that Minky is the most respected name in the ironing board world and the clincher for me was the fact that this was made in the UK so I would also be doing my patriotic duty.
I suspected that this model was about to be discontinued and the sales assistant confirmed this, adding that the store was trying to clear stock to make room for new models. With that assurance ringing in my ears, I duly paid over my £11.97 and took my bargain home, after a slight struggle getting it into my little KA!
It would be a lie to tell you that I couldn't wait to use my ironing board, as even with a brand spanking new model, the prospect of dashing away with the smoothing iron held little allure. When I did get around to putting it up, I began to discover exactly why this ironing board had been so drastically reduced in price and it became clear that it had nothing to do with stock clearance and everything to do with its stability.
The 'Ideal' is marketed as being a family size ironing board and it certainly is a good deal bigger than my previous one with an ironing surface of 122cm long and 38cm wide. It has a coated metal iron rest topped with two removable silicon (though they look like plastic) studs to protect the soleplate of the iron. This iron rest is really only effective if using an iron without steam as the angle at which the iron rests results in it continuing to steam away. The ironing surface rests on twin tubular steel legs ending in four feet each capped with a silicon protective cap.
The ironing surface itself has what Minky refer to as 'steamflow technology' which is simply a metal mesh surface covered by a foam-backed cotton cover which, quite frankly, doesn't fit particularly snugly onto the ironing surface and, to my mind, despite being supposedly a triple layer, is rather thin. It sells in various designs and mine is in white with what look like turquoise shamrock leaves. The others on sale at Tesco were the pebble design, as in the picture, and a very colourful stripe.
Erecting and using the ironing board:
One excellent feature of the Ideal is that it can be adjusted to suit any height. At 5' 2", I'm not the tallest person on the planet so this was a real bonus. The height can be adjusted from zero to 92cm which should be high enough for even the tallest. The height is adjusted by depressing a little lever just under the ironing surface which operates quickly and smoothly with closure being equally easy.
The legend on the packaging reads 'Sturdy, strong and stable' and here I would beg to differ. Although the fact didn't register at the time, I didn't have any difficulty carrying this ironing board from Tesco's till out to my car as it was surprisingly lightweight. On reflection, that fact should have set at least one alarm bell ringing. Once erected it becomes pretty obvious that the tubular metal used is pretty thin and definitely not heavy duty and although the ironing board stands perfectly steady when erected, once I began my ironing, the lack of stability was very evident and the whole structure rocks about even when using very gentle ironing movements. It would only have taken a little push to knock the whole thing over. Bearing this in mind, I would caution anyone with very young children to give this ironing board a wide berth because even a toddler could knock it over.
The manufacturers claim that the foam-backed 100% cotton cover gives an extra smooth finish but I actually found that whatever I was ironing clung to the ironing board cover irrespective of what material I was ironing and so ended up with quite a few unwanted creases making items longer to iron than should have been the case.
To my mind, this ironing board is far from ideal and it would have been more accurate for Minky to have sold this as the Adequate Ironing Board. I've certainly discovered that you really do get what you pay for, though I suppose at £11.97 I can't complain. The board comes with a 2 year guarantee which covers the structure under normal use but doesn't extend to the fact that the whole ironing board under performs when in use.
I shan't be keeping this ironing board and in fact it's put me off buying another model from the Minky range altogether and I certainly wouldn't recommend it to anyone. What this ironing board lacks is sturdiness. It really needed to be made of heavier metal to give it the stability it requires to handle the task it's designed for. Apparently it's made of reclyclable steel and I suspect I'll be recycling it a darn sight sooner than I'd originally anticipated.