Chrome with Bakelite handle

K-M Flatwork Ironer, 1939

Not on Viewexpand_more

One could argue that Stevens’ Petipoint was the racecar of the ironing world at the time, with its streamlined wings on either side. They actually facilitated air-cooling, keeping the user’s hand and the thermostat area cool. The upswept back portion of the iron is the “petit point” for detailing ruffles and pleats.

Knapp-Monarch advertised that its Flatwork Ironer, specially designed for flat linens like sheets and tablecloths, would “cut flatwork ironing time by ⅓.” Its round shape allowed it to move in any direction and it had versatile settings for linen, cotton, wool, silk, and artificial silk.
The irony (pun intended) here is that although these appliances performed very well, they often increased the amount of in-home ironing done by housewives, who earlier would have sent linens out for pressing.

K-M Flatwork Ironer
Artist Life
St. Louis, Missouri, 1929-1969
Accession Number
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

Does something look wrong with this image? Let us know

Zoom in on the left to the detail you'd like to save. Click 'Save detail' and wait until the image updates. Right click the image to 'save image as' or copy link, or click the image to open in a new tab.

Chrome with Bakelite handle