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I would buy the typical cheap steam iron that you buy at one of those cheap department stores that sells everything. They are suitable for home sewing needs and last a long time if you take care of them.

As for the ironing board, more in a moment.

I have had a love hate wirh irons. When you sew you need to use one. And you need to use it often, but that means damage is bound to happen.

My first Rowenta had a self winding cord which was on the bottom of the iron and it only took a week or so until it tipped off the board, landed hard, and broke. The center of gravity was nonexistent.

My second Rowenta's thermostat broke after 6 months.

I then went and bought a Hamilton Beach for less than $30 bucks. It heats up quickly, doesn't leak, doesn't weigh much, and gives sufficient steam for my purposes.

Some folks might need an iron with more/better steam, but it's fine for me and it was in my price range after the others stopped working.

As for the board, and this is why I like leaving it out, rather than finding a place to store it, was made using a piece of concrete that is water/mold resistant from a hardware store. The baord was 3' x 6' and we paid approximately $12 for the whole thing. My husband used this tutorial: and it was pretty easy to make. Those are his words, not mine.

I have been very pleased with this iron board, I just fear the day that I won't have space for it anymore.

But let's hope that that day is a long day away.