We’ve been writing about this gizmo named Effie for nearly two years now — it’s a home device built by a British startup that’s designed to take the pain out of ironing. This relatively small device on wheels can reportedly iron up to a dozen different items of clothing at once.
Just put items on hangers on Effie, which irons clothes by contracting them and pressing the creases out, simulating the steam iron process. (Ironing is a thing your mother used to do to your father’s suits before he went to work at the bank, for you younger folks who are part of the gig economy and wear shorts to work like the rest of us).
The clothes need to be on specially designed hangers, although the company promises to deliver those along with the device. A press of a single button gets the process started, and the device stops itself when the job is done. Effie is claimed to reduce time spent on ironing by up to 95 percent.
It’s not here yet, but we’ve received an update about the product’s development from the crew behind it. The device, invented by British engineers Rohan Kamdar and Trevor Kerth, is apparently now able to iron a wider variety of shirt styles, rather than just the business suit-type shirts that most people wear to work.
“We have been working incredibly hard to ensure that the Effie is able to iron as many different shirt sizes, cuts, shapes, materials, and colors as possible, without you, the user, having to tell it what you’ve put into it,” the developers tell Digital Trends. “If you think about the number of actions you have to perform to iron a shirt, you’ll start to realize what a huge step this is for us.”
If you think that’s exciting, wait until you hear about pants. The engineers are also working to make the Effie automatic ironing machine more versatile by teaching it to iron other forms of clothing, such as trousers.
The device irons using a patent-pending method to directly pull the wrinkles out of clothes. Eventually, Effie is meant to be able to iron shirts, pants, T-shirts, blouses, short dresses, bedsheets, towels, and pillow cases, as well dry socks, underwear and other peripherals. It takes three minutes to iron a batch of items, up to 12 at a time, and six minutes to dry and iron them.
The engineers employed a bunch of new technologies, including 3D printing, acrylic laser cutting, and plastic vacuum forming, to make their prototype, and the founders just sent us a new picture of Effie’s design evolution over the last couple of years.
You can sign up for updates at the company’s site. It doesn’t look like the company is looking for crowdsourcing funds at this point. but we’ll keep you posted if that changes. The company’s current FAQ says that they expect it to be on the market by late 2019, but considering it’s been in the works for nearly four years now, be cautious in pre-ordering products that haven’t proven they’re real yet. We’ll keep you posted.