Laundry and Dry-Cleaning Workers Career Video
Description: Operate or tend washing or dry-cleaning machines to wash or dry-clean industrial or household articles, such as cloth garments, suede, leather, furs, blankets, draperies, linens, rugs, and carpets. Includes spotters and dyers of these articles.
A rich variety of fabrics helps make clothing wearable, unique, and beautiful. Fabrics from cotton and linen, to silk and wool, all have one thing in common, sooner or later, they need to be cleaned and pressed. That provides an endless supply of customers for laundry and dry-cleaning workers, and pressers. Laundry workers may help customers use washers and dryers at a public laundromat, or operate specialized equipment at a dry-cleaner. They treat different fabrics with specialized cleaning methods, and advise customers on how to avoid damaging clothing. Dry-cleaning workers treat spots and stains before cleaning, and may make minor repairs such as sewing on buttons. Some also clean rugs and draperies. Pressers operate steam press machines or hand irons to remove wrinkles from clothing or flatwork items. They steam and stretch items by hand to return them to their original measurements, and finish pleated and other garments such as costumes and evening gowns. These are physical jobs, laundry and dry-cleaning workers and pressers are on their feet most of the time, and do a lot of bending, lifting, and carrying. Work environments may be noisy, odorous, and hot, while chemicals used in dry-cleaning are often harsh. Positions typically have no specific education requirements, although some positions may require a high school diploma.