relaxing way overstarched shirts

My father in law recently retired, and gave me 40 very nice long sleeve collared dress shirts.
Unfortunately, he had them bizarrely overstarched - with, I believe, a chemical starch. I took them to my drycleaner who kept them for two weeks soaking them in stuff to try to get the starch out, but they've just come back like cardboard. He says there's nothing he can do.
Does anyone out there know how I can get the starch out? I have enough shirts that I could certainly experiment on a few. I assume I'd use some kind of enzyme that would feed on the starch, but I'm clueless as to what might work. Is this what liquid fabric softener is for?
Thanks for your help ... -Peter
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snipped-for-privacy@intraspect.com says...

I'd like to know how/what your FIL did to get those shirts so stiffly starched!! Could you ask him?
Melvalena
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says...

Hi Malvalena,
Hot thick starch followed by ironing wet will get them like a board -- DrClean www.DrClean.co.uk The Best Fabric Cleaning Resource on the Web
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says...

I've been doing that...and yes they are crisp but not *that* crisp! Once washed I have to do it all over again.
Melvalena
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Don't be reckless with other people's hearts, and don't put up
with people who are reckless with yours.
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says...

Make the stqrch a thick gooy paste, or just short of a thick gooy paste, put it through a ringer and then iron dry - it should virtually stand in its own after that. -- DrClean www.DrClean.co.uk The Best Fabric Cleaning Resource on the Web
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scribbled in red crayon:

Sounds terribly uncomfortable. :o)
~Piper~ Life is simpler when you plow around the stumps.
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I wouldn't do it myself. -- DrClean www.DrClean.co.uk The Best Fabric Cleaning Resource on the Web
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On 23 Aug 2003 11:53:35 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@intraspect.com (Peter Curran) scribbled in red crayon:

Have you actually washed them in a washing machine? Try it if you haven't and do use fabric softener. I'd suggest liquid softener in the final rinse, not dryer sheets. This is bizarre. I've never heard of this problem.
~Piper~ Every path has some puddles.
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