Ever had the experience that you are ironing, and steaming and ironing and steaming, but the garment or tablecloth just won't iron properly. The reason could very well be the ironing board itself. Most boards that you buy today consist of the ironing board (which often isn't even a board), a thing piece of foam for padding (at least I think its for that) and a cover.
To iron effectively you need to pad the board. Here is how you do it:
Place a thick piece of quilt batting on the board and let it hang over the sides. You could also use an old blanket that has been doubled over. Now cut the batting in the shape of the board, about 5 inches away from the board. Do not do this where the board is joined to the iron-holder, just cut is level with the board here. Take your ironing board cover and sew ties on either side of it - 2 at the bottom and 2 at the top. These will be used to tie the cover on since the whole setup is a lot thicker now. Make sure you don't sew them in a place where you will prevent the board from opening and closing.
Once the ties are on, place the cover on top of the batting (or old blanketing, which you treat in exactly the same way). Make sure that it is tied on in the same way that you took it off, and then tie the ties that you have made in place. That's it - you have a well padded ironing board, that will do wonders for your ironing now.