Arte Es Vida

Altered Clothing — Journal Skirts by arteesvida
November 27, 2006, 1:44 am
Filed under: Fabric Arts, Journaling, Mixed Media

Journal skirts are the brain-child of one of my favorite artists, Rice Freeman-Zachery. She starts with a denim skirt (heavy enough to take embellishment), stamps on her journal entries and quotes and them covers them with paint, beads, applique, iron-ons and tons of other goodies! I did an interview with her for BellaOnline that I will repost on this blog as soon as it is re-coded and her enthusiasm convinced me to try making my own! !




Premade denim skirt or a spliced jean skirt

Fabric paint or acrylic paint

Paint conditioners for acrylic paint (optional)

Alphabet stamps

Permanent ink stamp pad (Memories or Staz-On)

Small paintbrushes

Other assorted embellishments (appliqué, iron on transfers, beads, buttons, ribbon, rick-rack, etc.)


If the skirt is new wash and dry it before using to remove any factory chemicals. My skirt was a spliced-jean skirt (sewn for me by my long-suffering friend Amy who is way handier with a sewing machine than I am!) made from a pair of jeans I loved but were falling apart. Don’t discount thrift store finds for this projects…especially jeans and skirts you find cheap because they have flaws…you can cover the flaws while you embellish or integrate them into the design!

Lay it flat, with a layer of cardboard inside the skirt in case the paint seeps through. Fabric paints work well but acrylic paints also work fine, and are permanent and machine washable for a lot less money! If you don’t like the stiff feel of the acrylic paints on fabric, you can add a paint conditioner to make it more pliable!

Start with your journal entry and quotes…after all this is the most important part! I use rubber stamps and permanent ink, but if you are handy with a paintbrush you can paint your own words on. Another option is to use printable iron-ons (get the kind made for dark fabric…they are worth the extra price) to print out your entry and heat-seal. On this skirt, I did my journaling down one side, let it dry to touch, then embellished it with paint dots (using the other end of my paint brush). On the rest of the skirt I used iron-on images I printed from my computer (my journal skirt was a homage to the Mexican Day Of The Dead so I used a Frida Kahlo painting and Loteria card images) and beaded embellishment (basically a simplified beaded cross stitch along the bottom edges).

For any embellishments I hand-stich on, I paint a thin layer of a washable glue (such as Jewel Glue or Liquid Stitch) for extra security. I’ve had this skirt for over 6 months now and haven’t lost a single bead yet! I still have room on the back to add more goodies as the mood strikes…I get tons of compliments when I wear my creation!

For More Info:
Check out Rice Freman-Zachery’s gorgeous journal skirts and other creations!

Make your own spliced jean skirt out of an old pair of jeans!

6 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Wow that is an amazing idea! It must have been great to meet the artist herself. Did you enjoy the experience?

Comment by Catherine

Actually, we did our interview by email, I’ve never met Rice in person!

Comment by arteesvida

Your blog is on the very high level and includes a lot of very interesting information and was very useful for me.

Comment by Brandi Washington

I really like this idea. Alot of people pay big amounts of money for customized clothing or jewelry. You might try using other colors also.

Comment by Handcrafted Jewelry

very interesting, but I don’t agree with you

Comment by Idetrorce

Hello! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after going through many of the posts I realized it’s new to me.
Nonetheless, I’m certainly delighted I came across it and I’ll be book-marking it
and checking back regularly!

Comment by kids formal wear

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: