Monday, 28 January 2013

Little Red Schoolhouses

As soon as I saw the picture of this quilt I just knew I would have to make it.  It's from the book 'Prairie Children and their Quilts' by Kathleen Tracy and is called 'Little Red Schoolhouse Quilt'.

 I started my teaching career in a small, red brick village school.  It only had two classes  and I taught in the room that was used for assemblies, PE, and also for eating lunches at midday.  This meant that I was constantly having to move furniture and children out of the way.  When the tables were getting prepared for lunch I had to evacuate the children to the cloakroom (where they kept their coats).  In winter we were surrounded by wet clothes and boots, very squashed, and nowhere to sit except the floor.  Not an ideal situation, and I was still expected to teach something.  We did a lot of chanting of the multiplication tables and reciting of poetry during those times.  I only stayed at that school for a year but it was quite an experience.  I recently met  someone who was an eight year old in my class at the time.  She recognised me instantly and started quoting Wordsworth's 'Daffodils' to me.  I'd obviously made a lasting impression on her.

I made this little quilt using scraps.  Some of it is quilting material, but there are also some pieces of old shirts in there as well.

I hand quilted it in the ditch around the seams of each square and across the diagonals, and outlined the roofs, doors and windows.  I hand stitched the binding to the back and finished it off with a machine embroidered label.  It measures just 15 1/2" x 15 1/2" square.  Each of the little house blocks is made up of 20 separate pieces, the chimney stacks being the tiniest pieces at 1" square (unfinished),  and is the first time I have worked on such a miniscule scale.


  1. It's such a cute block, and you've done it so well! It's always nice to have something with memories bound up in it. Love your handstitched label too :)

  2. I love the story behind your quilt. And it's always fun years later to tell your kids where the fabrics came from. Thanks for sharing.

  3. My goodness, your first teaching experience sounds just like the Miss Read books!

  4. What a darling schoolhouse quilt. I like the mini version more than the big one. Very sweet! K-