The Little Red Riding Hood, A French Fairy Tale
My Children’s Alphabet Book
We are more than halfway through this alphabet if you have followed my alphabet series. You probably have noticed by now that I created a children’s alphabet book using fairy tales for each letter of the alphabet. At first, I thought I should concentrate on all the old favorites but later I decided to make it a book with fairy tales and folk tales from all over the world. This is one of the first ones I created for the book and my favorite. I hope you like it too.
“When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than any talent for abstract, positive thinking.”— Albert Einstein
When it came to me to be more global I had already created the pages for R is for Little Red Riding Hood and J is for Jack and the Beanstalk. The research for the global fairy tales and folk tales from all over the world certainly added to my workload but in the end, it became very satisfying.
The Little Red Riding Hood, A French Fairy Tale
There was a little girl who was called Little Red Riding Hood after her red clothes. On this day, her mother asked her to take some shortcake and drink to her sick grandmother. She was told not to go through the woods but to take the road around. But the shortcut through the woods looked fine to her and would save her time, so she took it instead. Along the way, she met a big bad wolf that asked where she was going with the basket. She was very trusting and told him about her sick grandmother. The wolf then suggested she stop and pick some wildflowers along the way to take to the grandmother. “What a good idea,” Red Riding Hood thought. “They will cheer my grandmother.” So she left the path and got lost in the picking of flowers until more than an hour had passed.
While the girl was busy picking flowers, the wolf went to the grandmother’s house, after entering, he and locked the grandmother in the closet. He put on the grandmother’s nightclothes and slipped into the bed just as Red Riding Hood arrived.
When the girl arrived at the house with her basket and flowers and greeted her grandmother, she noticed that the grandmother looked very strange. She thought her grandmother must have changed very much from being sick but had to ask anyway. She said, “What a deep voice you have!”
“The better to greet you with,” responded the wolf.
Then she said, “What big eyes you have!”
“The better to see you with,” responded the wolf.
“What big teeth you have!”
“The better to eat you with,” responded the wolf and he jumped from the bed to catch her.
The frightened girl ran outside and a woodcutter happened to be passing with his ax. He saw her running from a wolf, so ran to the rescue and he killed the wolf with his ax. Together they freed the grandmother from the closet and enjoyed the shortcake.
“Fear isn't so difficult to understand. After all, weren't we all frightened as children? Nothing has changed since Little Red Riding Hood faced the big bad wolf. What frightens us today is exactly the same sort of thing that frightened us yesterday. It's just a different wolf. This fright complex is rooted in every individual.”— Alfred Hitchcock
I didn’t want my book to be just one more “A is for Apple” alphabet book and since I love fairy tales, why not use them instead? After deciding that, I was told I should use my collage method instead of the usual watercolor illustrations that I had originally desired. The collage took much longer but in the end, it made for a very unique book.
I used a photo of a little Hmong girl at the Hmong New Year’s Celebration in my area as a reference for this little girl. I also found a photo reference for the wolf and woods. I didn't make a video for this collage because, in the beginning, I didn’t think of taping my progress. I did, however, take plenty of photos along the way. I do hope you enjoy the progress of this collage.
Published with Lulu
This fairy tale has been shortened to fit into my book along with all the other letters of the alphabet. If you would like to read the full version, you can Google the title and find the story as "Little Red Riding Hood" or "Little Red Cap."
My book, The FairyTale Alphabet Book, Fairy Tales and Folk Tales from Around the World, was self-published last year with Lulu.com because Amazon (Kindle Direct Publishing) refused to allow illustrations that spanned the central gutter of the page. If you are interested in purchasing the book, go to the Lulu website and put my name or the name of the book in the search.
“If you happen to read fairy tales, you will observe that one idea runs from one end of them to the other--the idea that peace and happiness can only exist on some condition. This idea, which is the core of ethics, is the core of the nursery-tales.”— G.K. Chesterton
Did You Notice
In my collages, I use paper from magazines, old wall calendars, catalogs, and circulars. Often I will add things into a collage you can't see unless you are looking for it.
As a side note, did you know that the original Charles Perrault’s version of “Little Red Cap” (1697) was actually a warning to young girls to beware of being alone with “wolf-type” men who could seduce and rape them? His intended moral of the story was to obey your mother and not talk to strangers, the two key things that Little Red Riding Hood failed at. In the Perrault version, the wolf ate the grandmother and the story ended with the wolf eating the little girl as well. The woodsman was added in later versions. Were you aware of the original moral? Do you have one take away of your own? I’d love to hear about it.
I hope you like my story and my fairy tale alphabet book idea. I’d love to read your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.