Little Golden Notebook

Where fiber art, inspiration, and words meet.

TBT: Knitted Reins for Child

I was poking through and found The Book of “Hows” or What May Be Done With Wools in Every Home : Learning to Knit (published in 1900) in the Internet Archive’s Knitting Reference Library. Skimming through (i.e., looking at the pictures) I came across this gem. I didn’t realize that leashes for kids were such an old idea, though I really shouldn’t be surprised.


My children are all too old to need a leash, although I do remember a time when we could have used one for my oldest sons; instead I avoided taking them in public by myself for the first 5-6 years of my middle son’s life. I could probably get them to wear something like this now as a joke. I love that this has bells on it – they must be for times when you wee one manages to pull the reins out of your hands and dash off.

Also please note that I recognize the bad timing of choosing to post this considering the news of the zoo incident that unfolded/is unfolding this week. Many people have a lot to say about this online and off and I’m not going to rehash any of it. I wasn’t there, I didn’t see what happened, it wasn’t my kid, and I’m not a zoologist. This and this pretty much explain my nuanced, sarcastic, non-judgmental thoughts on what’s unfolded so far.


4 responses to “TBT: Knitted Reins for Child”

  1. chicken46 Avatar

    I still remember being on reins as a kid. They rank right up there with hand-me-down clothes and too-short school tights…. Bells might have made them more bearable though!

    1. Interesting! I had no idea they weren’t a recent thing. I posted about it on FB too and a friend who’s a history prof told me they’re pictured as far back as the medieval period, so they’ve been around at least that long.

      1. chicken46 Avatar

        Maybe I was just a really, really bad child!

  2. Maybe you just had better things to do than hang around with the boring grown-ups. Places to explore! Things to see!

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