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Treat (handle) with kid gloves

Created date

July 31st, 2009

Look at most any contemporary illustration of 19th-century high-society women and you ll find the subjects wearing gloves. Because gloves were such popular fashion accessories, it was important that they be elegant and comfortable, which is why kid gloves were big sellers throughout much of the 1800s. Made from the skin of young goats (and sometimes lambs), kid gloves were both fashionable in appearance and much softer than their thicker, leather counterparts. In time, their soft and dainty reputation made them an apt reference to the handling of delicate situations and those with difficult personalities. "The mayor knew that word of a scandal could lose him his reelection, so we had to make sure that we handled the matter with kid gloves."