The stories behind the sustainable clothing at Steel Pony
We were so excited to be featured in the WHYY show You Oughta Know and want to show you the segment. So here it is.
Dennis and i started steel pony 30 years ago we've been on historic fabric row for seven years and it's just really great.
i used to come shopping on fabric row and i have friends from when i was a kid who have stores here so it's almost like coming home
i have a degree in textile design and we design and make our own handbags and clothing we have been sustainable since we started our business 30 years ago
Sustainability means different things to different people so for us there are four things we primarily pay attention to.
Making things locally.
Using environmentally friendly fabrics
and keeping things out of the landfill
we do all the dyeing of the clothing here and we actually create our own colors . I make collections every season
I also do one-of-a-kind pieces where itake my scraps and i make things from
them so everything is customized.
I think my clothes in dennis's bags are very organic looking.
i'm a fine artist by training when I graduated I went up to martha's vineyard where i got a job with a leather shop making tourist stuff belts bags sandals.
Fast forward 40 years my wife needed a handbag and asked me to design and make it for her, so people started to admire it and that's where journey bags was born. I was having a lot of fun doing it one-of-a-kind pieces, even if i duplicate a shape it's always different so nobody has the same bag. A lot of it has to do with necessity so i started carrying a bag myself to see how the function would work
and what the needs would be so it would help me with deciding on howbig to make the bag based on what's going in the bag how light or heavy the
bag could be.
Once i decide on the shape i'll look at the form i'll look at the grain and then decide how i want to use it but a lot of times the leather is letting me. It knows where it needs to be
i use a lot of buffalo because the grain in a buffalo is very distinct the hides come from the animals that are used for restaurants we recently found a supplier of snapping turtle. Snapping turtle is used to make soup so they were throwing these hides out and that was a great find because the texture in that and the shape of it is just very unique so it's added a lot to the bags that
It's assembled by me here it's punched, it's laced its hand sewn. It's pretty labor intense but it is a labor of love. I really enjoy doing it.
It's just interesting to see how the designs unfold. People walk in and tell me how beautiful the store is the clothing and the handbags kind of naturally meshed but the longer you're together the closer you become in everything
we're simpatico sowe already had a lot of natural ability to do everything together
We don't plan things we just create and that's the fun part of our business.
I hope yo9u enjoyed our story. We always love to hear what you think.