Deadly Ponies creates accessories from sustainable, ethically sourced leathers

Tong Van

Tong Van

New Zealand accessories brand Deadly Ponies is turning leather scraps from tannery off-cuts into ethically crafted pieces, aiming to become the world’s most responsible handbag brand.

Founded in 2005 as a leather accessories brand, Deadly Ponies is the brainchild of New Zealand designer Liam Bowden, a celebrated collaboration between himself and husband Steven Boyd.

Designed in New Zealand, Deadly Ponies has the majority of its pieces handcrafted at its own eco-atelier in Chiang Mai, Thailand, ensuring total transparency.

“Boutique manufacturing and ethical sourcing are at the core of Deadly Ponies’ ethos,” said Bowden, who is also creative director at Deadly Ponies. “Our pieces are a stratum – not simply what you see on the surface, but the layers that lie beneath. With every detail intrinsically linked to the next through handcrafted consideration.”

Deadly Ponies creates accessories from sustainable, ethically sourced leathers

As of last April, the company achieved Living Wage Certification to ensure fair and ethical working conditions, fair pay, and equal rights across its business. The New Zealand label aims to receive B-Corp certification by next year. It is also working towards Carbon Zero certification through Toitu, with the hope to achieve this by the end of this year.

Deadly Ponies has worked with Leather Working Group certified tanneries when sourcing its leathers. Recent material innovations include biodegradable Burgundy Bulle crafted from New Zealand Merino, and vegetable-tanned (chrome-free) and Vegan Cactus Leather, holding Oeko Tex, USDA Organic, ISO 9001 accreditations.

“Sustainability can be nothing more than green-washing without first achieving the most important step: Transparency,” said Boyd and Bowden on the brand’s website.

Deadly Ponies currently operates four outlets in New Zealand. The brand recently entered Australia with its first store on Armadale’s High Street, in Melbourne.

Tong Van

Tong Van

Tong Van is a graduate of Ho Chi Minh City Law School majoring in Legal English and has been a content writer and researcher specialising in the retail sector for several years. Her interests include fashion, travel, health & beauty and food.

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