Stay Apparel Co.

An authentic American brand of place

Appearances

Find Stay tees at Revolt Style Studio and these other stockists

Retailers, Products, AppearancesNeal GouletComment
Not only is Revolt Style Studio in York carrying a selection of Stay tees, but we popped up in front of the store for First Friday on July 5, 2019.

Not only is Revolt Style Studio in York carrying a selection of Stay tees, but we popped up in front of the store for First Friday on July 5, 2019.

This is how business deals ought to go down.

On June 20, I received this Instagram direct message from Jessica Weikert, the owner of Revolt Style Studio in downtown York. Mind you, I had only previously met her briefly when she stopped by a Stay pop-up appearance at Central Market in York.

“Hey! If you guys aren’t selling in any shops in York right now, I’d love to carry your York shirts,” Jess wrote.

I responded: “In fact, we aren’t and would love to team up.”

Jess replied, “Great!”

Exactly one week later, after a brief back-and-forth via email to work out terms of our arrangement, I delivered five of our tee designs to Revolt Style Studio, 26 N. Beaver St., which Jess immediately put on sale and promoted via her social media channels.

And 11 days after that, at Jess’ invite and as a way to demonstrate our partnership, the Stay tent was in front of Revolt Style Studio, in the middle of a closed-to-vehicular traffic Beaver Street, offering our tees to participants in downtown’s First Friday event.

I have visions of what Stay ultimately might become, but in the meantime we are blessed to have opportunities to pop up at area events and markets such as Market on Chocolate in Hershey, Harrisburg Flea, York Flea, Creatively Lancaster and Pop-Up Ave in State College. (Of course, we offer all of our products here on our website.)

Retailers such as Revolt Style Studio also are vitally important to us, at least as much for helping to get the Stay brand into the public as for selling quantities of our tees. We make less money with each tee sold this way, but retailers provide a great service by granting us access to their customers.

You can find the current roster of Stay stockists here.

Our arrangements vary with each retailer (in some cases they purchase, in others we consign), but the bottom line is that we’re eager to grow our existing relationships and to explore new opportunities. If you are interested in carrying Stay stuff, please send us an email at hello@stayapparel.com.

Or you can do as Jess did and send us a direct message through Instagram (or Facebook). Our handle is @stayapparelco for each.

Stay sells stuff at spring shows

AppearancesNeal GouletComment
The Stay big top returns to downtown State College and Pop Up Ave on April 27.

The Stay big top returns to downtown State College and Pop Up Ave on April 27.

No seashells, but we'll have a full complement of U.S.-made Stay tees and accessories at all of our appearances as winter gives way to spring.

Here's where you will find us, with our first outdoor show under the Stay big top scheduled for April 20. All events are free:

Of course, if you can't see us in person, we sell everything online and offer fast, affordable shipping ($5 per order, free for purchases of $75 or more in the contiguous United States).

In person or online, you always get a free Stay sticker with any purchase.

Stay on display at Centric Bank

Community, AppearancesNeal GouletComment
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We aren’t selling there, but Stay has deposited itself at Centric Bank's Hummelstown branch for the whole of February.

Our six-foot table display, featuring a sampling of our tees, greets lobby patrons. In addition, the branch's staff is wearing our tees on two Fridays during the month.

We want to give a shout-out to assistant branch manager Amber Spotts for making our month-long visit possible and many thanks to the Centric team for supporting Stay and other local small-business customers.

Stay Apparel Co. featured on Happy Valley Hustle podcast

Appearances, BrandingNeal GouletComment
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We set the bar high early on at our first appearance at Pop Up Ave in downtown State College.

That’s where we were on the beautiful first day of fall, Sept. 22, 2018, setting up the Stay big top in preparation for the outdoor urban flea.

Penn State football coach James Franklin, fresh off the Nittany Lions’ rout of host Illinois the night before, already was up and at ’em before the Pop Up Ave’s official opening at 11 a.m.

He was our first customer.

Next in line was Bill Zimmerman, an affable event volunteer who in our limited exchange struck me as someone I’d enjoy chatting with again.

For me, that opportunity arose on Nov. 30, when I had the good fortune to sit down with Bill in State College for his podcast, “Happy Valley Hustle.”

In the introduction to each episode, Bill describes it as “the podcast that tells the stories of people running their own businesses, launching side hustles, and making the digital age work for them.”

Bill hails from Johnstown, Pa., which, as I explained on the podcast, has special meaning to me because the first professional hockey game I saw in person pitted my hometown Maine Nordiques against the visiting Johnstown Jets.

Like me, Bill has a newspaper reporting and public relations background. He’s currently a lecturer for the digital PR and PR, media and methods courses in Penn State's Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications.

He’s also a big fan of professional wrestling, hence the Hustle’s prop championship belt that I got to pose with in the photo above.

I’m honored that Bill wanted to hear Stay’s story and to be the podcast’s first guest of 2019. I hope you’ll listen to my episode and check out the others. (I’m partial to episode six, which features Brad Groznik, who with his wife, Andrea, started Pop Up Ave.)

Before you do, however, I want to correct something I said on the podcast. At Bill’s request, I described our new tee, which bears a heart doodled two decades ago by novelist John Updike. I said that Updike was from Wyomissing, Berks County.

That’s close but incorrect. Updike grew up three miles south, in Shillington. In fact, a group is trying to preserve his boyhood home, at 117 Philadelphia Ave., anticipating a 2020 opening for public tours.

Thanks to Bill for inviting and interviewing; thanks to you for reading and listening.

That’s it for me. I have to keep hustling.

Thank you for being a part of Stay Apparel Co.'s first full year!

AppearancesNeal GouletComment
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Having launched Stay Apparel Co. in October 2017, we had only four public appearances under our belt when 2018 began. Besides continuing to push online sales, we had a modest goal of averaging at least two appearances per month.

But thanks to opportunities that we hadn’t anticipated, we got ahead of our projected pace in April and really took off in June. On the strength of a 13-week run at Market on Chocolate in Hershey, we achieved our goal by August.

And with a flurry of activity in December, including three dates when we were in two places at the same time, we participated in 47 events across 48 dates during the year.

We regularly attended the Harrisburg Flea, York Flea and Creatively Lancaster and even helped to start a makers market at the Cocoa Beanery in Hershey. On a brilliant first day of fall, we debuted at Pop Up Avenue in State College.

The stops were many and varied. We set up shop in Strawberry Square in Harrisburg and Central Market in York. We pitched our blue big top in the middle of Cocoa Avenue during Artfest in Hershey and in the westbound lane of the Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge for the Bridge Bust that overlooked the Susquehanna River.

We sold tees on the concourse at Clipper Magazine Stadium in Lancaster and at ice level of Hersheypark Arena. We brought our wheeled mannequin, purchased at a closing Bon-Ton in Camp Hill, to three Creatively Lancaster shows held on consecutive Saturdays within a closed Bon-Ton at Park City Center.

We had a few clunker shows in terms of sales, but then again, too few to mention. After all, every show, no matter how much or how little business we did, presented an opportunity to get Stay in front of people.

Unwavering commitment

We take a long-term view of customer relations. We know that just because someone doesn’t buy from us today doesn’t mean they won’t on another day.

I was vividly reminded of this at the York Flea on Dec. 1 when a man (with his wife and daughter) who had braved the rain that ultimately cut short that event told me that he had seen Stay at the Bridge Bust on Oct. 6. He had regretted not buying from us then, he said, and came to the York Flea specifically to see us. He purchased two tees and earned my eternal gratitude.

Our big takeaway from 2018 is that people are intrigued by the Stay name — “So what does Stay mean?” someone invariably asks — our products and our vibe.

We feel like we’re on to something, whether it’s because we only sell U.S.-made products, or because of our cool designs, or because we deliver great customer service. It’s difficult to pinpoint, but we’re unwavering in our commitment to all three.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to a fun, busy and successful first full year. We are eager to do even more in 2019.

We resolve to work even harder to earn repeat business and to welcome new faces, literally and figuratively, into the Stay tent.

Years ago, I coordinated a visit to Harrisburg by former Philadelphia Phillies star Tug McGraw. Even though he spilled a beer on my pant leg and didn’t apologize, I enjoyed the guy. In a TV interview, someone asked why he was at what was then RiverSide Stadium.

“If there’s a baseball game, the Tugger wants to be there,” the Tugger said.

Likewise, if someone invites Stay to set up a table or tent, we’ll make every effort to be there.

We have a pretty good idea where we want to be in 2019, but we’re entirely open to additional opportunities. If you have suggestions, please send them to hello@stayapparel.com.

In the meantime, we’re looking forward to our first appearance in the new year: Jan. 5 at the Harrisburg Flea, when we’ll debut a new design on our first women’s cut and children’s tees.

Checking our list: Here's where you'll find Stay Apparel this holiday season

AppearancesNeal GouletComment
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There’s no place like home for the holidays. And Stay Apparel is all about home, offering cool U.S.-made tees featuring our hometown of Hershey, as well as Harrisburg, York, Lititz, Lancaster, Philadelphia.

And for the man who’s headin' for Pennsylvania and some homemade pumpkin pie, we offer our mouth-watering Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful tee.

We’re gearing up for a big holiday season, packing the Stay sleigh full of awesome U.S.-made clothing and accessories perfect for all your gift-giving needs. And if you live in central Pennsylvania, you’ll find us popping up near your neck of the woods throughout November and December.

We love meeting customers in person, so come and Stay for a while with us (admission is free unless otherwise noted):

Nov. 3: Harrisburg Flea from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Strawberry Square, 320 Market St., Harrisburg.

Nov. 17: Central Market in York, 34 W. Philadelphia St., from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the community stand.

Nov. 24: Creatively Lancaster from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Spooky Nook Sports, 75 Champ Blvd., Manheim.

Dec. 1: Harrisburg Flea from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Strawberry Square, 320 Market St., Harrisburg.

Dec. 1: York Flea from noon to 5 p.m. in Cherry Lane Park, York.

Dec. 7: Downtown Hershey 2018 Holiday Market from 5 to 8 p.m. in ChocolateTown Square Park.

Dec. 7: Hockey Night in Hershey at Hersheypark Arena, premiere of the Hershey-Derry Township Historical Society documentary, “B’ars to Bears: Hershey’s Hockey Dynasty.” (Admission fee)

Dec. 8: Creatively Lancaster from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the former Bon-Ton space at Park City Center.

Dec. 15: Creatively Lancaster from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the former Bon-Ton space at Park City Center.

Dec. 15: Central Market in York, 34 W. Philadelphia St., from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the community stand.

Dec. 22: Creatively Lancaster from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the former Bon-Ton space at Park City Center.

Of course, if you can’t come to us in person, we sell everything online and offer fast, affordable shipping ($5 per order, free for purchases of $75 or more in the contiguous United States).

You'll also find a limited selection of Stay items at these fine local retailers: Hershey Pharmacy & Gifts, Hershey-Derry Township Historical Society, and Knock Knock Boutique, Hershey; Arthur & Daughters, York; and Spotted Owl Boutique, Lititz.


The making of a makers market: Cocoa Beanery near Hershey

Community, AppearancesNeal GouletComment
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My wife, Sara, used to make biscotti under the brand name Putch & Buckie’s (coming to a retro tee in 2019!). One of the retail outlets she sold to was Cocoa Beanery, a coffee shop and cafe near Hershey. Donna Fair has managed Cocoa Beanery since it opened in 2008.

In January, as I sought opportunities for Stay Apparel Co. with area pop-up markets, I also reached out to Donna. Cocoa Beanery, under a series of big tents, hosts a Thursday farmers market from spring until fall.

I wondered whether Donna would be interested in launching a makers market. As the name suggests, these are vendors who create something, from tees and knitwear to candles and pottery to jewelry and soaps.

Donna graciously discussed the concept in general terms but made no commitment. By June, however, with a little more space on her calendar, she invited me to discuss the idea with her in greater detail.

While Donna offered a great venue, I could reach out to some of the kind, talented entrepreneurs from throughout central Pennsylvania that I had met while participating in the Harrisburg Flea, York Flea, Creatively Lancaster and Market on Chocolate (downtown Hershey) pop-up markets.

We launched with seven vendors on July 27, piggy-backing on Cocoa Beanery’s “Live on the Lawn” series that features live music, grill food and craft beer. Our makers market, at 1215 Research Blvd., Hummelstown, runs from 6 to 9 p.m. on the fourth Friday of the month. Admission is free.

“Makers’ markets are increasingly popular shopping destinations for consumers who want a deeper connection with the goods they buy and the people who make them,” Donna said in a news release. “You can think of these makers as doing for retail shopping what craft brewers have done to revitalize the beer industry.”

For the first show, Stay was joined by Adrienne's Herbals, Bianca Zidik, Burlap & Bows, Boom! Crafted Pickles, Jennie Bowman Designs and Moonrise Candle Co.

We grew to nine vendors for the Aug. 24 show. We expect to have 16 vendors for the third show, Sept. 28, and 17 for the final show of 2018, on Oct. 26.

But that might not be the final show. Donna and I have discussed holding a holiday makers market in early December. (Vendors interested in participating: please contact me at hello@stayapparel.com).

Donna suggested an appearance by Santa Claus. If we pull it off, I might have to ask Sara about baking biscotti for the occasion.

See you in September (and October): Here's where we'll be popping up

AppearancesNeal GouletComment

After a 13-week stint with Market on Chocolate in Hershey this summer, we're looking forward to hitting the road this fall.

We'll be returning to Harrisburg, York and Lancaster while making our first visit to State College. Here's a closer look at where you'll find us:

Sept. 1: Harrisburg Flea from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Midtown Cinema, 250 Reily St.

Sept. 2: York Flea at What the Food Trucks, an admission-free block party from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. featuring 40 trucks and carts, live music, beer and merchants.

Sept. 8: Creatively Lancaster from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Clipper Magazine Stadium, home of the Lancaster Barnstormers.

Sept. 22: Pop-Up Avenue in downtown State College, on South Fraser Street between College and Beaver avenues. It runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and includes live music, food vendors and a beer garden.

Sept. 29: The Hershey-Derry Township Historical Society's first "Brews, Brats & Bands" from 4 to 7 p.m. at Cocoa Beanery, 1215 Research Blvd., Hummelstown.

Oct. 6: Bridge Bust from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Veterans Memorial Bridge between Columbia and Wrightsville. We'll be among nearly 300 vendors on the 1.25-mile bridge, which will be closed to auto traffic.

Oct. 13: Let's play two! We're back at Clipper Magazine Stadium for another Creatively Lancaster pop-up event from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

You'll also find a limited selection of Stay items at these fine local retailers: Hershey Pharmacy & Gifts, Hershey-Derry Township Historical Society, and Knock Knock Boutique, Hershey; Arthur & Daughters and York Revolution team store, York; and Spotted Owl Boutique, Lititz.

We'll be at Market on Chocolate in downtown Hershey every Saturday this summer

AppearancesNeal GouletComment
Market on Chocolate is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays in ChocolateTown Square.

Market on Chocolate is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays in ChocolateTown Square.

Hershey is our home for the summer.

Starting June 2, you'll find the Stay tent in downtown Hershey from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Saturday through August as part of Market on Chocolate.

Sponsored by the nonprofit Downtown Hershey Association, Market on Chocolate this year will feature some 20 vendors every week in ChocolateTown Square.

From the association's website: 

"This year the market will feature many new and returning vendors selling a multitude of goods ranging from craft prepared foods, to unique jewelry and artisan wares, to locally grown items. The market also includes entertainment, children’s activities, and community programming in addition to fitness classes and other special events."

We'll have all of our Hershey tees and many others with us, but if there's a particular item or size that you'd like to see on a given Saturday, please drop us a note in advance at hello@stayapparel.com. We'll do our best to accommodate all requests.

We accept debit and credit cards.

We look forward to meeting you at Market on Chocolate and to a great summer in downtown Hershey. 

Stay is on the move in April and May

Appearances, ProductsNeal GouletComment
The Stay bigtop, coming to pop-up show near you.

The Stay bigtop, coming to pop-up show near you.

If April brings showers, well, there's not much we can do about the weather.

Regardless, we'll be right as rain for our April and May shows because we'll either be indoors or under the Stay bigtop. (OK, it's only a 10-foot-by-10-foot tent, but it's Stay-branded, made in the USA by our friends at TentCraft, and pretty awesome.)

We have six appearances scheduled, in Dauphin, Lancaster and York counties. We'll be back in our hometown, Hershey, for the first time since December. Each of these events is free and open to the public.

Here's the full slate:

April 7: Harrisburg Flea from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Strawberry Square, 320 Market St.

April 21: Go Green in the City from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in downtown York (outdoors)

April 28: York Flea from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Collusion Tapworks, 105 S. Howard St. (outdoors)

May 5: Harrisburg Flea from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Midtown Cinema, 250 Reily St. (outdoors)

May 12: Hershey ArtFest & Flower Show from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in downtown Hershey (outdoors)

May 19: Spring Harvest hosted by Honeysuckle Shop from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 4201 Harvest Road, Manheim. [Update May 2: This event has been cancelled.]

We hope to see you out and about this spring. Stop by, say hey, and maybe pick up a U.S.-made tee. As always, Stay stickers are free!

 

A new year, new Stay stuff made in the USA

Products, AppearancesNeal GouletComment
New items arriving in early 2018

New items arriving in early 2018

Most of our focus in 2018 is on getting out and about, namely bringing the Stay brand to pop-up events in the Hershey, Harrisburg, Lancaster and York areas.

We already have great U.S.-made tees branded for those communities, as well as Pennsylvania and the United States always available on our website. But we're always looking for opportunities to bring Stay stuff to where consumers gather in person.

That's why you'll see us at Harrisburg Flea, Creatively Lancaster's Makers Markets, York Flea, and Market on Chocolate in Hershey, among other appearances.

But we have a short list of new products, shown above, that we'll be rolling out, too, including:

USA pennant: Made for us in Big Run, Pa., by Standard Pennant Co., which has been serving the corporate, high school and college markets since 1919. The pennant design is a perfect complement to our USA tee

Lititz tee: America's coolest small town (winner 2013) gets the Stay treatment with this design, which is inspired by a sign on the replica train station/welcome center in Lititz Springs Park. We used water-based ink for a retro look that really pops.

Stay ball cap: Arriving in March, our second ball cap features white contrast stitching on charcoal fabric, with an embroidered Stay patch sewn on the front. The mid-profile design has a more streamlined look than our trucker cap. Both caps feature plastic adjustable straps and are made for us by Graffiti Caps in Cleveland.

Meanwhile, we've had a number of requests for a women's tank top, so look for that in the spring. [Update March 25, 2018: Try as we did, we could not find a U.S.-made tank that had the look, fit and price point that we felt comfortable offering to the public. So, we're tabling this idea for now.] We also plan to introduce our first long-sleeved tee in the fall.

Of course, we always welcome product suggestions. Please feel free to offer them here or in person at one of our pop-up events.

We hope you've enjoyed your Stay in 2017. We'll see you in the new year!

AppearancesNeal GouletComment
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We'll forever treasure 2017 as the year we launched Stay Apparel Co.

If you were among the many people who supported our efforts in some way, we offer a heartfelt thank you. If you weren't among them, then we look forward to welcoming you into the fold in 2018.

To that end, we're filling our calendar with appearances throughout central Pennsylvania, starting with:

Jan. 6: Harrisburg Flea, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Strawberry Square, 320 Market St., Harrisburg;

Jan. 13: Creatively Lancaster's Makers Market, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Tellus360, 24 E. King St., Lancaster;

Feb. 3: Central Market in York, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Wherever we are, please stop by, say hello, and pick up a free Stay sticker.

Meanwhile, if you know of an event that seems like a good fit for Stay, please let us know at hello@stayapparel.com. We welcome your suggestions.

We wish you the very best in the year ahead. Wherever you go, enjoy your Stay!

We're popping up Dec. 2 in York, Dec. 16 in Hershey

AppearancesNeal GouletComment
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Stay is in motion for the holidays, bringing our pop-up shopping experience to York and Hershey.

On Dec. 2, we're debuting our Stay-branded tent at York Flea's inaugural Holiday Flea from noon to 8 p.m. in Cherry Lane Park.

We'll have a full complement of merch, including our "Mighty Like the White Rose City" tee.

On Dec. 16, we're returning to Steele Hair Salon, 15 Briarcrest Square, time to be determined. We had a great response to our first "Stay at Steele" event on Nov. 18, despite the rain.  

We look forward to see you in December. Please stop by, say hi, and grab a free Stay sticker.