Welcome to Simply Apparel! A curated collection of refined casual apparel.
My name is Katie, founder and owner of Simply Apparel and Simply Tan.
I grew up in Binghamton NY, and went to Binghamton High School where they had a fashion program. Fashion was always something that I loved, and not just the evolving trends but also the history of it. I was fascinated by the technical development, the fabrics, the designs, and the styling. You can tell your story and your vibe with clothing, and that is what I was drawn to. I would lay out a few outfits for school each day - sporty, girly, preppy etc...I would pick based on how I was feeling that morning. I loved how clothing could make you feel not just with confidence but with a vibe. It was storytelling.
I focused immediately on a creative career within fashion merchandising. I went to SUNY Oneonta which had an incredible partnership with FIT. I was able to study in London for a semester, and complete my senior year at FIT in New York City. I had an amazing experience for over a decade working in corporate Fashion Merchandising out of NYC for Ralph Lauren and Tory Burch. I was very behind the scenes with the creation of each collection, and then presented to hundreds of buyers for each season. I understand quality and design vision very much on top of the business aspect. Season to season, I was involved at the very beginning of sketch phase, to prototype (some even seen within the factories in Asia), to sample stages at market, to then viewing how it all comes together in the stores. After reaching a senior role within my career, my husband and I made the choice to move back to upstate New York to connect with family and raise our son, Lincoln. While it was a very hard decision to make, I am extremely grateful for that chapter in my life and made a vow to myself to someday get back into the fashion world.
While living back in Binghamton NY, I started Simply Tan, an airbrush spray tanning business, shortly after my Father's diagnosis of Melanoma in 2017. Our goal is to provide an airbrush spray tanning service that clients enjoy and feel comfortable with, while also educating and encouraging them to protect their skin from UV rays.
Fast forward to 2020 and the shutdown of beauty services. Starting a boutique was always part of the plan, but when asked about it by family and friends it was always "not yet". The pandemic led to "what am I waiting for?". Simply Apparel started as a branch off of Simply Tan, and quickly morphed into its own separate business. We started with "stay home" apparel and slowly incorporated new categories and styles until we had a full lifestyle brand.
Having a boutique has opened a new creative outlet and I am so excited to bring that to the Binghamton NY area. We have an online presence shipping nationwide that I am working hard to grow, while also bringing a new location to shop in the area. My background brings knowledge of quality brands at an accessible price point. I love to look at each piece we pick and immediately think of 3 different ways to style, depending on your vibe for that day. That is key for every single item in our shop. Every piece has to bring quality and versatility, to tell your style story.
Next up, Amy! Meet our Shop Manager, Amy Dempsey!
Amy has always wanted to be apart of a boutique setting with her love for clothes. She was a big supporter when Simply Apparel began back in 2020, and became more and more involved with Katie as it grew. Amy is now the head of operations and our shop manager. She ships your orders asap and get all the new items to the floor instantly. She is an instrumental part of the growth of the business as she also organized all of our local pop up events. Amy has brought the shop to over 35 pop up events! She travels with Katie to the apparel tradeshows where the items are researched and purchased for the shop. She is involved from start to finish with the product, and has been there every step of the way during the buildout of our new space at 33 S Washington St.
I hope you enjoy our shop and thank you for shopping Simply!