As evidenced by the beloved 1980s teen board game Mall Madness, navigating the shopping centers can be fraught with obstacles, especially during the holidays. (Find a gee-darn parking spot! Cash in on sales! Beat Stacy back to the arcade!) Thankfully, our local shopping meccas have plenty of special deals, and even a pop-up shop or two, to help check gifts off your list.
Shop for a cause: On December 5, University Village will host its annual Holidate event. Trade in your $25 ticket donation for a discount card to use at participating retailers and entry into the Holidate Lounge, plus a free drink and appetizer at Piatti Ristorante & Bar. Proceeds go to Ronald McDonald House, so you can feel warm and fuzzy about shopping ’til you drop (University District, 2623 NE University Village St.; 206.523.0622; uvillage.com).
Following the success of last year’s pop-ups (including 11 Olives and Trophy Cupcakes, now long-term residents), two more delightful shops have set up downtown: After launching in September, Seattle-based handbag line Emilie Sloan’s third-floor atelier continues to glitter with totes, stocking-ready coin purses and cosmetic bags, plus apparel from local designers, including Seamless in Seattle winner Suzy Fairchild of the Frock Shop. Bonus for theater fiends: The 5th Avenue Theatre is selling show tickets and Elf merchandise from its main level pop-up. Enjoy the nightly indoor “snowfall” and shop away (Downtown, 600 Pine St.; concierge, 206.405.2655; pacificplaceseattle.com).
The Bellevue Collection
Fall brought a plethora of new shopping options to the Collection, from the Peek…Aren’t You Curious? kids’ apparel shop to a Fossil watch and accessories stop on the second level. Specifically for the holidays, it’s all things Christmas (including those peppermint Frango chocolates) at Macy’s Holiday Lane, and the original ’90s-era curiosity shop, Brookstone, also returns for a month-long stay (Bellevue, 575 Bellevue Square; 425.454.8096; bellevuecollection.com).