Spring has sprung on Portland's shopping and crafting calendar, with a full week of parties, sales, events, and runway shows. First up is the grand opening of Brooklyn Industries' Portland location, its first on the West Coast. Founded by artists (and married couple) Vahap Avsar and Lexy Funk, the store, with its reasonably priced hipster clothing for men and women, is closely associated with the borough it's named for (the original location is in Williamsburg), but Portland hipsters who've developed a taste for it during stays in New York are stoked. The party will also feature Avsar's artwork, in the store's BIAS gallery space, part of a push to ingratiate the company to the artistic community it caters to. (Brooklyn Industries, 735 NW 23rd, Thurs March 12, 8 pm, free)
If you're rolling a little (okay, a lot) higher on Thursday night, you might be attending Power of the Purse, the annual dinner and auction benefiting Girls Inc., which pairs local handbag designers [full disclosure: my boyfriend, Jesse Champlin of Rush Accessories, is one of them] with Portland personalities to co-create one-of-kind pieces. (The Nines, 525 SW Morrison, Thurs March 12, 5:30 pm, $125) Or, hit Aura for "Attraction," a lingerie runway show of independent designs, including former Mercury fashion show winner R.A.W. (Aura, 1022 W Burnside, Thurs March 12, 8 pm, $10-15)
Portland State University is also throwing a Craftstravaganza, perfect for students or anyone wandering downtown to get some midday craft shopping on. (Portland State University's Student Union, 1825 SW Broadway, Thurs-Fri March 12-13, noon-4 pm) Fans of mineral makeup won't want to miss the chance to meet Susan Posnick, making a personal appearance at Blush with an advance look at new products in her eponymous line. (Blush Beauty Bar, 513 NW 23rd, Thurs March 12, 2-5 pm) Pinkham Millinery is having a sample sale this week, providing an excellent opportunity to score a piece from Portland's most coveted line of headwear at a fraction of the cost. (Pinkham Millinery, 515 SW Broadway, Fri-Sun March 13-15)
You can check out new merchandise from local boutiques like Pin Me and Physical Element while simultaneously gushing over cute dogs at Boutiques Unleashed, the annual Dove Lewis benefit featuring runway models of both two- and four-legged varieties. (Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell, Fri March 13, 6:30 pm, $60-100, 21+) Brides-to-be with an eco-bent might want to check out the Green Vintage Bridal Show produced by AlexSandra's Vintage Emporium and Ava Hansen Millinery. (Historic Overlook House, 3839 N Melrose, Sat March 14, 1-6 pm, free)
Finally, this is the first of two preview weekends for Sweet Jayne, a new boutique where you can pillage designer samples, factory closeout items and overstock—$20 or less per item! (Sweet Jayne, 1914 NE Broadway, Sat March 14, 11 am-6 pm, Sun March 15, noon-5 pm) .