Sticking to a budget in London doesn’t mean you have to avoid the boutiques. Whether you’re seeking chic souvenirs or taste-making labels, here are six insider ideas for a wallet-friendly shopping fix.
Thanks to architect John Pawson (who also designed the museum’s refit), this slick standalone store puts a whole new spin on souvenir shopping. Once you’ve admired Dieter Rams’ classic shelving, load your basket with quirky objets by emerging and established talents.
Bring it back: A cute acrylic brooch by Brighton-based designer Lou Taylor (£10-£30).
A trip to Arket – H&M’s new minimalist sister brand – is every style-conscious Londoner’s obsession right now. The flagship is spacious, bright and calm – no easy feat given its Regent Street digs. The curated Scandi-inspired collection feels expensive, but is easy on the wallet.
Bring it back: An oh-so-soft classic organic T-shirt (£19).
This east London trailblazer has been thrilling local bargain hunters (and fancy-dress fiends) since the early 2000s, with its rainbow-coloured racks of grab-it-while-you-can printed shirts, ra-ra skirts and leather jackets.
Bring it back: Look out for Beyond Retro’s own LABEL collection, made from recycled clothing – including a 1990s-inspired mini denim backpack (£29).
Stationery nerds will find their spiritual home at this design-led pen-and-paper nirvana. Established by two graphic designers who’ve long harboured an obsession with stationery themselves, all the items, from paperclips to notebooks, have been chosen with the utmost care.
Bring it back: Perk up any desk with the minimal brass pen pot (£22.50).
It’s not just the open brick walls and in-store coffee bar that keep Shoreditch’s hip kids coming back to this warehouse-turned-multi-concept store. Alongside covetable ceramics and homewares, the rails are always well stocked with chic independent labels, from the cleans cuts of Minimum to cool kicks from Garment Project.
Bring it back: Every wall needs a contemporary graphic giclée print (£30), right?
One-stop grooming shop Beast. is changing the way guys stay fresh faced. The on-trend Seven Dials store has a hand-picked selection of male maintenance paraphernalia all displayed by product, not brand. So, if you want a moisturiser, that’s where you head. Simple.
Bring it back: A smart bathroom cabinet requires a beautiful Neville shaving bowl (£25).