Discover the best British craft and design in London, from gorgeous ceramics and glass to eye-catching textiles and jewellery – ideal for sourcing a memorable souvenir of your trip or supporting talented artisans from afar. We’ve rounded up six inspiring crafts destinations representing UK makers, including physical and digital stores. Our London Perfect holiday rentals offer elegant retreats for those staying in town and keen to shop up a storm.
The New Craftsmen
Championing exceptional British craft in London, The New Craftsmen showcases beautiful work by makers from the UK and Ireland. Founded in 2012, it evolved from a pop-up to a Mayfair store and online retail platform. Dedicated to unearthing exciting craft across the British Isles, from Devon to the Orkneys, the team commissions, curates and sells unique contemporary pieces for the home. Design hunters will find ceramics, glass, furniture, lighting, basketry and artworks. We love Michael Ruh’s glass Chelsea Jars, the ceramic tableware of Dylan Bowen and Arjan Van Dal, Alfred Newall’s vibrant Bobbin tables and Alexander de Vol’s wood/bronze vessels. 34 North Row, Mayfair, W1
Anyone seeking quality craft and design in London should visit Notting Hill’s Vessel Gallery. Started in 1999 by husband-and-wife duo Angel Monzon and Nadia Demetriou Ladas, this renowned showroom is an authority on contemporary glass, featuring work by makers from the UK, Scandinavia, Italy and beyond. The collection spans art glass, sculpture and decorative lighting, as well as ceramics and metal objects. Talents on show include Brits Laura Birdsall, Sarah Wiberley and Graham Muir, Swedes Gunnel Sahlin and Lena Bergström, and Dane Karin Mørch. Vessel sells unique and limited edition pieces, from tableware to vases, and collaborates with studios on exclusives. 114 Kensington Park Road, W11
Maud & Mabel
Contemporary aesthetics meet ancient craft at thoughtfully curated Maud & Mabel in Hampstead Village. Founded by former stylist Karen Whiteley in 2012, this serene bricks-and-mortar and online store displays a wide range of craftsmanship, spanning clay, cloth, wood, stone, glass and metal. Although many of its makers are based in London or the UK – such as ceramicist Anna Silverton who handthrows colourful porcelain jars – there are international talents in the mix too. Beautiful everyday objects are rooted in the Japanese philosophy of shibumi, balancing simplicity and complexity, perfection and imperfection. Whiteley creates regular exhibitions, collaborations and special collections. 10 Perrin’s Court, NW3
Wondering where to buy the best British craft and design in London? An incubator for around 170 local contemporary craft talents, Cockpit Arts is the city’s leading crafts studios. It was established in Holborn in 1986, with a second site added in Deptford in 2002. The popular twice-yearly Open Studios allow visitors to meet makers, buy handmade pieces or commission one-off designs (now offered as a digital experience, alongside virtual tours). The online Cockpit Makers’ Market means crafts fans anywhere can shop for gifts from the country’s top crafts talents. Jewellery, millinery, fashion, ceramics, glass, woodwork, metal and silversmithing are all represented. Larger furniture, lighting and homewares sit alongside more portable stationery, book art, textiles and toys. Cockpit Yard, Northington Street, Holborn, WC1
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Bold London design brand Darkroom is passionate about the “crafted and the curious”. Launched by founders Rhonda Drakeford and Lulu Roper-Caldbeck as a black-walled physical store in 2009, this influential boutique became a purely online retailer in 2016. Accessible, trend-setting pieces sport bright colours and graphic patterns. It’s a great spot to pick up striking plates, planters, mugs, cushions, candles and tea towels. Larger furniture is on offer, as well as smaller, gift-friendly art prints and jewellery. We love their Bauhaus-inspired alphabet pendants, handmade in London from silver or gold. Drakeford’s Aztec and Ndebele wall prints are fabulous to take home too.
South Kensington’s dazzling Victoria and Albert Museum specializes in applied and decorative arts and design, including ceramics, glass and textiles. Presenting British craft and design products inspired by the V&A’s permanent collections and temporary exhibitions, the V&A Shop offers exclusive commissions and one-off vintage pieces. It sells affordable stationery, homewares, jewellery and style accessories, from diaries and art prints to aprons, mugs and totes, by emerging and established names. The Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser range takes its cue from 2021’s Alice in Wonderland exhibition, including bags, scarves and quirky acrylic jewellery handmade by London duo Tatty Devine. You can also enjoy the store online. Chic London Perfect stays in Kensington include nearby Middleton located in a charming Kensington news. Cromwell Road, SW7
Can’t get enough of design? Check out our guide for London’s Best Museums for Design Lovers for more artistic inspiration for your London holiday!