Gift shops are usually the last minute saviour on route to a birthday party, where you scribble a card while swiftly walking and gathering yourself for a calm entrance. Trips around museum gifts can be more exciting than the actual exhibitions themselves! Why not indulge this winter and take a scroll around London’s best gift shops, bookshops and museum stores with all the pressies your kids could dream of? There may even be a little something for you parents…
1. Verandah, Kensal Rise
Independant Gift Shop in Kensal Rise, North West London
Verandah was founded in 1990 in Notting Hill, London. The establishment now has two larger premises in Kensal Rise and Kensal Green. Owners Simone and Penny set out to create two unique boutique stores that rapidly established as a local fixture with a strong and loyal customer base. Products range from humorous greeting cards to toys, furniture, jewellery and designer clothes samples, all carefully selected for individually-minded customers. They gift wrap while you wait!
2. Inside Store, Highgate
insidestore, design led furniture shop, Highgate
Insidestore is an interiors focused showroom in Kentish Town, North London, selling modern furniture & lighting and home accessories. All products have a common design aesthetic: simple, stylish and playful. Formerly known as Future and Found, insidestore was founded by Andrea Bates, a former buyer at Heal’s and Paperchase, in 2012.
3. Map Gift Shop, Archway
KidRated loves Map Gift Shop in Archway, North London
‘map gift shop‘ is renowned for their interior printed textile ranges. A favourite visit to ‘map gift shop’ is an experience makes the business of buying gifts an absolute pleasure, with friendly staff, wacky gifts that change every week and beautiful keepsakes. Wander down from Hampstead Heath or Archway Park with a coffee and browse all afternoon to your heart’s content.
4. Mia Wood, Richmond
Family-run independent gift shop in Richmond, London
Mia Wood is a family run business situated in Kew Village. This site has a collection of stylish and designer gifts, beauttiful glassware and homeware products. Mia harmoniously fuses traditional pieces with new modern ideas, open 7 days a week.
5. Mooch, Ealing
Mooch London is a hugely popular gift shop in Ealing, West London
Mooch is an award-winning gift shop based in West London. The store get their stock mainly. from small independent suppliers mixed in with a selection of more well known brands that our customers love. Here you can find presents for women, men, babies and children, with a free gift wrapping service. The real beauty of being an independent shop is that Mooch listen to customer needs and adapt stock to suit them.
6. The Emporium of Thrifts, Catford
Gifts available at The Emporium of Thrift in South East London
The Emporium of Thrift in South East London is notorious for great gifting, packed full of gorgeous products that you would be proud to give and ecstatic to receive. There’s 10% off for South London and Lewishaw card holders to match the community feel and exceptional customer service.
7. Oliver Bonas, Paddington
Paddington’s Oliver Bonas store has a range of home decor and amazing gifts to purchase
Oliver Bonas is a famous British store, selling fashionable items and homeware with nearly 80 stores across the UK and Ireland. OB’s company values are work hard, play hard & bekind – the ethos of this company is apparent when in store with bright coloured props and practical items that will make you feel fabulous.
8. SUCK alternative gifts, OXO tower
SUCK UK has been named London’s best gift shop
Stuff for kids, kitchens, stationary, office gifts, the best stocking fillers all year round! SuckUK was voted the best London’s gift shop, with amazingly affordable, unusual gifts, gadgets and alternative souvenirs. You will always find new, unique and useful objects that you won’t want to put down here, perfect for any birthday present for any age.
9. To Home from London, Camden Market
To Home from London sits right in the heart of Camden Market, North London
To Home From London in Camden Market is a sells a mix of original artworks and offers creative workshops. Here you can find the most authentic souvenirs, specially crafted in the UK providing positivity and good vibes. To Home From London offers a 10% discount when a Camden Card is presented.
10. Monster Supplies, Hoxton Street
Edible Eyeballs available in store at Monster Supplies
Hoxton Street Monster Supplies was established in 1818, though the exact details of why, and by whom, have tragically been lost to history. This gaff pride themselves on being London’s only purveyor of quality goods for monsters of every kind. Buy some hilarious edible goods such as a Human Heart, Edible Eyeballs and OrganMarmalade. Whether you’re a Vampire, Werewolf or scary parent, Monster Supplies have everything you need.
11. Alice Through the Looking Glass, Central London
Alice Through The Looking Glass, Voted one of the best bookshops in London
Alice Through The Looking Glass boutique is for C.S Lewis fantatics and storylovers. This independant bookstore sells Alice iconography, first edition books, rare illustrated editions and unique objects created in collaboration with talented artists. A visit to this shop is an experience in itself, a perfect family day out for kids and teens!
12. Notting Hill Bookshop, Portobello
Notting Hill Bookshop, as featured in Notting Hill (1999) starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts
If you loved Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts in the 90’s Notting Hill (1999), you’ll know all about The Notting Hill Bookshop. The company are able to get hold any title, as long as it is in print, with free delivery within a 2 mile radius. Browse through original classics and new prints in store. You can spend hours walking around Portobello Market and end up here.
13. Jo’s House, Herne Hill
Jo’s House in Herne Hill
Jo’s House is a contemporary store, retailing locally sourced independent products alongside internationally known brands that are new and exclusive to the Herne Hill area where the store is located. After a sixteen year career at Harvey Nichols in jewellery, Jo decided to follow her dreams and open her own store in 2017 selling gorgeous accessories, wellbeing products and much more.
14. The British Library
The British Library’s gift shop is perfect for bookworms and literary lovers
The British Library is the perfect stocking filler stop, with something for everyone in the family. Books, posters, Christmas jumpers, colouring books and toys – you name it,The British Library shop most likely has it. Give your grandparents, friends and relatives incredible gifts this Christmas, with sections specially for kids and teens.
15. BFI Southbank
Head to the BFI shop and discover the ideal bundles for film fanatics
For over 14 years, a small team of dedicated film enthusiasts have worked hard to create the best film shop possible for our members and visitors to the BFI Southbank. Each member of the team has their own specialist interests and knowledge which also makes great conversation when you are looking for that ideal gift for your film buff friend.
The BFI was founded in 1933. The company are a charity governed by a Royal Charter and combine cultural, creative and industrial roles, including management of the BFI National Archive. Every purchase at the BFI Shop supports the work of the BFI.
16. National Theatre Gift Shop
Plays and scripts available at The National Theatre shop
Calling all keen thespians! Head down to the National Theatre shop for iconic prints, epic playtexts, insane room lighting and other miscellious items that don’t break the bank. Whether you’re picking up a programme or ordering from the historic poster archive, every sale goes directly back into supporting the artistic work of the National Theatre.
17. London Transport Museum
Maybe it’s because you’re a Londoner that you love transport so…
What was once an entrance into Covent Garden’s Victorian flower market is now a stylish contemporary shop selling souvenirs, limited edition models and exclusive accessories. Among the shop’s most popular items are iconic posters spanning a century of transport design, including art deco classics of the 1930s. London Transport Museum has one of the finest poster archives in the world with over 5,000 posters and 700 original poster artworks. You’ll be sure to find something cool here to brighten up your teens room and make them proud to be a Londoner!
18. Rise, Kensal Green
Take a stroll down to Rise, an independantly run gift shop on the way to Ladbroke Grove. Look out for the glittery red sparkling sign – you can’t miss it! Cards, stationery, stocking fillers, cushions and lovely Xmas ornament can all be found here, not to mention the sweet smelling scented candles from local sources. Support a small enterprise like the Rise and you wont’ regret iit.
19. RAF Museum
Globe installation at RAF Museum’s gift shop
Support the charitable work of the Royal Air Force Museum by visiting their museum shop. A giant statue of Lenin is positioned above the tills and will help you find it! Discover books, DVDs, RAF models, prints, gifts, clothes, toys and pocket-money souvenirs to suit any budget. If you have a little extra dosh to spend, why not get a wooden spitfire model with an engraved plague? Personalised gifts for the win.
20. The Design Museum
Wall of colour at The Design Museum’s gift shop
The extensive collection at the Design Museum’s gift shop is impressive and fun. There are gifts for architects, adventurers, photographers, fashion designers, food lovers and anyone creative. The Design Museum Shop also believes design can make a big difference in combating waste and has taken steps to reduce its contribution to the problem, starting with a curated selection of products for The Waste Age Exhibition range, including funky t-shirts and unusual earrings. Before browsing, be sure to visit the new exhibition Amy: Beyond The Stage and buy a poster to remember Amy’s legacy on your way out.
21. Royal Academy of Arts
Posters available to purchase at the Royal Academy of Arts gift shop
Set in the lush Suffolk countryside, just outside the ancient Cathedral town of Bury St Edmunds this unusual stately home is perfect for the whole family. It has extensive ground and plenty of marked pathways, plus a mixture of parkland, riverbank and ancient woodland, there is plenty of wildlife to see.
The design of the Barbican gift shop matches the brutal architecture of the iconic building
The Barbican gift shopoffers incredible design-led gifts, inspired by their dynamic architecture. The collective invest in the independant artists in design and publishing, so expect to find a unique trendy present here. Once at thte gallery, there are two shops – The Art Gallery Shop on level 3 and the Barbican Shop on level G – which both regularly refresh their ranges. Each purchase from either shop made directly support the arts and learning activities at the gallery.
23. Kew Gardens
Kew Gardens Gift Shop is sensational for kids and garden enthusiasts
Kew Gardens is worth a visit just for their amazing gift shop! Browse through hanging plantpots and gardeners galore, taste jars of unfiltered bee’s honey and smell the delicious candle range from Aery. This store is a world of delight for kids to explore too, with cuddly toys, interactive games and a cafe next door with an exclusive kids menu. Eating and shopping by nature has never been so easy!
24. Benjamin Pollock’s Toyshop, Covent Garden
Benjamin Pollock’s Toyshop, Covent Garden
Pollock’s have been selling toys and games to adults and children for over 100 years. “Many longstanding customers who remember our toys from their childhood return again and again, to buy for themselves, for their friends and the children in their lives.” Here you can buy toy theatres, puppets, old fashioned domino and game sets and wind up music boxes. Beautifully designed gifts that both children and grandparents would appericiate in the heart of Covent Garden.
25. V & A
Beautiful Decor inside the Victoria and Albert Museum
Tate’s mission is to promote knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of art – the gallery shop inside succeeds. You can find a wide range of books on modern art and culture, plus a stunning display of exclusive products and gift ideas. Check out the inspiring selection of children’s books, products and creative activities for the whole family.
27. Natural History Museum
Dinosaurs guarding the National History Museums gifts
The Natural History Museum is a world-class visitor attraction in South Kensington. There are plenty of kidfriendly gifts here made from organic, recycled and sustainable materials such as Dinosaur toys, educational books, family games, wall prints, personalised gifts and botanicial scent collection. The Wildlife Photography exhibition has a seperate shop with exclusive photography prints for gallery viewers, so be sure to grab some wall art while stocks last!
28. The Photographers’ Gallery Bookshop
Bookshop and film cameras available to purchase at The Photographers’ Gallery
The Photographers’ Gallery is an independent bookshop, with all profits helping to support gallery’s public programme. Here you can find a unique range of books, editions, zines, journals, cameras, films, cards and gifts from around the world. The selection of unusual camera equipment is mainly analogue, with an extensive range of over 150 films to purchase. The perfect gift spot for budding photographers and creatives!
29. The Science Museum
Interactive games and educational toys at The Science Museum gift shop
The Science Museum shop offers something for every kid, with gifts available for pre-school children to 12+. An essential token of your visit is Space Food Ice Cream Sandwich as well as telescopes, biology and plant science sets. Your one stop shop for all things experimental and a fun outing for all the family will interactive toys, games and guranteed laughter.
30. Saatchi Gallery
Woman looks through art book in The Saatchi Gallery store
If you are looking for a sophisicated and stylist gifts this season, The Saatchi Store is where its at. Look through an array of prints, photographs and postcards displaying contemporary work by undiscovered artists and designers. This is a great airy space before an afternoon tea at the gallery cage, where you can spend hours browsing lifestyle products and artworks to take home with you.