In Depth

The UK’s best independent stationery shops

Stock up on luxurious writing supplies from these pen-and-paper professionals

Choosing Keeping, London

This charming shop on Columbia road, home to the infamous flower market, provides a lovely spot of respite from the crowds choosing peonies and tulips and has a wonderful array of some of the most attractive paper products, pens and desk accessories in the capital. Their pieces have a delightfully retro aesthetic, from the celluloid pen cases in tortoiseshell or mother of pearl, to the notebooks with marbled paper edges and covers. Their botanical paper weights make unusual and beautiful gifts, especially when wrapped in some Liberty print or 18th-century-style paper.

128 Columbia Road, London E2 7RG; choosingkeeping.com

Papier, online

A relative newcomer to the world of fine stationery, Papier was founded in 2015 with the aim of encouraging people in our ever-more digital world to continue the art of letter writing and sending beautiful things through the post. They seek out designers and illustrators to decorate stationery such as writing paper, envelopes, invitations and diaries with beautiful artwork. The website has a wonderful wedding service, offering everything paper-related that you could need, from save-the-date cards and invitations, to place cards and menus for the big day itself.

Online only; papier.com

Papersmiths, Bristol and London

Hailing from the West Country, Papersmiths offer a carefully curated array of stationery, beautifully photographed and sold online and in their stylish shops in Bristol's Clifton Village and London's Shoreditch. Their selection includes everything the discerning desk accessory aficionado requires, from notebooks with graphic-print covers, to leather-bound plain paper journals in bright primaries and fountain pens in copper, gold and teal casings. Papersmiths demonstrate their attention to detail in terms of brand aesthetic, applying it across the board to items including minimalist pencil sharpeners, scissors and staplers.

Various locations; papersmiths.co.uk

Il Papiro, London

Originally from Florence, this Italian stationers specialises in marbling paper to order and sells a variety of desk accessories covered in the luxury wrap, including diaries, frames and letter racks. Their selection of stationery and pens has an antique feel, with quills, wax seals and leather journals on the shelves alongside watermarked specialty writing paper and letter embossers. 

In a nod to their Italian heritage, Il Papiro also has a selection of Murano glass desk accessories, such as pen holders, ink pots and letter openers.

Various locations in London; ilpapiro.co.uk

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