One of the places me and Phil always visit when we’re in London is Carnaby Street. Although you probably already know Carnaby Street (make sure you check out Cha Cha Moon for lunch), you may not have found Kingly Court which is hidden behind Carnaby Street itself. All the shops are independents and there are quite a few crafty ones, as well as some nice cake shops and an amazing tea house. Basically it has everything I like:)
Kingly Court also contains the Carnaby Book Exchange, where you can swap a book you’ve read for any other on the shelves. When I was there they had a good selection of fiction as well a few art books. The Exchange is a project curated by Fashion Curation students at the London College of Fashion, and they’re done a really good job of creating a stylish and welcoming space to stop for a browse and a read. Make sure you remember to take along a book to leave behind next time you’re planning a trip to London.
P.S. If you’re interested in tea shops also make sure you visit the Tea House in Covent Garden. It’s normally packed to the rafters with shoppers, but it’s worth fighting your way through to have a look at the selection of teas. I’m working my way through a ‘Strawberries and Cream’ sencha at the moment which is rather nice, and I’ve had a lovely ‘Wild Cherry’ green tea from them in the past.