Upmarket stationer and luxury goods specialist Smythson returned to profit last year.

The retailer, where Prime Minister David Cameron’s wife Samantha is a part-time creative consultant, made a pre-tax profit of £259,000 in the year to March 28, the Daily Telegraph reported, after suffering a loss of £3.9m the previous year.

Accounts filed at Companies House showed Smythson’s sales rose 4.4% to £16.5m.

The document stated: “After the unprecedented effect of the recession in the second half of the year to March 31 2009, the group’s recovery was underpinned during the rest of 2009 by improved sell-through of seasonal and core merchandise, continued improvement in stock and working capital management.”

The 13-store retailer said there had been double-digit like-for-like growth in the first quarter of the new financial year.

Samantha Cameron was at Smythson for 14 years, but stepped down in May from her full-time creative director’s role. Last December the retailer was sold for £18m to Greenwill SA, a holding company for Italian leather goods business Tivoli.