Ready to Wear: Should designers be forced to show under one roof?

And so adieu, the Carrousel du Louvre. Established as the heart of the Paris collections back in 1994 – when governing body La Chambre Syndicale decreed it a practical indoor and underground alternative to tents set up in the great museum's grounds – and with IM Pei's shimmering glass pyramid overhead, it was announced last week that it was to be used no longer.

Ready to Wear: The J Brand Houlihan cargo jean is selling like hot cakes

The relationship between clothing originally intended to be strictly functional and sex is often a barbed one – high-heeled trainers, anyone? Or how about a close-fitting designer parka?

Ready to Wear: Valentino is the undisputed master of the grand gesture

Nobody would ever accuse the great Roman couturier, Valentino Garavani, of understatement. Instead he is the undisputed master of the grand gesture. As The Last Emperor, a film about his life and work, opens, he announces: "I love a beautiful lady. I love a beautiful dog. I love a beautiful piece of furniture. I love beauty. It's not my fault." Don't you just know how he feels.

Ready to Wear: Martin Margiela is the ultimate designer's designer

This week sees the opening of London's first major retrospective of the work of that all-round fashion God and international man of mystery, Martin Margiela.

Ready to Wear: Few designers are clever enough to make stripes appealing

Prints – clashing, colliding and quite disarmingly colourful – were ubiquitous on the spring/summer catwalks, and the bold and brave are no doubt wearing them with pride by now, blissfully unaware of their potential to induce migraine in unsuspecting passers-by. Budget fashion = bad prints.

Ready to Wear: The socks and sandals look has got legs

Socks and sandals? Overly self-conscious styling device or quite a good look? Certainly, this one has, er, legs.

Ready to Wear: The vogue for distressed denims is galling

Last week my friend B said to me, "I'm so sick of rips in jeans on anyone older than 16. I'm talking fake Balmain." She has a point.

Ready to Wear: Perhaps the WAGS will have to sharpen up their acts

It’s good to know that Fabio Capello is planning to allow footballers’ wives and girlfriends take part in any offduty World Cup activities, including feel-good (no-carb) barbecues, safe in the knowledge that behind every good man etc...

Ready to Wear: The Italian stallion lives and breathes

Marooned in Florence, Italy (it's a dirty job), with nothing better to do than people watch.

Ready to Wear: Never theme a holiday wardrobe to a holiday. No capri pants in Capri

It's the start of the summer holiday season and – as with all debuts – as far as matters sartorial are concerned, the pressure is on.

Ready to Wear: How times have changed since yours truly sweated over a sewing machine

Aged 11, I made a zip-fronted, cherry red shift dress printed with white daisies for a school project.

Ready to Wear: There’s nothing quite like a broad shoulder to shout 'working woman'

It's always safe to assume that a trend is dead in the water once it appears in the nation's favourite soaps.

Ready to Wear: More discerning souls have never lost track of Manolo Blahnik’s designs

Sipping cocktails at home with Her Majesty the Queen earlier this month – as you do – I couldn't help but notice that the very best dressed feet in the room all owed their elegant appearance to none other than Manolo Blahnik.

Ready to Wear: The New Look is a projection of a woman that heterosexual men dream of

A fashion fact: Prada and Louis Vuitton are among the most powerful brands in the world. Fashion fact number two – and also just a fact, in fact – history repeats itself.

Ready to Wear: McQueen’s aim was to make clothing that was anything but throwaway

Fashion has lost its greatest showman, a man who not only art directed the most memorable fashion experiences of the past 15 years and tirelessly pushed at the boundaries of technical innovation, but who was also a couturier in the traditional sense, always demonstrating a respect for handcraftsmanship and the art of dressmaking that was unrivalled.

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