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Needles at the ready

Forget loo-roll covers and tea cosies, the latest woolly wonders have made knitting cool again, says Trish Lorenz

NILS: Both men and women are pretty fond of sitting. But as you’re not able to fold this and it’s not made of lace, Ikea’s made it male

Ikea furniture: Are Billy, Sofia and friends really sexist?

It’s incredible what you can get at Ikea these days: those mugs with the too-small handles; fairy lights; beds; meatballs; a bit of casual sexism. If you were to have a flick through the Swedish flat-pack company’s substantial catalogue, paying attention to the names it gives its products, among the many Nordic place names it uses for things such as mirrors and bedside tables, it seems to have a distinctly gendered naming process.

You wear it well: Costume-maker Pernilla Lindfors' Scandinavian style

When Lindfors was on maternity leave, she couldn't keep her hands still - which meant dressing up her house instead...

Shine on: the power of lighting

As this year’s Light Show comes to London’s Southbank Centre, Trish Lorenz suggests bright ideas for all budgets

Interiors insider: Charlie Marshall of Loaf

Founder of Loaf Charlie Marshall shares top tips on what to look for when buying a bed and his favourite interior shops in London.

GO WILD: Animal inspired finishes are all the vogue. £34.95/roll, galeriewallcoverings.com

Beauty is skin deep: latest trend in interiors

From aged finishes to shimmering metallics it's what on the surface that counts this season, says Trish Lorenz

1, Cover an entire wall with a Royal Horticultural Society print from Surface View. From £50/ sq m, surfaceview.co.uk

Pretty as a peach

Nature's bounty is the inspiration for an interiors look bound to bring a breath of fresh air to your home. Trish Lorenz steps outside

Reclamation projects: It helps to have a plan as to the sort of objects you're looking for before entering junk shops such as Aladdin's Cave in London

The Insider: A professional's guide to junk-hunting

A new TV show for junk nerds started this month on Sky Arts 2 (Tuesdays, 8pm). Design Dealers follows Sarah Brunner and Paul Liengaard as they trawl flea markets to furnish some of the UK's swishest spaces. As frugal furnishing infiltrates the mainstream, I asked Brunner for her shopping list…

Emerald elegance: Luxuriate in Pantone's refined colour of 2013

1. Velvet tub chair

<p>1. Chelsea Antiques Fair, London £5, penman-fairs.co.uk</p>
<p>Established in 1950, this annual event is relaunched this year with new stands and displays and a fresh style. It's held on 13-17 March.</p>

The 10 Best antiques fairs

Whether you’re hunting for an heirloom or looking for a bargain, try one of these treasure troves

Melody Roseveare

Interiors insider: Melody Roseveare

 



<p>{1} Brink and Campman Orchid Rug</p>
<p>This hand-tufted rug will bring a splash of colour to any living room. A contemporary twist on florals, this acrylic rug has been carved to highlight its fantastic mix of colours and looks wonderful set against a neutral decor.</p>
<p>From £100, heals.co.uk</p>

The 10 best rugs

Need to feel warm in this freezing weather or want a splash of colour in your home? Then invest in a bright or cosy floor covering

The Insider: How to make your fairy lights fantastic

You may think the time of the year for fairy lights has passed – but I think all year is good for fairy lights. Why? Because they're lovely! They add warmth to any room – so don't pack them away now the tree's down. Get creative…

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General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions