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What's in store: Amsterdam

Chic shopping options, as selected by Grant Thatcher from <a target="new" href="http://www.luxecityguides.com">LUXE</a> City Guides

Susie Rushton: You can't put a price on simple pleasures

Do you know why the British economy is struggling? Let me tell you a story to illustrate. On Saturday I went to a village fête in Somerset. Picture the scene: a coconut shy, quoits, an egg-throwing contest, bric-à-brac and an ice-cream van, in a pretty field next to a country church. Toddlers as far as the eye can see; women in striped aprons and men in Birkenstocks. Feeling hungry, I stop by a cake stall, where I buy a home-made chocolate brownie for – get this – 15p. Fifteen pence! By the close of business, I doubt whether the cook-cum-stallholder even made back the cost of her ingredients, let alone turned a profit. And that's what's wrong with the British attitude to enterprise.

Balmain produces this year's template for the high street

The final round of the autumn/winter collections was well under way at Paris Fashion Week yesterday, with shows from Balenciaga, Balmain, Rick Owens and Manish Arora. With many of the industry's most influential labels showing at the event, this is the place for the cream of the world's press and buyers to get a head start on the new season's trends.

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What is power dressing?

Key looks for autumn/winter 2009 according to Alexander McQueen, Marc Jacobs, Prada, Balmain and Balenciaga

Hit & Run: It’s the ‘big L’ for Asterix

A map of France is cracked by a Roman standard driven into the ground. To one side a magnifying glass focuses on a “Gaulish village” surrounded by four Roman outposts: Aquarium, Totorum, Laudanum and Compendium. Who would have thought – given such adverse circumstances – that one of that village’s most famous denizens, namely, Asterix the Gaul, would live to reach the grand old age of 50?

Thigh-highs get a reboot

Sex on legs? Not necessarily. This season's hot footwear trend comes in shapes and guises from suede to flat to embroidered to biker. Anything, in fact, but black PVC