Life and Style
 

Being a member of One Direction has some serious pulling power when it comes to influencing a public vote.

A rosy future for the colour pink

Love it or loathe it, pink is everywhere this season. Harriet Walker and Gemma Hayward explain why it’s just the colour for dark days – and how to wear it with panache

Fashion: I am woman, hear me roar

If you are one of the dying breed whose wardrobe does not contain at least one animal-print item, you could soon have a case for recognition as a minority group. We're not sure when it happened, but suddenly the world is in animal print, with celebs leading the pack: stars from La Moss to Jasmine Guinness via Lily Allen have been spotted in near-identical leopard-print coats, suggesting that this is one spring trend that is going to stick.

Get your disco safari jumpsuit on

Rhiannon Harries rounds up the key trends for spring/summer 2009. And fear not, while some may look crazy on the catwalk, they can all be easily adapted for life in the real world

Ready to wear: The Dior shoes sure give new meaning to the concept of ‘shoes to have sex in’

Fashion's preoccupation with footwear that is bizarre to the point of madness continues to gather momentum.

Leona Lewis: Hackney beats Hollywood

She's a sensation Stateside, but Leona Lewis is refusingto swap the East End for the West Coast. Rob Sharp explores her home turf

Eclectic dreams: From the exotic to the bucolic, London's designers forecast a brighter, prettier spring

It should come as no great surprise that, just as a look that Vogue recently described as "the new austere" finally arrives in store, an entirely new mood emerges. And so, for spring/summer 2009, all that is strict, dark and distressed looks set to be supplanted by clothing that is just the reverse: exotic in places, bucolic in others, and owing more than a little to haute couture, if with a touch of utilitarian grounding, vintage Helmut Lang-style, to toughen things up a little.

Real women: the latest fashion

Size, age and colour are no longer a barrier to a career on the catwalk – that was the message from London Fashion Week. Fashion editor Susannah Frankel reports

Pandora: Tory donor: I'm still hedging my bets

As the Conservatives prepare for their autumn conference, one of their most generous benefactors is still threatening to throw his considerable clout behind another party.

<a href="http://blogs.independent.co.uk/independent/2008/09/christopher-kan.html" target="_blank">London Fashion Week: Christopher Kane</a>

Christopher Kane's spring/summer collection yesterday further cemented his reputation as one of London's most talented and viable young designers

Ready To Wear: Welcome back, leather trousers

Carola Long: 'Christopher Kane&rsquo;s leather trousers look really quite sexywhen motionless, but best of luck walking in them'

Grazia is handbagging its rivals into submission

Grazia took on the fiercely competitive weekly market &ndash; and won. Jane Bruton, the editor, tells Sophie Morris her secrets

Central Saint Martins: The art and soul of Britain

It's where hundreds of the nation's most creative people cut their teeth. Now Central Saint Martins is leaving its historic home

The MAN show is bringing menswear designers in from the cold

A long-held bugbear of mine has been why London Fashion Week has been so fixated on womenswear. Over the past six seasons, however, a showcase called MAN has taken its place among the 60-odd other shows at London Fashion Week, aiming to raise support and recognition for the city's menswear designers. And such momentum has built up around it that, this season, off-schedule menswear events coordinated to take advantage of the attention. From nowhere, London Fashion Week suddenly gained an unofficial day of menswear.

That was London Fashion Week that was

It should perhaps come as no great surprise that by the time London Fashion Week drew to a close yesterday the bucolic view of femininity which characterises the current spring season had given way to a rather darker mood for the forthcoming autumn.

Kane able to build on the hype with grown-up glamour

Christopher Kane has proved he is far more than just the latest, over-hyped young British designer.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links