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Kawaii, or a love of the adorable, is huge in Japan – and it’s big here too. Bless, says Will Coldwell

Liquid sweetness: What could be easier? There is a hand-me-down quality to this summer's dresses, evocative of the flea market and the jumble sale. Alison Veness reports

This is the big easy. A dreamy, languorous moment of escapism before glamour inescapably descends, a moment to dress up in something effortlessly simple - after all, what could be easier than a fluid dress?

Fashion Update: Schiffer to retire?

RUMOUR has it that Karl Lagerfeld's favourite model, Claudia Schiffer, will retire from modelling after she marries her fiance, David Copperfield. Schiffer, who has been compared with Bardot, made her modelling debut at the age of 19 on the runway of a Chanel haute couture show. In modelling terms, she was a late starter. Now, at the grand old age of 23, she could be the first of the supermodels to bow out gracefully.

Chanel apologises to Muslims for 'Satanic Breasts' dress

IT IS not often that the head of a French haute couture house visits the Grand Mosque of Paris, the leading place of prayer for France's 3 million Muslims.

So you wanna be a boxer?: Boxing is no longer the preserve of the macho male. Now women are fighting fit without breaking bones. Emma Cook enters the ring

When boxing trainer and manager Isola Akay visited New York's largest gym five years ago he was shocked to see women fighting in the ring. 'I couldn't believe they were hitting each other so hard' he recalls. 'I decided I could offer something much better without all that bashing.'

Fashion: Backstage, the launching of TV careers . . .

Move over, Richard and Judy, it's the Cindy and Claudia show. While most spectators at the Chanel show in Paris were watching the catwalk, the real action was going on backstage for the cameras. Suddenly, television is where it's at.

Fashion Update: Naomi experiences a mood swing

WE ALL know how much a supermodel costs these days, but what price a supermermaid? Valentino wouldn't tell how much he paid Naomi Campbell to spend the whole of his Oliver show on a swing, wearing a coral encrusted bikini over a striped sheath dress ending in a mermaid tail.

People: Queen seeks tea and sympathy at Waterloo

TIRED, perhaps, of the endless gossip about her daughters-in-law, the Queen is taking a mid-week break to Belgium. King Baudoin and Queen Fabiola do not have any children, so Her Majesty will be able to get away from it all. Brussels boasts numerous attractions, but the Queen has opted for quiet contemplation at the battlefield of Waterloo. She will then take tea.

Dressing-up is what the British do best: as the decade moves on, individualism moves in

LAST MARCH, around the time that John Major was rolling up his sleeves and pitching into gritty, man-of-the-people heart-to-hearts, Claudia Schiffer was swinging down the catwalk with a dubious expression on her face. Dressed in scarlet leather, gilt chains and knee-high bovver boots, she was wearing around pounds 4,000 worth of clothes. And yet here was a look that was ridiculously easy to rip off at second-hand stalls the world over, from Kensington Market to LA's Melrose Avenue. But maybe that was the point.

FASHION / The new pluck: Who'd have thought there was so much in an eyebrow? Those bushy Brooke Shields caterpillars have been refined to Fifties arcs and now they've more or less disappeared altogether. You never know what you've got till they've gone

One of the last great beauty credos of the Eighties is crumbling. The luxuriant eyebrow that every beauty editor and make-up artist held sacrosanct for an entire decade (the same one that was supposed to be absolutely essential to the architecture of any face) is being plucked and pencilled into an emaciated shadow of its former self.

Wannabees follow in steps of superstar models: Dreams came true for 13 girls-next-door when they became 'superstar' models - for a night. Roger Tredre reports

LAST MONTH she was signing on back home in Cardiff. This week, she was a superstar model, for a night at least, striding the catwalk before the television cameras and the probing eyes of a thousand fashion industry guests. It was a dream come true for Dena Khazragi, 19, a finalist in the British round of the Look of the Year contest.
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone