Life and Style
 

Stellar showings summarise the new spirit of modernity that’s revitalising the stuffy world of haute couture, says Alexander Fury

Murray goes for four on the trot in Basle

Andy Murray will try to win his fourth title triumph in a row next week – at Roger Federer's hometown tournament in Basle. The Scot, whose winning run has justresulted in him replacing the Swiss at No 3 in the world rankings, has taken a wild card into the event whose highly competitive field includes Federer, Novak Djokovic, Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and Tomas Berdych.

Bags of style: Ally Capellino in her newly opened west London store fitted out by interior designer Rupert Blanchard

Ally Capellino: It's in the bag

From retro rucksacks to schoolboy satchels, Ally Capellino's designs are as popular as they are practical – even though they don't follow fashions. As she opens her second shop, she tells Harriet Walker what makes a classic

The Lost Diaries, By Craig Brown

Better spaghetti, passing wind, and Madonna's sex

Merkel blocks quick deal on debt crisis

Angela Merkel signalled her intention yesterday to put German domestic opinion ahead of diplomatic niceties as European leaders began five days of intense wrangling over an attempt to resolve the eurozone debt crisis. At Germany's insistence, tomorrow's gathering in Brussels will be a mere warm-up for a more important summit next Wednesday.

Golden start for Great Britain

Great Britain claimed three gold medals on the opening day of the European Track Championships in Apeldoorn in the Netherlands yesterday.

Clashes as Euro leaders take to the field

Germany: Angela Merkel pledges to give German MPs first sight of eurozone rescue plan as officials gather in Brussels for pivotal summit

Satellite expected to hit Earth

German scientists say they expect pieces of a defunct satellite hurtling toward the atmosphere to hit Earth this weekend.

Franco-German row blocks debt crisis agreement

Eurozone leaders conceded last night there are still huge divisions on how to solve the bloc's debt crisis with no chance of agreement by the end of Sunday's summit, which was originally slated as a make-or-break meeting.

Window shopping: Tweed

The 'champagne of fabrics' is loved by fashion labels from Converse to Yves Saint Laurent. Now tweed is making a comeback in our living rooms

From Paris, with love

Lace, pearls and chaste chiffon gave the spring collections a girlish lightness of touch, says Susannah Frankel

Ready To Wear: Why be so down on a rapper's debut on the catwalk?

The sight of front-row faces at Kanye West's debut show made it worth attending alone.

Susannah Frankel: 'The tabi boot has always frightened me'

Much is made in fashion of the 'heritage classic' – the Hermès Kelly or Birkin bag, the Burberry trenchcoat, the Gucci loafer and so forth. Never quite so conspicuous is the timeless piece of clothing and/or accessory that becomes inexorably linked to an avant-garde label. By its nature, this will never have quite the profile of its essentially bourgeois counterparts. Neither will it be so widely appreciated. And that, to the right fashion follower, at least, makes it all the more desirable.

Harriet Walker: The label will lose its cool if it continues to chase ubiquity

If fashion relies on cheques and balances, then Supergroup may well have tipped the scales. The recipe for cool is notoriously elusive, and the industry's alchemists spend thousands of hours and pounds trying to decant it, but it doesn't take much for a successful company to come tumbling down.

Florence and the fashion machine

Guests were met by an underwater playground at the Chanel show which opened the Paris collections yesterday. Florence Welch played live standing in a seashell.

Uniqlo: Back to the future

Uniqlo's new Innovation Project sees the Japanese high-street giant returning to its roots, says Susannah Frankel

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
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No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

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Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
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Ed Balls interview

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Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

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Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

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