Life and Style

How do five designers alight on the same obscure inspiration? How are ‘trends’ born?

STYLE POLICE: Tie me up, tie me down

This is the season of the drawstring. Prepare to wear them on hems, necklines - even seams, says JAMES SHERWOOD

Fashion: Suits you, signore

There are no trends in menswear. As the Milan shows proved, it's only the details that change.

Brace yourself, Paris

ALTHOUGH we do sometimes publish articles about Christmas shopping in this travel section, I have to confess that going on holiday to shop always struck me as a contradiction in terms. Was not shopping after all a particularly painful form of work, and were not holidays supposed to mean an absence of work?

Test your Euro Knowledge

Bank staff should brace themselves for a mystifying start to the New Year in case customers demand accounts be converted into equarders, eus or even curos rather than the newly introduced euro. With just over two weeks to E-day, a survey reveals 51 per cent of those questioned still do not know the correct name of the new European single currency. Only five per cent surveyed in the BBC Money Programme poll knew euro notes and coins would be introduced in 2002, and 90 per cent had no idea the euro would be worth around 70p. European Movement director Steven Woodard said the findings illustrated how out of touch people were with events on the other side of the Channel. Try our quiz to find out if your euro knowledge is up to speed...

The Style Police: Will we wear it?

Huge, bell-shaped skirts look great in period dramas. And there they should stay, warns James Sherwood

Staying in: Sauciness and silicone

A statuesque Austrian woman wearing a crown, a lurid green bikini and a matching sash reading "Miss Asparagus" sashays into a television studio to sit on the knee of a suave Frenchman. "Would you mind taking a look at my asparagus?" he asks, in more of a simple than a double entendre. "How does it compare to other boys' asparagus? What part do you prefer - the shaft or the tip?" Having salaciously invited the woman to gorge herself on some asparagus, the man then wonders: "Was it as good for you as it was for me?" The spirit of Carry On is not dead. It lives on in Eurotrash.

Trans-sexual's Eurovision win has divine appeal

THE triumph of Dana International, trans-sexual Israeli winner of this year's Eurovision Song Contest, sparked emotions of biblical proportions yesterday. The young and open-minded celebrated a new diva, while the singer herself claimed divine inspiration. Back home, disgusted ultra- Orthodox Jews expressed the opposite view.

She was a he and Israel's part of Europe - that's showbiz

THE TRANS-SEXUAL singer from Israel, Dana International, won one of the most eventful Eurovision Song Contests for years last night, only securing victory in the final round of voting with her song "Diva".

Hot off the Press

shopperholic

Fashion: The skirts you can keep, but oh what I'd give for a pair of shades and some trainers

Menswear designers have already decided what the fashionable male will be wearing next autumn: it's either cobweb knits, Edwardiana, north African layers or that old favourite, a crisply tailored miniskirt. Ian Phillips braved the stampedes. Photographs by Andrew Thomas.

Scent of a sex-industry operative

PETER YORK ON ADS No 207: JEAN PAUL GAULTIER'S FRAGANCE

Fashion: A New Year's fling with tartan

Check it out, Sassenachs. Vivienne Westwood is not the only one south of the Border to be wild about tartan.

Tried & Tested: The Fake Fir Look

They don't drop needles, and they're re-usable, but how do they look? We hang our lights on artificial trees

Book review: Fashion with a sense of Uma

Undressing Cinema: Clothing and Identity in the Movies by Stella Bruzzi Routledge pounds 45/pounds 12.99

Charity ball that stretches imagination to the limit

Skin Two Rubber Ball, tonight, Hammersmith Palais
Career Services

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The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice
Hollywood targets Asian audiences as US films enjoy record-breaking run at Chinese box office

Hollywood targets Asian audiences

The world's second biggest movie market is fast becoming the Hollywood studios' most crucial
Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app'

Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child
Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

Is it time to ditch autocorrect?

Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
10 best girls' summer dresses

Frock chick: 10 best girls' summer dresses

Get them ready for the holidays with these cool and pretty options 
Westminster’s dark secret: Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together

Westminster’s dark secret

Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Dulce et decorum est - a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Dulce et decorum est: a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality
Google tells popular music website to censor album cover art in 'sexually explicit content' ban

Naked censorship?

The strange case of Google, the music website and the nudity take-down requests
Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

As England take on India at Trent Bridge, here is our pick of the high-performing bats to help you up your run-count this summer 
Brazil vs Germany World Cup 2014 comment: David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

Captain appears to give up as shocking 7-1 World Cup semi-final defeat threatens ramifications in Brazil