Life and Style

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

THE FALL GUYS; AUTUMN MENSWEAR FROM A-Z

We've done a women's autumn fashion special. Now it's the men's turn: after all, you're just as interested in what's hot for the coming season as we are (and if you're not, you should be). So from trad tweed to sexy suits, this one's for you, boys

Collect Call: After a fashion;

Bonham's Design Sale

Famous owner fails to add value to frock collection

A large collection of dresses belonging to TV personality Janet Street-Porter was yesterday auctioned for a total of only pounds 3,000 - half the amount it was expected to raise.

POP: Hugh Cornwell; Dingwalls, London

Thursday was the one-time Strangler-king's birthday, and the select crowd welcomed Mr Cornwell with a chorus of congratulation - "happy birthday, dear Hyooo-ugh..." This, of course, he barely acknowledged, since what is an ex-Strangler for if not to evince disgust at such tawdriness? But here's the difference: though he played the set wearing a disaffected frown, the music Cornwell makes these days retains little of the cute, brute thuggery of yore; in his old age (he's 48) he's replaced it with pop craftsmanship and wry lyrics about the way men and women tease and interact.

Challenge Charlie; I need an overhaul

Charlie Harrington continues her occasional series with a rescue plan for a young woman who doesn't have the stamina to shop till she drops

PETER YORK ON ADS: Antoine flaunts a bit of lip and a lot of lolly

No 187: LYONS MAID LOLLIES

Berardi's Paris

Antonio Berardi (below) is fashion's Next Big Thing, so says everyone, including American Vogue. British, 28, and just two years out of Central St Martin's, he has already had offers to design for major houses in Paris and Milan. Here he reports on this month's Paris couture, a special eye on the catwalks where soon he will loom large. Photographs by Jon Fischer

After Diana, Janet decides it's time for a clear-out

It is a brave woman who follows the trend started by Diana, Princess of Wales in publicly clearing out her overstuffed wardrobe. Few could have imagined that the next contender in this particularly masochistic style challenge would be Yoof TV guru Janet Street-Porter.

Style police; No accounting for taste

Beware the sales. Many bargains belong in the fashion bin, warns James Sherwood

Oh, for the freedom of the begging-bowl

You know beggars? You know what it is about beggars? It's their lack of elegance. They're such losers, such schlumps. All that matted hair, those horrible, deliberate clothes, the filthy dogs on string, the scrawled notices on cardboard like an NHS hospital. If Tony and the Blairenes ("A Song, A Smile and a Nolle Prosequi") ever want to make a real difference to our quality of public life, they might take a break from forming human pyramids in the Cabinet room, and commission Terence Conran to redesign our beggars.

The man behind the Girlies waves goodbye to Channel 4

'The Girlie Show': Criticised by Channel 4's newly appointed chief executive, Michael Jackson

DANCE Tobias Tak Purcell Room, London

Today's tap dancers have a hard act to follow. Our mental template for their art has been drawn by Hollywood musicals that combined rare talent with 25-take celluloid perfection. Ballet dancers have enough trouble competing with rose-coloured memories of Ulanova or Bruhn but at least their films aren't on BBC2 every Saturday afternoon. The unsweaty insouciance of the Hollywood hoofer is impossible to achieve outside the cutting room but the Dutch dancer Tobias Tak comes very close. His stamina and breath control are such that he can happily interrupt a song with a virtuoso tap display then slip back into the verse without missing a beat.

Style police: Cred men don't wear plaid

Kilts went from risque to passe without ever being cool, despite Gaultier's efforts. James Sherwood reports

Sads, mads and le lad

Antoine de Caunes (new beard and all) gets serious about trash with Serena Mackesy

Avante-garde Belgian joins Establishment

The reclusive Belgian designer Martin Margiela was yesterday appointed design director of the luxury French company, Hermes. Rather than going for a name that will feature on tabloid front pages, Hermes have opted for the most avant-garde and experimental of designers, whose label inside his clothes does not even bear his signature. It is nothing but a rectangle of plain white cotton.
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game