Life and Style
 

Waterproofing your wardrobe with practical, yet luxurious, purchases is a wise investment, says Emma Akbareian

<a href="http://blogs.independent.co.uk/independent/2008/10/spending-powe-2.html">Spending power: Pasta Hut, huh?</a>

Pizza Hut is being re-named Pasta Hut to give the business a healthy, modern makeover. Or is it?

Urban Gardener: Yellow fever

It's raining, and I'm perched rather precariously on a wobbly ladder against some scaffolding overlooking a tiny garden in Hither Green in south-east London. Below me, waiting to have their picture taken, my partner's grandchildren Florence, age seven, and Otto, age six, are being extremely patient.

Paperbacks: The Journal of Dora Damage, by Belinda Starling

Vic-Lit gets gets a female-friendly makeover in Belinda Starling's accomplished, and sadly posthumous, debut novel. Set in Lambeth in the 1860s, it follows the fortunes of Dora Damage, her bookbinder husband, Peter, and epileptic daughter, Lucinda.

Governing body to get makeover with Collins' departure

The departure of Dave Collins was not the only parting of the ways announced by UK Athletics yesterday. The former Royal Marine will be leaving the domestic governing body of track and field and so will his job description. The post of performance director is to be replaced by that of head coach. Charles van Commenee, the Dutchman who guided Denise Lewis to Olympic heptathlon gold eight years ago, is the odds-on favourite to fill it. Niels de Vos, the chief executive of UK Athletics, declined to confirm as much yesterday, but an announcement is expected "in the next few weeks". Van Commenee completes his duties as technical director of the Dutch Olympic Committee when the Paralympics close in Beijing on 17 September.

Paperbacks: The End Of Mr Y, by Scarlett Thomas

Even hardcore science-fiction sceptics will find something to enjoy in Scarlett Thomas's novel about time travel to a fourth dimension. Touching on every genre under the sun – from fantasy to transgressive romance – the novel acts as a crash course in Darwin, Derrida and particle physics. Narrator Ariel Manto is a geeky expert on 19th-century thought experiments, drawn to the work of Victorian novelist and mystic, Thomas E Lumas.

Trinny and Susannah slide out of fashion

They were queens of the makeover show, and a generation of women trusted their style advice. So what caused Trinny and Susannah's crowns to slip?

Preview: Hedda, Gate Theatre, London

Carrie Cracknell and Natalie Abrahami haven't been in the job for long, but the artistic directors of the Gate Theatre have been making their mark on its line-up of international drama. Last year's The Sexual Neuroses of Our Parents and I Am Falling were forceful statements of intent. Next on the list is Hedda, Lucy Kirkwood's modern-day makeover of Ibsen's play, in a symbiosis of dance and drama.

Is it time West Side Story got a 21st-century makeover?

This month, 'West Side Story' returns to the London stage in a form unchanged since 1957. Time for a 21st-century makeover? Certainly not, says its original lyricist, Stephen Sondheim...

Album: Blue Blokes 3, Stubble (Fledg'ling)

As members of 3 Mustaphas 3, Ben Mandelson and Lu Edmonds were playing footloose and fancy-free with blended roots music “forgeries” as far back as the Eighties, so the string-band crossovers done in cahoots with folk-blues guitarist Ian Anderson on Stubble should come as no great surprise.

If I Were You, Library Theatre, Manchester

Ever imagined yourself inside your husband's (or wife's) body? No, me neither, but Alan Ayckbourn has a vivid idea of what if must be like to find yourself with the physical attributes of the opposite sex while retaining your own personality.

Ballroom glitz: Designer Helen David has given her historic sitting-room a riotous makeover

This room used to be the ballroom in this late-Georgian house in Highbury, London. The original room has been divided up but it retains that sense of grandeur and it's lovely to have a place where you can picture what might have taken place in centuries past.

Game review: Twisted Metal - Head-on: Extra twisted edition

Originally a PSP title, Twisted Metal: Head-On was one of the handheld console’s best launch titles.

Urban gardener: Designs for living

Three years ago, when the Gardeners' World presenter Joe Swift told me he was about to launch Modular Garden, a design and build company that took its lead from the TV makeover, I remember being slightly pessimistic about its chances. The public had grown weary of people storming into gardens, ripping the guts out of it and cobbling something together on a tight budget and an even tighter time schedule and occasionally (and this is the incredible bit) without the prior consent or approval of the owner. What those poor people had to put up with for our entertainment is no one's business. I mean they're hardly likely to turn round at the pay-off and say, "Bloody hell! What have you done to my garden you bastards?" Joe and I (together with the talented Ann-Marie Powell) worked on such a series on a new housing estate six years ago when the genre was at its peak of popularity. With no clients to deal with and having to build 15 gardens in 15 days, the whole thing was slightly surreal and we still bear the scars from the sound of cheap decking, flimsy screens and blue gnomes being ripped out.

Pope needs makeover, says Franco Zeffirelli

Franco Zeffirelli would like to make over what he called Pope Benedict XVI's "cold" image and his "showy" clothes, an Italian newspaper reported yesterday.

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Jeremy Clarkson
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Ben Little, right, is a Labour supporter while Jonathan Rogers supports the Green Party
general election 2015
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The 91st Hakone Ekiden Qualifier at Showa Kinen Park, Tokyo, 2014
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Life and Style
Former helicopter pilot Major Tim Peake will become the first UK astronaut in space for over 20 years
food + drinkNothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
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Kim Wilde began gardening in the 1990s when she moved to the countryside
peopleThe singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
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Alexis Sanchez celebrates scoring a second for Arsenal against Reading
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An easy-peel potato; Dave Hax has come up with an ingenious method in food preparation
voicesDave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
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Japan's population is projected to fall dramatically in the next 50 years (Wikimedia)
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own