News A mad scramble by bargain hunters in one of the capital’s biggest

Up to 118 million visits to UK retail websites estimated to have been made on each of Christmas Day and Boxing Day

Fashion audit: 16/11/09

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This new super-luxe label launched for autumn/winter and has impressed with its range of chic and cool reworked classics. There are silky party dresses with appliqué chiffon detailing to die for, as well as some excellent modern and edgy tailoring. Available from Selfridges. Clemencylondon.com

Carola Long: 'The skinny jean-based silhouette has now reached perfection – provided you get it right

"I get a bit sick of this skinny black uniform," announced Luella Bartley after her candy-coloured spring/summer show in September. She's referring, of course, to the Balmain-meets- Alexander-Wang-meets-French-Vogue editor-look which nine out of 10 fashion lovers prefer: ankle boots, spray-on jeans, boyish T-shirt, long thin cardigan and a leather jacket. It may not be original, and you may look like a bit of a fashion-bot, but some of us aren't at all sick of it because it's so damn easy. That is, those of us who have never quite recovered from the convenience of a school uniform. What some people call a rut, I call a capsule wardrobe.

The Thick of It: Back in the loop

With a general election approaching, the return of Armando Iannucci's invective-filled political satire couldn't be better timed, says Gerard Gilbert

Think small not mall: Ditch contemporary retail and head for the bijou boutique

A purring machine" is Emile Zola's description of the vast, ruthlessly contrived department store at the centre of his 19th-century novel The Ladies' Paradise, which charts the early stages of our now full-blown love affair with shopping.

Smoked salmon with horseradish butter on toast

Serves 4

Observations: Pandas come out of retirement to highlight climate change

Everyone recognises the iconic WWF black and white panda logo, and charity collection boxes that used to sit in post offices and shops. Well, now some will look a lot less familiar, thanks to a group of artists and designers who have transformed 120 of them into works of art for a project called Pandamonium. The pandas, which have been brought out of retirement to highlight the urgent need to address climate change and its impact on people, wildlife and the planet, will be on show in Selfridges windows and around the shop's concept store on Oxford Street from today until the end of October.

August – the perfect time for Christmas shopping

It might be months before the clocks get put back, but that hasn't stopped department stores decking their halls with boughs of holly

Grouse and crispy parsnip salad

Serves 4

The new gold: Lost Malawi to hit the shelves of Waitrose

Tea as your grandparents would have drunk it is on its way to the UK for the first time in over a hundred years. Lost Malawi, a hand-crafted pure black tea, will be on the shelves at Waitrose in November, exported from the first African single-estate tea grower. Henrietta Lovell, a former corporate finance expert, runs the Rare Tea Company which imports the tea from Malawi.

Couple with the Midas touch open new concessions

Annoushka Ducas and John Ayton, the couple who sold Links of London for £50m two years ago, are defying the recession and opening their new jewellery concessions in 11 shops this Wednesday.

Birthday rivalry on the high street

Cath Kidston, Heal’s, OKA and M&S get nostalgic - and cut-throat - over their milestone anniversaries, Annie Deakin reports

Plenty of smashing new talent in store

Some of the art world's biggest names have nominated their favourite rising stars for an exhibition at Selfridges. They tell Charlotte Cripps why they chose them

Frankmusik - Bigger than hype

Vincent Frank, aka Frankmusik, has received plenty of positive press attention already, but he's confident that he doesn't need it. Rob Sharp meets an assured new talent

Letters: Kenyan visa staff

Kenyan visa staff are rude, dismissive and unhelpful
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Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

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Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence