Arts and Entertainment
 

Zoe Pilger reviews feminist artist Sarah Lucas's first major solo exhibition

The 10 best hair straighteners

The last thing anyone needs on a frizzy, bad hair day is a pair of ineffective irons. So here are 10 that won't let your locks down. Just watch your fingers...

The Ten Best Irons

The pressing matter of having a crisp shirt or dress is no laughing matter. Which is why we’ve put all manner of electric irons to the test.

Pieter Vermeersch, Untitled (Blue 0-100%)

Belgian artist Pieter Vermeersch is having a ‘blue period’ if his solo exhibition at London’s Carl Freedman gallery is anything to go by.

The ten best kitchen scales

Whether your preference is retro or ultra-modern, it’s worth finding a stylish way to weigh out your ingredients. We’ve got sets for cooks of all persuasions...

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The ten best children's car seats

Whether you have a baby on board, an energetic toddler or an older child, we find the safest, most comfortable and practical seats for your journey...

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Roger That: phonetic alphabet in pictures

The visual interpretation of the alphabet should be simple enough. What better way to visualise the letter 'a' than by thinking typographically, after all. But three design studios have decided to reinvent the alphabetical wheel by imagining what written letters would look like based on their phonetic versions: Alpha, Bravo, Charlie and so on.

The 10 best home phones

You can make your landline a real talking point, whether you're looking for sleek design and the very latest technology or a touch of retro nostalgia.

The 10 best fridges

The hottest things in cool come in all sizes, from under-counter compacts to huge American-style two-doors. Your choice of shape is more limited...

The 10 best fountain pens

Step away from the keyboard and write a letter in style with a traditional ink pen. From high end to easily affordable, the nicest nibs are right here...

The ten best cutlery sets

Whether you’re after Seventies chic, ergonomic comfort or old-school charm, eat supper in style with the finest knives and forks on the market...

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The ten best children's watches

Whether it’s digital or analogue, a fun watch can help youngsters learn to tell the time. They’ll (probably) never be late for school or swimming again...

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The 10 best Wellington boots

The right wellies can improve everything from gardening to dancing in a field. Buy now for damp spring days, or to save for festival season.

Backstage pass: Behind the scenes at London Fashion Week

The photographer Patrick Lindblom scouts around behind the curtain at the hottest autumn/winter shows...

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Ten best dinner plates

Yes, there’s always a place for plain white flatware, but there are plenty of beautiful decorative pieces too, if you fancy a more glamorous table setting...

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The ten best dog accessories

From transporting a tired terrier in style to making Fido shoulder his share of the load, we take a lead and scoop up the best canine clobber...

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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
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month