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High-octane glitz for Versace as J-Lo brings the house down

Life and style | The Guardian

The actor’s appearance in ‘That’ dress from 2000 had the crowd in Milan whooping

One of the lesser-known aspects of Versace’s brand mythology is its role in the inception of Google Images.

The story goes like this. In the year 2000 – as fashion scholars will recall – Jennifer Lopez wore a sheer, low-cut green Versace dress to the Grammys. “The whole world wanted to see that dress,” said Donatella Versace at a press conference in Milan on Friday. And so the world surfed the net – as we used to say – but couldn’t find the picture within the mainly text-based system. And lo, Google Images was born.

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September 22nd 2019, 2:40 pm

Five ways to maintain healthy bowels

Life and style | The Guardian

Diet is crucial, but don’t forget to exercise, reduce your stress levels – and go when you need to go

Bowel health is largely determined by the gut microbiome, the vast population of bacteria that live in our intestine. Research suggests a high-fibre diet is crucial for healthy bowels, as these bacteria break down fibre into substances that have anti-inflammatory properties. But diets high in salt, saturated fat and red meat can lead to increased risk of inflammatory diseases. “Specific bacteria have been linked to bowel cancer,” says Prof Philip Quirke of the University of Leeds. “We think that the maintenance of them is probably linked to diet, because you find higher rates of bowel cancer in places with high red meat consumption, and lower levels in areas where diets are based more on high fibre content.”

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September 22nd 2019, 11:06 am

When my husband died, mushroom foraging helped me out of the dark

Life and style | The Guardian

After losing all sense of hope and home, hunting in woodland with other mushroomers got me through my grief

I was a bright-eyed 18-year-old, just one month into an international study exchange in Stavanger in Norway when I met Eiolf. I stood next to him at a party and we spent the whole night talking. It helped that he was one of the few Norwegian students I met who could actually point to my home country of Malaysia on a map. After that night I’d hang around the library hoping to cross his path. Luckily, he had the same idea.

Eiolf was knowledgeable and read a lot, but he also had a goofy sense of humour. He was very kind, too, the sort of person who children and animals gravitate towards. I had assumed that at the end of my exchange I’d go back to Malaysia, but instead I relocated to Norway to be with him; it just felt right. Norway was very different to my homeland, but I settled there and enjoyed a fulfilling career as an anthropologist, while Eiolf became an architect. We were together for 32 years, and I never lost that sense of joy in our relationship. He made me a better version of myself.

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September 22nd 2019, 10:19 am

How to brush your hair to keep it healthy

Life and style | The Guardian

Start from the bottom, brush before washing – and whatever you do, don’t overdo it

Don’t believe the old wives’ tale that brushing your hair with 100 strokes before going to bed keeps it soft and healthy. Too much brushing can irritate your scalp and stress your hair, causing it to break and fall out. I recommend brushing long hair a few times a day, not more.

The same advice applies to using combs: be gentle and, if your hair is long, hold your hair in your hands and comb the ends out first. Whether you are using a brush or a comb, start from the bottom, then brush in sections, working up towards your scalp.

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September 22nd 2019, 10:19 am

How to survive a Twitter storm

Life and style | The Guardian

Tanya Gold published a piece about a plus-size mannequin one Sunday. By Monday morning the internet had gone mad and was out for her blood

It was my fault. Sometimes I write glibly. I make an argument for myself and forget that people read it. It still surprises me, after 20 years of writing, to think that I have readers: that my internal monologue is out and about in the world. I do not think about them. If I did, I couldn’t write anything.

In June, I wrote a piece about Nike’s obese mannequin, which was displayed at the London flagship shop to publicise Nike’s new willingness to sell clothes to overweight women. It makes me laugh now to think I insulted a mannequin – how, on that day in 2019, we came to discuss human rights for mannequins. I said it was a cynical doll from a cynical company that is no friend to women. I said that the normalisation of obesity frightens me, because I can see the outcome of addiction to sugar in myself. I said that the “fat acceptance” movement is an abyss of denial. I said the mannequin was “gargantuan” and “heaving with fat”. I said it might get diabetes – if it had flesh. I said that if it ran, it would ruin its inhuman knees.

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September 22nd 2019, 10:19 am

‘There’s no end and no escape. You feel so, so exposed’: life as a victim of revenge porn

Life and style | The Guardian

This ever-evolving crime rages almost unchecked. Three women talk about the devastating effect it had – and still has – on them

Ruth King (not her real name) can still remember the call coming through on her mobile. She thinks of that moment as “the start of hell”. “It was four years ago, but I remember it clear as day,” she says. “It was my friend warning that there were videos of me everywhere. Her husband worked at a local factory and pornographic videos of me were being shared between all the workers.”

King’s instant response was to vomit. “I was working with my dad – he’s an old-fashioned type of guy, so what could I say? I told him I wasn’t well and went home.” Almost as soon as she got there, another friend, a builder, called to tell her the same videos were being passed around his building site. “He said: ‘I didn’t believe they were of you, Ruth, but I looked and they are.’”

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September 22nd 2019, 9:36 am

Ease the chill by sowing for brighter days | James Wong

Life and style | The Guardian

Poppies, radishes and spring onions – some of the cheerful flowers and veg you can plant now

I am not afraid to admit it. There are some plants that I have a troubled relationship with. While nerines and amaryllis are some of my very favourite garden flowers, for their ability to erupt like pastel pink fireworks from beneath the earth in September, their arrival is also unequivocal confirmation that the dark days of winter are just around the corner. Like that last quick dip in the ocean before catching your flight home from a summer holiday, for me it’s an emotional trigger that the months of sunshine and fun are over and only school and seriousness await.

Fortunately, for us fair-weather gardeners, there are some plants you can spark into life right now, just as almost everything else slips into a slumber, providing you with a constant reminder of new things to come. Here are some of my favourite flower and veg seeds that you can sow in the autumn.

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September 22nd 2019, 6:03 am

Cover up: the 10 best high street coats – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Whether it’s fitted, fringed or faux fur you’re after, look no further than our pick of layers to help you prepare for colder times ahead

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September 22nd 2019, 5:03 am

Beyond borscht: a food tour of Russia

Life and style | The Guardian

There’s much more to Russian cuisine than sour cream, beetroot and dill, as this culinary journey from St Petersburg to Moscow proves

At Taste to Eat, a contemporary restaurant with a distinctly SEO-unfriendly name in St Petersburg, I am about to plunge into a chicken kiev, its heart bursting with garlic. Over the past five days I have eaten hot pyshki doughnuts covered in sugar, scarfed down herring under fur coats, and gobbled barley porridge with blood sausage. I have looked askance at beef wobbling in grey-brown aspic. I’ve tasted mead and pickled mushrooms where you can practically taste the mud on the fingernails of the people who made them. I have had borscht (exceptional) and borscht (execrable) and borscht (middling). In tearing the pizza-like crust of a katchapuri and dipping it in its central egg and molten cheese vat, I have learned the joys of Georgian cuisine. Despite all this, I worry I am no closer to answering the question I set out to answer: what’s Russian food actually like?

This is a culinary immersion into Russia organised by Intrepid, a travel company that likes its visitors to get under the skin of the destination. Clearly it is not without a sense of irony. After all, a Russian culinary tour sounds about as paradoxical as an English weather tour or, I suppose, an English culinary tour.

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September 22nd 2019, 5:03 am

Ethical fashion campaigner Livia Firth: ‘We have turned a corner finally’

Life and style | The Guardian

With the Green Carpet Fashion Awards opening in Milan, the eco pioneer explains why the once-unfashionable concept is a winner

Ethical fashion used to be unfashionable. When Livia Firth launched her consultancy, Eco-Age, a decade ago, she says, “it was something no one was talking about”. During the current round of fashion shows – from Extinction Rebellion’s protests to dresses made from recycled plastic bottles – people have talked about little else.

In the last two months, says Firth, “we have turned a corner finally. It is a beautiful moment, but it is also very dangerous. Fast fashion is the first offender in sustainability and there is greenwashing at a level there has never been before”.

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September 22nd 2019, 4:46 am

Vegan college menus on the rise as students return to university

Life and style | The Guardian

Record numbers of college canteens are going meat-free

University campuses across the country are cutting meat from their canteen and cafe menus under pressure from growing numbers of vegan students and staff.

This year, more university cafeterias than ever are being replaced by exclusively vegan and vegetarian canteens, according to the university caterers’ organisation Tuco, while vegan organisations are reporting big increases in the numbers of activists pushing for meat-free food on campus.

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September 22nd 2019, 4:46 am

Imaginary friends can help grown-ups, as well as children | Eva Wiseman

Life and style | The Guardian

They help us confront our fears when we are young, but as we get older we find other imaginary friends to take their place

Until a year ago we had an invisible lodger in our house named Uncle. My daughter would call him on the phone, elaborate domestic arrangements involving bus routes and placatory hmms – we would prepare for his arrival with tea cups and saucers, the only time such objects found a place in our lives. Uncle was tall and lived in a pink house that was “very thin”, and it was always a schlep for him to visit, and he often got lost. Still, though, he managed to join us on holiday, and to come to our parents’ houses, and to the park, despite his many phobias. Until one day, he was forgotten – any mention to my daughter of her imaginary friend was met with a scrunched sort of embarrassment. For us.

It is no tragedy that a child’s imaginary friend dissolves with age. They fade into the pre-school fog when real friends, by which I mean children, by which I mean small people who cry about breakfast and teach each other how to draw hands, take priority. But it is being reported as a tragedy that imaginary friends are dissolving altogether. In 2004, it was estimated that by the age of seven, 65% of children had an imaginary friend. Last month a study of nursery workers revealed that 72% believed children have fewer imaginary friends than they did five years ago, blaming, guess, correct, screens. Screens, those imagination leeches, those glass sponges of boredom and self – there are few things adults fear and lust over in equal measure as much as the phone screen. Perhaps Beyoncé, or bread.

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September 22nd 2019, 4:03 am

The little chap is in no rush to walk… which is no bad thing | Séamas O’Reilly

Life and style | The Guardian

We’re happy to put off the end of our son’s babyhood – not least because our home is mined with pitfalls

A year ago I wrote about Just You Waits, those parents who answer any comment you make about your current difficulties by saying ‘just you wait’ and referencing some other, greater trial down the road.

You’d think writing this was a risky gambit. I was effectively calling out friends, family and acquaintances in a national newspaper column that they all (say they) read. What you’re missing is that the mind is extremely adept at self-delusion and not one of the Just You Waits I was thinking of recognised themselves in that piece. They’d all read it, of course, and most thought it was just priceless. One old work pal texted to say he knew exactly the kind of person I meant, not realising I was literally picturing his own tilted, smirking face while writing the thing. (Later he was telling me not to worry about sleep training, because teething would be the real nightmare.)

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September 22nd 2019, 4:03 am

Fancy footwork: the 10 best high street boots and shoes – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

From heels to trainers, cowboy boots to snakeprint: step out in the season’s finest footwear

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September 22nd 2019, 3:15 am

False lashes are more fun if you paint them on | Funmi Fetto

Life and style | The Guardian

Scrawled spider legs on the lower lash line and skin soothing treatment. Plus, this week’s best buys

These avant-garde rock’n’roll lashes (as seen at Dior AW19) look like falsies. They are, but they’re the hand-drawn type. Which is kind of fun. Start with an eye primer – it creates a velvety canvas. Post priming, makeup artist Peter Philips covered the entire upper lid with an intense inky black liner (go hard or go home and all that), scrawled spider legs along the lower lash line and finished with lashings of everything-proof mascara. That’s it. Actually it’s not. You’ll also need a steady hand.

1. Anastasia Beverly Hills Eyeliner, £21, beautybay.com
2. Revlon So Fierce Vinyl Eyeliner, £6.99, lookfantastic.com
3. Shiseido Kajal InkArtist, £22, shiseido.com
4. Dior’s Waterproof Eyeliner Crayon in Noir Trinidad, £22, dior.com
5. Stila Magnum XXX Mascara, £19, stila.co.uk

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September 22nd 2019, 1:12 am

Olsen Cycles preview: ‘A bike that will thrive in winter’ | Martin Love

Life and style | The Guardian

Mud holds no fear for Olsen. These are mountain bikes built to cope with the foulest weather

Olsen Cycles
Price
frames from £1,700, olsenbicycles.com

During a heroic one-day attempt to cycle the length of the beautiful South Downs Way between Winchester, the first capital of England, and the white cliffs of Eastbourne, Steve Olsen had a eureka moment. As he hacked along the slippery chalk trail, he decided to create a lightweight, all-adventure bike that would put foul-weather capability first. His thinking was that a bike that ‘thrives in winter will survive summer, however a bike that thrives in summer will die in winter’. The main zone of conflict between an off-roader and a pool of gloopy mud, is the gear mechanism. The sprockets get clogged with dirt and grime. For this reason, rather than fitting exposed traditional derailleurs, he chose to fit enclosed, reliable, weather-beating Pinion gearboxes linked to super-durable Gates Carbondrive CDX belts. His early bike models were named after some of his favourite pubs from along the South Downs Way – the Lamb, the Ram and the Swan. Since then he has created three new models with differing geometry to suit the style of riding you do, with rather less poetic names – the N1, N2 and N3. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still stop for a few pints.

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September 22nd 2019, 1:12 am

Lagom at Hackney Church Brew Co: ‘Dishes throbbing with flavour’ – restaurant review

Life and style | The Guardian

Searingly good food, flames and fair prices at an east London brewery make one old man very happy

Lagom at Hackney Church Brew Co, 16-17 Bohemia Place, London E8 1DU (020 8986 2643). Small plates £1.50-£8, large plates £9-£29 (for whole chicken), wines from £25, beers around £5 a pint

Down a shadowed road an old man shambles. He’s wearing a secondhand pinstripe jacket and sensible shoes with cushioned soles. Pools of buttercup-yellow light spread from reconditioned railway arches, illuminating the uncreased faces of the Friday-night crew outside, bottles of the finest local microbrew in hand. Music booms. There’s a cavernous bar gilded in red neon with the legend Night Tales. Broad-shouldered bouncers stand sentry, thumbing their phones. The old man shuffles past, aware it’s not for him.

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September 22nd 2019, 1:12 am

Our relationship is perfect – except we don’t have sex | Dear Mariella

Life and style | The Guardian

Don’t compromise on such a vital element of a committed relationship, says Mariella Frostrup

The dilemma I’ve been with my boyfriend for a year and it’s been near perfect, if not for the fact we don’t have sex. It dwindled after three months and I attempted to initiate it – even though it’s not really my character – to no avail. Now it’s not only barely existent but unenjoyable for me as he feels obliged to do it. I’ve always had a high sex drive and at the moment it’s all I think about. I really care about him and feel this is the man I could marry and have children with – he’s voiced several times that this is what he wants, too. I’ve brought the issue up no less than five times now and each time he either changes the subject or blames stress at work. The problem is, he wants me to move in with him, so this has well and truly come to a head. I need to make him see that this is a huge issue for me. I would have considered moving in and seeing how it went, but we don’t live close so this will be a big upheaval. How do I tactfully broach the subject?

Mariella replies Is there a tactful way to say, “Over my dead body?” You have to ask yourself an important question: why would an intelligent, functional, rational, human being expect you to opt for a sexless future with a person who can’t even communicate why they’re unable to engage with you physically?

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September 22nd 2019, 1:12 am

Sunday with Jason Atherton: ‘It’s all about rest, relaxation and ice-cream’

Life and style | The Guardian

The chef on taking it easy, the best bacon butties and why he loves fresh bed linen

Do you set an alarm? No need, I wake up at every day at 7am like clockwork whether I want to or not. After 34 years of cooking that’s set in stone. I hanker for my teenage days when I could sleep forever.

A routine? I make a coffee, then spend 20 minutes checking the restaurant logs from Saturday night. I get it out the way, else my wife goes nuts. Then it’s time for a run across Wandsworth and Clapham Commons come rain or shine.

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September 22nd 2019, 1:12 am

Nigel Slater’s chicken tarragon crumble and plum crumble recipes

Life and style | The Guardian

Crumbly crusts add the perfect topping to the juiciest fillings

As much as I like a pastry-topped pie, I also like a crisper, lighter and more crumbly crust to contrast with a soft and creamy filling. Which is what happened this week when we set out to make chicken and tarragon pie. There was bread to use up, as there so often is. So the bread went into the food processor to become soft, fresh crumbs and the butter we could have used to turn crumbs into crust was replaced with the golden, roasted skin from the chicken, cooked crisp and then finely chopped. The filling, protected by the layer of savoury crumbs, was a mixture of roast chicken, tarragon and cream. There were smiles all round.

There was a sweet crumble, too. Particularly juicy fruit often does better with a single crust. A bottom layer of pastry is rarely anything but soggy when your filling is plums or damsons, fruit that seems to produce gallons of sweet-sour purple juice.

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September 22nd 2019, 1:12 am

The edit... Flat shoes for the new season

Life and style | The Guardian

Snake print or metallic, high-cut or ballerina... Come down to ground level with this pick of flat-soled slippers, loafers, and slingbacks

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September 21st 2019, 7:27 pm

Zandra Rhodes: ‘Fashion deserves credit. It takes as much effort as a painting'

Life and style | The Guardian

As a show celebrate 50 years of her work, the designer talks about the inspiration of Pucci and the joys of ice-cream and jam

Zandra Rhodes was born in 1940 in Chatham, Kent, where her mother taught at the local art college and her father drove a taxi. After studying printed textile design at the Royal College of Art, she opened her first fashion shop in London’s Fulham Road in 1967. Her debut collection featured in American Vogue, modelled by the actress Natalie Wood, and she quickly became one of the most fashionable designers of the 70s and 80s, with everyone from Princess Diana to Freddie Mercury wearing her clothes. She continues to be a major influence in fashion, seeing her designs and prints revived by fashion labels such as Valentino, Dior and Fendi in recent years. A retrospective of her work opens later this month at the Fashion and Textile museum in London.

What was it like to put together a retrospective of your work?
You mean while I’m still alive? Ha. Well, 50 years is a good number to mark. I found it particularly interesting looking at photos of my fashion shows from the 80s. I was the first to do big, dramatic productions and looking back now, I think: “My God, how did I do that?”

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September 21st 2019, 12:24 pm

Artist in residence: North Yorkshire’s Lebberson Hall reimagined

Life and style | The Guardian

Renovating a 19th-century home rekindled Shirley Vauvelle’s creative vision

The artist Shirley Vauvelle lives a mile from the coast between Scarborough and Filey in North Yorkshire. Before she starts work in her home studio, she takes a daily swim in the sea, scouring the shoreline for driftwood as she leaves the water. “I’ve always collected found things, such as shells and pebbles,” she says, “but I’m particularly drawn to weathered wood. I love finding pieces and bringing them home.”

Home for Vauvelle is the 19th-century Lebberston Hall. She and her husband had been looking for a renovation project for two years when their estate agent persuaded them to view the house, which was lived in by an elderly woman. “She was like something out of an Enid Blyton novel,” Vauvelle recalls. “The house hadn’t been touched since the 1970s. It was a pretty ugly building really: Victoriana-heavy, with two horses in the paddock.” What convinced them was the potential to renovate the existing garages and outbuildings and, curiously, a mature horse chestnut tree. “It is in such a beautiful position,” Vauvelle says. “It seems to ground the whole building. When I saw it, I could really start to imagine living here.”

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September 21st 2019, 11:24 am

Yotam Ottolenghi’s potato recipes

Life and style | The Guardian

The ever-popular potato, magicked into a spicy chaat masala, a creamy gratin and a no-fuss tray of oven chips – but with lime salt and a cardamom mayo

My Google search for Britain’s most popular vegetable didn’t even list potatoes in the top 10 (!), while broccoli, sweetcorn and brussels sprouts were nestled, smugly, in first, second and seventh place, respectively.

Whoever conducted that survey must have eliminated the spud on the grounds of unfair advantage (seriously, who doesn’t love potatoes?) or on account of it not qualifying as one of your five a day (though it’s definitely one of mine).

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September 21st 2019, 9:34 am

Chloë Sevigny: ‘Make lists after break-ups or have a passionate fling

Life and style | The Guardian

The actor, 44, talks about Bernie Sanders, sex and intimacy, environmental catastrophe and speeding in New York

I come off cold or unapproachable, when in fact I’m just insecure. I’m hypercritical of how I look, how I act, how I come across in interviews. Every new year I make the same resolution: be kinder to yourself. I try to stay positive, but it never lasts. I’ve been in therapy for a couple of years now, and I don’t look at photos of me, or read what people say.

My mum made sure I always felt powerful. My parents were loving, encouraging my brother and me in everything we did – whether that was pursuing performing after seeing Annie on Broadway aged five, or spending hours rolling around in the front yard. By my teenage years I’d grown despondent, I was ready to leave the small town I grew up in earlier than I could.

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September 21st 2019, 9:20 am

Creamy, untreated and in a glass bottle: Britain gets a taste for old-fashioned milk

Life and style | The Guardian

Dairy farmers cash in on a growing trend to replace both homogenisation and plastic with a revival of the traditional ways

“When the milk price crashed five years ago, we were in a bad way,” says Bryce Cunningham, a third-generation farmer running Mossgiel farm in Ayrshire. “Fifty, sixty years ago, you could make a living on a dairy farm; now you’re expected to just survive. So I thought, ‘If we did it the way they did it before, could we survive?’”

The farm sits on the land that Robert Burns farmed in the 1700s. “Farming the land that he worked, could we recreate the milk that he drank?”

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September 21st 2019, 7:20 am

From Beyoncé covers to indie shoots: the new generation of black fashion photographers

Life and style | The Guardian

Why Tyler Mitchell, Nadine Ijewere and others are shaking up the industry

Tyler Mitchell was only 23 when he was invited to photograph Beyoncé for American Vogue’s September 2018 issue. In one of the two covers, she smoulders at the camera, wearing barely-there makeup and balancing a halo of colourful flowers on her head. In the other, she stands outside in an Alexander McQueen tiered dress with pan-African coloured lace, lifting white material above her natural braided hair. There is a raw beauty to both, casting the almost superhuman pop star in an unusually intimate light. But that wasn’t the only noteworthy thing about the pictures: Mitchell had made history, as the first African American photographer to shoot a Vogue cover.

A few months later, Nadine Ijewere became the first black woman to reach a similar milestone, when she shot the singer Dua Lipa in a Gucci gown for the January 2019 issue of Edward Enninful’s British Vogue. Both covers were widely celebrated as landmark moments, but Mitchell is quick to level an awkward question at the media gatekeepers: “Why did it happen so late? If it were up to me, it would have happened earlier,” he tells me on the phone from New York.

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September 21st 2019, 6:16 am

Top of the tops: the 10 best high street jumpers and blouses – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Power, pyjama, polo, pink: take your pick for the perfect autumn look

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September 21st 2019, 5:47 am

And breathe ... Gurus extol the virtues of conscious respiration

Life and style | The Guardian

Devotees say the practice helps address anxiety, addiction, stress and other health issues.

It can be difficult to catch your breath in fast-paced societies, awash with unhealthy food and ridden by pollution.

So it’s no wonder an increasing number of people are attending conscious breathing workshops, where you repetitively inhale and exhale deeply for up to 90 minutes to help address anxiety, addiction, stress and a whole host of health problems.

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September 21st 2019, 5:00 am

How we live together: the separated couple who share a home

Life and style | The Guardian

At first we tried being polyamorous, but that didn’t work

Gemma Payne, 37

We got together 10 years ago, but after five years decided we didn’t want to continue our romantic relationship. We still share a house, though, for financial reasons and because we wanted to bring up our daughter (now six) together.

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September 21st 2019, 5:00 am

Sir Bradley Wiggins: ‘My most embarrassing moment? Post 2012, I had a few hissy fits’

Life and style | The Guardian

The cyclist on the birth of his daughter, his estranged father, and former heavyweight boxer Mike Tyson

Born in Belgium, Bradley Wiggins, 39, grew up in London. He became a junior world champion in 1998 and won Olympic bronze in 2000. In 2012, he was the first Briton to win the Tour de France and took his fourth Olympic gold medal in the time trial in London. He was knighted the following year. In 2016, he won gold in Rio, becoming Britain’s most decorated Olympian, and announced retirement. He is touring the UK with his show, Bradley Wiggins: An Evening With, until 6 October.

When were you happiest?
When my second child Bella was born in 2006. I missed my son Ben being born because I was racing, so seeing it for the first time was quite an experience.

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September 21st 2019, 5:00 am

Tim Dowling: how long does it take to be broken by a 4.50am alarm?

Life and style | The Guardian

I trudge down the stairs and back up again, but I can’t go back to sleep

Just before we moved into our house, I was given a quick demonstration of the existing alarm system. I paid almost no attention. I will leave it alone, I thought, and it will leave me alone.

Two years later, the alarm remains off, or mostly off; the panel in the hall has a yellow light that blinks 24 hours a day. Sometimes when it’s very dark its pulse can be felt through the whole house – a faint reflection glancing off walls, reaching up the stairs. I hardly notice it any more.

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September 21st 2019, 4:30 am

A letter to… my stepdad, who stepped up

Life and style | The Guardian

‘You did something you probably don’t remember, but to me was so kind and so big, I’ll never forget’: the letter you always wanted to write

I remember the very first time I met you, I wanted to hate you. You stole my mum away from my dad – at least that’s what I believed at 10 years old. I was wrong, but I wouldn’t learn for a while that someone cannot steal anyone else’s affection; they choose to go. I couldn’t hate you, though: you were kind to us; you made my mum smile like I’d never seen; and you let us have whatever pudding we wanted.

You had ended up with three pre-teens you’d never asked for, and over the years we have been difficult. But you took it in your stride. You never once asked us to call you Dad, never asked us to love you. But it was inevitable, you were important. Are important.

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September 21st 2019, 4:30 am

Today’s demisexual kids are swimming against the tide of hookup culture. Good luck to them

Life and style | The Guardian

Our sexual landscape is a puzzling one and these brave Luddites are excusing themselves from it

If you’re of an age to remember LGB marches and felt perplexed when the T and the Q folk joined the throng, but are now up to speed, I bring you news of another letter. D, for demisexuality. Or D for, “Duh, well, of course demisexuality, you antique,” because in the main, it seems to be teens and twentysomethings doing it. Or more accurately, not doing it unless they really want to.

Demisexuality means – loosely speaking, since capturing any sexuality in a neat definition is like herding cats – being only sexually attracted to people you already know. Hookup culture leaves demisexuals bewildered. For them, blind lust for strangers on dating apps or in the street does not often, or ever, occur. They need friendship first, before sexual feelings awaken.

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September 21st 2019, 4:30 am

Blind date: ‘We hadn’t finished the main course before he asked for my number’

Life and style | The Guardian

Bud, 23, communications assistant meets Georgia, 28, doctor

What were you hoping for?
A night out with someone exciting.

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September 21st 2019, 4:30 am

Romesh Ranganathan: My kids loved Lil Dicky’s Earth – but not for the reasons I hoped

Life and style | The Guardian

It turns out I hadn’t listened to the words properly

A rapper by the name of Lil Dicky recently went stratospheric with the release of Earth, a song featuring pop royalty singing as different flora and fauna to celebrate our wonderful planet – yet another attempt to convince people to change their behaviour, when I think we all know it’s over.

I heard the song in the background somewhere, and decided that this was going to be a song I would introduce to my kids. Every now and again, as part of my continuing effort to convert my children to the joys of hip-hop, I will ask Alexa (other in-house robot spies are available) to play them a song. I am careful to use the clean versions, as my wife doesn’t want them listening to swearing. Normally what happens is this: one of the boys asks Alexa to stop, tells me the song I have chosen sucks, and then asks Alexa to play something else, like George Ezra or anything from the Lego Movie 2 soundtrack. So far I’ve managed to put them off Wu-Tang Clan, Kendrick Lamar, J Cole, Anderson .Paak and many others.

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September 21st 2019, 4:30 am

Feel good: the 10 best high street jumpsuits and dresses – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

From olive to orange, buttoned to belted, jump feet first into these garments and you’ll be one step ahead for autumn

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September 21st 2019, 4:30 am

Vogue's Edward Enninful: ‘Was the criticism of Meghan Markle racist? Some of it, yes’

Life and style | The Guardian

The editor on his collaboration with Markle, the culture war that followed – and proving his critics wrong

If you have ever wondered how it feels to have your magazine guest-edited by the world’s most-watched royal, here is a rough guide. Travel to Kensington Palace alone, in secret, many months before publication. Agree a plan over mint tea. Assign said royal a code name, known only to your innermost circle, and distract the rest of your staff by having them work on a completely different issue. (This may be used later, or even written off as a loss leader; it’s a price worth paying for the impact the project will have.)

For Edward Enninful, who morphed from Vogue editor to covert agent when the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, expressed an interest in guest-editing his magazine, the deception was the hardest part. “Every single day we were having secret meetings in my office,” Enninful tells me, speaking on the phone a fortnight after the magazine reached newsstands. “We were just grateful for each day that went by without a leak.”

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September 21st 2019, 4:15 am

This season’s best hair trends | Sali Hughes

Life and style | The Guardian

Chic hair tricks to steal from the catwalks

There was a time when buying fancy hair accessories was a sign that I was on day 26 of my cycle and shouldn’t be let loose with any more than small change. Now I wonder where I put all the bands, clamps, clips and slides. At Chanel, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana and more, models wore diamante snowflakes, slides and starbursts studded into the base of ponytails, around messy buns and pinning back waves. I am irresistibly drawn to the less flashy costume pearl hairwear at Simone Rocha and Shrimps (alice bands notwithstanding – am I alone in finding them painful?). Pearls are extremely flattering near skin, and I like their contradictory demure/camp associations. The act of putting them on hair accessories instead of a three-strand necklace makes them more fun, so I recommend you snap up those I recently got in Zara (from just £4.95 for two, though I bought five – I am as God made me).

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September 21st 2019, 3:30 am

'Mum would have wanted me to have these clothes': how I shopped my way through grief

Life and style | The Guardian

We had always shared the fun of fashion. Now she was dying, I found comfort in silk blouses and glitter platforms

As my mother lay dying on a hospital bed, I went shopping. After long days at her bedside, doing my best to buoy her spirits, helping her sip water from a cup because she was too weak to hold it, after almost daily round-trips from home by rail to that hospital in my old stomping grounds, my shopping urges became fairly frequent. As the toll of her illness and slow painful death overwhelmed me, I shopped, then some more, and then some.

Neither of us knew she was dying at first. My mother was tired and ready, she often told me, to shuffle off at 84. Her body was a bit of a wreck but her brain still worked; she still cared about the cryptic crossword and the state of the Labour party. It encouraged me to hear of her antics during the morning medical catch-ups, and so her death just didn’t fit into my picture, even when a bumbling junior doctor took me aside to tell me she was very ill indeed.

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September 21st 2019, 1:13 am

Strap in: the 10 best high street bags – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

From backpack to bucket, padded to patterned: there are bags to suit all tastes this season

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September 21st 2019, 1:13 am

‘Don't dress like Ally McBeal’: the new rules of women’s workwear

Life and style | The Guardian

Office culture has changed but no one has a clue about the dress code. Here’s your 2019 update

Looking back, the late 20th century looks like an enviably straightforward place to live. There’s probably a touch of rose-tinted hindsight here, I suppose (imagine having to get around using only paper maps, and eating iceberg lettuce in every salad) but at least you knew where you were.

Work, for instance. Work had a fixed geographical location and a time window. Work was desks and staplers and telephones and fountain pens. You had to spend all your time sitting still at the desk, so that the people at your work knew you were at work, and so that other people in their other workplaces could phone you, on the phone that didn’t move from your desk. And so you knew what to wear. A pencil skirt and court shoes were perfect when your longest journey was walking to the kettle point and back. There was little pressure to “refresh your work look” when your office surroundings, from colleagues to pot plants, remained largely the same from year to year.

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September 20th 2019, 8:19 am

Leg it: the 10 best high street skirts – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Midi or maxi, zebra or snake: skirts come in all shapes and sizes this season

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September 20th 2019, 8:19 am

My life in sex: ‘My partner’s lover visits our place once or twice a week’

Life and style | The Guardian

The monogamous man in a three-way relationship

My partner and I have been very much in love for about seven years. Early on, she told me about a man she had met briefly, years earlier, to whom she felt a sexual attraction unlike anything she had experienced before. Nothing happened, so it stayed an unexplored fantasy.

A year ago they met again by chance, and the chemistry was (she explained) instantly electric. We had a frank discussion about her desire for him, which resulted in her taking him to bed one afternoon for what she described as the best orgasm she had ever experienced. This was followed by weekly lunchtime sex (at my apartment in London).

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September 20th 2019, 5:31 am

Experience: I cured my own mystery disease

Life and style | The Guardian

The surgery had been performed on rats and dogs, but never on humans. I reasoned it could be scaled up

Twenty years ago, on the first day of my final year studying biology at university in Missouri, I collapsed. My heart was racing, I was dizzy, disoriented and weak. I was 21 and had been feeling unwell over the summer;doctors thought it might be glandular fever, but this was much worse. When I didn’t improve, I was sure I had succumbed to the same mysterious, chronic illness that had crippled my mother since I was a child.

We were both in tears when I rang to say I was dropping out and coming home to St Louis. Bed-bound 22 hours a day, we supported each other, while friends helped with shopping. I had spent my life watching specialists fail to diagnose my mother, and now the same was happening to me: no condition they could think of explained our symptoms. Months, then years, slipped away as friends moved on with their lives, leaving me isolated and heartbroken. I realised that if I wanted a diagnosis, I’d have to find it myself.

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September 20th 2019, 5:31 am

I’ll pay it forward (except to the grifter who conned me) | Hannah Jane Parkinson

Life and style | The Guardian

Good deeds take very little, but I truly believe the whole world would collapse without these acts of kindness

A little while ago, I was sitting in a cafe, reading, when an elderly lady approached me. “Excuse me,” she asked. “Would you be able to help me with my shopping?”

I beamed. Of course I would be able to help her with her shopping! Let’s get this shopping-helping show on the road, I wanted to shout. For I am an excellent person and enthusiastic assistant to those in need. Unfortunately, it turned out she didn’t mean shopping as a metonym for shopping bags, but shopping as in the verb. She had not yet been to the shop. This was not me lifting two Lidl bags and carrying them to the bus stop, as I had envisioned; this was me going to Lidl.

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September 20th 2019, 2:31 am

The new workwear: 10 key pieces for 2019 – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

These are all you need to build your autumn 9-5 wardrobe

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September 20th 2019, 2:31 am

From circular hairstyles to shrinking sliders: this week’s fashion trends

Life and style | The Guardian

What’s hot and what’s not in fashion this week

Fabric metamorphoses First tulle, now gingham, which Vogue says is “full of sassy promise”.

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September 20th 2019, 2:31 am

Disco delights: the best new makeup for nights out – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Glitzy eyeliner, luxe lip gloss and eyeshadow made to be worn on a dancefloor – our beauty editor’s pick of this season’s nocturnal makeup

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September 20th 2019, 1:29 am

Street smart: the season's key trends – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

From the grey suit to checks, from the mega dress to leather, take inspiration from the latest looks

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September 20th 2019, 1:29 am

Daniel Lee's Bottega Veneta show exudes quiet confidence

Life and style | The Guardian

The British designer’s SS20 range makes it clear he has got the measure of his customers

If the weight of being the most hyped designer of the moment has gone to his head, Bottega Veneta’s creative director, Daniel Lee, wasn’t showing it at his spring/summer 2020 show at Milan fashion week.

It has been seven months since the British designer made his debut for the Italian house to huge critical acclaim in February. Before his arrival, the house had been helmed by Tomas Maier for 17 years and had built a strong identity for reliable, if safe, luxury. It was a rule book that Lee respected but rewrote with his first collection. The fashion industry raced to be the first to shoot it, Instagram blew up with adoration for it and waiting lists amassed before product hit the shop floor.

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September 19th 2019, 6:07 pm

Max Mara seeks secret service aesthetic at Milan fashion week

Life and style | The Guardian

Fendi also reconfigures range with nostalgic look, while Missoni supplies some fun

News that the next 007 is reportedly female has reached Max Mara HQ in Milan. At the Italian brand’s spring/summer 2020 show on Thursday, spy style was the main thread in a collection that cast 1960s secret service agent Modesty Blaise as its undercover protagonist.

The creative director Ian Griffiths kitted his statuesque army of operatives out in precision-pressed military-style shirts, worn with skinny ties and strict pencil skirts with practical pocket belts (only space for a baby magnifying glass in there). The colour palette was decidedly incognito too, with military greys and Daz-bright white punctuated only with occasional spats of pastel.

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September 19th 2019, 12:15 pm

Maids of honour: could I crack Bake Off’s first ‘impossible’ challenge?

Life and style | The Guardian

This week, contestants on the Channel 4 show all failed to make a decent curd tart – the first time everyone has flunked the technical. One armchair baker sees if she can better them

As an inveterate armchair baker, who laughs knowingly as raw dough gets the Paul Hollywood finger or unset fillings ooze, I watched enthusiastically as every single contestant failed the technical challenge in the latest episode of The Great British Bake Off. Hollywood described the efforts to make maids of honour – a kind of curd-filled tart – as “awful”. But how would I get on when I gave this recipe – beloved of Henry VIII – a try?

I begin by boiling milk then adding vinegar: everyone’s favourite way to start a dessert. This lumpy horror should be separated using a muslin cloth. Obviously, I don’t have any muslins: it’s not the 1890s. I use a grubby cloth that came with a pot of cleanser. Perhaps any essential oils will enhance the flavour? The face cloth is definitively too small to hold 200g of hot, separated vinegar milk, but I catch it with a sieve.

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September 19th 2019, 12:03 pm

Women, looking unapproachable could be your greatest asset | Yomi Adegoke

Life and style | The Guardian

Meeting the world with a ‘resting bitch face’ may not be what society demands, but it protects you against unsolicited male attention in public

With girls as young as 13 years old now opting for Botox, it is clear that ageing is no longer the only thing women are trying to ward off. An article in the New York Post has noted a rise in women seeking plastic surgery to “fix” their so-called “resting bitch face”. This is a women-only affliction, where, even when wearing a neutral expression, you appear perpetually standoffish. In reality, it refers to any time that a woman’s facial expression is set in anything less than a smile.

According to one doctor quoted in the piece, the number of requests for the procedure have more than doubled in the past year. This isn’t exactly shocking – women are made to feel bad about just about everything in terms of their appearance – but to me it seems many of these women are getting rid of something that is actually a great asset.

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September 19th 2019, 11:03 am

‘Okra is the most foul thing ever grown’: chefs on their most hated ingredients

Life and style | The Guardian

From ‘horrible’ coconut to ‘stomach-turning’ turbot, top chefs reveal the foods they can’t stand

It is common to hear chefs wax lyrical about ingredients they adore. We hear far less about those that are a pain to prep, a nightmare to cook with or difficult to arrange on the plate. To put that right, G2 spoke to a variety of chefs who talked of soapy herbs, dangerous shellfish and the ingredients they have come to hate.

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September 19th 2019, 11:03 am

Life goals: how three women made their money work

Life and style | The Guardian

Putting money aside can be difficult. But with a bit of careful planning, you can pull it off. We spoke to three people who did exactly that

Putting money aside – whether it’s for short-term goals or major life changes – can be difficult. There’s the unappealing prospect of forgoing stuff, toning down your social life, or taking on a side hustle. But with a bit of careful planning, and a clear goal to motivate you, you can pull it off. We spoke to three people who did exactly that.

How to save for a mortgage in your 20s
Local newspaper journalist and blogger Sarah Howells decided in 2012 that she wanted to get on the property ladder before her 30th birthday – in May 2019. “My friends were all buying houses and it felt like the right move,” she says. Sarah’s original goal was to raise 10% of the price of a house in her area as a deposit – at the time around £15,000. But with a competitive housing market, she eventually had to add an extra £5,000 to her target. “I’ve managed to hit £20,000 in seven years, which I reckon isn’t too bad going,” she says.

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September 19th 2019, 8:31 am

'I’m tired and desperate' – a disabled victim of domestic violence on her struggle to survive

Life and style | The Guardian

Disabled women are at higher risk of domestic violence than others, so why are there so few accessible refuges? As Sarah’s story shows, they are faced with an impossible system

To survive in the refuge, Sarah (not her real name) stores fruit and cereal bars to eat in her room. When we first talk in March, she has been there for a month after leaving her abusive husband. She had been sofa surfing with friends and family for a week while waiting for a place.

This is standard nowadays – research by Women’s Aid in 2017 found that 60% of referrals to refuges were declined, meaning that women escape abusive homes only to be turned away due to lack of space. But because Sarah is a disabled abuse victim, with several physical illnesses that leave her struggling to walk, as well as mental health problems, she at least got high priority.

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September 19th 2019, 6:26 am

The war on (unwanted) dick pics has begun

Life and style | The Guardian

A web developer asked men to send her pictures of their genitals in order to build a filter that ‘recognises’ a penis and blurs it. Which raises the question: why haven’t tech companies taken this on yet?

Earlier this month, after waking up to find an unwelcome dick pic in her Twitter account’s DMs, web developer Kelsey Bressler, 28, co-created an AI filter she claims is capable of preventing over 95% of sexually explicit images from reaching her inbox.

To test the filter, Bressler solicited pictures of male genitalia en masse, receiving hundreds to the trial account @ShowYoDiq, “for science”.

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September 19th 2019, 6:26 am

Field of dreams: AW19 accessories as seen on scarecrows – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Make hay while the sun shines. A dream lineup of shoes, bags, hats and boots go wild in the country

Read more from the autumn/winter 2019 edition of The Fashion, our biannual fashion supplement

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September 19th 2019, 4:14 am

French fancy: Parisienne chic from the city of lights – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Tweed skirts and proper blouses. Take a tip from across the pond: a little bit je ne sais quoi will make you stand out from the crowd this autumn

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September 19th 2019, 3:26 am

Off duty: 2019's best casual clothes for men – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Whether weekends mean walks or watching films, our menswear editor sources the items that will ensure you’re relaxing in style

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September 19th 2019, 1:25 am

Smoke on the water: Sweden’s first Foodstock festival

Life and style | The Guardian

A top Swedish chef has turned his love for cooking over fire into a two-day festival of open flames and Nordic flavours on a pretty island in the Stockholm archipelago

We were only a few minutes into our boat trip across the Stockholm archipelago when we began to smell the smoke. In the distance was Stora (or Great) Fjäderholmarna, the largest of the four “Feather Islands”, east of the city. Small ships had been shuttling back and forth from its harbour all morning.

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September 18th 2019, 12:32 pm

How to make summer pudding – recipe | Felicity Cloake

Life and style | The Guardian

Snap up bargain berries and snaffle the last of the crop from the hedgerows and make this seasonal filling, fruity classic

Summer pudding is an old-fashioned and peculiarly British pleasure – a solid lump of stodge designed to be enjoyed when our berries are at their world-class peak. Well chilled, however, it’s surprisingly refreshing stuff, and refreshingly thrifty as well – the perfect home for that stale loaf and those over-ripe berries going cheap at the market.

Prep 15 min
Chill 4 hr-plus
Serves 6

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September 18th 2019, 12:32 pm

'Missing out is not a worry for me': the millennial foster carers

Life and style | The Guardian

More and more people in their 20s and early 30s are becoming foster carers. Here, younger Guardian readers explain why

Growing up in a fostering family, Natalie Wainwright always planned to become a foster parent. But she didn’t think she’d be doing it in her 20s.

Wainwright, who lives in Sussex, is at 23 one of the UK’s youngest foster carers – well below the average age of 45 to 54. After working full-time as a teacher for a year, she chose to go part-time, believing she could have more of an impact as a foster carer as she felt drawn towards looking after vulnerable children.

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September 18th 2019, 12:32 pm

'Can't I just say it's tasty?' Why food critics go too far

Life and style | The Guardian

It’s easy to write beautifully if you can work yourself into a frenzy of love or loathing. Unfortunately, most meals are just quite pleasant

I was a restaurant reviewer for 10 years, and then I was let go, as they say. I expected to be distraught because I would miss the money, and also the food. Instead, it was an incredible relief. Reviewing food is fine when you hate a lot of things; it is fine when you stand ready and willing to do an elaborate and caustic hit job on an orange sorbet because you have been either absolutely loving or completely hating relatively benign things since you could talk. It is fine when you have quite a dedicated moral architecture of taste, when you admire good food so much that you can summon real dismay at even its very slight inferior. The problem is not that you run out of words for the best of it, nor that you take no demonic enjoyment from having unearthed the worst.

The problem is the smörgåsbord of food that is just tasty. It’s not an angel dancing on your tongue; it didn’t crack open your understanding of what a vegetable should be, or its meaning in the universe; it wasn’t like an explosion, or an epiphany; it didn’t have the deep, resonating familiarity that brought you so close to the quiddity of a steak that you felt as if you could speak cow just by eating it. It’s just tasty – or quite tasty.

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September 18th 2019, 12:32 pm

One in five of us do it, but is ‘wardrobing’ ever acceptable?

Life and style | The Guardian

Wearing new clothes and then returning them to the retailer is now so common that sellers are clamping down. So what do shoppers think of the practice?

Step into your local post office during your lunch break and you will see them: queues of shoppers, packages in hand, waiting to return items they have bought online. But not all of the clothes being returned to major retailers will be unworn. According to a survey, a fifth of shoppers admit to buying items with the intention of wearing them and then returning them. “Wardrobing” is estimated to cost UK retailers £1.5bn, and they are increasingly clamping down on the practice: earlier this year, the online retailer Asos announced it would blacklist serial returners. We took to the streets of London to find out how common wardrobing really is – and whether the retailers should be worried.

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September 18th 2019, 12:32 pm

Shock tactics: can electric dog collars ever be ethical?

Life and style | The Guardian

Last year, the government announced plans to ban remote-control collars, but now a dog-owning minister is calling for the ban to be abandoned. So what is the truth about these training aids?

Is it cruel to give your pet electric shocks? Just little ones? The work and pensions secretary, Thérèse Coffey, has come under fire for using one on her beagle-pug cross, Lola, which reportedly kept trying to attack other dogs. She spoke to Steve Andrews, a Suffolk dog trainer, who recommended an electric collar to help control Lola’s behaviour. This seemed to work, and Andrews has since asked Coffey to help to overturn the government’s plans for a ban on remote-control collars. Awkwardly, the plans were announced by Michael Gove last year, when Coffey was a minister in his department.

“Thérèse’s dog responds on setting 11 [out of 100],” Andrews told the Eastern Daily Press. “She felt what that was like and could feel nothing … This is not cruel. Thérèse and her family are dog lovers doing the best for their pet.”

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September 18th 2019, 11:40 am

Beat procrastination: 10 simple tips for blitzing your work to-do list

Life and style | The Guardian

You don’t need to master mindfulness or download a complicated productivity app to stay on top of your admin

Ever get to that stage where you seem to be spending all your time and energy just putting things off? You know you should get stuff done but you find yourself weighed down by the tyranny of your to-do list.

And, of course, the more you put something off, the larger the looming shadow it casts. This is particularly insidious when it comes to dull-but-essential tasks, such as admin.

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September 18th 2019, 8:56 am

Walk on the wild side: animal prints stalk the streets – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

From leopard to zebra, take inspiration from these menswear looks this season. You’ll be sure to stay ahead of the pride

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September 18th 2019, 6:10 am

Hot properties: how Oslo went wild for floating saunas

Life and style | The Guardian

When the city’s first floating sauna was banned by port authorities, its owners took it on the run, sparking a public craze

It all began in September 2011, when Martin Lundberg sailed his boat into the marina in the fashionable Aker Brygge district in central Oslo, Norway.

A native of Malmö, Sweden, Lundberg had spent the summer on his boat moored off one of Oslo’s islands. He didn’t have a job, or a home other than the boat.

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September 18th 2019, 4:10 am

Why Ivanka Trump’s new haircut should make us very afraid | Arwa Mahdawi

Life and style | The Guardian

If her family cares about anything, it is image. Her political bob (pob) may be an attempt to get us to take her ambitions more seriously

It is hard to keep up with the volume of news these days. However, that is no excuse for me missing what may prove to be the biggest story of the year: Ivanka Trump getting a haircut. Yep, the first daughter chopped several inches off her locks earlier this month and is now sporting a shoulder-length bob.

I have no idea how I missed this story, because it was everywhere last week – reaching an online audience of more than 1.4 billion people, according to an analysis by Critical Mention, a software company that tracks this sort of thing. Of course, online metrics should be taken with a pinch of salt; I doubt almost one in five people in the world read about Trump’s new do. Nevertheless, an inordinate number of us appear to find the heiress’s hair bizarrely captivating. The new cut has been analysed to within an inch of its life. The Daily Beast, for example, mused that it “could be an optics ploy to communicate control in a derailed administration”. Salon asked whether the shorter cut was a “nod to her growing ambitions, while an image consultant told Refinery29 that Trump “wants to re-establish credibility because her father’s campaign is coming up ... this hair makes her look more grounded and more mature and more professional.”

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September 18th 2019, 4:10 am

Off grid: the best checks for women– in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

Square up to the latest looks with the capes, boots, blouses and bags worth checking out for autumn

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September 18th 2019, 3:24 am

The pull of tulle: the floaty fabric has zest for AW19 – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

What do Villanelle, Carrie Bradshaw and Queen Elsa of Arendelle have in common? This season, with their love of tulle, they are very on trend

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September 18th 2019, 1:20 am

London fashion week spring/summer 2020: 20 key shows – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

This season saw a heady mix of schedule regulars as well as up-and-coming stars – with a focus on sustainability

So hot it hurts: London fashion week in the age of climate activism

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September 17th 2019, 1:27 pm

So hot it hurts: London fashion week in the age of climate activism

Life and style | The Guardian

The trends at Britain’s biggest fashion event? Pre-loved clothes, designer rentals, retro looks you can source in your attic and the end of single-use coathangers

As irony would have it, the Sunday of London fashion week was a freakishly warm day for mid-September. Victoria Beckham’s show was being held in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, so there was a queue snaking down King Charles Street in Westminster while ID cards were checked, bags were scanned and the audience lolled in the sunshine. On the other side of the road, the fashion queue was mirrored by an orderly lineup of climate crisis activists – many dressed not dissimilarly from the fashion crowd, with a lean toward asymmetric clothing and unusual sunglasses – holding placards reading “The Ugly Truth About Fashion” and “Business As Usual Is Killing The Planet”.

Sara Arnold, an Extinction Rebellion spokesperson, talked eloquently about the need to “wake people up to their power as citizens, not consumers”. A fashion photographer, perhaps misjudging the mood, began to heckle her, only to be shushed by the very showgoers who the protesters were facing off against. “If we realise and act now, we have the power to change our course,” Arnold continued. The fashion industry audience listened politely, until all the Saint Laurent and Gucci handbags had been through the scanner and we could file into the show space, where a view of David Beckham and Dame Helen Mirren displaced from our minds any thought of the imminent demise of the human race.

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September 17th 2019, 12:45 pm

Why Billy Porter was the best thing to happen at London fashion week – in pictures

Life and style | The Guardian

The Pose star wore 15 outfits across the four-day event for SS20, from colourful capes to bright-pink gloves and feathered hats. Here is a recap

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September 17th 2019, 12:45 pm

Neelam Gill: ‘Growing up I wished I looked like other girls’

Life and style | The Guardian

The model on partying until 7am in her favourite Julien MacDonald dress – and how she takes inspiration from the style of Bollywood actresses

I never would have been confident enough to wear this dress a few years ago. People think that, when you’re a model, everything looks good on you – but they forget that it depends on how you feel. Growing up, I wished I had boobs, I wished I had hips, I wished my body was like most other girls’. But the reason I was so drawn to this Julien MacDonald dress was because I felt really sexy and confident in it. I felt really secure in myself as a woman.

Related: Julien Macdonald: ‘Who would play me in the film of my life? They’d have to be gorgeous’

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September 17th 2019, 10:26 am

Nigel Slater’s bavette with aubergines recipe

Life and style | The Guardian

Grilled steak and aubergines is quick and tasty

Cut 2 large aubergines, about 350g each in weight, into 1cm slices. Lay them on a roasting tray or baking sheet. Season. Peel and thinly slice 4 cloves of garlic, scatter over the aubergine slices then pour over 8 tbsp of olive oil.

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September 17th 2019, 10:26 am

Spike Lee's hat trick: the story of his iconic Yankees baseball cap

Life and style | The Guardian

The filmmaker explains how he changed the history of headgear with a phone call

I always enjoy wearing baseball caps. I got my first when I was six or seven years old. All the kids had them. Back in the day it really wasn’t a fashion thing, but now people wear the hats and it has nothing to do with sports.

I have been wearing baseball cap brand New Era for 50 years, but it was the 1996 World Series that changed the game. I had a red down jacket that had Yankees written on it in script and I wanted my Yankees cap to match. I called New Era, the official cap of Major League Baseball that the players wear on the field, to see if they could make me one. I wanted the official, official one. Up to that point you could only get the hats in the kit colours – it was not done in Major League Baseball to make any other colourways.

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September 17th 2019, 9:09 am

Zero-waste shops and sustainable fashion: meet the new breed of small business owners

Life and style | The Guardian

Last year there were 5.7m micro businesses – those with up to nine employees – in the UK, accounting for 99% of all businesses. Three founders share their industry experiences

Frustrated by the effects of plastic pollution, Kate Robertson and her friends decided to take positive action. The self-styled “mums on a mission” set about creating a zero-waste shop in their home of Bridport, Dorset, launched a crowdfunding campaign and exceeded their £16,000 target by raising £17,000. But, by that point someone else had opened a zero-waste shop in the town, so instead they decided to create Dorset’s first mobile zero-waste shop, The Green Weigh. The women make seven stops a week in their repurposed van (affectionately named “Gertie”), visiting different markets and villages each day so people can top up on everything from beans and pulses to household goods and personal items.

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September 17th 2019, 7:56 am

How 'art world insider' became the look of the decade

Life and style | The Guardian

As culture has become more visual, clothes that speak of galleries, exhibitions and artist studios have found widespread appeal. These are style ideals that speak of purpose, plans – and the legacy of Pheobe Philo

The 60s had miniskirts, the 70s had flares, the 80s had shoulderpads. Every decade has a look. True, in each case this is an appalling oversimplification. Flares did not rule the whole of the 70s, for instance: by the summer of 1978, Sandy was rocking wet-look drainpipes in Grease. So to put your head above the parapet and attempt to skewer the look of the decade before that decade is even over is, clearly, madness.

But I’m going to do it anyway, so here goes. For a certain type of woman in the decade that is now drawing to a close, the unspoken style ideal was to look like you worked in the art world. This involved interesting neutrals (mostly navy for the first half of the decade, grey and beige the second) with sophisticated, painterly accent colours such as mustard or fuchsia. It meant a sihouette that was de-centred, abstracted from the shape of the body below. It called for unfussy pieces with intriguing details: a simple dress with a statement sleeve, for instance. There was little skin on show: there were a lot of funnel necks, then polos, and skirts were below the knee for most of the decade. There were elements of menswear – blazers, tailored trousers, unisex white trainers or Gucci loafers – but these were mixed with feminine silk blouses rather than styled in a performatively androgynous Annie Hall kind of way. For evening, tight black dresses languished unworn in favour of elevated, accessorised versions of the daywear look, or bold dresses with a certain flamboyance of colour or print or silhouette.

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September 17th 2019, 6:21 am

Dark crystals: the brutal reality behind a booming wellness craze

Life and style | The Guardian

Demand for ‘healing’ crystals is soaring – but many are mined in deadly conditions in one of the world’s poorest countries. And there is little evidence that this billion-dollar industry is cleaning up its act.

By Tess McClure

In February, crystals colonised Tucson. They spread out over carparks and gravel lots, motel courtyards and freeway footpaths, past strip malls and burger bars. Beneath tents and canopies, on block after block, rested every kind of stone imaginable: the opaque, soapy pastels of angeline; dark, mossy-toned epidote; tourmaline streaked with red and green. There were enormous, dining-table-sized pieces selling for tens of thousands of dollars, lumps of rose quartz for $100, crystal eggs for $1.50. Crystals were stacked upon crystals, filling plastic trays, carved into every possible shape: knives, penises, bathtubs, angels, birds of paradise.

It was the month of the Tucson gem shows, a series of markets and exhibitions that collectively make up the largest crystal expo in the world. More than 4,000 crystal, mineral and gemstone vendors had come to sell their wares. They were expecting more than 50,000 customers to pass through, from new age enthusiasts with thick dreadlocks and tie-dye T-shirts, to gallery owners, suited businessmen and major wholesalers. Deals done here would determine the fate of tens of thousands of tonnes of crystals, dispatching them across the US and Europe into museums and galleries, crystal healing and yoga centres, wellness retailers and Etsy stores.

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September 17th 2019, 5:53 am

The great 1970s wine revival

Life and style | The Guardian

Lambrusco, muscadet, Bull’s Blood: after years of neglect, some wines have returned as retro-vintage stars

Whatever happened to the bestselling wines of the 1970s and 80s? Some, happily, are no longer with us or have been banished to the dustiest reaches of the corner shop, brands such as Hirondelle, Lutomer Laski Riesling, or Le Piat d’Or, that neither we nor the French adore any more.

Others, remodelled, repackaged, occasionally even drinkable, are still slogging it out in the pitiless commercial battlefield of a supermarket near you: Mateus Rosé, Black Tower, Blue Nun.

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September 17th 2019, 5:53 am

Ostrichpillow Light - the sleep turban that has transformed my long-haul journeys

Life and style | The Guardian

Far more presentable than the frankly ridiculous original Ostrichpillow, and offering the total darkness an eye mask can never match, this is the only way to fly

I remember seeing an Ostrichpillow for the first time. It looked like a bulb of garlic had mated with a football mascot and their spawn had eaten a human. It is an immersive, outsized, semi-portable nap-station – and utterly compelling. Seriously, if you haven’t seen one, have a look. The Ostrichpillow website features some profoundly odd promo shots: a woman curled into the foetal position under a table; someone sleeping standing up like a horse, head resting on a wall; another encased in an outsized fist of grey fabric. The plump, segmented gourd totally envelops the head, with openings at the side into which hands can disappear. It looks so odd, and from the first second I saw it I thought: “I want that.”

I didn’t buy one, though. As inviting as it looks, you would need courage to use it. An Ostrichpillow in the wild is a bleak snapshot of corporate burnout. The wearer appears to have given up on life, let alone their job. If your boss saw you cosplaying as Toad from Super Mario Bros and sleeping in a corridor, they would assume you were near mental collapse. Thank the Ostrich Lords, then, that the company has come out with a slimline alternative. Ostrichpillow Light (£32) is a segmented turban stuffed with tiny beads that wraps around the neck or eyes. It is an attempt to capture the engulfing quality of the original in a more elegant form. Rather than a job-jeopardiser, it is marketed as a travel pillow. To test it, I catch an economy flight home from Los Angeles where I had gone to eat cheap tacos. (Financially speaking, I’m good at making bad decisions.)

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September 17th 2019, 5:53 am

The rise of the proposal planner: ‘It’s not enough to get down on one knee any more’

Life and style | The Guardian

You have found the man or woman of your dreams and are ready to pop the question. But where and how? Meet the professionals who can make the moment truly memorable

When 36-year-old Justus Parmar decided to propose to his girlfriend, Elisia, he knew it had to be two things – “unforgettable and big”. Less than a week later, he flew Elisia from their home in Toronto, Canada, to the UK, where he proposed in a capsule of the London Eye. Their fellow passengers were an incognito musician, who performed their favourite song, Ed Sheeran’s Perfect, and extras who lined up to reveal T-shirts that read: “Will you marry me?” She said yes.

The number of marriages in the UK may have been in decline since the 70s, with barely 240,000 couples tying the knot in 2016, but weddings are still big business, worth more than £10bn a year. With everything from e-commerce platforms such as Zola – which allows couples to plan their special day online and is valued at $650m (£520m) – to startups such as Bloomerent, which helps couples getting married in the same city reuse each others’ flowers, it is a rapidly expanding, tech-driven sector. And the latest innovation doesn’t even concern the wedding itself, but the proposal.

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September 17th 2019, 5:05 am

Demna Gvasalia quits Vetements: 'I have accomplished my mission'

Life and style | The Guardian

In the middle of Spring 2020 presentations, influential designer announces he is leaving label he co-founded

Fashion’s enfant terrible Demna Gvasalia quit his uber-hip streetwear brand Vetements, in a move that shocked the industry.

Related: ‘I don’t think elegance is relevant’: Vetements’ Demna Gvasalia, the world’s hottest designer

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September 17th 2019, 4:05 am

I have to fantasise about porn to climax with my boyfriend

Life and style | The Guardian

I am left with a feeling of disgust and lingering guilt, but I don’t know what else to do

I’m a 20-year-old woman and my boyfriend is 21. We have been together for a year. While I didn’t masturbate until I was 16 and I watch pornography once every few months, I still have to fantasise about porn scenes to be able to climax when we have sex. It disgusts me, but I don’t know how else to do it. After sex, while we are trying to relax and cuddle, I am left with a lingering feeling of guilt. Help my diseased millennial mind!

Taking a practical approach in order to achieve orgasm during sex with a partner does not constitute a disease – or even something worthy of guilt. Most people make similar decisions at different times and in different situations. You are lucky to be able to trigger your own orgasm through fantasy – some people cannot.

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September 17th 2019, 3:21 am

Fall for tulle: how fashion's floatiest fabric rose to power

Life and style | The Guardian

Made famous by everyone’s favourite assassin, Villanelle, this versatile material has find its way from saccharine to subversive

What do Villanelle, Carrie Bradshaw and Queen Elsa of Arendelle have in common? Aside from convention-challenging, glass ceiling-shattering, nonconformist ways, their most memorable outfits comprise candyfloss-hued clouds of tulle. And, this season, they are bang on trend.

“The material itself transcends all eras,” says London fashion week designer Ryan Lo, who has used tulle “for as long as I can remember”. He has found a fanbase in the likes of Elle Fanning and Maisie Williams as a result. “We knit it, gather it, smock it, use it as a petticoat, make ruffles, flowers – the possibilities are endless.” For AW19 his references run a gamut of epochs, retaining the “serious period dreamy quality”.

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September 17th 2019, 1:18 am

Tim Walker: Wonderful Things review – a vibrant and upbeat V&A show

Life and style | The Guardian

One of British fashion photography’s biggest names explores museum artefacts

The show-stopping gown in a new exhibition at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum is a red silk number from Alexander McQueen’s infamous Horn of Plenty collection. Its billowing skirts are only partially visible, however, beneath a gauzy white conservational wrap, while its distinctive headdress is entirely hidden. This outer layer catches the light in what must be the first time a McQueen creation has been upstaged by its own dust jacket.

Tim Walker: Wonderful Things, which opens on Saturday, plays with expectations in many ways. At a preview the photographer – whose twisted fairytale aesthetic has made him one of British fashion’s most prominent names – described the show as not a retrospective “but the end of a chapter”.

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September 16th 2019, 7:48 pm

'It's finding something new in the old': how fashion can confront the climate crisis

Life and style | The Guardian

Sustainable style can help spread an important message, say panelists at London fashion week after a weekend of protests

The climate crisis was on the agenda again at London fashion week on Monday, with sustainability experts and activists taking part in a symposium at the Finnish Institute focusing on creativity and sustainability. It was in keeping with fashion week so far, which has seen Extinction Rebellion activists stage a “die-in” and swarm the Victoria Beckham show, one of the week’s highest-profile events, hoping to force the industry to take the climate emergency seriously.

The symposium was a follow-up to July’s Helsinki fashion week, which is open exclusively to designers and brands who produce sustainable collections. Similar events have already taken place in New York, and there are more planned for Paris and Milan – part of a programme focusing on sustainability and the identity of each host city. For London’s instalment, which was chaired by Helsinki fashion week’s founder, Evelyn Mora, creativity was deemed an appropriate topic given the British capital is, in her words, “the belly of the beast”, known for its fashion-forward approach to design.

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September 16th 2019, 3:00 pm

Thomasina Miers' recipe for spinach and feta filo pie | The Simple Fix

Life and style | The Guardian

Just five main ingredients make up this delicious spanakopita – a classic Greek filo pie of spinach and feta

I once made a Channel 4 show called The Wild Gourmets. We travelled the length and breadth of the country, foraging, fishing and hunting for food, and I was allowed to cook only with what we found – plus a few sparse ingredients. It can be incredibly liberating, cutting out too much choice from the cooking equation and forcing oneself to limit the number of ingredients thrown in. Here is a midweek feast: a classic spinach and feta pie from Greece that could have more ingredients, but is totally delicious with just these.

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September 16th 2019, 10:42 am

Rachel Roddy’s recipe for sausages with red onion and grapes | A Kitchen in Rome

Life and style | The Guardian

Like many Italian recipes, this one calls for few ingredients, but they all count: fat sausages in a sweet-sour sauce of braised red onion and red and white grapes

Alastair Little puts it well in the preface to his book Keep it Simple: “Simple food does not necessarily mean quick food, or even easy food, though it can be both. Keeping it simple means being pure in effect – finding natural rhythms and balances, allowing the food to taste of itself.” For years I had a Post-It with this quote written on it stuck to the top of my desk, until it was pulled off or lost in a move. It is an idea that makes so much sense – one at the root of so much Italian cooking (and of many other great cuisines, too). It is an idea that drags us back to the raw ingredients and asks us, the cooks, to consider them, taste them, judge them, think about how they transform and work with other ingredients, and how we can bring out the best in them.

Idealising Italian food is tedious, and it is also not useful. What is to be admired, though, and therefore useful, is recognising the confident Italian ability to keep things simple and bring out the best in ingredients. Italian cooking is also chock-full of five-ingredient recipes: innumerable examples of well-honed, everyday brilliance that are as at home in the UK as in the Mediterranean – what one friend would call “light bulb recipes”.

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September 16th 2019, 10:42 am

Just not sporty: how to embrace exercise as an adult if you disliked it as a child

Life and style | The Guardian

Bad memories of PE can give people the lifelong impression they’re not cut out for sport. But plenty of adults have left behind sedentary lifestyles – you just have to find the right approach

When Sarah Overall was a child, a PE teacher held the entire class back because Overall would not do the high jump. She was tiny – as an adult, she is under 5ft (1.5m) tall – and was scared of hurting herself on the metal bar. “I was too short to get over it,” she says. “I remember the whole class watching.” Netball was “pure hell”. She enjoyed hockey, which suited her body better, but she felt written off by her PE teacher. “I was like: ‘Do you not get that I actually work really hard at the things I can do?’”

Now, years later, Overall is a personal trainer and sees the damage that bad PE lessons have had on her clients. “It’s pretty much everybody who comes to me,” she says. “I don’t think I’ve got anybody, especially a woman, who has said: ‘I was good at sport at school.’”

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September 16th 2019, 7:26 am

How we met: ‘Two girls had broken in. I threw on a towel and ran out to meet them’

Life and style | The Guardian

Dianne and Dreux Bourque met in 1987. Dianne, 50, is a nurse and Dreux, 51, works in healthcare administration. They have two sons and live in Dallas, Texas

The Christian Brothers – “kind of like monks,” says Dreux – would not have been happy to know that two teenage girls had broken into the dormitory of their all-boys’ boarding school in Louisiana. “These men had taken vows of poverty and celibacy, and they didn’t deal with women very well at all.”

Dreux was 18, and was working at his old school during the holidays, helping to run its summer camp. He had been having a shower when one of the boys ran in to tell him two girls were in the dormitory. “I threw on a towel, ran out and met these two young ladies and said: ‘You can’t be here,’” he recalls.

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September 16th 2019, 7:26 am

Five ways to start saving – from paying yourself first to premium bonds

Life and style | The Guardian

It doesn’t matter how little you put away, the trick is to get started. From clever apps to canny tips, here’s a guide to getting into good habits … while still having money for a flutter

Rather than treating savings as an afterthought, set up a standing order into a separate account as soon as you get paid, says Anna Bowes, the co-founder of Savings Champion. “That way it can become just another bill, but one that you will benefit from in the future.”

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September 16th 2019, 6:26 am

Autumn recipes from Nigel Slater's new cookbook

Life and style | The Guardian

Dishes from the plant-based Greenfeast: Autumn, Winter – gnocchi and peas, orecchiette and cheese, chocolate and cantucci

Dinner is different in winter. The change starts late on a summer’s evening, when you first notice the soft, familiar scent of distant woodsmoke in the sudden chill of the air. Then, a day or two later, a damp, mushroomy mist hovers over the gardens and parks. Later, you notice the leaves have turned silently from yellow ochre to the walnut hue of tobacco. Autumn is here once again. You may sigh, rejoice or open a bottle. For many, this is the end of their year. For me, this is when it starts, when warmth and bonhomie come to the fore. With the change of weather, supper takes on a more significant role. What I crave now is food that is both cosseting and warming, substantial and deeply satisfying. Food that nourishes but also sets me up for going back out in the cold and wet. And yet, I still find my diet is heavily plant-based with less emphasis on meat. It is simply the way it has progressed over the years and shows little sign of abating.

At the start of the longest half of the year, our appetite is pricked by the sudden drop in temperature, and as evenings get longer, we have the opportunity to spend a little more time in the kitchen. To mash beans into buttery clouds. Simmer vegetable stews to serve with bowls of couscous. To bring dishes of sweet potato to melting tenderness in spiced cream. And, of course, the pasta jar comes out again.

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September 16th 2019, 6:26 am

Chainsaws, fire and paranoia: my total bedbug meltdown

Life and style | The Guardian

It took me ages to realize my place was infested. That’s when I learned of the life-altering measures required to fix the problem

In these weird political times, I hear a lot of people saying, “Can things get any worse?” I usually scoff and tell them “Yes. Yes they can.” Things can always get worse, and I’ve learned this lesson the hard way – from bedbugs.

For the past 10 years I’ve produced a podcast called RISK!, where people tell true stories too intense or explicit for broadcast radio. Some are a laugh riot, but others keep me up at night.

Over time, I began to notice that the scarier stories on the show have an uncanny tendency to include these insect parasites. It’s typical of someone to start with a line like, “The summer my mom died, my career collapsed. But the worst part was getting bedbugs.”

This recurring theme got me worried – and they say worrying is like praying for what you fear.

I’m a kinky polyamorous gay man, so it could have been that sleeping around was how I got bedbugs in the first place. But having more than one partner was also how I figured out the insects were after me.

Several years ago, I woke up in my bed next to my friend Kai, a sculptor I was sleeping with. I had just finished making a pot of coffee in the kitchen when he stumbled in, looking shook.

“See these marks on me? What are they?” Small red dots ran down his torso. I went numb with deja vu. A week prior, another fella I was dating complained about the same marks, but I’d assumed a mosquito was to blame.

“Fuck!” I said. “I hope this isn’t what I think it is!”

I ran back to the bedroom and yanked up the mattress to peek at the box spring. There it was. A bunch of little black stains, like someone had taken a thin Sharpie and dotted the fabric. Then I looked a little closer and saw something worse: something brown, oval, and moving. I trapped it on a little piece of masking tape and started Googling to find out what it was.

Kai fled the scene, while I fell into the Heart of Darkness of Google spirals. I learned that the little black dots on the fabric were feces and that the contents of those droppings were mostly my own blood. Turns out, not everyone will have a reaction to a bedbug bite, so this had gone on for some time without my knowing. Two people that sleep in the same bed can be bitten by bugs and one might break out with red marks while the other might not.

That’s why that bug I found was was so big. He’d been feasting on me for weeks but my skin hadn’t shown it. Did you know bedbugs inject an anesthetic into you, a numbing chemical, so when they do start sucking your blood, you don’t know?

Here’s another fun fact: we have no idea what, if any, purpose bedbugs serve in the ecosystem.

As I was going all hot and cold with panic, I remember saying out loud, “But this is like crabs, right? I’ve survived crabs before!” Gentle reader, they’re not. The natural habitat of pubic lice is pubic hair, which is a thing that grew on peoples’ bodies till the 1990s. But bedbugs can hide in mirrors, bookshelves, wall units, books, computers, phones, clocks, remote controls, and most importantly, walls.

I was turning up so much contradictory information that I finally ran to Barnes and Noble to pick up a “definitive” tome called The Bed Bug Survival Guide, only to find mixed messages there too. The notes I took that day are filled with insane stuff like this: “For a few months after spotting bugs, you should require all guests to your home to strip nude in the hall before entering your premises and to keep their clothes quarantined in garbage bags away from the walls in the hall.”

I have a reputation for being as kinky as they come, but even I couldn’t get away with that sort of hospitality. Another one was: “For the rest of your life, if you absolutely must enter a hotel room, keep everything you own in the bathtub!” I remember one source saying, “Vacuum vacuum vacuum! All couches, drapes, and table cloths!” Then a few pages later, it said to be careful about vacuuming because “that’s a surefire way to spread eggs into other parts of the home!”

I’m a recovering Catholic, so I couldn’t help but think: “I’m being punished. I must have brought this plague on myself!” I spent the rest of the day texting any guy I’d slept with in months with variations of “Honey! Check your stuff because I might have given you something!” You won’t find that in How to Win Friends and Influence People.

As I rifled through contacts, I began obsessing over one incident a couple months past. I met this guy on a BDSM website. I said we could play at my place, but he said, “Wouldn’t it be kinky if we were to have sex in this sleazy pay-by-the-hour motel I heard about in the shadiest part of Queens?” All kink play requires negotiation. This is where I should have said to myself, “Am I agreeing this because it’s hot to me too, or just because he has a sweet booty?” It was the booty.

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September 16th 2019, 6:26 am

'I wouldn't contour now': women over 50 on their beauty routines

Life and style | The Guardian

After trying out beauty trends in our shoot, four women reveal their go-to products and top tips

Read more from the autumn/winter 2019 edition of The Fashion, our biannual fashion supplement

What’s your usual look? It’s not this dramatic. I don’t usually do anything to my hair, just wash it and put my hands through it.

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September 16th 2019, 4:24 am

Fishing tackle, tights and Dynasty shoulders: style trends for AW19

Life and style | The Guardian

Familiarise yourself with gypsophila and grey, know your grouper from your guppy and try to keep up with the new rugby look. Here’s our cheat sheet to the best – and most unexpected – of the season’s fashion

Indomitably sophisticated, the polo neck is the Old Fashioned of cocktails – something with timeless appeal. It will soften a biker jacket as at Celine, add gravitas to a prairie dress, à la Alexa Chung’s catwalk, and anchor down frilly frocks, such as at Simone Rocha.

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September 16th 2019, 1:22 am

Victoria Beckham launches makeup range and targets wellness market

Life and style | The Guardian

Ex-Spice Girl reveals plan to take on Gwyneth Paltrow in increasingly lucrative sector

Victoria Beckham’s pivot from Spice Girl to fashion designer was, it turns out, just the beginning. Her next ambition sees her poised to reinvent herself a second time as Britain’s answer to Gwyneth Paltrow.

Paltrow is currently the unrivalled star of the increasingly lucrative wellness industry, as frontwoman of the brand and media empire Goop, but Beckham looks set to mount a challenge.

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September 15th 2019, 4:00 pm
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