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Today’s top stories, opinion and opportunities
Friday 16 September 2016

Image: Reuters

Brakes on Brexit?

Britain gets a glimpse of its future outside the EU today as the leaders of the 27 other members meet without British prime minister Theresa May at a summit in Bratislava. Britain may not be in the room but it will certainly be on the agenda: there is frustration among the remaining 27 that, despite the vote in June, it has still not invoked Article 50 – the mechanism that would trigger its departure. With elections coming up in France and Germany next year, EU leaders would rather have negotiations on the UK’s exit done and dusted sooner rather than later. That’s looking pretty unlikely now. Indeed, some in Brussels now believe that they may as well wait until late 2017 to begin, once the political landscape in Europe’s biggest nations is clearer. Brexit, it seems, is going to drag on and on.

Image: Getty Images

Fashion forward

The fashion pack is descending on the UK capital for the spring/summer 2017 edition of London Fashion Week, which kicks off today. This season’s event sees much-anticipated returns to London from MM6 Maison Margiela and Versus Versace but all eyes are on Burberry. The British brand’s Monday night show will embody the industry’s hottest topics: not only will it present its women’s and menswear collections together – eschewing summer frocks and winter coats in favour of strictly trans-seasonal pieces – but most significantly the clothes will be available to buy online and in shops as soon as the last model steps off the catwalk. Like it or not, Burberry’s showcase could well be the blueprint for fashion shows of the future.

Image: Getty Images

Park life

The third Friday in September is Park(ing) Day and it has been since 2005, when art and design studio Rebar took it upon itself to transform a San Francisco parking lot into a mini park complete with a bench and tree. For two hours, until the meter ran out, the firm staged a quiet protest against the lack of public space in the city and with that sparked a global movement. Today in its 10th year, the campaign has sprouted to 160 cities across the world from Munich to Singapore – and it’s not only turning parking spots into parks but also temporary urban farms, free bike-repair shops and coffee stands. The idea is to confront current concepts of public urban space and convert an asphalt block into a green oasis or whatever the community needs the most.

Image: Getty Images

Talking shop

After much anticipation today marks the official opening of the first Nordstrom outpost in Toronto. Anchoring the northern end of the downtown shopping mall Eaton Centre, the three-storey multibrand fashion retailer designed by US architecture firm CallisonRTKL is freshly stocked with brands such as Maison Kitsuné, Sofie D’Hoore and Arc’teryx. With so much on offer across 20,000 sq m it would be easy to be overwhelmed but thankfully personal stylists are on hand to help. The premises also encompass parlours, bars and restaurants so weary customers can refuel in between shopping sprees. With another location set to open in Yorkdale Shopping Centre next month, the Seattle-headquartered company has big ambitions to shake things up in Toronto’s retail landscape.

From Monocle 24

Image: Joshua Tucker

‘Mezzing in Lebanon’

As part of the London Design Biennale more than 30 countries have brought design installations and exhibitions to the UK capital. We visit the Lebanese Pavilion, which has recreated the bustling streets of Beirut at Somerset House.

From Monocle Films

The Big Interview: Karl Lagerfeld

Outspoken, in demand and still at the top of his game, fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld talks to Monocle’s editor in chief Tyler Brûlé about the industry, the media and why Berlin isn’t as good as it used to be.

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