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Travel news: Culinary journeys in Nepal and Italy

You can take a holiday to Nepal and learn to cook Asian food at the same time with a new trip from Himalayan Footsteps.

You can take a holiday to Nepal and learn to cook Asian food at the same time with a new trip from Himalayan Footsteps. The 10- or 17-day trips start on October 2, followed by departures on March 5 and 24, 2014. Trips start in Kathmandu, where participants will be taken out to local food markets to buy ingredients, experience traditional dishes cooked in local homes, and then cook their own meals in spectacular locations in different parts of the country. Prices start at Dh5,800 per person for the 10-day trip, including two internal flights, accommodation and food, the cookery course, all transport, a sightseeing guide and entrance fees, but excluding international flights (www.himalayanfootsteps.com).

Alternatively, explore the coast of Amalfi, Italy, with the Dubai-based women's travel organisation The World at Her Feet, in partnership with BBC Good Food Middle East magazine. The six-day adventure departs on September 27, and travellers will enjoy cooking sessions with one of the Amalfi region's well-known chefs, visits to local farms with tastings, a guided tour of Pompeii, excursions to the Amalfi coast and Capri, and most meals, for Dh9,400 per person, on a twin-sharing basis. For registration and more details email marizel@cpidubai.com or visit www.bbcgoodfoodme.com. The price does not include travel to and from Italy.

Propaganda on display in London show

Those fascinated by historical travel, particularly with visits to communist countries such as China, Russia, Vietnam, Cambodia and North Korea, but also 20th-century Europe and the First and Second World Wars, can indulge their interest in an exhibition at the British Library (www.bl.uk) in London until September 17. Through posters, films, cartoons, sounds and texts, Propaganda: Power and Persuasion contains a huge variety of material on international state propaganda in the 20th and 21st centuries. Adult entry is 9 (Dh51).

Dive into a spa-and-adventure trip to Oman

If indulgence is your thing, then you can currently save on a luxury diving break in Oman with Six Senses Zighy Bay's Musandam Dive package. Until September 30, for US$660 (Dh2,424) per person per night including taxes, two people sharing can enjoy two nights' accommodation, breakfast, a full-day dive boat excursion for two and a 60-minute massage for two at the Six Senses Spa. Email reservations-zighy@sixsenses.com or phone 00968 2673 5555 to book.

* Rosemary Behan

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 Styled with bleached bobs and pale skin, the models wore clean and sporty separates reminiscent of the chic workwear of The Hunger Games. Courtesy Getty Images

Fashion Forward: Thoughtful tailoring at Asudari

The womenswear label Asudari showcased a collection that featured sharp masculine tailoring, but with feminine silhouettes.

Styled with bleached bobs and pale skin, the models wore clean and sporty separates reminiscent of the chic workwear of The Hunger Games.

Designer Lamia Asudari says she was influenced by Delftware ceramics from the 16th century, as well as the imagery of weaponry and artillery. Indeed, pistols, grenades and guns were emblazoned over jackets and dresses.

 Several of Jo Baaklini's pieces featured fruit prints. Courtesy Getty Images

Fashion Forward: At Starch, watermelon shirts, anyone?

“We need to cultivate our own fashion heroes — our own regional brands,” stressed Fashion Forward’s honcho Bong Guerrero in a press con two weeks ago.

Aptly, the slot for this season’s opening runway show was given to two newbies: Jo Baaklini and Timi Hayek, whose talents were scouted by Starch, a group dedicated to launching emerging Lebanese designers.

Between the two, Mr Baaklini had a stronger showing.

 Jean Louis Sabaji’s collection was very good when the tricks were toned down — like the simple white jumpsuit with a sculptural neckpiece. Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images

Fashion Forward: Jean Louis Sabaji’s debatable debut

Jean Louis Sabaji’s collection was very good when the tricks were toned down — like the simple white jumpsuit with a sculptural neckpiece, the floral crop top, and the radiant yellow pleated skirt.

But most of the time he went too far. There were bell-bottoms, separates that looked like costumes from The Jetsons, and a yellow dress reminiscent of Bjork’s infamous Oscars swan dress — several disparate elements in one multicoloured, multilayered show.

 Launched in 2009 by childhood friends Arwa Abdelhadi and Basma Abu Ghazaleh, Kage bills itself as a label whose “ultimate goal is to design a collection appealing to all.” Courtesy Getty Images

Fashion Forward: Kage pleases all palates

Did the designers of Kage aim to showcase every type of basic clothing on their latest show?

Because there were skirts, shorts, trousers, off-shoulder tops, short dresses, cocktail dresses, long flowy dresses, spaghetti straps, jackets, hoods — and even pyjamas, which with the incoming summer heat, looked especially appealing.

Launched in 2009 by childhood friends Arwa Abdelhadi and Basma Abu Ghazaleh, Kage bills itself as a label whose “ultimate goal is to design a collection appealing to all”, they said in their statement.

 The standout was a grey hooded cape that created a tension between edge and elegance. Courtesy Getty Images

Fashion Forward: Polish, craft (and fur!) at The Emperor 1688

The best show of Day 1 at Fashion Forward was delivered by the three Golkar brothers behind The Emperor 1688.

The coats and capes were the clear winners: they came in all sorts of interesting colours and sizes — and featured exceptionally tailored proportions. There was a lot of volume, but also stiffness.

And whimsy: two favourites were a green double-breasted suit and a blue overcoat with a red clover pattern and gold buttons.

 Midway through Ezra's show, snow started falling from the ceiling. Ian Gavan / Getty Images for Fashion Forward

Fashion Forward: Ezra stuns in snow-covered show

Turns out the Filipino designer Ezra, known for his dreamy couture, still had a few surprises up his sleeve.

Midway through his show, snow started falling from the ceiling.

It created a starkly beautiful atmosphere for his intricately constructed gowns that seemed to be designed for an Ice Queen transported back to the 1950s.

He showed a collection that had a lot of technical firepower behind it: glittering iridescent fabrics paired with head and neckpieces that were moulded and stiffened to stand out in odd angles.

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