1 Bronx rapper Cardi B (the “strip club Mariah Carey”) emerged from Instagram to dislodge Taylor Swift from the top of the US charts. After two Grammy nominations, her debut album is due to drop this year.
2 Baijiu, an ancient Chinese vermouth-style spirit brewed from rice wine, is the most widely consumed spirit in the world, but it’s rarely seen in the UK. This year, with a new wave of cocktail bars opening, expect that to change.
3 It’s happening. This year, Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, has confirmed two people will go on a private mission around the moon with the Falcon Heavy rocket, taking humans further than ever before. TBH there’s never been a better time.
4 This will be the year of comfort, with tracksuits appearing as a genuine alternative to the party dress. Victoria Beckham has announced a long-term collaboration with Reebok, Rihanna’s Fenty X Puma collaboration showed shiny tracksuits on the catwalks, as did Gucci. Plus, it’s a great outfit for watching the World Cup.
5 The new “women’s movies”, including Ocean’s 8 (featuring Sarah Paulson, Rihanna, Sandra Bullock, Awkwafina and Cate Blanchett) and Ava DuVernay’s Wrinkle in Time (Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling) feature female protagonists who do more than talk about boys.
6 The world’s most glamorous online retailer is going on holiday. Jet-A-Porter (get it?) is their style selection for your dream vacation, from Fendi skiwear to retro sunglasses by Le Specs.
7 Locked in her bathroom for 50 years, Frida Kahlo’s prosthetics, corsets, shoes and personal effects are finally going on show outside Mexico City, alongside the self-portraits in which they appear. See them from 16 June at the V&A.
8 Trump’s visit to the UK is going to be… fun? With the “biggest demonstration in British history” being organised to show him he’s not welcome here, along with a mass-mooning along the streets, it should be a day to remember. Bottoms up.
9 Valletta is one of the European Capitals of Culture 2018 (valletta2018.org), so Malta’s mini-capital is gearing up for a load of performances, exhibitions and street parties. It’s sunny all year round, and only takes three hours on the plane, boom.
10 It’s the year of pop divas: Kylie Minogue is back; Céline Dion has hinted about an English-language album coming in the autumn; Madonna is planning a 2018 tour; there are rumours of a Lady Gaga album, and the end of Britney Spears’s Vegas residency suggests new material’s on the way. We are truly spoilt.
11 Greer is a shy college freshman when she meets the woman who leads her towards adventure. The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer (author of The Interestings and The Wife, which is coming out as a film this year), is a novel to get excited about. As is My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Man Booker finalist Ottessa Moshfegh, about a young woman “embarking on an extended hibernation with the help of the worst psychiatrist in the world”.
12 Make-up artists went wild with glitter and shimmer for SS18, with glittery eyelids at Topshop, Undercover and Stella Jean, and stick-on jewels at Dries Van Noten, Jeremy Scott and Givenchy. Go to ecoglitterfun.com for ethical stuff. This is your year to sparkle.
13 Could anything beat Ryan Murphy’s take on the OJ Simpson trial? Presenting: Ryan Murphy’s take on the Versace murder: The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story’. Elsewhere on telly, season two of The Handmaid’s Tale begins streaming in the US in April. The first season ended at the same place as Margaret Atwood’s novel, so the thrill is seeing where the story goes next.
14 Ottolenghi is rolling out a catering service: they’ll come to your home and make dinner. You don’t even have to track down the za’atar.
15 This is more than just a beanbag chair. One of Muji’s most popular products, the Body Fit, is finally coming to the UK, in 12 different colours, too. Aaand relax.
16 Swatch has been the most creative watch brand for almost 35 years. Its newest series cheekily asks the customer to design their own, with Swatch x You. Prices start from £41.50.
17 The Barbican’s 2018 season The Art of Change explores how the arts respond to, reflect and potentially effect change. Book now for the UK premiere of The Town Hall Affair, based on a film documenting a raucous 1971 “Women’s Lib” debate between Germaine Greer and Norman Mailer.
18 The largest single-space luxury accessories destination in the world, the Selfridges Accessories Hall in London opens, selling 70,000 products from handbags, to a hand-carved comb and an Erdem tea towel.
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