Style Watch

updated 09/13/1999 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/13/1999 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Look, Ma, No Hands!

Now that celebs dare not leave home without a cell phone, pager and Palm Pilot, they are adding to their list of modern-day essentials strapped-on wrist wallets, fanny packs, torso bags and messenger bags worn close to the body. "I carry one instead of a purse," actress Melissa Joan Hart says of her hold-all messenger tote. "I can throw it over my shoulder and forget it's even there."

Call it utility chic. "Rather than being all dressed up, people now want to be more street," says Hollywood stylist Maryam Malakpour, who garbs Lenny Kravitz and Sheryl Crow. Fellow stylist Jeanne Yang touts the look's practicality: "It's like having an extra hand." Indeed, Yang recently shod Christina Ricci in thigh-high boots with a pocket for credit cards, keys and cash. "You can go disco dancing all night long in them," Yang says, "and be totally unencumbered."

with Steven Cojocaru in Los Angeles

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