Triple treat We love getting something for nothing, but...



Triple treat

We love getting something for nothing, but three handbags for the price of one? Ooh la la! That's the deal with the new Interchangeable Flap Bag, the first product to come out under the Vayda & Cave line developed by Annapolis-based Karen Hrubiak (formerly Vayda) and her Hong Kong-based partner, Beth Cave.

"Most women have half a dozen day bags or less and one evening bag they use over and over again," says Hrubiak, 37. "These are fresh every time you use them."

That's because the handmade satin bags, currently available in basic black or silvery gray, come with three different flaps (many with beading) that snap on and off so you can switch the purse's appearance to match yours. The handles can change too, from long, over-the-shoulder straps to short, hand-held bands.

Our only gripe is the way the flaps attach. They snap on and, in our experiences, snap off easily and at the wrong times - like when you're fishing around for your lipstick. But Hrubiak says that after use, the lids become more flexible and less apt to unsnap, but we still think they should maybe look into Velcro or button fasteners.

Right now Hrubiak and Cave are putting the finishing touches on a Web site for the line and taking orders via phone (866-841-9137, Ext. 7085) or e-mail ( The bags sell for $60 to $90.

Made you look

This spring, the eyes have it. Face makeup is basically neutral -- soft pink lips, rosy cheeks -- but the eyes pop with pastel color in shimmery light greens, pale yellows, blues and purples. Nars 2002 collection features liquid liners in lilac (called Lakme) and blue-violet (Blue Nile) perfect for drawing (literally) attention to your most expressive feature. Available online at http: / / for $27. -- T. B.

The old reverse fools 'em every time

Now you can wear the same pair of pants two days in a row without getting branded a dirtball because the jeans, denim skirts and jackets in Chuck Roaste's (patented!) Inside Out spring collection are all reversible -- which can make packing for that weekend getaway a lot simpler. The line has a vintage, sort-of '70s styling with soft, flexible denim and detailed stitching and is available by ordering from the showroom (called Onward Kashiyama) in New York at 212-629-6100. Prices range from $100 to $150. -- T. B.

The wonders of tea

Mmmmm, tea. It soothes your nerves, cures sore throats and deodorizes your feet. What, you didn't know that? Here are a few other uses for tea that might surprise you:

Eye depuffer - Long nights translate into sluggish, puffy-eyed mornings. The cooled, wet tea bags from your brewed morning cup can be used as compresses to reduce that sleepy swelling around your eyes.

Skin rejuvenator - Patchy winter skin peeking out from springy dresses is not a pretty sight. Take away the rough spots by wrapping them in a cotton cloth soaked in peppermint tea.

Hair conditioner - A black tea rinse takes out the tangles after washing (use on dark hair only).

And, of course, the foot thing - A warm black-tea foot bath will take away the, uh, aroma of a hard day's work.

- T. B.

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