Hollywood handbag designer Kathrine Baumann thrilled nominee Queen Latifah by designing the ultimate OSCARS accessory just for her.

The nominated CHICAGO star arrived at the Academy Awards yesterday (23MAR03) clutching Baumann's pearl-coloured diamond bag, admitting it was the best thing about her outfit.

Baumann decided Latifah, real name Dana Owens, was the perfect model for her Oscars For The Ages bag. She says, "She held it in front of her dress and said, 'It was made for me. I'm so honoured to be carrying this because of its significance.'

"It has a yellow canary diamond on the front, representing the decade of deco - when the Oscars started - and a diamond broach. The three stone diamond clasp represents the past, present and future of the Academy Awards."

The bag, priced at $2.9 million (GBP1.93 million), will now be sold off with 15 per cent of the sale going to the SCREEN ACTORS GUILD PENSION + WELFARE FUND.