Check out Open Has a New Trick
demonstrates a nifty way of associating a filehandle with a scalar variable.
Whether this is the best way to go about the problem I have no idea, but it's a neat trick.
P.S. Upon rereading your request, I might be guilty of an overly elaborate interpretation. You might want the sprintf() function if you merely want to format a string...I was thinking you wanted to use formats.
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