James Stewart dans Fenêtre sur cour

James Stewart in Rear Window

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In these endless times of generalized confinement, and while we scratch our heads more and more to find something to entertain ourselves on Netflix and all the other streaming platforms, there is a film that it would be good not to forget to look. Rear window, obviously.

Released on screens in the fall of 1954, the forty-sixth film by legendary British director Alfred Hitchcock tells the story of a man who has nothing better to do than stay at home. Jeff Jeffries, played here by the handsome and equally legendary James Stewart, is an adventurous photographer who, with his leg in a cast and his butt in a wheelchair, spends his days looking out the window.

Rear Window is a film about loneliness and despair, about time passing slowly, about anger and enthusiasm that quickly fades. Above all, it is a film about voyeurism as a passion by default since poor Jeff Jeffries chooses here to occupy himself by dissecting the end of this lens which usually travels the world with him, the little world which business in the apartments located on the other side of the courtyard of his building.

For all that, and without mentioning viruses, Rear Window is today a film with a terribly particular taste. Without starting to spy so obsessively on the world across the way, there is something here, in James Stewart, from which we can draw inspiration as we wish in order to make our confinement a little more pleasant: his chic. Thus, despite this life which is only lived inside and without even the possibility of getting up, the character of Jeff Jeffries manages with a certain outlook, it must be said, to have the appearance of a day to day. The sign that our man clearly does not let himself be defeated. In Fenêtre sur Cour, Jeff Jeffries elevates the wearing of pajamas to the absolute elegance of confinement.


There is something here, at James Stewart, that we can draw inspiration from to make our confinement a little more pleasant: his chic

Over the four days over which the film takes place, the hero appears in four different outfits of the genre. There are khaki pajamas, then a blue one and another blue one and, finally, when the tension is at its height (all the same, we are at Hitchcock's, and it is not because everything happens at a window that the suspense is not there), another which is rosy. They are made of poplin, this delicate and light material that is found on many of Hast's formal shirts . Mr. Jeffries' pajamas have a wide collar, called Ulster collar, which more or less resembles that of Cuban shirts . Finally, they have three pockets, one on the chest and two at the waist, which are strongly reminiscent of those on our work jackets .

Like an aside in the middle of a film scene, let us breathe here more generally that we find pell-mell, the elegance, the comfort and the practical sense of the tops worn by Jeff Jeffries in the locker room Hast. This echo says something important: at Hast, our passion for ultimate elegance guides our research in order to manufacture pieces that span the ages, which embrace the spirit of today. Timeless, in short. But back to Rear Window, that’s what matters here.

Since it seems to be particularly hot in the film, Jeff Jeffries never fully buttons the five big white buttons at the top, which has the effect of making him look a tad scruffy, but that's not a big deal. As for the pajama bottoms, they are held at the waist by a drawstring and are not decorated with any pockets on either side. The opposite would be of no use since Jeff Jeffries spends all his time sitting.

To give a little more depth to his elegance, the character has his right foot - the one that is able-bodied - wearing a pretty black leather slipper, called the Opera slipper, which we really liked to wear in the middle of a 20th century. Without laces or big seams, it simply looks like a ballet dancer's shoe, to slide delicately on the living room floor.

With his hair impeccably combed back, and certainly varnished with a light coat of brilliantine, a Swiss watch with gold hands on his wrist, Jeff Jeffries would be almost ready for a walk in the park and even an evening reception.

Beyond periods of confinement, and accessorized as necessary, pajamas could well be the new outdoor outfit. That said, even if we know how to wear pajamas like Jeff Jeffries, the latter has one advantage over all of us and forever: Grace Kelly. In the guise of Lisa Freemont, she is his daily visitor and the one who actually makes him jump even more than what happens in the other apartments. An elegant one, too, and not in pajamas. Every time she appears on camera, her outfits have new colors, materials and shapes that are stunning. To the famous costume designer Edith Head responsible for imagining these looks, Alfred Hitchkock only asked that Grace Kelly “look like Chinese porcelain, almost untouchable”.