It might surprise you to learn that one of the most influential men in fashion didn't show under the big tent at Lincoln Center during New York Fashion Week--and likely never attended a single runway show in his life! We're referring to none other than the late legendary director Alfred Hitchcock, whose heroines in the '50s and '60s consistently epitomized a certain ladylike sophistication and have inspired many a collection since then. In fact, it's the kind of look we saw plenty of on the F/W 12 runways, which is why we're choosing a classic display of Hitchcockian style--his 1954 film Rear Window--for today's Currently Channeling story.The Cinematic Inspiration
In Rear Window, photographer L.B. Jeffries (James Stewart) is confined to his apartment after breaking his leg; along with his girlfriend Lisa Fremont (Grace Kelly), he starts observing the neighbors through his rear window. When the couple notices that a neighbor has mysteriously disappeared, they set out to solve the mystery--in style, of course!
The Sartorial Story
Kelly plays a wealthy, well-attired model and dress designer in the film, so we're treated to an endless procession of glamorous outfits, much like the F/W 12 runway looks at Christian Dior and Jil Sander. Dior's La Revue Blouse ($7600, 800.929.DIOR) and Isadora Skirt ($1400, 800.929.DIOR) hint at her character's immaculately polished style. Meanwhile, Jil Sander's pastel Coat ($8290) is the kind of outerwear--luxe and feminine--that she wore in the flick! Even if you don't have the ice-blonde hair of the typical Hitchcock heroine, you can nab that unmistakable aura of elegance with the following essentials.
Get The Look
H&M Wool Coat ($149)
While a Hitchcock heroine might wear H&M's clutch coat with a classic pencil skirt, we suggest updating the look by balancing the coat's voluminous proportions with sleek pants and ankle boots.
Zara Silver Voluminous Dress ($90)
The silhouette of Zara's full-skirted dress is demure and elegant, like many of Kelly's Rear Window ensembles, but a metallic sheen makes it appropriately modern. Team it with a shrunken leather jacket and lace-up boots for a little bit of toughness.
Miu Miu Lizard-Trimmed Sequined Clutch ($1810)
Casual cross-body bags aren't part of the Hitchcock heroine's repertoire! Instead, opt for a little clutch trimmed in copper sequins that pack a whole lot of sparkle.
girl. by Band of Outsiders Boxy Zip Front Jacket ($515, 714.962.9749) and Asymmetric A-line Skirt ($295, available October 1st)
Look up "ladylike" in any style savant's dictionary, and you'll likely find this matching jacket and skirt set. Style it with a pussy-bow blouse and neutral heels for a pretty, professional outfit.
Ralph Lauren Blue Label Leather-Trimmed Gloves ($125)
Elbow-length gloves are not only functional for chilly fall days, they also lend a touch of drama to any look. Slip this pair on to add instant polish to a trench coat and jeans.
Erickson Beamon for Club MonacoEarrings ($150)
Kelly's character is rarely ever spotted without a piece of statement jewelry, whether it's a glittering diamond necklace or strand of pearls. We think Erickson Beamon's chandelier earrings will do the trick teamed with perfectly coiffed hair a la Kelly!
kate spade new york Isabelle Heels ($328)
If you ever got caught in a Hitchcock-esque chase scene, these delicate heels won't help you run any faster, but you'll look mighty stylish trying to escape! You'll get plenty of mileage out of these shoes too, since they're chic paired with a floaty frock or skinny jeans.--Tiffany Tse
Dior runway photo, courtesy of Dior; Jil Sander runway photo, courtesy of Imax Tree; movie stills, courtesy of Getty Images.