Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, Aix-les-Bains, France, c. 1927
Courtesy Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas Papers
Yale Collection of American Literature
Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
This stunning studio photograph captures Gertrude and Aliceís sartorial makeover in the late 1920s. Beginning with Steinís radical haircut of 1926, the women created an homme-femme style, a lesbian mode of dressing still in fashion today. Stein, in a solid-colored suit, flat shoes, and fedora, stands next to Toklas, who looks like a peacock in her floral outfit, long earrings, heeled shoes, and ultrafeminine hat and handbag. They posed comfortably as a couple, without any of the dissembling that marked photographs of the two of them in earlier years.