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In focusing his lens on the severe hairline at the back of Stein’s head, Carl Van Vechten expressed the public’s fascination with her coiffure. Although it was not strange to see a young woman with bobbed hair in the years between the wars, it was rare to see such a radical cut on a woman over fifty. Stein, moreover, wore blouses, vests, and skirts, often made of heavy fabric, with her bob, not the flapper dresses or pajama-style pants favored by young women. (Stein never wore trousers.) By combining her imperial cut with a tweed vest—or as here, a plain velvet gown—Stein made her self-fashioning distinctive. Artists, friends, and journalists strained to describe her late-life appearance, commonly falling back on analogies to classical sculpture, in particular, busts of Julius Caesar.