This snapshot evokes happy childhood memories for me. Some of my fondest recollections of my grandmother are when she was at her sewing machine. One Easter she made matching dresses for me, my sister, and my four cousins. For an eighth grade dance, she let me pick the fabric (green taffeta covered with lace!) for my dress.
If I am not mistaken, the woman is using a Singer treadle machine. What is she sewing? Given the voluminous light colored material, perhaps it is a dress for a special occasion. I love the domestic details here—the piano with beginner’s music on the stand, the porcelain dish, the girl with her doll.
The grandmother wears a simple gingham house dress, but it is dressed up with white piping along the front and sleeves. I’m assuming she made it herself. It looks like the sleeves are cut on, making it easier to construct. Doesn’t it look like the doll’s dress might be made from the same fabric as the grandmother’s outfit?