Vuillard had a close relationship with his mother, a dressmaker in Paris. Her profession made the young Édouard to be surrounded by textures and colors, which will be the future motifs of his paintings.
After the death of his father in 1884, Vuillard received a scholarship to study at the exclusive Lyceé Condorcet, but along with Ker Xavier Roussel, they left the Lyceé to study art in Diogène Maillart’ studio.
In 1890, Vuillard met Pierre Bonnard and joined the group called Les Nabis, “the prophets.” This movement brought together a group of artists who, influenced by Gauguin’s use of color, sought a more emotional and subjective art than the one from the Impressionists.
Vuillard’s paintings are recognized by their interior scenes. Many times, he shows us his home. In several of these paintings, he portraits his mother, with whom he lived until the age of 60. Vuillard’s paintings are intimate, almost autobiographical. In The flowered dress, we see the inside of one of the rooms of his house with his mother standing examining a fabric. Apparently, the scene shows a group of employees working in dressmaking. The mother stands out from the other characters by the pattern of her dress and by the fact that Vuillard illuminates her excessively compared to the rest of the characters, which remain obscure and anonymous.