The construction is quite ingenious and a marvel of re-purposed materials. Seven clean, empty baby food tins (about the size of tomato paste cans) were wrapped in scraps of upholstery fabric gleaned from sample books, then nested tightly together. I would want to use a glue gun to hold them together, but since they didn't have glue guns back then maybe she used rubber cement or white glue.
I love the generous size. It's great for when I'm sewing a seam and removing pins as I go, blindly stabbing them in the general direction of the pincushion and usually hitting the target. Since the suit I am currently making used almost all of my pins, I took the opportunity to clean the cushion and remove the buried needles. Now it's ready to serve another 40 years!