This dress is from the Victoria & Albert Collection. It was part of their "The Golden Age of Couture" exhibition which was back in 2008 and they put up a pattern of it for download so that we eager seamstresses can recreate this lovely dress. The pattern can be found here.
Well, and I've been trying. I like the shape of the dress. I particularly like the side pockets of the skirt, but I really don't like the band across the bust. Any embellishment straight across the bust is a definite no-no for full-busted gals like me. I thought I could just leave out the band and go ahead with the dress but that isn't really possible because I'd still be left with a seam right across the bust.
So, yes, I decided to draft the bodice myself from scratch instead of fiddling around with the original pattern. So far this has only turned out semi-successfully. At the moment my bodice has some pretty sad looking, strangely bulging and wonky bust darts (pictured below). I have decided that this is unacceptable for a couture dress so I'll need to cut the front bodice again.
We'll see how it goes. I'll keep you posted on the progress of the not-so-couture dress. In the meantime I'll leave you drooling over some of the items that were on display in "The Golden Age of Couture" exhibition. A Vintage lover's wet dream! The homepage of the exhibition is very nice too with lots of information on the designs and the couture houses of the time.