I needed a dress for Melbourne cup last year so I did a pattern mash up to get exactly what I wanted. Betty Draper eat your heart out!
I bought up some lovely printed cotton from Spotlight, one of their vintage reproduction fabrics with yellow roses on it. I bought about 5 metres of it because it was on sale, I loved it, and any 1950′s style dress takes up a hell of a lot of fabric. I had an idea of what I wanted to make up but I didn’t actually have a pattern that matched it directly, so it was mash up time! I used the bodice of Simplicity 1873 but grafted it so it had a higher neck and a lower back finish. I then used a gathered skirt pattern from Vogue 8723. I also took a sleeve pattern from unfortunately I dont know where. My memory has quickly faded. Most shirt sleeves from a shirt pattern would do the trick. I bought white cotton voille to line the bodice and kept the sleeves unlined.
It was quite easy to pull the different pattern pieces together. What made it easy was that it had a gathered skirt which can adjust to how you want it to the bodice. There’s no matching seams, darts or pleats. I did add about an inch to the skirt bottom so it fell under the knee. Adding the sleeves was a little trickier so that required a couple of fittings as I went along. I opted to have the zipper go down the side seam rather than back as I was a bit concerned that having lowered the back it might end up gaping at the top of a zipper. By having it on the side it is well hidden.
More pics on my blog: http://www.bobbinandbaste.com/2013/08/yellow-roses/