A designer should always work 6 months or more in advance of the season they are in and I have yet to master the art of thinking that far ahead. That being said I have come up with a couple of designs for party dresses for the quickly approaching holiday season and one of my inspirations is Leisl's dress from the Sound of Music.
What I'm going to borrow from this dress is the bodice that stops at the natural waist and the full skirt. The sleeves are clearly way out of date so those will go but some ribbon straps will do.
I think it is the gathered chiffon on the bodice with the ribbon creating the cinching that makes this dress so feminine and endearing.