Thanks for the feedback ya'll! Here is the thinking sketches I promised runningwithscissors
: (warning: I am a new sewer also, so my "tutorial" might not make any sense.)
The top is three pattern pieces: front left and right, and back, cut 2nd time for lining. Trace neck-line for borders; sew to neckline before attaching lining.
The midriff/tie is 2 long piece of fabric cut to desired length and attached right side together, then flipped right side out, and finish the ends.
The skirt part is made of 2 pieces of rectangular fabric, gathered and joined at the sides, then join the midriff to the skirt and then the two to the top.
The measurements on the sketch is for my dress so you would have to make your own measurements. Sorry, if I am not being clear enough!
also as an option, i could make the image bigger and place a link here so anyone who wants to see it can choose to load it.