Wow that is an incredible dress (and you are one brave person to make it for someone else).
I'm curious about the pleating over the bust, how are the pleats sewn so that there is room for the bust, are they just sewn at the top and bottom, or did you shape them, or what? I'm really curious as it is a gorgeous effect, and I can't quite envision how it was completed.
It was slow and complicated, lots and lots of pinning, checking, repeating...lol. I basically sewed the first few pleats, then I would place it on the manequin and adjust to fit. I would baste a pleat in, check it on the dummy, then sew it completely. Measurements aren't everything, it was what looked good to the eye. I started with a basic pleat size, but had to fudge it here and there so the pleat near the zipper was the same size. Here are some in progress pictures. The pleats are just tacked along the top, allows for movement.