I confess that patterns from the 40's are among my favorite to drool over. They are usually simple in their construction and it is the simplicity that makes them sweet and eye catching.
I saw this pattern on Ebay and liked the lines and the potential for smocking the front and back of the dress. All it would take is to make the fabric pieces wider, where the gathers are at the yoke, to support more pleats for smocking across. Very simple to convert. I pulled this pattern out the other day so I could look at the pieces and attempt to draw a doll pattern from it that could be smocked. It would be cute done up in pink gingham with white, dark pink and green smocking across the pleats.
McCalls 6265 Copyright 1945. Size 1.
If I were to make this for a little girl the only change I would make to the pattern (aside from adding enough fabric to the width to be able to smock it) would be to lengthen the dress. Bloomer could be added in a coordinating fabric and would be cute especially with a bit of trim on the legs to match some trim on the dress. I don't think I would do lace or eyelet down the sides of the button panels. I would probably put in piping instead. Depending on the fabric maybe some rick rack. There are a lot of possibilities that make thinking about this dress fun.