The gingham looks good, not as "mottled" as I thought it would. The adjustment made were:
cleaner finish on armholes- I just could not stand it so I covered the armholes with lace tape.
The pattern calls for the back to be closed with ribbon ties......I did a french seam and placket closure. I also finished the neck edge with a bias band rather than the folded over ruffle.
Finally, I think the armhole openings are too generous for a tiny girl so I plan to make a more snug fit with elastic. The classic smocking pattern is Baby Carriage by Mollie Jane Taylor and I used vintage buttons, a little over sized, for the carriage wheels. I think our little southwestern Grace will look sweet in it this spring and summer.