After fitting and getting all the pieces cut out (lining, interlining, fabric), I started on the bodice outside layer first. I attached the guards using 2" red bias tape.
Also, just wanted to say I really didn't set out to copy Jen Thompson's dress http://www.festiveattyre.com/ I was using her wonderful website for guidance and in the meantime wound up getting almost the same color linen as her wool dress. I didn't plan it to happen that way. Linen was on sale for like $3.00 a yard at fabric.com and I couldn't pass it up. But the blue was the only color I liked that was usable. I tried to coordinate other colors to use for the guards but nothing worked...so that's how I ended up with a dress almost exactly like Jen's.
Here is a closeup of the linen:
I will be making bias tape out of the linen so I can bind the edges of the bodice together and make it nice and neat looking...this should be an experience.