I really like that pattern, I think I'll give it a go...what's one more project ONT? LOL
Once you've made it I think you'll be able to play around and make some changes, but part of it's charm is the garter stitch IMHO, as mentioned above.
Cheating is an option. . . . Cheaters never win and winners never cheat, but smart knitters who want to retain an iota of sanity do, cheerfully. ~~Kory Stamper