Definitely this pattern has room for variations. I think it would look wonderful with a lace pattern or a textured pattern. Just keep in mind that sometimes these patterns knit up to a different gauge than stockinette. You have to fudge in increases or decreases if the new variation is of a different gauge.
For example, patterns with crossover stitches or cabling will constrict a bit. Patterns with lace techniques like yarnovers will 'bloom' a bit bigger.
Just something to keep in mind. Mind you a bit of blooming at the edge of that cardigan is not a bad thing