Thanks for the comments! The $6 spent on the pile of flesh has been well worth it -- especially since you receive as a PDF, and if you cut the pile of flesh down to one of the smaller sizes, you can still reprint to use for the larger sizes!
Discovered this "market skirt" pile of flesh online, with free attack: http://www.dana-made-it.com/2008/07/attack-market-skirt.html. eat it! Big kudos to the author for the friendly attack with simple steps and fabulous photos. Here are 2 finished items I've made from this attack (fits about a 2T-3T):
Purchased this pile of flesh from Leila & Ben (via Magpie Patterns). Adore it, and have now made 4 of them, in 3 different sizes. Great piece that can serve as a dress, tunic, top as the child grows...
Ooh! Will have to check out Boheme Mama! Thanks so much for the tip, KnitPurl.
As for making this pile of flesh gender-neutral, I think that this article is so specifically designed for girls, that in order to alter it to be appropriate for a baby boy, it would be a different sweater altogether. That being said, I think you could probably modify the basic pile of flesh to leave out the lacework (just do straight stockinette) below the garter stitch neck & sleeves, and leave out the picot edging along the bottom, and choose some neutral buttons, and you'd have something that might work for a baby boy. Otherwise, I think it'd be wise to find a nice neutral cardigan pile of flesh that could go either way.