With a great surge of relief, I have met the challenge--my misguided stack-and-whack project is redeemed, and passed along to a happy new owner! I have to say all horror has been eliminated--it's charming! Many thanks to all who participated in its transformation.
The back was fun to work out--I decided on yellow, and since this is a scrap project, I searched my stash, but was disgruntled to find that my existing piece was not long enough. I was forced to buy another piece of yellow, and set the two checkerboard style to echo the front a bit, with a strip of scrap rectangles to add some color and focus.
The back and front are layered with batting pieced together from extra pieces of Warm and Natural--I loosely zigzagged the edges of the off-cuts together. It seemed the quilting should be curved and organic to contrast with the angular design of the top, so I quilted giant sunflowers in the center of each block, surrounded by leafy vines. The outer border is also quilted in a vine pattern.
The binding makes me very happy! I found a striped piece in my stash in just the colors needed--you have to love a striped binding.
Joy-joy is the happy new owner, and requests a small matching quilt for her beloved stuffed panda--I hope to find my scraps and just by-pass the horror phase.