I've never done a black quilt before and that was a personal challenge for me that had nothing to do with the contest rules. Besides being limited to only using colors found in the challenge fabric, the quilt had to be 40" square and contain at least one "square in a square" block.
After I'd pulled my matching fabrics, I just started making blocks - at this point, not having a real plan or design in mind. These are 4" paper pieced blocks I drafted on EQ7.
I decided to hand quilt this due to the design element I wanted to add.
Once I started placing the bright blocks around the center, I realized that I couldn't completely surround the center medallion - which had been my first thought. So I shadow quilted the remaining border with the square in a square design using different colored thread to mimick the actual blocks. I hope you can click on these to enlarge them to see how pretty the different colors look. I added small bits of piping for color interest and the gold border finishes at 1/4" (cut 3/4"). It's such an intense color I didn't want too much contrast with the black.
The fabric I picked for the basket lent itself perfectly to be quilted along the lines and it looks woven. Remember that each fabric had to be present in the challenge fabric to be used. Most of these came from my stash and the guild free table - how fun is that??!