Thanks for the nice comments, both here and in other forums.
I've got to give a ton of credit to the designer, Laura J. Perin. When I took this class, the teacher came up with four colorways and I came up with mine which was the fifth. We also got to see it stitched with mostly the original called for materials and had one other stitched version available to us in a totally different colorway. This means I have now seen this piece stitched with the:
light green/sage green
blue to teals
green and red
and my black version
And every one of them works! Though it takes a certain knowledge and eye to substitute colors, the reason this works is the design itself.
Anyone who would like to see more Laura J. Perin works check out her blog, Two Handed Stitcher, or Coni's blog, Spinster Stitcher, in my sidebar.