I'm happy to report that I decided on a lay-out for the Noah quilt. It's along the "crazy quilting" line with some appliqué thrown in.
I will appliqué the animal in pairs - it's the Arch after all, then quilt in overlapping circles around each pair. Hopefully, this will be all the quilting that's needed so that the back will be one solid piece of fabric with quilted circles. The animals, one boat and one Noah will be appliqué-ed onto the dark blue fabric, whereas the sun and wave patterned fabric will be used for patches without any appliqué, symbolising the sky and the sea. The border will be made up of the border fabric shown and the whole thing will be 100 cm * 150 cm.
Now I have to take my design to the copy shop, blow it up to 685% of the original ... hm, not really feasible. So: blow up to 137%, copy it once, cut out the individual patches, blow those up to 500% so that I have the templates to start cutting. (What would I do without Excel?!?)