Use a light gray marker to go around the entire outside of the image (Sahara Sand used here). Hint: Be careful not to over do this, just a very light halo around your image. Read more: http://www.splitcoaststampers.com/resources/tutorials/markerlayering/
To begin you'll need a fairly thick acetate (for this I've used 0.18); your embossing folder of choice; I tend to prefer the sizzix ones as they give a deeper press but I have used a cuttlebug one too; you just need to be a bit more careful when removing the paint. Acrylic paint, paintbrush, baby wipes, kitchen towel and an acrylic block. And of course something to emboss with such as a vagabond, cuttlebug etc.