To start off, here are some interesting process shots which show the progression of the embroidery work for a piece I called "Rune Collar" which I did for a client many years back. Stretched on a 24 inch hoop the white linen base fabric has the design drawn on it. The framework for the collar is gold cord which was couched into place. Then each rune gets a padding of cord to give it extra dimension. Once that is done, the rune is embroidered by couching rayon cord into place. Then the background for each section is covered with cupped sequins worked face down to create a slightly padded look. The whole collar was finished with the bead swags and antique crescent moon sequins, which was worked separately and added at the end.
This piece is called "Joy Mandala". It' embroidered with wood, glass, plastic and metal beads, stampings, and sequins. It took roughly 80 hours to complete. It makes me smile, each time I see it, which was naturally, the point.