FASHION

Petra Palumbo: It Trend, It Girl

The British socialite glams up needlepoint.


Photographer: Billal Taright

If anyone can change our perception of needlepoint, it’s Petra Palumbo. The daughter of the English baron Peter Palumbo (who used to play polo with Prince Charles) and his Lebanese wife, Hayat Morowa, Petra works at her mom’s London store, Tapisserie, which specializes in hand-painted canvases. “My aim is to encourage people to create modern, fun designs—to make needlework cool,” she says.

Palumbo, 25, was embroidering by the time she was in elementary school, and—backed by a degree from London College of Fashion and internships at Oscar de la Renta and Dior, where she worked under jewelry wiz Camille Miceli—she hopes to up the shop’s style cred through collaborations like the slippers Tapisserie recently designed for Dunhill. (Rumor has it she may soon be reuniting with Miceli, now at Louis Vuitton, for a project.) Still, needlework remains a passion as much as a business. “I do it in weird places,” says Palumbo, who often squeezes in her stitching on the subway. “But I haven’t taken it to a nightclub yet. That would be when I’d need to stop.”

Photos: Petra Palumbo: It Trend, It Girl

Carven coat, $2,200, saks.com; Gucci turtleneck, $895, gucci.com; Dsquared2 skirt, $740, Saks Fifth Avenue, 877.551.SAKS; Noor Fares gold and diamond earrings, $2,850, Bergdorf Goodman, New York, 212.753.7300. Styled by Carmen Borgonovo.

Photographer: Billal Taright

Petra Palumbo wears Gucci dress, $6,800, and boots, $1,595, gucci.com. Styled by Carmen Borgonovo.

Photographer: Billal Taright

Eddie Borgo necklace, $495, saks.com.

Peter Som dress, $1,595, petersom.com.

John Hardy gold, topaz, and sapphire earrings, $9,500, johnhardy.com; Tacori silver, quartz over hematite gemstone chain, and diamond necklace, $2,250, tacori.com.

Bottega Veneta flats, $590, bottegaveneta.com.

Isa Arfen top, $1,450, net-a-porter.com.

Marni bag, $3,600, Barneys New York, New York, 212.826.8900; Tabitha Simmons flats, $995, saks.com.

Dsquared2 jacket, $11,175, Saks Fifth Avenue, 877.551.SAKS.

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Hair by Stephen Low for Neville at ELSL Management; Makeup by Karina Constantine for Mac Cosmetics at CLM. Photography Assistant: Michael Furlonger; Fashion Assistant: Vanissa Antonious.