Brenda M King Prize for Critical Writing in Textiles

Brenda was committed to supporting and developing critical writing within the broad field of textiles.
This Prize is made possible with the support of her husband David King.
The Trustees of the Textile Society express their sincere gratitude for his generous donation.

The establishment of the Brenda M King Prize for Critical Writing in Textiles replaces the former Textile Society Critical Writing Award. Recipients of the Award in previous years can be viewed at the foot of the page.

The Brenda M King Prize for Critical Writing in Textiles of up to £2,000 is given for a piece of outstanding critical writing on any aspect of textiles including, but not limited to: history, dress, practice and process.

The judges are seeking previously unpublished submissions from early career researchers, established authors and students. Writing that has been submitted as part of MA, MRes, or PhD study can be considered.

The following criteria will be used to judge the writing:

  • Strength and originality of the concept under discussion;
  • Research quality and consistency;
  • Critical analysis and communication quality.

Deadline details

  • Closing date: 1 September 2024
  • New members: To submit your application by the closing date, please join by 18 August 2024 for your membership number to be activated.
  • This working period is determined by the banks, and is outside the control of the Textile Society.
  • We regret that no refunds can be issued as a result of late submissions.

Dr Melanie Miller (Lead)

Melanie is a maker, curator, writer and editor in the field of Textiles and Embroidery.

She has a degree in History from the London School of Economics, a degree in Textiles and Fashion from Manchester Polytechnic, and a PhD from Manchester Metropolitan University.

Melanie worked as an editor at Dorling Kindersley Publishing Company, and taught for over twenty years at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU)/Manchester School of Art where she was the route leader for the MA Textiles course for eight years.

Dr Vivienne Richmond

Vivienne is a textile historian, maker and mender with a PhD in History from the University of London (2004). From 2000-2020 Vivienne was, consecutively, Lecturer/Senior Lecturer/Head of Dept in the Department of History, Goldsmiths, University of London.

Vivienne is co-editor, with Marina Moskowitz, of Textile History, the journal of the Pasold Research Fund and co-editor-in-chief, with Janis Jefferies, of the forthcoming Bloomsbury World Encyclopaedia of World Textiles. Vivienne is author of Clothing the Poor in Nineteenth-Century England (Cambridge University Press, 2013.)

Helen Wolfe

Helen developed a 45 year career at the British Museum; first working in the Department of Ethnography at the Museum of Mankind and then as Textile Collection Manager, setting up the British Museum Textile Centre at Blythe House. During this time, Helen developed her knowledge and love of textiles from across the world; working with the BM textile collection and travelling widely with exhibitions and training programmes.

Helen has been Chair of the Oxford Asian Textile Group (OATG) since 2020, continuing her interest and passion for the world of textiles while contributing to British Museum projects.

You may make one application only. This should include:

  1. Online application form, submitted through your individual Textile Society membership number.
  2. A written paper of approximately 3,000 words (not including footnotes or bibliography) in PDF format (max file size 8MB).
    • The paper should be research based with a theoretical approach.
    • The paper may be accompanied by up to six good quality illustrations, fully referenced.
    • Please include an additional paragraph (maximum 300 words) explaining how the Textile Society could further your work in the future.
  3. A short CV in PDF format (max. file size 4MB).

Please submit your completed application online through your membership login page.

  1. Applicants will be notified of the outcome within three months of the closing date.
  2. Applications that have not adhered to the above criteria may not be considered.
  3. The Textile Society Committee decision is final.
  4. A working liaison with successful applicants in receipt of an award is encouraged.As such, the Textile Society should be appropriately acknowledged and the Textile Society logo should be displayed on all written material.
  5. The successful applicant will have their paper published in Text (The Textile Society Journal) and/or the applicant may be asked to give a presentation at an appropriate event.The editors of Text are happy to work with successful applicants to achieve a published outcome.
  6. By submitting images to the Textile Society the applicant grants permission for all images to be used by the Textile Society for the purposes of publicity, including, but not limited to, use on the public website and social media channels, and all other publicity material such as the Textile Society journal Text, News, posters, etc.It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all material is fully cleared for these purposes.
  7. The Textile Society journal Text is archived by the British Library.
  8. By submitting images to the Textile Society it is deemed that the applicant grants permission for all material to be archived.
  9. Enquiries: