For over a decade now, the Textiles Society has been celebrating the emergence of promising new designers with the annual Lucienne Day Innovative Textile Design Award. With a collection of striking designers as past winners (including artisans such as Rachel Howarth and Sian O’Doherty), the Textiles Society is inviting its past winners back to celebrate Lucienne Day’s centenary at the Manchester Antique Textile Fair next month – an event that’s also deserving of celebration in its own right, as it’s now in its 25th year running. The Lucienne Day award is often crucial to emerging designers and textile graduates in Britain. “It came just at the right time” explains Rachel Howarth, “after my graduation and when funds were low, giving me the belief, opportunity and finances to realise my next project.” Having gone on to great successes in homeware and interior design, Howarth is now one of Scotland’s most exciting makers. Similarly, since winning the award textile artist Sian O’Doherty has gone on to great heights creating beautiful clothing and homeware collections handmade in her Welsh studio. Taking inspiration from the natural beauty of her home landscape combined with the rich traditional patterns and techniques of Welsh textiles, she has built a rewarding practice with unique woven and knitted fabrics for fashion and interior accessories. At the Manchester Antique Textile Fair, the Textile Society is reaching out to all past award winners to join them at the fair’s silver anniversary, celebrating their achievement in supporting textile practices throughout the decades – and as always, keeping a keen eye on the future. The Manchester Antique Textile Fair will take place on April 30th, 2017.