Esther B. King, 85, owner and operator of King Needlework Services in Washington for 22 years before her retirement in 1970, died of congestive heart failure Friday at the Carriage Hill nursing home in Arlington.

Mrs. King was born in Baltimore and moved to Washington following her marriage in 1917 to the late Louis S. King, who operated dry cleaning establishments here. She helped her husband in his business before opening her needlework shop on Connecticut Avenue in 1948.

In the years following World War II, Mr. King employed a number of refugees skilled in needlework and helped many of them get established in this country. She sold her business when she retired.

She was a charter member of the D.C. Chapter of B'nai B'rith Internatonal and was a long time member of the Connecticut Avenue Business Association.

She alwo was active in the Anti-Tuberculosis League of Israel.

Survivors include two daughters, Licien Harris of Baltimore, and Selma Fauer of West Orange, N. J.; two sons, Martin, of Arlington, and Ben, of Potamac; a brother, Milton Bergner of Astoria, N.Y., and nine grandchildren.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington.