28 December, 1962 – 29 June, 2021
Tara Kiley-Rothwell passed away June 29,2021 after spreading light, color and positivity amongst her family, friends and and kindred spirits in her world of weaving and fiber arts.
Tara was born in Cincinnati, OH on December 28, 1962 to Charles V. Schwallie and Patricia Schwallie(Kiley). The youngest of three siblings by 12 years, and as her older brothers Gary and Bob were off to college, she excelled in school and after experiencing foreign exchange studies in Denmark graduated from Princeton HS in Cincinnati in 1981.She met her best friend Linda Malcziewski (Speidel) in 3rd grade and they have sustained each other through long separations of time and geography for the past 50 years. She developed her interest in hand crafts knitting and cross stitch early in life which inspired her later artistic passions.
Post high school she attended the University of Wisconsin Madison graduating in 1985 and was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority. She continued developing her sense of style in the decade of colorful fashion (and hair) and evolving her musical preferences from Bobby Sherman and Barry Manilow to The Police, Van Halen and her all time fave Michael Stanley. Just before going off to college, she met the love of her life, Michael Rothwell and they were married in 1986, living in Cincinnati. She had early forays into banking and the travel industry, but then focused on raising their two sons and immersing herself into supporting their educational and athletic endeavors. Seeing them succeed and mature was her greatest pleasure.
As Mike’s career advanced, they moved to Pennsylvania and as the boys were furthering their education and careers, she began developing and exploring her long suppressed interest in weaving. After being taught traditional weaving by her beloved mentor Tom Knisely, she was inspired to explore her own creative spirit and began studying and training in the art of SAORI weaving, traveling to Japan to learn and receive certification as a SAORI nstructor from SAORI no mori in order to pursue her dream of having her own studio to share this creativity and art form with others.. This dream was realized and Kite Tales SAORI Weaving Arts Studio was opened in late 2016 and gave Tara tremendous joy, not just from the art but from the deep connection she felt with many students.
Tara was very active in the Lancaster Spinners and Weavers Guild, the Central Pennsylvania Handweavers Guild, Mid Atlantic Fiber Associationand the annual Sheep-to-Shawl competition at the Pennsylvania Farm Show in 2018, 2019, and 2020. She introduced Saori weaving to that event for the first time in 2018.
Tara was preceded in death by her beloved mother Patricia Schwallie(Kiley) of Cincinnati, OH and oldest brother Gary L. Schwallie of Centennial, CO.
She is survived by her loving husband of 34 years, Michael Rothwell. Also she is survived by her dear sons, Dylan Rothwell and his partner Lizzy Kosin of Washington DC, and Liam Rothwell and his partner Hailey Alvey of Flagstaff, AZ. She is survived by and will be forever missed by her brother Robert Schwallie and his wife Deborah Schwallie(Bailey) of Camp Verde, AZ and Cincinnati, OH. She passed peacefully surrounded by her loving family and friends.
Her spirit, inspirational attitude, and ever present smile and laughter will be missed by the many friends, neighbors, colleagues and students whose lives were touched by hers.
Celebrations of her life and memory will be planned in the near future as will plans for furthering her interest and passion for SAORI weaving .
Go to studio website: kitetaleshandweaving.com
Condolences: Neill Funeral Home Camp Hill PA www.dignitymemorial.com
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Liza Q Wirtz
23 August 2021
Tara was marvelous. The world is a little darker for her absence.
I met Tara online in 2018, when I became part of an ongoing SAORI weaving conversation on Facebook of which she was an integral component, and in person in 2019, when we co-sponsored a weaving retreat in the mountains of North Carolina with several other SAORI weavers. She was immensely creative and interested in everything, and she had a smile that lit the room, whether that room was at an Episcopal camp or driven by Zoom.
I miss her.
16 August 2021
Dear Mike and the family,
I am sorry for this late response. Please accept my sincere condolences. I am truly sorry for your loss.
I just received the card back that I sent to you several weeks ago. I sent it to the address of the studio. I guess that you might have closed it.
I've met Tara at the SAORI conference in GA in 2014. I was not her close friend, however, as a SAORI sister I 've been feeling as if we were working together for sharing the same values and introducing SAORI to others in communities. I remeber her big smile and enthusiasm about SAORI.
I wish you strength and faith through this difficult time.
2 August 2021
I had the pleasure of travelling with Tara to Saorinomori in Osaka, Japan in 2018. She was my fearless leader; navigating us through airports and train stations and keeping things light with her sense of humour ( and her patience with me bringing way too much luggage!). She was the epitome of optimism and I am so sorry I won't have another adventure with her. My sympathies go out to Mike and the family. Tara is missed.
30 July 2021
Our entire team at Sakaiseikisangyo Co., Ltd. would like to express our deepest sympathies and gratitude for Tara and her years of contribution and irreplaceable presence within the global SAORI community. We fondly remember the precious and heartwarming moments we shared with her, her smiles and thoughtful words of care and understanding. We believe that she brightened the spirit and life of so many other people who interacted with her. She will be missed, and we will continue our journey holding her creative and positive spirit in our hearts.
With gratitude for Tara Kiley-Rothwell and her presence within the SAORI community,
SAORI Global – International Division
Sakaiseikisangyo Co., Ltd.
22 July 2021
Tara was so empowering for the many of us who worked and played with her. She taught the participants on the Red Tomato Farm he love of weaving and we will forever be grateful for her presence in our lives.
9 July 2021
I spend 3 days of intense learning and weaving with Tara several years ago. She was a wonderful teacher, patient and very creative. She was so generous with her knowledge and enthusiasm....absolutely perfect for the Saori spirit.
I always hoped I would have another chance to learn from her and was deeply saddened to learn of her passing.
Thank you, Tara, for the many gifts you shared with me. May your generosity and positivity serve as a guiding light to others.
Jacquelyn (Hatch) Howard
7 July 2021
Tara holds a special place in my memory of our times at Princeton High. I was recently in Cincinnati and had the pleasure of seeing two dear friends that I know from PHS. And like, Tara, I was blessed to have a friend since third grade (Tara’s is Linda Spiedel, mine is Natasha (Jones) McDougle) who are also wonderful classmates.
The way Tara sought her life’s joy through weaving is amazing. I loved reading about that.
To the Kiley and Rothwell family, please know that Tara touched others and made them feel better because she did. She’ll be fondly remembered. So please honor her and take the time to share her stories so that she continues to inspire others beyond today.
Much love and respect,
Jacquelyn (PHS class of ‘81).
7 July 2021
I remember Tara when she lived in Sharonville, her boys swam on the swim team with my boys. We also had the Princeton connection. Prayers of peace to her family and friends.
6 July 2021
So many find memories of Tara from grade school at Evendale elementary. My mother was friends with Tara’s mother at Bethesda North Hospital and I became friends with her brother Bob from working at Christ Hospital Emergency Department. My deepest condolences for her family and loved ones. I pray your hearts be filled with comfort and fond memories.
6 July 2021
I would like to express my deepest sympathy to Tara’s family and friends.
I met Tara through the Mid-Atlantic Fiber Association. She was just a bright beacon of positivity! Tara’s enthusiasm, kindness and talent for Saori weaving was infectious. Honestly, if I hadn’t met Tara, I probably would have given up my dream of Saori weaving. I will forever be grateful for her encouragement, her willingness to share her knowledge with others. Tara helped me set-up a Saori loom at my library. We had a wonderful afternoon! Even though I only met Tara a few times in person, I felt like I knew her for years.
Tara’s memory will live on through everyone she has mentored and inspired!
Sending prayers and loving thoughts...
Kenilworth Public Library
6 July 2021
My deepest condolences to Mike, Dylan, Liam and Tara’s family.
Tara and I became friends when we were 6 years old and our friendship was the longest I've ever had. We grew up together and shared many, many experiences from elementary through high school, plus the years in college and well beyond. Her wit and humor were one of a kind, and more than once her common sense helped me tremendously. I have Tara to thank for her musical tastes rubbing off on me and also taking into account views from other perspectives. Her constant positivity towards life and generous spirit touched many lives, and I am grateful to have known her for so long. She was a tremendous friend.
I will miss you Tara.
6 July 2021
Tara, your family and friends will miss your person terribly.
Tara’s dear friend Deborah introduced me to her many years ago and Tara shared her weaving expertise by making rugs for us out of old T-shirt’s. I enjoyed connecting with her on her design concepts.
We live in Baltimore and when Deb would host a gathering and we were not sure if we wanted to make the drive, Deb would say, “Tara will be here.” That was like a lure for us.
Tara, I hope you could discern and feel how wondrous you are. I am sorry for those who really knew you; if I am sad by your passing, I know others are crushed.
May perpetual light shine upon you.
4 July 2021
I first met Tara when her and I were bridesmaids at the wedding of my brother Jerome to Linda. Throughout the years I always heard about all the fun and creative adventures of Tara and her family. I always admired her creativity, sense of style and zest for life. Tara had the best laugh I have ever heard, her mere presence would radiate happiness and her smile would light up a room.
My deepest condolensces to Mike, Dylan and Liam for the loss of a wonderful Wife and Mother and to Linda for the loss of your dear life long friend!
You are all in my prayers,
4 July 2021
Tara was the very first person to introduce me to weaving in her lovely studio. A friend and I spent a perfect afternoon being introduced to Saori, which started me on a wonderful weaving journey that continues to this day. I loved that she took weaving put of the studio, pulling her looms outside to weave under the sun. Her bright, colorful spirit and energy will be missed.
Barb and Frank Jones
3 July 2021
What a beautiful testimony of life, dreams and accomplishments that Tara fulfilled to make a difference in the lives of others. A legacy of memories is a priceless gift that cannot be bought. You've earned your wings Tara, so fly high girl.
Sharon Appelman (Guckiean)
2 July 2021
We are so sorry for your loss. I grew up on the street in Evendale with the family listening to music downstairs babysitting Tara. I still have Gary's James Brown album collection. I ran into Tara at the UC/Wisconsin game. Those were great times. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all! The Guckieans
2 July 2021
So very sorry for the loss of a dear friend. Mark alway referred to Tara as “the little sister of his friend, Bob. “ When Tara and her family moved into the same Cincinnati neighborhood, we quickly became friends. Our families shared many good times together. Tara had an infectious laugh and always made you feel loved. Upon her relocation to PA, our lives were separated by distance, but friendship always remained. We will miss you.
Connie Mark Spencer Grant Annie
2 July 2021
I am so sorry to hear of Tara’s passing. I met Tara when she introduced my 4th grade students to the art of weaving. She was so passionate about her craft yet so patient with my students. I looked forward to her returning year after year. She had a bright, creative light that was infectious to everyone who interacted with her. She will be missed!
2 July 2021
I am so sorry for your loss…
I met Tara as a Saori instructor at MAFA. She was a kind and warm hearted individual who was thrilled to share her passion and knowledge in this form of weaving- “there is no such thing as a mistake”. She was such a ray of positive energy that touched all who came in contact with her.
1 July 2021
Tara is and will forever be my dear friend, my mentor, my Pennsylvania momma, my inspiration. She was an amazing woman that pushed you to dare to live your most authentic, nontraditional, break the rules while smiling life.
Tara, I love you and will hold you in my heart forever and a day...and yes, I will always remember to use all the colors. Xoxo my dear friend.
30 June 2021
Tara was one of the loveliest and most unique ladies I ever had the honor to have known. She will be greatly missed.
30 June 2021
I met Tara through weaving. She was such a welcoming caring person with lots of fun and funny quips to share. She had such passion for her art and was happy to share her knowledge with everyone. I am so sorry for your loss.
Central PA Guild