From probate to purl: Edmonds attorney opens fiber-arts shop

Tara Roberts at her yarn shop at Salish Crossing. (Photos by Larry Vogel)

Tara Roberts, 45, has practiced law in Edmonds for several years, and still does, on a computer in the back office of her new yarn shop, Stranded by the Sea, at 176 Sunset Ave. in Salish Crossing.

“I do probate, trust and estate law so it’s flexible, no court schedules. I can still serve my client base.”

For her, combining the creative with the pragmatic is not a stretch.

“I was the child of artists who had art studios and taught art. We had an art store and we lived above it. My mom, sister and aunts are all professional artists.”

So naturally Roberts went into law. “I wanted to be an attorney since I was a little kid; it’s part of my identity,” she said. “But I was raised in an arts environment.”

Fifteen years ago, Roberts taught herself to knit with YouTube videos, later taking classes, and is currently earning a certificate in the Master Hand Knitting program of the Knitting Guild Association.

As she became increasingly interested in knitting, Roberts raised Angora rabbits, known for their lush coats. “I’d groom them and have all this wool. I went around to local shops but nobody wanted it. Then, a friend of mine who spins told me, ‘You’ll just have to learn to spin it yourself.’ That was eight years ago. And it’s all blossomed into more. The shop became the next venture.”

A member of the Northwest Regional Spinning Association, Roberts is a believer in the “sheep-to-sweater” philosophy, which values and promotes legacy skills — spinning raw wool into yarn, then using that yarn in knitting projects.

Her store carries the supplies needed, including raw wool, natural yarns, spinning wheels and spindles.

One of her pet projects will be offering a variety of classes. Starting in January, people can learn basic knitting techniques and crocheting. Roberts wants to encourage community so she’ll welcome weekly knitting and crocheting circles. In addition, Roberts plans to partner with the Bellingham group, Knitted Knockers, which creates and distributes prostheses for survivors of breast cancer.

Eventually, there will also be classes in the visual arts, a nod to her mother, Mary Huether, a retired art teacher. “She’s helping me with the store, and her sculptures and paintings are on display,” said Roberts.

Stranded by the Sea is located in Salish Crossing.
Stranded by the Sea is located in Salish Crossing.

The shop had its “soft launch” last week, but the big celebrations are yet to come. “I joined the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce and we’re having a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Nov. 30 from 11 a.m. to noon,” Roberts said. “Our grand opening is planned for Dec. 1.”

As she begins this new business while keeping her law practice going, Roberts seems to have found a way to balance both. “If the shop is successful, the law may phase out over time,” she laughed. “We’ll see.”

Stranded by the Sea
176 Sunset Ave.
Hours: Monday-Friday, 10 am.-6 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

— By Connie McDougall


  1. Fantastic, what a nice addition to our Edmonds community. So happy to see another fiber arts company coming to town.

  2. Awesome! A Little piece of Heaven on Earth! I was searching for knitting and crochet classes and found this woman! I cannot wait to begin working on my project and incorporate some artistic quality and ‘high end’ fibers into my custom pieces. Creative Time!

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