Here at Twisted Towers, we like to help you prepare for all sorts of predicaments.
Possibly, this urge is the result of my upbringing by the Twisted Seniors, who insisted that I master two life skills before my childhood could be considered complete. (They’re forward-thinking people, my parents.) Specifically, my mother taught me to remove my bra whilst still wearing my top, and my father taught me to gargle the William Tell Overture. Yeah, there was also half-hearted reference to other stuff about riding a bike, rewiring a plug, and saying no to drugs, but it was mostly about the musical gargling and the bra-removal.
I can only assume that when my mother first realized she was pregnant, she sat down with my father for an earnest conversation about their shared values, and about the sort of human being they intended to contribute to this world. “No child of mine,” my father doubtless insisted, thumping his fist on the table,* “will leave this house without being able to offer comedy renditions of Rossini’s operatic works”. (My father is a man of principle.) And so at a young age, I was taught to gargle William Tell.
Yes, I do still retain both of these life skills.
No, I will not be offering any public demonstrations.
Yes, I can also ride a bike, rewire a plug, and say no to drugs, if necessary all at the same time.
Anyway, back to the matter of this post, and to preparing for unanticipated predicaments. I do sometimes – not all the time, but sometimes – worry about how dreadful it would be if you were to look up from your knitting/crochet and decide that the mantelpiece/shelves/prison-bars (delete as appropriate) in front of you were looking a bit too dull. Because I’ve been there and I’ve done that and it’s Not Good. So just in case it helps you out a tiny bit, I’ve written a pattern for some little crocheted Moroccan-inspired lanterns that you can hang in a line across your hearth/bookcase/cell, and thus make the place a tad cheerier. They’re quick and easy to make, but I now have a houseful of the wretched things as I went through a gazillion prototypes before arriving at the final version.
Talking of the work that went in to creating this design, in the interests of ruthlessly exploitative capitalism I do need to levy a small charge for the pattern (£0.96), because y’know the multi-billion-pound yacht of my unrealistic fantasies ain’t going to commission itself. But if you NEED this pattern and you’re seriously short of pennies (or you’re incarcerated in the aforementioned prison cell after a series of ill-advised life-choices, and find yourself using your limited financial resources to pay off the resident hard-nut on your wing), then drop me a line and I’ll send you the pattern for free. Because I’d hate to think of anyone needlessy suffering a bare mantelpiece this Christmas.
The lanterns are quick to make, and you can add a hint of flames inside using sparkly yarn. This may not be perfectly realistic, but it is 100% less likely to burn your house down than real fire.
The yarn is DK-weight Stylecraft Special, so these lanterns are affordable as well as easy to create. Fancy ordering the pattern? It’s available from my Ravelry shop (yes I know that some of you aren’t on Ravelry), and the link is here: Or you can visit my Ravelry shop here, to find a mixture of knitting and crochet patterns, most of which are free. 🙂 Happy hooking, people!
You always give me such great laughs! Thank you so much for that; your columns are a delight, in addition to great yarns inspiration! Lanterns are adorable????
My wrists are causing knitting hiatus for the present, so this is particularly special today ????
The Twisted Yarn says
Thank you so much, but dodgy wrists interrupting knitting is the stuff of nightmares. Wishing you perfect, pain-free, health, VERY soon.
Awwww, they’re cute! I didn’t learn a thing from my parents other then how not to do so. So gargling Willem Tell and pulling of your bra with Tee on is a life skill I never learned. Concerning your sense of humor and your way you live they did well. I love them without knowing them. Thank goodness there were my grandparents to learn me some basic skills. And loved me a lot so I did end well. My fathers father taught me math and how to love without reservation, she taught me crochet and knitting and many other skills. From all four grandparents I inherited my biting sense of humor which my sons inherited and use too. I do have to find a place for this bunting. You love that in the UK do you ;>p
The Twisted Yarn says
I’m sorry that your parents weren’t all that they could or should have been, but I’m VERY glad that you had grandparents who cared and nurtured you. And a biting sense of humour is a pretty awesome thing, both to inherit and to pass on to your sons.
Linda Ellis Peck says
You are so funny and marvelous! I love this little pattern and will order on Ravelry. Thanks for the fun times!
The Twisted Yarn says
And thank YOU for generosity in words and purchases.
Rebecca Eveland says
Your parents sound so very special. Consider yourself fortunate. Thanks bunches for the lantern bunting pattern. Was wondering what I was going to hang on our new mantel this year. Problem solved; and, I have leftover Stylecraft yarn from other projects, so this is perfect. Thanks for a wonderfully inexpensive Christmas gift.
The Twisted Yarn says
Glad to be of assistance! (I have to be nice about my parents as at least one of them reads here. 😉 I’m genuinely grateful for these two life-lessons, though.)
Your site can’t be reached this-morning (in Australia it’s morning): any idea why ? – cache won’t resolve.
Normally I never use the Reader – I consider it rude not to actually visit. But needs must.
Having a dear friend in Marrakech at this very minute, I would love to be able to reach the blog …
The Twisted Yarn says
Eek. Erm. Um. I sincerely wish that I could offer some techy wisdom here. Um. I know you shouldn’t have to, but have you tried on more than one device? If so, please tell me and I’ll contact my lovely friend who understands technological stuff.
Denise Fordyce says
I’m reading it from central Victoria in Oz so it must have fixed itself!
Only my laptop is connected to the Internet, so can’t test. But all other blog posts came through fine.
The message is “This site can’t be reached. thetwistedyarn.com took too long to respond”.
Has your ISP maybe slowed you down because of excess usage by your fans ? 😀
Jean Kapcia says
What wise parents you have Phil! I love your blog and your skills. Please, please write a book – surely you can squeeze it in between knitting, crochet, running, gardening and a heavy dose of mothering/wifeing/clinical psychologing? The yacht fund would grow faster too, even more quickly if you vlogged your gargling and bra-extraction-without-removing-your-top skills…ok, maybe just the William Tell part in Part 1 then…
Off post-haste to Ravelry now to buy this lovely pattern – I need lanterns in my life????????????????????
Maggie Bullock says
My first morning coffee, in the garden, has been made even more enjoyable as I read your blog. You may have grandgirls to pass this bra removing with your top on skilll to, as I have done to my girls and my grandhirls. After a hard days slog you just have to let the girls go free. However, as for the gargling ect skill, I’m afraid I’d drown in listerene, so I’ve been remiss in that area. I thank you for sharing your little slice of life with me, I’m off to have my second morning coffee. Oh, and the pattern is gorgeous and very well timed. xx
Lynda Scott says
I have just purchased the lanterns pattern on paypal.
But now I cant find it!
Could you send it again?
Cant wait to start.
Naima Iqbal says
Prison cell? 🤣🤣🤣Yep that sounds like bad marriage choices to me 😂😂. Hilarious. Love it 👏👏
The lanterns look very cute, but thanks especially for the great guffaws! ????
Your blog is such a delight to read! A mixture of inspiration, creativity all wrapped up with humor. I am currently in tears from laughing so hard reading this particular post! You also have me wanting to run out and purchase a mantle to put up in my house!!! (no room for one, sadly, so if I ever get done with my Christmas knitting I’ll have to make some for my curtain rods or something) Thank you so very much for sharing and Happy Holidays!
They are very pretty but the wardens won’t allow them. Bah humbug !
Postcard from Gibraltar says
Oh I do love your posts, thank you for making me smile. Lovely little lanterns…
Beautiful. Also, they could be adapted by careful choice of colour and making the ‘nose cone’ a little longer into delightful little rockets! A lovely post again; thank you.
Kath Stepjenson says
Your post did make me laugh and I love the little lanterns! I would love to look at your Ravelry page but can’t find you.
I learned the bra-thing all by myself – but I will have to check out the gargling later tonight! maybe I do have a hidden talent to be found rather late in life?:) anyway, I really like the little lanters – and maybe (will have to try that out as well – but not tonight:) a little battery driven tealight would work inside? will let you know how that one works out – once I have finished all the christmas presents and managed to make at least one lantern to test…. thanks for a fun blog entry in the meantime!
Nola Flamingo says
I downloaded the pattern a few days ago. I making my first lantern today using UV reactive yarns. I am using a 5 mm hook to make the lanterns slightly larger so I can put LED Tea lights in center of the lanterns.
I wanted to let you know of a possible typo in instructions. On page 1- last line, when decreasing from 24 sts to 18 sts shouldn’t the instruction be: >Ch 1, (sc2tog TBL, sc TBL into next 2 sts) 5 times…. [into next 2 sts] is missing and the same typo at in Photo Tutorial section.
Born To Organize says
You always leave my smiling, Phil. It’s a gift!
Your pattern is festive and fun and leaves me feeling upbeat somehow.