I love Jennifer. I love her with all my heart and a tiny portion of my pancreas.
Jennifer is an Art of Doing Stuff reader that brought homemade firestarters to my attention. You may have seen them before. I sure hadn’t. I was familiar with store bought firestarters and pinecones dipped in wax which were a DIY craft featured on Design*Sponge a year or so ago. But for some reason I never gave them a shot. They seemed like a lot of work and I wasn’t convinced they’d do the trick.
Plus my local dollar store carries firestarters for a dollar. And when I’m at the dollar store buying firestarters I can also buy a bag of Bugles, a pair of socks and metal garbage can with all of the Muppets on it. Clearly … this gives the dollar store an advantage.
So when Jennifer asked me whether I’d tried to make my own firestarters before I thought, No. Why would I? That thought lasted approximately 2.3 seconds. And then my thought was Oh my GOD. Why, for the love of GOD have I never made my own firestarters??? WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH ME. Any normal person would be making their own firestarters. And it sounds like so much FUN!!! Pyromaniacal f-u-n!
So I made my own firestarters. There are about as many firestarter tutorials on the Internet as there are pictures of the Olsen Twins exhibiting poor posture while wearing oversized sunglasses. So I probably didn’t need to add to the gluttony of firestarter tutorials – but I did.
Take your egg carton …
Shove whatever you have on hand in the cups.
Cotton balls …
Wood chips …
Dryer lint … belly button lint …
Paper towels … sawdust …
Melt your leftover candlewax.
I found it was easiest to just drop the wax into a metal can and then put the can in a pot with an inch or so of water in the bottom of it.
Gently heat the water. It won’t take much to melt the wax.
Pour the wax over the contents of your egg carton.
If you don’t have an easily cleaned tile countertop like I do, make sure you put something underneath to protect your surface. Wax will seep through. This, by the way, is why I love my crappy old tile countertop. There is nothing I can do to hurt it. I put hot pots on it, chop on it, melt candles all over it, spill vinegar on it and sometimes even tap dance on it. In-de-structible!
Allow the wax to harden.
Once the wax has solidified break the compartments apart.
These are the best firestarters EVER.
They light with one match.
They burn long and hard. 10 minutes easily. Definitely long enough to start a fire.
Will I still buy my dollar store fire starters? Yup. They’re a dollar for the love of God. And a dollar’s worth lights about 7 fires! However, when I run out of them, as I have been known to do … I’ll always have these. PLUS, now that I know this general method words, I’ll give those pinecone fire starters a shot again.
So thank you Jennifer! From the bottom of my pancreas. Thank you.