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Sunday, November 24, 2013

Wintertime QuickCraft®: Fire Starters!

It looks like those GingerSnaps lucky enough to have a wood-burning fireplace will get a lot of use from it this year, if the beginning of winter is any indication of its intensity! Miss Ginger's indoor fireplace is push-button gas, which is convenient and cozy, but it doesn't really satisfy her pyromania like a real wood-burner, so she keeps an outdoor chimenea stoked on the patio for the times she can't resist the firebug! 

Whether your fireplace is indoors or out, and whether you are at home or out camping around an open fire, here is a little craft idea that will make starting a fire (on purpose!) a cinch! Just follow her steps carefully, so you don't start a fire before you want one! If you don't have a fireplace, you could still make these as a thoughtful gift for someone who does! It's a total up cycle, so the cost is virtually nil! 

You'll need some coarse sawdust, a paper egg carton (foam won't work) and some wax. Miss Ginger saves the ends and crumbs of candles throughout the year, and adds them to any "strangely scented" candles she may have acquired. If you don't have enough "candle leavings" you can buy a box of wax in the canning section at your grocery store, but that kind of defeats the purpose of an up cycle, no? 



Melt your wax in a double boiler, or an old, clean can floating in a pot of boiling water.  An old metal coffee pot from a garage sale is a great pot for melting wax because it has a handle and spout to facilitate pouring! 







While your wax is melting, begin packing the sawdust into the individual cells of the egg carton.  Miss G tears the top off and use it as a little tray under the bottom to help catch the overflow, but you want to make sure you protect your work surface with several layers of paper to catch spills and soak-through.




Once the wax is melted, carefully pour it over the sawdust, filling each cell with wax.  It will take a lot, because the paper carton will also soak up a lot of wax! 









When the wax is completely cooled and hardened, break apart the cells to create individual starters.  You can make simple gifts by tying them up in a cello bag with some festive ribbon, or fancy ones by nestling them into a bed of sawdust in a small crate or box.





These cute little fire starters  light quickly and reliably with a match or lighter, and because they are coated in wax, they will work rain or shine! 



3 comments:

mrs.missalaineus said...

we made little stoves in girl scouts with a similar project- rolled up cardboard tight and then put it in a tuna can, it relaxed enough to have some space between the spirals and then we poured in wax, and let it harden- instant canned heat!

xxalainaxx

mistress maddie said...

push-button gas? Oh, you mean the stove hon? This will be a great gift to take camping next year for my hosts to get the fire started.

Beth said...

That's a great idea, and it sounds simple enough!

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