Fire Starters

It's fire (in the fireplace) season and being a bit of a frugalista, I'm always looking for ways to save money on our addiction. I saw this great idea while out surfing the web and wanted to share with you and walk you through how easy it is to make them. These are fire starters that I found on

They're super easy to make! We already get the Sunday paper and recycle most of it by the end of the day so now I have a little hands-on project I can do over my morning coffee.

Here's how to make your own:

Grab a page of the newspaper (I used one large folded page so really 2 pages I guess) and crumple it down making one long stick.


Start twisting and hold it tight, grab an assistant if you need some help. Twist it really really tight.

(my child is so burdened by my requests)

Fold it in half and hold the ends together in one hand . . .


... then grab the top with the other hand and you should find that the whole thing naturally wants to twist together, you shouldn't have to force it at all. If you find it doesn't want to, first try the other way, then straighten it out and begin again, this time twisting it much tighter.

Tie a length of twine or string around the end. It doesn't have to be super tight.


Admire your work.


Make a bunch more.


Now load them into a pretty bowl or basket.


Oh, and don't forget to wash your hands before you go back to relaxing on the couch.


When you want to use them to light a fire, we found it works best to load them in at the bottom (where kindling would go) and to light the open end - the one with the twine on it. I twisted mine so tight that they burn very slowly. I have no trouble getting a full fire lit on just 2 or 3 of these. That's pretty great since I'm more used to using an entire section of the paper wadded up into paper balls. Please remember that using newspaper in your fireplace does release some additional chemicals into your chimney which can build up so a good cleaning every once in awhile is in order.

Thank you for reading,


  1. I love how those turned out!  What a great idea!

  2. Julie {build, sew, reap}October 20, 2011 at 12:03 PM

    Thanks Stacey. I'm glad to find something to reduce our recycling bin load AND save some time and trouble getting fires started. Plus, I think they're cool looking.


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