Easy DIY Fire Starters with Nature

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Sitting around a warm, crackling campfire is one of the great pleasures in life. Struggling to get your fire started is not. As someone who has had the experience of struggling for an hour (or more) to get a good campfire properly going, I was super excited about the idea of these DIY fire starters!

One could argue that the struggle of fire starting builds character and patience and all that. And I’m sure that’s true to a degree. But still, I’m all about finding a way to make the fire starting process a bit easier.

Not too easy, mind you. I’ll personally never partake in the method of pouring on some gasoline and lighting it up. That’s cheating. But these cute little egg cartons filled with wax and other nature bits? Why, certainly!

Not only were these DIY fire starters fun to make with my little guy, but they did indeed help us get our fire going quite quickly, even outdoors on a very cold winter day! They would also work great for a wood burning stove or indoor fireplace.

close up of DIY fire starters being held up in front of fire

It’s also quite fun to find different nature bits to fill these with. We had some pine cones laying around that we collected in the summer and evergreen left over from Christmas to use for ours.

If you don’t have much around the house already, there are quite a few things you could forage on a walk through the forest to put in these! If you want to take it in a different direction, herbs, spices, and dried flower petals also can make great additions.

Not only do these help get a flame going, but they also add a wonderful aroma as they burn! Ready to make your own DIY fire starters? Read on to see how!

Materials

There are a few base ingredients required, but after that, feel free to get creative and mix and match as you like! Here are some ideas to get you started:

assortment of pinecones, needles, matches, beeswax, and candle wicks

The egg carton will create the base for the DIY fire starters. I love this because it’s a great way to reuse them! Muffin pans with cupcake liners will also work.

The candle wicks linked above are six inches long, and I cut them into thirds to use for these.

You can use any type of candle-making wax, but I happened to have beeswax on hand. I would recommend the pellets rather than a large block as those can be difficult to cut.

Some sort of wood chips or shavings can be used for a longer-lasting burn. If you have access to your own wood chips or sawdust, feel free to use those. Otherwise, these cedar shavings can be purchased and smell wonderful!

Once you have these ingredients, the others are up to you! Since I happened to have a lot of pine around the house, we went with an evergreen theme for our DIY fire starters. I also bought a little bit of sage and rosemary to add to the aroma. This would also be nice for keeping bugs away during summer fires.

Check out this article to get inspiration for some beautiful DIY fire starters that utilize flowers and spices. These would make your home smell absolutely delicious!

Melt your wax.

pot on the stove with beeswax

Set up a double boiler on your stove. Do this by adding some water to a pot. Then place a glass or ceramic bowl that’s large enough to fit without falling in on top. Place your wax into the bowl and turn the stove on low/medium.

When the water in the pot starts to boil, the steam will melt the beeswax. Make sure to use an old bowl that you don’t care for as beeswax is nearly impossible to clean out. I saved an old, chipped bowl of my own solely for the purpose of beeswax crafts.

Fill up egg cartons.

The next step for these DIY fire starters is to fill up the egg cartons! We did this part while we waited for our wax to melt. There’s really no particular process; just take your materials and distribute everything randomly until you’ve used it all up.

boy with a tray of pine needles and pine cones
egg carton filled with pine needles and pine cones for DIY fire starters

Pour wax.

Once your egg carton is filled with everything, slowly pour wax over each hole. Each one doesn’t necessarily need to be filled to the very top. You just need enough to hold everything in place.

Messes were made 😂.

Add in candle wicks.

Trim the wicks into pieces that are two inches long. After the wax has been poured and before it completely solidifies, add in the wicks. They don’t need to completely stand up straight, but you can use the little nature pieces in the wax to prop them up a bit.

Once the wax has completely hardened, tear them apart so that you have several individual fire starters! Here’s what ours looked like when they were all finished. Almost too cute to burn, right?

Finished fire starters in egg carton

Come on baby, light my fire.

Now that your DIY fire starters are finished, it’s time to burn these bad boys! Take them outside for your next backyard campfire or use them in your wood burning stove or fireplace (if you have an old fashioned one that actually requires the use of logs).

fire starter being lit on a pile of twigs and leaves

We took ours outside on an extra cold winter day and were pleasantly surprised at the ease with which we were able to get our fire going! (Like I said before, I’ve struggled at times.)

Our little guy enjoyed helping me make these! And, of course, he loves helping build a fire and burning things. Not to mention s’mores…maybe that’s the real reason he enjoys fires so much 😂 .

boy holding up roasted marshmallow

Hope you have as much fun with these as we did! If you liked this article and want more ideas for campfires, check out these 5 ideas for the best campfire ever!

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