I made some fire starters (the white ones) and some just fire scents (red & green). The firestarters have wicks, which slowly burn down to help start the fire. The fire scents are just wax covered pinecones with no wick, that are just thrown in an already lit fire for a nice smell. Read on!
Wax (I used paraffin wax, but any kind will do, including old candles)
candle scent (liquid or solid)
candle coloring (liquid or solid)
aluminum can and old pot
an old towel and old potholder
wicks, if making firestarters
twist-ties, if making fire scents
Before beginning, cover your work surface with an old towel. Dried wax is a pain to clean off your stove and countertops, trust me!
Next, make in improvised double boiler (so you don't get your good one all waxy). An aluminum can in an old thrift store pot is the way to go. Add about 2 inches of water. Chop up the wax and add to the can. If you want to work on more than one color or scent at a time, add more cans as needed.
As the wax is melting, add wicks or twisties to your pinecones.
For the firestarters, wrap a wick around the pinecone in a spiral as if you are putting lights on a Christmas tree, bottom to top, and make sure to leave a tail at the top (about 2 inches)
For the fire scents, just wrap a twist tie at the very top.
They should look something like this:
Give your pinceones a dunk, let them drip, and set them on aluminum foil on your towel to cool. As the wax cools, it will thicken significantly. If the wax cools enough to form a film on the top, that's ok. Just skim it off or stir it in and keep going. Cooler wax makes thicker layers, so you don't have to dunk it as many times. If you are not seeing a noticeble difference between dunks, wait a few more minutes and try again.
Sprite helped too. Just make sure your helpers know not to touch the can. It stays hot!
After you're happy with them, go ahead and cut the twist ties off as low as you can. For the firestarters with wicks, trim them to about 1/2 inch.
With the leftover wax, I made a candle by pouring it into an empty candle holder and adding a wick. After it cools completely, you will need to add a little more wax because it will shrink down in the center. (You can see a white firestarter cooling in the background. Somehow the white ones were camera shy).
Now they just need to be wrapped up all pretty!