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How to Make Shredded Paper Fire Logs

Suzanne Alicie

A fireplace is a lovely part of your home. In the search for ways to recycle and reuse items, as well as save trees, it has been discovered that a cheap and easy way to make your own fire logs exists. Reuse all of your old newspapers and make shredded paper fire logs that will burn for as long as a regular log and will give off heat and pretty flames as well. This process takes time, but with a big stack of paper you can make several logs at one time, and when they are ready you can use them as you would a regular log.

  1. Shred a stack of newspapers. The easiest way to do this is to run them through a shredder, but you can also use scissors if you like. Don't include colorful glossy ads; use just the regular newsprint.

  2. Spread a length of cheesecloth out that measures the length you want your log to be. If it looks like a lot don't worry; it is better to have too much than too little.

  3. Mix the shredded newspapers with water until they are soft. The paper will start to break down and will form a texture similar to paste. As with paste, the paper should be a thick concoction; if it is too runny add more paper. You will notice that what seemed to be a large pile of paper looks much smaller once it is soaked.

  4. Use your hands to form the paper paste into a log shape on the cheesecloth. If it is the right consistency it will hold the shape fairly well.

  5. Wrap the cheesecloth around the log and tie twine around it in 4-inch intervals. Be sure to tie the ends off as well.

  6. Place the logs in a dry warm area for several weeks, turning them every few days so that they dry all the way around and through.

  7. Unwrap a log and squeeze it, the log should be firm and hard, with no cold spots that indicate wetness inside. If it is not yet ready, rewrap it and place it back to dry for a few more days. Once the logs are dried completely, you can unwrap them and stack them near the fireplace.