Keep Matches in a Mason jar – with a Strikeable Lid!

March 13, 2012 by Lauren

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I saw an awesome idea for storing matches in a mason jar – using sandpaper as the lid so you can light the matches. Credit where credit is due – awesome idea!

So we had to do it. It’s a super easy project. And the mason jar is perfect for taking camping or for just lookin’ pretty. Basically: put STRIKE ANYWHERE matches in a jar. Strike-on-the-box matches won’t work. Cut the sandpaper to the shape of the mason jar. (We put a firm piece of paper under it so the sandpaper doesn’t push down when a match is struck.)

Of course, we had to take it one step further by creating a hole in the lid so you can easily get the matches out! Who wants to unscrew a lid every time you want to light a candle? I sure don’t. Yeah, I get that tired by the end of the day. Sue me.

And…. FIRE! You might need to replace the paper after awhile. It will wear down with strikes.

Enjoy! And please suggest any potential projects you’d like to see or have seen somewhere else but are afraid to try! We have no fear… of failure.

Also, here’s some strike-anywhere matches if you weren’t able to find any locally! (it took us awhile to find some in Austin!)
and these are the cute jars we used :)


  1. Delaine says:

    This is the coolest idea!

  2. Nicole says:

    <3 this idea! My family has a place on the water and we keep citronella candles and such outside on the bar. I think I'll make this for mom so her matches stay dry! probably alter a bit so that instead of the hole I'll adhere the sandpaper to the jar top. Great DIY idea!

  3. Great post, and I must say that a glass jar for matches is smarter than a box. Seeing as I only use matches in two places, on my porch for citronella candles, and in the woods while camping…glass proves to weather the elements much better than those little boxes. Plus, they end up looking so much cuter that way! Thanks for the simple yet amazing idea!

  4. Audra says:

    I have seen this recipe on other sites and MANY people have said that because it is VERY low sudsing (is that a word?) it works beautifully in the HE washers. Others have also added 1 cup of Oxiclean to the mix.

  5. Audra says:

    Nix that last post – wrong page!! (See Homemade Laundry Soap on the right.)

  6. Tricia Rose says:

    I will certainly do this – previously I glued maps on match boxes, but the striking sides wore out…

  7. Stephanie R says:

    This is such a great idea! I always keep the matches hidden because the package isn’t the most appealing packaging, but this is perfect! A way that I wouldn’t have to hide them!

  8. C.K. says:

    I’m going to do this one but I will use a grommet for the hole to.

  9. Troy says:

    Great idea! I am definitely going to do this for matches around the house. For camping I will use a small, plastic peanut butter jar instead though. Or maybe a Parmesan cheese jar, the kind with the hinged lid and the large shaker holes. My children have too much of a tendency to knock things off tables. Broken glass and campgrounds don’t mix real well.

  10. melanie swanson says:

    Such a great idea ! Will be doing this and putting them on the shelf by the wood for the wood stove. It will be so much nicer than all the matches sitting in a cracked coffee cup… lol

  11. Mystrodaumus says:

    Just did this. Love it! One for the wood stove and one for the bathroom. Matches ARE the most effective odor eliminator (pee-u!).

  12. megbot says:

    This is a great idea. I think I would nix the hole though, and put the sandpaper on the inside of the lid. It would be a little more waterproof that way.

  13. Angie says:

    I can’t find strike anywhere matches. Help!

  14. Audrey says:

    I have the same problem as Angie…where do you get strick-anywhere matches?? I haven’t seen them in years.

  15. Lauren says:

    Audrey – I had to look EVERYWHERE! Ha. I don’t know what stores you have there… but I looked at CVS, Walgreens, several gas stations, target, and no one had them. and then FINALLY just my regular grocery store, HEB, had them. Ah.

  16. Kyle says:

    Your local ACE hardware will have these matches. And the sandpaper. And the jars. Cool idea for boy scouts too!

  17. Amanda says:

    I featured you on my blog today – Live a fabuLESS life! Great idea!

  18. Samut says:

    Hi, I’ve seen your post in pinterest. I was wondering what kind of sandpaper are you using? Me and my bf tried it and we used different kinds of sandpaper but could not get the match to light. Thanks in advance for the answer :)

  19. Lauren says:

    Hi there Samut – make sure you’re using strike anywhere matches! Strike-on-box matches totally wont work, no matter what kind of sandpaper. Strike anywhere matches should work… well.. anywhere! :)

  20. Samut says:

    Thanks a lot! Also, I just want to say I really love your blog :)

  21. […] in me sought remedy that. I took to Pintrest (yes I have a mild obsession) and found this pin from The Burlap Bag. Unfortunately I do not have STRIKE ANYWHERE matches. So I thought of a way to go around that […]

  22. Charlotte says:

    Hi Lauren,
    I was on Pinterest looking for a better (or cute) way to store matches and found this. What a great idea but I do not have strike anywhere matches and didn’t want to go out just to get some so I did my best and came up with a similar solution! Thanks for posting this wonderful idea!

  23. Lauren says:

    Charlotte what an awesome spin-off! Glad you logged about it so I can see! :)

  24. Ann MacNeil says:

    huh, i’d totally do this. for strike anywhere matches, put the sandpaper on top or inside of the mason jar lid…the seal would keep things good and dry inside. and same with the strike-on-box matches, glue the box sides to either the jar lid or to a paper and stick it with the lid…

  25. Aileen says:

    doing this now!

  26. jb says:

    good for strike anywhere, but use finer grade sand paper or glue the striker of the box on jar lid. however if outside the hole will defeat the moisture invasion problem and ruin the matches useless.

  27. Kate says:

    Probably one of the best things I have come across on Pinterest. Brilliant! ;) I am going to put this together right now and put it beside the fireplace

  28. […] craft is floating all around the internet, (I originally found it on this blog via Pintrest). The only problem I found was that strike anywhere matches are needed, and much more […]

  29. Victoria says:

    I made these for my wedding favors, and my guests loved them!

  30. great idea!
    Choose life, Deuteronomy 30:19
    Julie Bagamary

  31. sallieanne says:

    LOvE IT! Will def make this.

  32. […] Store matches in a mason jar with a strikable lid. […]

  33. Amy says:

    Could you post directions on making the hole?

  34. […] a butane lighter to start a fire, but I thought something prettier would make this a better gift.  The Burlap Bag had shared a match jar project that was exactly what I was looking for.  The only changes I made […]

  35. […] Mason Jar Strike-Anywhere Matches (looks much cuter by the fireplace) by Burlap Bag […]

  36. Rachel says:

    how innovative!

  37. […] links the idea back to The Burlap Share this:MoreLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. Posted in […]

  38. […] is a cute jar for matches with a strike-able lid! Good for bathrooms or wherever candles […]

  39. […] Mason Jar Match Storage with Strikeable Lid (DIY) […]

  40. tnrec says:

    I love this idea. I think I can do the jars at home but when camping I think I will go to small, plastic peanut butter jars instead. The sandpaper will be glued to the inside of the lid there so that it does not get wet or worn by rubbing other things.
    I LOVE THIS IDEA!!!! I am so going to do this!!!

  41. tnrec says:

    OH and strike anywhere matches are getting hard to find no matter where you are. They are usually right with the rest of the matches, however, we have a farming store near here that usually carries them. Thank goodness!!

  42. Luann Lane says:

    I just used Charlotte’s idea…glued the striker strips to the top of the lid. Very easy and works great! I use mine in the kitchen to light the stove most of the time so I didn’t put the hole in the lid…too much moisture around and was afraid it would ruin the matches. I’m also wondering if you can put a couple of those little “moisture trappers” (not sure of actual term) in with the matches?

  43. Tracy Eckhardt says:

    Why couldn’t you just glue the sandpaper to a used lid, punch a hole in it with an old school bottle opener, and call it good. It is just a suggestion. I think I am going to make some of these for x-mas presents, as all of my friends have fireplaces inside or outside. Thank you!!!

  44. Juanita Bayne says:

    Didn’t read through all the comments so maybe this was mentioned already. . . you MUST be careful not to store the jar of matches too close to a wood stove. . . they will burst into flames and explode the jar, sending a shower of burning/lit matches all the way across the room! Might be a little different reaction with the hole cut in the lid as a vent but way back in my very young hippie days long ago, I thought it would be handy to store a box of wooden (at that time all were strike anywhere) matches in a quart jar near the wood burning stove that provided our heat. Was not a good idea! One night the heat from the stove ignited the matches inside the jar, a couple feet away from the stove–the jar exploded, the lid blew off and burning matches mixed with flying chunks of glass went into every corner of the room! Fortunately we were all in other areas but close enough to hear the noise and investigate before our little hippie house burned to the ground! Be careful, be smart!

  45. kayeph says:

    Use two circles of sandpaper, instead of supporting the first with paper. You’ll have a back-up.

  46. This idea is total cool!!! Had never thought of it. Might try this. :)

  47. […] Store matches in mason jar, add a piece of sand paper in the cap on which to strike the matches. (source) […]

  48. Bill says:

    Whatever you do, don’t put the sandpaper on the underside of the lid and leave the matches head-up. If the jar falls over and rolls, a match-head could strike against the paper and set them all off. At that point, you have created a pipe bomb with glass shrapnel.

  49. […] {source: s} […]

  50. The Doctor says:

    Clever, but an exceedingly bad and dangerous idea! Bits of the match head can easily break off when the match it struck on that sandpaper, and if a flaming particle goes into that hole, the jar would erupt in flame. Its why the box of matches has the abrasive strip on the side and admonishes you to close the box before striking.

  51. Gramma says:

    Be sure you are using the Strike Anywhere Matches. For campers or fishermen, paint the head of each match with clear nail polish. They will still strike after getting wet/damp. It works! Try it.

  52. […] this be so awesome for camping??  Totally another AHA! moment!  The Burlap Bag details this easy project […]

  53. Shawn says:

    That is a great idea! But I didn’t know there were strike anywhere matches, I hope I can find some. Thanks for sharing.

  54. mary says:

    I couldn’t wait to make the jar match holder.
    Unfortunately…I skimmed the directions and didn’t see the Strike Anywhere match directions.
    Needless to say..I have a ton of matches to use and THEN will buy some. The little jar is wonderful tho! Thanks for the idea!!

  55. janett says:

    I think maybe the salt container top idea (the dry spice jar ) could work great for dispensing matches, that way there is no hole left open to ignite other matches and keeps them dry

  56. […] Click HERE for tips – notice the sandpaper lid! […]

  57. […] Lauren at The Burlap Bag uses mason jars to store matches, and takes things to a whole new level using sandpaper to make a […]

  58. pat says:

    If you don’t want a hole just use the tin mason jar lid, attach sandpaper on top of lid and screw the band on . Now it’s sturdy to strike the matches. Keeps matches dry also.

  59. Rochelle says:

    I got my jar now im on my way to the hardware store to complete my project. It looks cool i cant was to use it when we camp this weekend!!!

  60. […] Photos courtesy of The Burlap Bag […]

  61. Dawn says:

    Just a thought…. if you don’t put a hole in the top and put sandpaper on the underside of the mason jar lid, it will be waterproof!

  62. Jan Howell says:

    Great idea. Thanks for sharing

  63. […] would be only appropriate to post some cool ideas for camping. This first awesome idea I found at The Burlap Sack. It looks incredibly easy to do and would be very useful. Might even be able to decorate the jar or […]

  64. […] Store matches in a mason jar and add a disc of sandpaper to the lid on which to strike them.Via The Burlap Bag […]

  65. Leasa Houghlan says:

    Im thinking I will use the top off a container of salt with the pour spout instead and attach the sandpaper to that, then the jar can be closed yet opened easily to retrieve a match. I keep my matches outside, usually in a small butter container or something similar, but this idea is way cuter! Thanks for all the great ideas, Im so inspired!!

  66. […] things the kids will have access to, but I have found them useful for things I keep in the kitchen. The Burlap Bag shows how to store strike anywhere matches in a jar with a sandpaper lid. Her lid even has a little hole […]

  67. leslie2278 says:

    I linked to you in my blog: Thanks for the inspiration!

  68. […] Match Holder by The Burlap Bag […]

  69. […] Store matches in a mason jar and add a disc of sandpaper to the lid on which to strike them.Via The Burlap Bag […]

  70. […] Store matches in mason jar. Add a piece of sand paper in the cap to strike the matches. (source) […]

  71. Sandra says:

    I would not put hole in lid to keep moisture out of jar.

  72. […] light every time.  Obviously keep away from kids but essential for lighting those sparklers!  (The Burlap Bag) How sweet is this little topiary from Whitney Caroline designs? Here is another free print to […]

  73. […]  Make A Match Box Mason Jar […]

  74. | FUN肆誌 says:

    […] Via The Burlap Bag […]

  75. […] clever idea! Fill your jar with matches, put sandpaper in the lid, and there you go! So simple! talks a little more in depth about this creation that they found and wanted to try. Now I’m […]

  76. I have a giant thing of matches to use up – what about putting regular matches in, cutting the box striker to fit the mason jar lid, and caning it a day. Not quite as pretty (though with pretty paper under the striker, it’d look nicer) but useful.

  77. […] Keep your matches handy and dry with this clever holder from The Burlap Bag. […]

  78. […] holder- ingenious idea by The Burlap Bag. Sandpaper lid and matches at the […]

  79. […] Store matches in a mason jar and add a disc of sandpaper to the lid on which to strike them.Via The Burlap Bag […]

  80. […] would be only appropriate to post some cool ideas for camping. This first awesome idea I found at The Burlap Sack. It looks incredibly easy to do and would be very useful. Might even be able to decorate the jar or […]

  81. […] a piece of sandpaper and a mason jar into a water-proof container for matches with this simple craft […]

  82. […] A box of 300 strike anywhere matches. I plan to keep these dry by making this awesome canning jar with sandpaper top (for striking the matches). […]

  83. […] Match holder and dispenser: The best way to store matches is in a mason jar, not only because the matches come out super easily through a hole in the top, but you can add sandpaper to the bottom or the top for easy striking. See a good instruction here. […]

  84. […]  Waterproof Match Container with a Sand Paper lid to strike Matches // The Burlap Bag […]

  85. […] Swap out the lid to create this durable “match box.” (Then, use the lids for the plant markers above;) Just remember, you need to use STRIKE ANYWHERE matches for this to work. Get the full how-to via The Burlap Bag. […]

  86. […] Here’s cute idea to store matches in mason jar. So much cuter than the match box! (From: The Burlap Bag) […]

  87. […] Storage for Matches and add sandpaper for a match strike. […]

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