Yankee Candle Began as a Christmas Gift of Melted Crayons

How a broke teenager's holiday gesture for Mom became a $1.9 billion candle colossus

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Most every brand will tell you that its founding story is inspirational—even emotional. You’ve probably heard a few of the more famous ones. How Steve Wozniak would drop his Apple I prototype off at Steve Jobs’ house, hoping the thing would work. How high school buds Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield started an ice cream parlor because they couldn’t afford the equipment to make bagels.

But few founding stories pluck the heartstrings quite like that of Yankee Candle, started in the early 1970s by Michael Kittredge II.



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This story first appeared in the Nov. 1, 2021, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.