written by Deanna Murphy, photography by Julian Martin
BIG LOViE creates warm hugs in the form of cozy blankets.
DeSimone, who is also a cancer survivor, says,
"As we grow older, I think we become more aware and appreciative of how important personal relationships are, and I just really want to celebrate that. A blanket inherently has a special way to bring comfort, but when we infuse a mission and meaning, it takes it to a new level."
Co-founder Fideler echoes the importance of this part of their company ethos, adding, "I never would have envisioned being part of a blanket company, but when you start with the love and the positive messaging, it was irresistible."
Despite the company being in its infancy, it is important to DeSimone to incorporate giving back. BIG LOViE launched "Share the Love" last month — a one-for one program where for each blanket purchased, the company will donate another blanket to a child in need. DeSimone gets emotional when discussing this aspect. A recent donation of blankets was provided to My Stuff Bags, a nonprofit based in Westlake Village that supplies kids leaving abusive homes with a bag of essentials.
"What we're doing is giving them hope, as if to say 'someone's going to help you, you're important, we care about you,"' she says as she holds back tears. "The feeling of a blanket around you - there is a comfort there."
Locally, she's developing additional partnerships including one with Miracle Babies, which provides support for families of newborns in neonatal intensive care units. The blankets donated will be provided to the families, not the infants themselves, offering a bit of comfort while parents spend countless hours alongside their babies in the hospital.
Currently only available on their own website and on Amazon, DeSimone already has high hopes for BIG LOViE's expansion, noting scarves and hats are high on her list of things to add. Which just might prove to be the only way to motivate anyone to leave the warmth of their Big Lovie at home. biglovie.com