The thought of bringing a smile to the face of a child or an elderly person was all the motivation Fountain Valley resident Charell De Luca needed to put her skills to work fashioning cuddly lap blankets for people she may never meet, but still wanted to help.
Charell will tell you it all began innocently enough about a year ago when she decided to make fleece blankets for her family and friends. She obtained her materials from the Garment District area of Los Angeles and set to work. Needless to say, the blankets were a hit. So with the encouragement and assistance of her two grown daughters and a couple of neighbors, Charell decided to put her skills and passion to work for others. Echoing a tradition as American as apple pie, the women work together, quickly fabricating each blanket from two squares of fleece carefully selected for its new owner â€“ a playful print for an infant or toddler and perhaps a more subdued tone for a senior. Fueled by the good feelings that come from imagining the smiling faces of the recipients, the group can turn out a blanket in as little as 15 minutes.
Charell puts it this way. â€œI enjoy making these blankets and seeing people enjoy them. I thought they would bring a smile to a child's face. Down the road, I would like to donate them to an assisted living facility for the elderly. I do not belong to an organization, so this was just giving for the sake of giving. It's a good feeling!â€
For now, Charell hands the finished blankets to the community affairs department at her Costa Mesa-based employer Experian that then makes sure they get to local organizations that help people in need. She can take comfort in knowing that her creations have made their way into the hands of local organizations like Project Linus, which collects and delivers new blankets to children who are sick or traumatized.