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Publication numberUS20030014844 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 09/908,846
Publication dateJan 23, 2003
Filing dateJul 20, 2001
Priority dateJul 20, 2001
Publication number09908846, 908846, US 2003/0014844 A1, US 2003/014844 A1, US 20030014844 A1, US 20030014844A1, US 2003014844 A1, US 2003014844A1, US-A1-20030014844, US-A1-2003014844, US2003/0014844A1, US2003/014844A1, US20030014844 A1, US20030014844A1, US2003014844 A1, US2003014844A1
InventorsRobson Splane
Original AssigneeSplane Robson L.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Snap-on personal storage devices
US 20030014844 A1
Abstract
A removable storage device is provided for enabling storage of personal articles on the person of a user. The device includes a pair of snap fit elements. One element includes a recess for receiving a portion of the other element as a snap fit therein so as to permit a portion of an article of clothing worn by the user to be captured between the elements when the elements are snap fit together to thereby removably affix the elements to the article of clothing. One of the snap fit elements includes a support member or arrangement (e.g., a D-ring or a pocket) for supporting a personal article.
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Claims(21)
What is claimed:
1. A removable storage device for enabling storage of personal articles on the person of a user, said device comprising:
first and second snap fit elements, said first element including a recess therein for receiving a portion of the second element as a snap fit therein so as to permit a portion of an article of clothing worn by the user to be captured between said elements when said elements are snap fit together to thereby removably affix the elements to the article of clothing, and one of said snap fit elements including supporting means for supporting at least one personal article thereon so that the personal article can be carried on the article of clothing.
2. A storage device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said supporting means comprises a member mounted on said one element so as to create a space between said member and said one element for receiving at least a portion of the personal article.
3. A storage device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said supporting means comprises a ring member.
4. A storage device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said supporting means comprises a chain member.
5. A storage device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said supporting means comprises a pocket affixed to said one element.
6. A storage device as claimed in claim 1 wherein said supporting means comprises a D-ring affixed to said one element.
7. A storage device as claimed in claim 6 wherein said second member comprises a front snap fit member adapted to be disposed on the outside of the article of clothing and comprising a first substantially cylindrical snap fit portion and a further, raised front portion to which said D-ring is affixed and said first element comprises a rear snap fit member adapted to be disposed on the inside of the article of clothing and including a substantially cylindrical recess for, in use, receiving said substantially cylindrical snap fit portion of said second member.
8. A storage device as claimed in claim 7 wherein said raised portion includes spaced raised parts defining a recessed gap therebetween and receiving opposed ends of said D-ring.
9. A storage device as claimed in claim 1 further comprising a connecting member extending between said first and second elements and being foldable, in use, around an edge portion of the article of clothing.
10. A storage device as claimed in claim 9 wherein said connector member includes first and second openings in opposite end portions thereof for respectively receiving said first and second snap fit elements.
11. A storage device as claimed in claim 9 wherein at least one of said snap fit elements is formed integrally with said connecting member.
12. A storage device as claimed in claim 9 wherein both of said snap fit elements are formed integrally with said connecting member.
13. A storage device as claimed in claim 9 wherein said supporting means comprises an article supporting portion of said connecting member.
14. A storage device as claimed in claim 13 wherein said supporting portion comprises a backing member including one of said snap fit elements and a pocket portion affixed to said backing member.
15. A storage device as claimed in claim 14 wherein said pocket portion includes an elasticized edge portion.
16. A storage device as claimed in claim 14 wherein said pocket portion includes at least one pleat therein.
17. A storage device as claimed in claim 14 wherein said pocket portion includes an external pocket for holding a writing implement.
18. A storage device as claimed in claim 14 wherein said connecting member further comprises a tongue portion and a live hinge disposed between said tongue portion and said backing portion.
19. A storage device as claimed in claim 18 wherein said tongue portion includes window therein for receiving an identification tag.
20. A storage device as claimed in claim 19 wherein said pocket portion includes at least one pleat therein.
21. A storage device for enabling storage of personal articles on the person of a user of the device, said device comprising:
a pocket portion for receiving personal articles, said pocket portion including a first snap fit element; and
a connecting portion hingedly affixed to said pocket portion and including a second snap fit element,
one of said first and second snap fit elements including a recess therein for receiving a part of the other of said snap fit elements as a snap fit therein so as to permit a portion of an article of clothing worn by the user to be captured between said first and second elements to thereby removably affix the elements, and thus the pocket portion, to the article of clothing.
Description
FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to devices for providing storage on the person of a user of small articles or personal affects such as eyeglasses, identification cards, keys, checkbooks, cash, cell phones and the like.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] People routinely carry on their person a variety of personal affects during the course of their daily lives. Some items such as those mentioned above are essential enough that people wish to transport these items even when they are wearing clothing without pockets and carrying bags are not available or are impractical. It will be appreciated that as modern dress becomes more casual, articles of clothing without pockets have become more common even in office settings. In this regard, tee shirts, polo shirts, golf shirts, shorts and casual pants and trousers of various types without pockets are now worn on many occasions and thus, the problem of conveniently transporting small personal items has become more acute.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0003] Generally speaking, in accordance with the invention, a snap fastener device is provided for supporting a personal article or item, such as a pair of eyeglasses, keys, a pen or other writing implement, a cell phone or any one of a number of other relatively small personal affects, on an article of apparel without piercing or otherwise damaging the article of apparel. Thus, by snapping or securing the fastener device in place on the article of apparel, one or more of such personal affects can be supported by the device and thus carried on the person of the user.

[0004] In accordance with one aspect of the invention, a removable storage device is provided for enabling storage of personal articles on the person of a user, the device comprising: first and second snap fit elements, the first element including a recess therein for receiving a portion of the second element as a snap fit therein so as to permit a portion of an article of clothing worn by the user to be captured between said elements when said elements are snap fit together to thereby removably affix the elements to the article of clothing, and one of the snap fit elements including supporting means for supporting a personal article thereon so that the article can be carried on the personal article of clothing.

[0005] The supporting means can take a number of different forms and in one preferred embodiment, the supporting means comprises a member mounted on said one element so as to create a space between that member and the one element for receiving at least a portion of the personal article. In another embodiment, the supporting means comprises a ring member. In yet another embodiment, the supporting means comprises a chain member. In still another embodiment, the supporting means comprises a pocket affixed to said one element.

[0006] In a further embodiment, the supporting means comprises a D-ring affixed to the one element. Preferably, the second member comprises a front snap fit member adapted to be disposed on the outside of the article of clothing and comprising a first substantially cylindrical snap fit portion and a further, raised front portion to which the D-ring is affixed and the first element comprises a rear snap fit member adapted to be disposed on the inside of the article of clothing and including a substantially cylindrical recess therein for, in use, receiving the substantially cylindrical snap fit portion of the second member. Advantageously, the raised portion includes spaced raised parts defining a recessed gap therebetween and receiving opposed ends of said D-ring.

[0007] In a further important embodiment, the device of the invention further comprises a connecting member extending between the first and second elements and being foldable, in use, around an edge portion of the article of clothing so as to fit around the end of a shirt sleeve or the hem of a pair of shorts. In one implementation, the connector member includes first and second openings in opposite end portions thereof for respectively receiving the first and second snap fit elements. In another implementation, at least one of the snap fit elements is formed integrally with the connecting member while in another, both of said snap fit elements are formed integrally with said connecting member. Preferably, the article supporting means of this embodiment comprises an article supporting portion of the connecting member. The article supporting portion preferably comprises a backing member including one of said snap fit elements and a pocket portion affixed to the backing member. Advantageously, the pocket portion includes an elasticized edge portion. The pocket portion beneficially includes at least one pleat therein. Advantageously, the pocket portion includes an external pocket for holding a writing implement. In a preferred embodiment, the connecting member further comprises a tongue portion and a live hinge disposed between the tongue portion and the backing portion. Advantageously, the tongue portion includes window therein for receiving an identification tag.

[0008] In accordance with a further aspect of the invention which was foreshadowed above, a storage device is provided for enabling storage of personal articles on the person of a user of the device, the device comprising: a pocket portion for receiving at least one personal article, said pocket portion including a first snap fit element; and a connecting portion hingedly affixed to the pocket portion and including a second snap fit element, one of the first and second snap fit elements including a recess therein for receiving a part of the other of the snap fit elements as a snap fit therein so as to permit a portion of an article of clothing worn by the user to be captured between the first and second elements to thereby removably affix the elements, and thus the pocket portion, to the article of clothing.

[0009] Further features and advantages of the present invention will be set forth in, or apparent from, the detailed description of preferred embodiments thereof which follows.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0010]FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a first embodiment of the snap fastener device of the invention prior to affixing of the elements thereof to a portion of an article of apparel;

[0011]FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the device of FIG. 1, showing the device as affixed in place;

[0012]FIGS. 3 and 4 are a top plan view and a cross sectional view, respectively, of one preferred embodiment of one of the fastener elements of FIGS. 1 and 2;

[0013]FIG. 5 is a cross sectional view similar to FIG. 2 showing a further embodiment of the invention;

[0014]FIG. 6(a) is a top plan view of a further embodiment of the fastener element of FIGS. 3 and 4;

[0015]FIG. 6(b) is a cross sectional view taken generally along line A-A of FIG. 6(a);

[0016] FIGS. 7(a) and 7(b) are a top plan view and side elevational view respectively of a preferred embodiment of the other snap fit element of the fastener device of the invention;

[0017]FIG. 8 is a front elevational view of a further embodiment of the invention;

[0018]FIG. 9 is a front elevational view of an additional embodiment of the invention;

[0019]FIG. 10 is a front elevational view of yet another embodiment of the invention;

[0020]FIG. 11 is a front elevational view of still another embodiment of the invention;

[0021]FIG. 12 is a front elevational view of a further embodiment of the invention;

[0022]FIG. 13 is a cross sectional view of yet another embodiment of the fastener device of the invention, showing the device as about to receive a pair of eyeglasses;

[0023]FIG. 14 is a front elevational view, partially broken away, of the device of FIG. 13;

[0024]FIG. 15 is a perspective view of the device of FIG. 14, showing additional features thereof;

[0025]FIG. 16 is a perspective view of the backing member of FIG. 14;

[0026]FIG. 17 is a detail of an alternative embodiment of the device of FIG. 16, drawn to an enlarged scale; and

[0027]FIG. 18 is a top plan view of the backing member of FIG. 16.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION

[0028] Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, a first preferred embodiment of the invention is shown. In this embodiment, the storage device of the invention, which is generally denoted 10, comprises first and second snap fit elements 12 and 14. As indicated above, snap fit elements 12 and 14 are adapted to be snap fit together so as to capture therebetween a portion of material M (e.g., shirting material) of an article of apparel such as a tee shirt. Elements 12 and 14 are preferably machined or molded from plastic although other materials can be used.

[0029] In the implementation illustrated, snap fit element 12, which is shown in somewhat more detail in FIGS. 3 and 4, is adapted to be disposed inside the article of apparel and thus serves as the rear or interior snap fit element. As shown, element 12 is of a generally cylindrical shape and includes a central recess 12 a formed by a cylindrical side wall 12 b and a flat bottom wall 12 c including a central aperture 12 d. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the side wall 12 b may include a series of radially extending, circumferentially spaced slots 12 e so as to increase the resilience or flexibility of side wall 12 b.

[0030] In the implementation illustrated, the snap fit element 14 is also generally cylindrical in shape. Snap fit element 14 is adapted to be disposed on the outside of the captured material M of the article of apparel and thus serves as the front or exterior snap fit element. Element 14 includes a base or rear portion 14 a which is received in recess 12 a of element 12 and which, in this embodiment, includes a circumferential groove 14 b in the outer lateral wall surface thereof. An outer raised portion 14 c includes spaced posts 14 d and 14 e which receive the opposite ends of a D-ring 16 and which define a recessed area 14 f therebetween. As indicated in FIG. 1, D-ring 16 is adapted to receive a personal article, represented by a portion of an eyeglasses temple piece denoted E. Thus, with the illustrated arrangement, the eyeglasses or other personal article of the user can be hung from, or otherwise supported by, device 10 when device 10 is affixed to an article of apparel.

[0031] It will be understood that the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 to 4, and including a D-ring 16, can be modified to employ a different form or kind of support element in place of D-ring 16. For example, as shown in FIG. 5, element 14 can include a post 14 g which serves to create a space between base portion 14 a and an outer member and portion 14 h which may, for example, be of a decorative shape. In this regard, base portion 14 a creates a platform or base for creating a pleasing or decorative design so that device 10 can also function as a piece of jewelry, or, because of the special shape and/or appearance of base portion 14 a or an additional portion or member mounted thereon, a novelty or curiosity provoking item, or, with selected graphics, as a promotional item. This is discussed further below in connection with FIGS. 8 to 12.

[0032] Referring to FIGS. 6(a) and 6(b) and FIGS. 7(a) and 7(b), there is shown a further embodiment of the personal storage device of the invention. In this embodiment, the first snap fit element is denoted 18 and as illustrated, includes a central recess 18 a defined by a circumferential wall portion 18 b and a bottom or base portion 18 c. Wall portion 18 b includes a radial gap 18 d therein shown in FIG. 6(a). As shown in FIG. 6(b), wall portion 18 b also includes an inwardly facing circumferential projection 18 e. Bottom portion 18 e includes a central opening 18 f and a pair of oppositely disposed, arcuate openings 18 g and 18 h.

[0033] As shown in FIGS. 7(a) and 7(b) in this embodiment, the second or outer member, which is denoted 20, is of a generally toroidal shape and includes a circumferential groove 20 a which is adapted to receive the inwardly facing circumferential projection 18 e.

[0034] Referring to FIG. 8, a further embodiment of the invention is shown. As illustrated, and as discussed above in connection with FIG. 5, the outward appearance of the storage device of the invention is not limited by the shape of the snap fit elements (and, indeed, these elements do not have to be circular in shape), and in FIG. 8, a triangular backing member 22 is provided, with a V-shaped front member 24 mounted in spaced relation thereon. An openable circular spring clip 26 is received between members 22 and 24 and, in the embodiment shown, supports a plastic credit card holder C or the like.

[0035] Referring to FIG. 9, a further embodiment is shown wherein a decorative, generally Y-shaped member 28 is mounted on a backing member 30 in spaced relation thereto. The spacing between members 28 and 30 serves as a means for supporting a personal article, e.g., eyeglasses such as reading glasses or sunglasses. Again, this embodiment is intended to underscore the discussion above that a storage device in accordance with the invention can have an attractive appearance while also serving its intended function as a personal article storage or support device.

[0036] Referring to FIG. 10, yet another embodiment of the invention is shown which includes another form of article support. In this embodiment, an article support element is provided in the form of a D-ring 32 attached by a hinge or pivot element 34 so as to pivot with respect to an outer member 36 of the front support element (not seen in FIG. 10). Although not limited to the configuration shown, this embodiment also includes a light screen 36 which can be turned on and off by a control switch indicated at 38 so as to provide light for, e.g., locating an object, and can be set into a blinking mode by a further control switch indicated at 40.

[0037] Referring to FIG. 11, a further embodiment is shown wherein the device constitutes, or simulates, a piece of jewelry. The device includes a front facing member of element 42 of a circular shape, similar to a circle pin, and an article support member is formed by a small chain 44 extending between opposite sides of member 42.

[0038] Referring to FIG. 12, yet another embodiment is shown wherein the outer appearance of the device is similar to that of the pins which are commonly sold at sports stadiums and includes an outer circumferential portion 46 and an inner central portion 48 containing, e.g., a sports logo. A simple curved support element 50 extends between opposite sides of outer portion 46. It will, of course, be appreciated that the central portion 48 can include any kind of graphics or pictorial representations, including pictures of famous personages, cartoon characters, written messages of various kinds, etc.

[0039] Again, with respect to FIGS. 8 to 12, it will be understood that the foregoing are merely a small sampling of the possibilities regarding the outward appearance presented by the device of the invention.

[0040] Referring to FIGS. 13 to 15, a further embodiment of the invention is shown. As illustrated in FIG. 13, in this embodiment, an outer pocket or pouch 52 is provided which is adapted to receive a personal article or articles such as a pair of eyeglasses indicated at E. Pocket or pouch 52 can be made of any suitable material including sewn fabric, heat sealed vinyl and the like. This embodiment uses a pair of snap fit elements 54 and 56 which can be similar to those described above and which, as described hereinbefore, are snap fit together to capture material of an article of apparel therebetween so as to support pouch 52 on the article of apparel.

[0041] In the illustrated embodiment, pocket or pouch 52 is mounted on a backing member which is best seen in FIG. 16 and which is shown in a plan view in FIG. 18 as having a generally arcuate shape including a central portion 58 a and offset lateral portions 58 b. Backing member 58 is formed integrally with a tongue member 60 and is connected thereto by a foldable or otherwise resilient flexible connection shown here as a living hinge 62. Tongue member 60 includes an opening or window 64 therein in which an identification card or the like, indicated at 66, may be inserted.

[0042] As shown in FIG. 16, a portion of tongue 60 adjacent hinge 62 preferably includes teeth to provide enhanced gripping of the material or fabric in contact therewith. In this regard, the device of this embodiment is particularly adapted to be supported at the edge of a sleeve or the hem of a pair of shorts with the tongue 60 and snap element 54 on the inside so that, in use, teeth 68 face toward the inside of the material or fabric.

[0043] In the illustrated embodiment, snap element 54 is secured by a rivet 70 or other fastener (see FIG. 13) which extends through a hole 72 (FIG. 16) at the distal or free end of tongue 60. In an alternative embodiment illustrated in FIG. 17, a snap element 74 is formed integrally with tongue 60 at the distal end thereof. In the embodiment of FIG. 17, snap element 74 includes a recess 74 a having a central opening 74 b. Four slots 74 c extend radially between the peripherally of opening 74 b and the periphery of recess 74 a. Four circumferential or arcuate slots 74 d are provided which extend between the ends of slots 74 c and which terminate in the body of tongue 60, as shown.

[0044] Referring again to FIGS. 14 and 15, pocket or pouch 52, which is affixed to backing member 58 by any suitable means such as an adhesive, rivets, or the like, advantageously includes at least one pleat 52 a to increase the fullness thereof and as shown in FIG. 14, pleat 52 a may have graphics, denoted 52 b, thereof such as a product logo.

[0045] As shown in FIG. 16, pouch or pocket 52 advantageously includes an upper elasticized edge portion 52 c for gripping an article placed in pocket 52. As is also shown in FIG. 15, pocket or pouch 52, in an advantageous implementation, further includes an outer pen holder pocket 52 d (not shown in FIG. 14) for supporting a pen or other writing implement. Other further specialized outer pockets (not shown) could also be provided.

[0046] In an alternative implementation of this embodiment of the invention, tongue 60 can be omitted, and a separate snap fit element generally corresponding to element 54 used in cooperation with snap member 56 to affix pocket 52 to an article of apparel so as to support pocket 52 on the person of a user. Preferably, the separate snap fit member would be of a non-recessed or male type member generally corresponding to that shown in FIGS. 7(a) and 7(b) although not necessarily of that configuration, while, in this implementation, snap fit member 56 would be recessed and connected by one or more rivets to backing member 58.

[0047] Although the invention has been described above in relation to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that variations and modifications can be effected in these preferred embodiments without departing from the scope and spirit of the invention.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7216404Aug 24, 2006May 15, 2007Kenneth DoylePouch mounting system
US7377390May 24, 2004May 27, 2008Mattel, Inc.Stand for doll attachment
US8272109 *Mar 26, 2010Sep 25, 2012Sam FratantoniDevice for retaining objects to surfaces
US8347416 *Jun 11, 2010Jan 8, 2013Lisa QueryMethod and apparatus for modifying an article of clothing
US20110204108 *Feb 10, 2011Aug 25, 2011John ManleyCell phone and personal electronics support system
US20110232045 *Mar 26, 2010Sep 29, 2011Sam FratantoniDevice for Retaining Objects to Surfaces
Classifications
U.S. Classification24/3.1
International ClassificationA45C13/10, A45F5/00, A45F5/02
Cooperative ClassificationA45F5/02, A45C13/1092, A45F2200/0516, A45F5/00, Y10T24/13
European ClassificationA45F5/02
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Aug 29, 2001ASAssignment
Owner name: SUNCEPTS, INC., CALIFORNIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:SPLANE, ROBSON L. JR.;REEL/FRAME:012120/0370
Effective date: 20010820