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Publication numberUS20050036715 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/640,862
Publication dateFeb 17, 2005
Filing dateAug 14, 2003
Priority dateAug 14, 2003
Also published asUS20060043134, WO2005016075A2, WO2005016075A3
Publication number10640862, 640862, US 2005/0036715 A1, US 2005/036715 A1, US 20050036715 A1, US 20050036715A1, US 2005036715 A1, US 2005036715A1, US-A1-20050036715, US-A1-2005036715, US2005/0036715A1, US2005/036715A1, US20050036715 A1, US20050036715A1, US2005036715 A1, US2005036715A1
InventorsTom Delaney
Original AssigneeTom Delaney
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Thermally insulating activity mat bag
US 20050036715 A1
Abstract
A thermally insulating activity mat bag having a bag portion with two openable faces, an activity mat portion that is connected to the bag portion, a closure for closing the activity mat portion over the two openable faces of the bag portion, attachments for holding the activity mat bag to a surface, and tethers for holding toys and other items to the activity mat bag. The activity mat portion preferably bears graphical indicia thereon which can be themed to the tethered toys. Accessory mats with different graphical indicia can be provided which attach to the top, sides, or ends of the activity mat. The tethered toys can be selected to fit the theme of the activity mat portion and the accessory mat(s) if desired.
Images(6)
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Claims(34)
1. An thermally insulating activity mat bag, comprising:
a bag portion;
an activity mat portion, the activity mat portion being connected to the bag portion; and
tethering means for attaching other items to the activity mat bag.
2. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 1, further comprising closure means to permit the activity mat portion to close with the bag portion.
3. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 2, wherein the closure means comprises a zipper.
4. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 1, further comprising attachment means for holding the activity mat bag to a surface.
5. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 4, wherein the attachment means comprises at least one of the group consisting of suction cups, weights, and adherent contacting means.
6. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 4, wherein the attachment means are connected to the activity mat portion.
7. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 1, wherein the tethering means comprises straps that are detachably attachable to the activity mat bag.
8. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 1, further comprising an accessory mat, which accessory mat is detachably attachable to the activity mat.
9. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 8, wherein the accessory mat bears graphical indicia.
10. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 8, wherein the activity mat portion bears graphical indicia.
11. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 1, wherein the activity mat portion has four side edges, and is permanently affixed to the bag portion along one side edge.
12. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 2, wherein the activity mat portion has a front side edge, two side edges, and a back edge, and the bag portion has two opposed side walls each with a top edge and a front edge, a back wall with a top edge, and a bottom wall with a front edge, wherein the back edge of the activity mat portion is connected to the front edge of the bottom wall, and the closure means provides for connection of the front side edge and two side edges of the activity mat portion to the top and front edges of the opposed side walls and the top edge of the back wall of bag portion.
13. The thermally insulating activity mat bag of claim 1, wherein the activity mat portion is detachably attachable to the bag portion.
14. An thermally insulating activity mat bag, comprising:
a bag portion;
an activity mat portion, the activity mat portion being connected to the bag portion;
closure means that permits the activity mat portion to close with the bag portion; and
attachment means for holding the activity mat bag to a surface.
15. The activity mat bag of claim 14, further comprising tethering means for attaching other items to the activity mat bag.
16. The activity mat bag of claim 14, wherein the attachment means comprises at least one of the group consisting of suction cups, weights, and adherent contacting means.
17. The activity mat bag of claim 15, wherein the tethering means comprises straps that attachably detach to the activity mat bag.
18. The activity mat bag of claim 14, further comprising an accessory mat, which accessory mat is detachably attachable to the activity mat.
19. The activity mat bag of claim 14, wherein the activity mat portion is permanently affixed to the bag portion.
20. The activity mat bag of claim 14, wherein the activity mat portion is detachably attachable to the bag portion.
21. An activity mat bag, comprising:
a bag portion having two openable faces;
an activity mat portion that is connectable to the bag portion; and
closure means for closing the activity mat portion over the two openable faces of the bag portion.
22. The activity mat bag of claim 21, wherein the closure means comprises a zipper.
23. The activity mat bag of claim 21, further comprising attachment means for holding the activity mat bag to a surface.
24. The activity mat bag of claim 23, wherein the attachment means comprises at least one of the group consisting of suction cups, weights, and adherent contacting means.
25. The activity mat bag of claim 23, wherein the attachment means are connected to the activity mat portion.
26. The activity mat bag of claim 21, further comprising tethering means for attaching items to the activity mat bag.
27. The activity mat bag of claim 26, wherein the tethering means comprise straps that are detachably attachable to the activity mat bag.
28. The activity mat bag of claim 21, further comprising an accessory mat, which accessory mat is detachably attachable to the activity mat.
29. The activity mat bag of claim 28, wherein the accessory mat bears graphical indicia.
30. The activity mat bag of claim 28, wherein the activity mat portion bears graphical indicia.
31. The activity mat bag of claim 21, wherein the activity mat portion is permanently affixed to the bag.
32. The activity mat bag of claim 21, wherein the activity mat portion has a front side edge, two side edges, and a back edge, and the bag portion has two opposed side walls each with a top edge and a front edge, a back wall with a top edge, and a bottom wall with a front edge, wherein the back edge of the activity mat portion is connected to the front edge of the bottom wall, and the closure means provides for joining of the front side edge and two side edges of the activity mat portion to the top and front edges of the opposed side walls and the top edge of the back wall of bag portion to thereby close the two openable faces of the bag portion.
33. The activity mat bag of claim 21, wherein the activity mat portion is detachably attachable to the bag portion.
34. An activity mat bag comprising:
a bag portion with two openable faces;
an activity mat portion that is connected to the bag portion;
a closure for closing the activity mat portion over the two openable faces of the bag portion;
attachments for holding the activity mat bag to a surface; and
tethers for holding toys and other items to the activity mat bag.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates to the field of portable bags, and more particularly relates to the field of insulated bags with multiple uses.

Parents, relatives and other caretakers of infants, toddlers and young children often find themselves carrying large quantities of gear including food, drink, diapers, towels, play equipment, toys and educational aids to take care of infants and young children.

In situations where a caretaker wishes to take infants and young children outside of the house, it is desirable to bring along a large number of miscellaneous items. Some of these items may be necessities, such as food or drink, and some of these items may be used to entertain the child while on an outing. Organizing and carrying all of these items at one time may prove to be problematic simply because of the large number and differing types of items that need to be accounted for. In addition, many kinds of food for children require some degree of refrigeration.

It is also desirable to provide a stimulating, educational, and sanitary environment where the child can safely play. Public locations such as restaurants are often not as clean as they should be, and it is desirable that toys remain in a sanitary, defined location so that the caretaker need not retrieve scattered or dropped toys which may need to be cleaned before being given back to the young child to play with.

Young children need mental activities and stimulation, and particularly in cases they are forced to remain in one location for any extended period of time, they tend to become distracted. It is therefore desirable that a play environment be provided that permits the young child a great degree of freedom to play, yet which is easy for the caretaker to transport, set up, and maintain in a sanitary condition.

Therefore, a need exists for a convenient container to transport a number of items when on an outing with a child. It is desirable that such a container provide features that allow the transportation of refrigerated items and be useable for an additional purpose, such as entertaining and protecting a child. Various aspects of the present invention meet such a need.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The invention provides an activity mat integrated with an insulated container, such as an insulated bag, which has a closure such as a zipper. When the closure is opened, a mat portion can be deployed from a bag portion. The mat portion can preferably bear design indicia. The mat portion will preferably have retention means such as straps with suction caps, to hold the activity mat and the bag portion in place on a flat surface such as a table, counter, high chair or other surface. Other means to retain the mat in place can be provided, such as weights, surface tension adhesion pads, etc. The activity mat portion can be either permanently connected to the bag portion, or it can be made to be separatable by a zipper, snaps, hook and loop material, or other means. The activity mat portion preferably has snaps or other attachments located thereon. These attachments provide a place to attach tethered toys and other items such that when infant or child plays with tethered toys on the mat, the tethered toys will not fall on the floor, become dirty or get lost.

In order to permit a change in the theme of the play surface, additional activity mat surfaces can be provided on separate sheets which attach to the attachments (e.g. snaps). Thus, a single activity mat bag can be provided to have a zoo theme, a farm theme, a playhouse theme or any other desired themes with appropriate toys so that the theme can be easily changed. If desired, bottle holders, pockets, separate compartments, and attachment can be placed on the inside and outside of the bag portion to provide for convenient carrying and attachment points and locations for these various items.

To use the activity mat portion, the user can easily unzip and deploy the activity mat portion, attach suction caps or other attachment means (e.g. straps, weights, etc.) to the surface the bag is to be used on, attach the tethered toys to the mat (if not already attached), and the child quickly begin to play on the clean activity mat portion. The opened up “backstop” of the bag portion can provide a place to store items even during play and, if desired, bear graphical indicia that is complementary to the themed activity mat portion.

This activity mat bag can be attached to a surface, for example, to a restaurant table or other table and the bag portion can either hang off of the edge of the table, or can be left on the table in front of or to the side of the child so that the child may quickly begin play. When it is time to go, the attachment means can be quickly and easily detached from the surface and the activity mat portion can be zipped back together with the bag portion, and user can quickly leave without worry about searching for and retrieving lost toys.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exemplary activity mat bag of the invention in its closed position.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the exemplary activity mat bag of FIG. 1, but in opened position with its activity mat portion deployed and attached to a surface.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of another exemplary activity mat bag in its opened position, with its activity mat portion separated from the bag portion.

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of an exemplary optional accessory mat.

FIG. 5A is a perspective view of an exemplary attachment means comprising a weight.

FIG. 5B is a perspective view of an exemplary attachment means comprising an adherent contacting means.

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional diagram of a side of a activity map bag in accordance with an exemplary embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exemplary mat bag 10 of the invention in its closed position. The activity mat bag 10 has a bag portion 12 and an activity mat portion 14. A carrying handle 16 can be provided, and bag portion 12 can have pockets 18 formed thereon. A closure 20, such as a zipper, is provided to engage activity mat portion 14 with bag portion 12. The activity mat bag may be composed of a flexible insulating material, such as a multilayer insulting material having an insulating layer. Therefore, when in its closed position, the activity mat bag is thermally insulating and may be used to carry chilled or heated foodstuffs.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of exemplary activity mat bag 10 of FIG. 1, but in opened position with its activity mat portion 14 deployed from bag portion 12 by operating closure 20. Mat portion 14 preferably has attachment means 22, which can comprise elastic straps 24 to which suctions cups 26 are attached. Straps 24 can preferably be affixed to a perimeter area 28 of activity mat portion 14, but could be affixed elsewhere. These suction cups 26 can be used to retain activity mat portion 14 to a surface “S”, such as a countertop or table top. Other attachment means such as elastic straps can be provided (not shown.)

Referring to FIGS. 5A and 5B, which are perspective views of alternate exemplary attachment means, which can for example comprising a weight 30 (e.g. sand in a bag) and an adherent contacting pad 32, respectively, attached to strap 24.

Referring back to FIG. 2, showing activity mat portion 14 deployed from bag portion 12 by unzipping zipper 20, with activity mat portion 14 lying on surface “S”, and with two suction cups 26 attached to surface “S”. Bag portion 12 has a bottom portion 40, a right side wall 42, a left side wall 44 and a back wall 46, and one part of closure (e.g., zipper) 20A extends along a front edge 48 and top edge 50 of left side wall 44, a top edge 52 of back wall 46, a top edge 54 and front edge 56 of right side wall 42, and the other portion of zipper 20B extends along perimeter area 28 of activity mat portion 14. A back edge 58 of activity mat portion 14 is affixed to the vicinity of front edge 60 of bag portion 12. By zipping up zipper 20 by pulling on zipper pull 21, activity mat portion 14 will close the open face 70 of bag portion between front edges 48 and 50 of side walls 44 and 42, respectively, and close the open face 72 of bag portion between top edges 50 and 54 of side walls 44 and 42, respectively. Bag portion 12 can have bottle holders, bottom pockets 74, side pockets 76, and attachments 98 such as hooks that can be placed on the inside or outside of the bag portion to provide for convenient carrying and attachment points and locations for these various items. A plurality of attachment means 80 are preferably formed on activity mat 14, and can comprise, for example, a male or female portion of a snap, hook and lace materials, or other attachment means. Attachment means 80 are adapted to engage with a tethered item 82, which can comprise a toy 84 or other items to which a tether line 86 is attached. Tether line 86 can have a complementary attachment means 88 formed thereon which is complementary to attachment means 80 formed on activity mat portion 14, to permit tethered item 82 to be fixed to activity mat 14. For example, attachment means 88 can comprise a female snap and attachment 80 can comprise a complementary male snap. Tether line 86 permits the infant or child to move toy 84 around on a surface 90 of activity mat 14, which can preferably bear graphical indicia 92. Together with toy 84, the graphical indicia bearing activity mat 14 can create a themed activity environment for the player, such as a farm theme, a zoo theme, a playhouse theme or any other desired themes with appropriate toys so that the theme can be easily changed. If desired, the bottom 40 and/or back 46 of bag portion 12 can also have graphical indicia 96 located thereon so as to create a “backstop” complementary to the themed activity mat portion 14.

Pockets in the bag portion, such as side pocket 76, may be used to hold devices for chilling or heating foodstuffs stored in the activity bag mat. For example, containers filled with frozen or heated liquids may be conveniently stored in the side pockets. In one thermally insulated activity mat bag in accordance with an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, the side pockets are composed of a netting like material. The netting material allows for the free flow of air around a chilling or heating device thus enhances the convective transfer of heat from or to the device.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of another exemplary activity mat bag 120 in its opened position, with a separatable activity mat portion 122 separated from bag portion 124. A tab 126 can have a first detachable attachment means formed thereon, e.g. hook and loop material, or snaps, a zipper, etc. (not shown), and bag portion 124 can have a complementary, second detachable attachment means 128, e.g., hook and loop material (shown), or snaps, a zipper, etc. (not shown) formed thereon to permit mat portion 122 to be detachably attached to bag portion 124. Attachment means 130 are also preferably located on activity mat portion 122. In other aspects, exemplary activity mat bag 120 can be like the exemplary activity mat bag 10 of FIGS. 1 and 2.

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of an exemplary optional accessory mat 140, with attachment means 142 located on an accessory mat body 144, such that when accessory mat 140 is coupled to activity mat 14 or 122, attachment means 142 will be aligned for connection with attachment means 80 or 130. One or more accessory mats may be coupled to activity mat 14 in a side-to-side or end-to-end relationship in order to expand the play area of the activity mat. Accessory mats may also be placed over the activity map in order to change the appearance of the activity mat.

Accessory mat body 144 preferably has graphical indicia 146 located thereon which can have any desired appearance, with one benefit of accessory mat 140 being that it provides an option to change the theme of activity mat bag 10 or 120 without purchasing an entirely new bag, so that the child's interest can be maintained. Interactive or dynamic components may be incorporated into the graphical indicia. For example, phosphorescent or thermally sensitive inks may be used to create images that may be manipulated using an appropriate stimulus. In addition, electrical components, such as lights and switches, may be incorporated to provide dynamic or interactive features. Auditory components may be added as well through the use of buzzers and sound chips.

Attachment means 142 can preferably have a lower portion (e.g., a female snap) that is adapted for detachable attachment to attachment means 80 or 130, and an upper portion (e.g., a male snap) that is adapted for engagement with complementary attachment means 88 of tether 82. In this way, while accessory mat 140 can be affixed directly over a top surface of activity mat 14 or 122, the same kinds of tethered toys can be attached to accessory mat 140 as to activity mat 14 or 122.

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional diagram of a side of a activity map bag in accordance with an exemplary embodiment of the present invention. The sides of an activity map bag are composed of a multilayer flexible structure having thermal insulating properties. The multilayer structure includes an interior layer 200, an intermediate thermally insulating layer 202, and an exterior layer 204. The types of materials used for the interior layer, insulating layer, and the exterior layer may be varied in order to enhance the durability, clean-ability, and thermally insulating features of the present invention. In a multilayer material in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention, the interior layer is composed of a washable vinyl material. The exterior layer is composed of a woven abrasion resistant material such as Nylon™. The insulating layer may be of any suitable insulating material such as a flexible closed cell plastic foam.

Although the invention has been shown and presented herein by means of certain embodiments of the activity mat bag, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited thereto but may be variously embodied within the spirit and scope of the invention. Those of ordinary skill in the art will be able to identify various modifications which still remain within the ambit of the claims which follow.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8051510Aug 18, 2006Nov 8, 2011Soloway Sharon RFoldable diaper bag, changing surface, and play pad assembly
Classifications
U.S. Classification383/4, 383/110, 5/417
International ClassificationA47G9/06, A45C7/00, A45F3/02, A45F4/06
Cooperative ClassificationA45C7/0095, A45F3/04, A47G9/062, A45F4/06, A47D13/063, A45F3/02, A47D15/003
European ClassificationA47D13/06B2, A47G9/06B, A45F4/06, A47D15/00B2