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Publication numberUS20050091722 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/977,972
Publication dateMay 5, 2005
Filing dateOct 29, 2004
Priority dateNov 3, 2003
Publication number10977972, 977972, US 2005/0091722 A1, US 2005/091722 A1, US 20050091722 A1, US 20050091722A1, US 2005091722 A1, US 2005091722A1, US-A1-20050091722, US-A1-2005091722, US2005/0091722A1, US2005/091722A1, US20050091722 A1, US20050091722A1, US2005091722 A1, US2005091722A1
InventorsMaureen Walsh
Original AssigneeWalsh Maureen A.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Commuter apron
US 20050091722 A1
Abstract
An apron for a commuter includes a protective front covering that has a top portion and a bottom portion. The covering includes a layer of waterproof material and preferably an outer decorative layer. Two straps are affixed to the top portion of the front covering. Each strap includes a weight located at the free end of the strap.
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Claims(7)
1. An apron comprising:
a protective front covering having a top portion and a bottom portion, said covering including a layer of waterproof material; and
at least two straps affixed to the top portion of the covering, each of said at least two straps including a weight located at the free end of the strap.
2. The apron according to claim 1, wherein said covering includes an outer layering of decorative material.
3. The apron according to claim 1, wherein said covering includes at least one pocket connected to said covering adjacent to said bottom portion thereof.
4. The apron according to claim 2, wherein said covering includes at least one pocket connected to said outer layering adjacent to said bottom portion of said covering.
5. The apron according to claim 3, wherein the pocket includes a vertical seam.
6. The apron according to claim 3, wherein said pocket includes a stiffener to maintain the pocket in an open position.
7. The apron according to claim 3, wherein the covering has a bottom edge on said bottom portion, the pocket is spaced from a bottom edge of said covering.
Description
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims domestic priority under 35 U.S.C. 119(e) to previously filed provisional application U.S. Ser. No. 60/516,449, filed Nov. 3, 2003, entitled COMMUTER APRON, the disclosure of which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Eating or drinking in a moving vehicle is a long-standing problem for vehicle drivers and passengers. The problem arises because it is difficult to consume food or beverages in a truck or auto without spilling liquid or dropping crumbs of food. These crumbs or drops of liquid generally drop onto the lap or garments of the passenger that is eating or spill onto the clothing of adjacent passengers. The problem is particularly acute for individuals e.g. commuters, that often drive alone to their place of work, who attempt to drink coffee or consume food without soiling their work-clothes.

Aprons or bibs have been used in the past to prevent soiling of garments during consumption of food or beverages. However such protective coverings customarily require the wearer to affix them using strings or ties located behind the wearer's neck. Tying or joining such strings or ties can be difficult, and in some instances dangerous, for an individual to do alone, particularly while riding in or driving a vehicle. If the apron or bib is not secured by tying it is likely to slip from the wearers chest while the vehicle is moving and permit beverages or food particles to fall onto the wearers garments. Much the same problem arises for children who cannot fasten a bib or apron alone and therefore run the risk of soiling their garments while consuming food or beverages in a vehicle. Vehicle passengers and drivers have long sought a protective device that could be quickly donned, and would remain in place on the wearer's chest without the need for tying strings or fastening snaps or buttons to hold the device in place.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The commuter apron of the present invention solves the problem of rapid and easy donning of a protective bib or apron that will remain in place without the need to join strings or fastens snaps or buttons. The apron of the invention consists of a protective fabric covering that can be in the shape of a bib or apron and two weighted straps located at the top of the covering. The straps (which are weighted at the end located farthest from the protective covering) can easily be tossed over the shoulders by the wearer to don the apron or bib. The weights located at or near the ends of the straps are sufficiently heavy (usually 1-4 ounces) to hold the apron or bib in place while the wearer is driving or riding in a vehicle. Of course, the apron use is not limited to just consumers, but can be used by, for example, many other people, such as by the elderly and handicapped, or anyone who wants to protect their clothes while eating or drinking.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The commuter apron of the invention will be better understood by reference to the following drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is front perspective view of the commuter apron of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a side perspective view of a driver wearing the commuter apron of the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a rear elevation of the apron shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a cross section of the commuter apron depicted in FIG. 1 along section line 4-4 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged plan view of the weighted strap section with parts broken away;

FIG. 6 is a cross section of the weighted strap along section line 6-6 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the apron in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention, shown with parts broken away;

FIG. 8 is a side cross-sectional view of the apron of FIG. 7; and

FIG. 9 is a cross section of the apron of FIG. 7 along section line 9-9 of FIG. 8.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

The commuter apron 100 of the invention is generally depicted in FIG. 1. Referring to FIG. 1 it can be seen that the apron or bib of the present invention is generally formed of a protective covering 1, which can be formed in the shape of a bib or apron. The covering must be of sufficient dimensions to protect the chest and lap of the wearer and should be made of a waterproof or water-resistant fabric such as LeChute® or Supplex®, or any other microfiber fabric (hereinafter referred to as waterproof). Two weighted straps 2, and 3 are joined to the upper end of the protective covering 1. The straps 2 and 3 are weighted at or adjacent to the free end 5 and 6 of the strap, i.e. the end farthest from the protective cover. A lip 4 is formed in the front side of the covering to catch crumbs or food particles that may fall onto the protective covering and avoid having them fall onto the wearer's skirt or trousers, or onto the floor of the vehicle.

The commuter apron 1 of the invention is worn as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3. The driver 7 of a vehicle dons the apron by simply tossing the weighted ends 5 and 5 of straps 2 and 3 over her shoulders. No other fastening operation is required. The position of the weighted strap ends 5 and 6 on the wearer's back 8 can be seen in FIG. 3.

The construction of the apron 100 is can be seen in cross section in FIG. 4. The protective covering 1 may be formed of a single layer of waterproof material or may be formed of an outer sheet or layer of decorative material 1 and an inner layer or sheet of waterproof protective material 9. Suitable waterproof materials include flexible plastics such as vinyl or breathable membrane materials such as those offered by W. L. Gore Company under the Trademark GORETEX®. The lip or pocket 4 is sewn or joined to the protective covering 1 at the bottom 10 of the pocket to enable falling food particles to be caught and later disposed of in an appropriate trash receptacle. Pocket 4 also preferably includes a vertical seam 13, which is sewn to the protective covering to divide the pocket in two and to help prevent pocket 4 from flapping open too much.

Weights 11 are sewn or fastened in the straps 2 and 3. The weights can be drapery weights made of metal e.g. lead or iron, or sealed packets filled with sand or a similar material. The weights are sewn inside the straps 2 and 3 at or near the ends 5 and 6 that are farthest away from the protective covering 1. In one embodiment depicted in FIG. 4 two weights 11 are sewn into a fabric packet 12 and the packet is then sewn into or joined to the straps 2 and 3. Construction of the straps 2 and 3 will be better understood with reference to FIG. 5, which depicts placement of the weights in a strap 3 using the packet embodiment 12. The weights need not be in a packet but one or more weights can be sewn individually into the straps 2 and 3. Position of weight in the packet arrangement 12 is depicted in the cross sectional view of FIG. 6, taken along the line 6-6 of FIG. 5.

Referring now to FIGS. 7-9, another embodiment of the present invention commuter apron is shown. This embodiment differs from the one shown in FIGS. 1-6 in that a stiffener 20 is sewn into or otherwise connected to a hem of pocket 4 so that in use, pocket 4 will remain open, as shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, to aid in catching any falling food particles.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US20130111644 *Oct 10, 2012May 9, 2013Valarie Lynn TimmonsClothing Protector with Weighted Straps
US20130312149 *Feb 5, 2007Nov 28, 2013Eagle Industries Unlimited, Inc.Internal vest divider for armor plating
Classifications
U.S. Classification2/48
International ClassificationA41D13/04
Cooperative ClassificationA41D13/04
European ClassificationA41D13/04