US 20080173325 A1
A modular makeup storage system is provided which comprises a support assembly and a template attached to the support assembly, said template having a predetermined arrangement of holes for permanent or removable attachment of fixtures. The storage system is of any desired size and shape, and may fit on a table top or may be portable. The user may design the desired configuration of the storage system to allow flexibility for various makeup and other products.
1. A modular makeup storage system comprising:
a template having a predetermined arrangement of holes for permanent or removable attachment of fixtures.
2. The system of
a support assembly, onto which the template is attached.
3. The system of
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16. A modular makeup storage system comprising:
a support assembly comprising a back, a front, two sides, and a bottom;
a template attached to the back of the support assembly; said template having a predetermined arrangement of holes for permanent or removable attachment of fixtures;
an optional handle, and an optional carrying strap.
17. The storage system of
18. The storage system of
19. The storage system of
20. A one-piece clip for releasably holding a jar-type vessel, comprising:
a bottom shelf;
a back attached to the bottom shelf;
an arm member attached to the back;
a front-facing top bar attached to the arm member;
an upward-extending hook attached to the arm member;
two rear-facing attachment members attached to the back.
21. The clip of
This application claims priority from U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 60/885,824, filed Jan. 19, 2007, which is hereby incorporated by reference to the extent not inconsistent with the disclosure herewith.
The storage and organization of various makeup products presents a problem for many people. Individuals typically have different types of makeup products, such as lipstick, face powder, nail polish, mascara, and the like. In addition, typically an individual has multiple different shades or colors of products. The makeup user also requires different applicators, such as brushes for different products. The organization of the products to allow access as well as storage when the products are not in use is a continual concern for many users.
The makeup storage and organization solutions currently in use have drawbacks. Most makeup storage products do not allow access to or visualization of many different products at once. Some disclosed products include: a cabinet having drawers and open compartments, two mirrored doors, and a light in US 2006/0006772; a portable vanity case having multiple drawers in a center section of the cabinet, with an upper section having a mirror which closes over the drawers, and two side doors which close over the side walls of the case in U.S. Pat. No. D261,825; and a cosmetics travel case which has a bottom portion containing two trays that can be extended horizontally when the case is open in U.S. Pat. No. 5,941,255.
The cosmetic cases currently available do not allow for storing and organizing multiple different types and sizes of products securely and allowing for changing the products which can be stored.
Provided is a modular makeup storage system. More specifically, in one embodiment, provided is a modular makeup storage system comprising: a template having a predetermined arrangement of holes for permanent or removable attachment of fixtures. The template may be attached to a support assembly, which can have various forms. In one embodiment, provided is a modular makeup storage system comprising: a support assembly; and a template attached to the support assembly, said template having a predetermined arrangement of holes for permanent or removable attachment of fixtures. In one embodiment, a template is permanently or releasably attached to the support assembly. Some methods of attaching a template to the support assembly are one or more members of the group consisting of: glue, tape, rivets, hook and loop fabrics (such as Velcro®), sewing, snaps, nails, screws, melted plastic, and other attachment means. One or more methods of attaching a template may be used in the same storage system. In one embodiment, a template is used to attach fixtures, which are used for storage or attachment of various items, as described further herein.
The storage system may have any suitable configuration and size. In one embodiment, the storage system is designed to be relatively portable in size. In one embodiment, the storage system is designed to be relatively larger for placement on a table-top, or for use in storing a large number of products, for example. Different configurations of the storage system and support assembly are further described herein.
Other optional features may be present in any embodiment, such as a handle, a strap, a lock, a mirror, pads under the bottom (for protection of a surface, for example), reinforcement of various portions (such as the corners), pockets, a drawer, and other features as known in the art. Any embodiment may include a stand, as further described herein.
There may be more than one template attached to the support assembly. In one embodiment, there is one template attached to the back of the support assembly. In one embodiment, there are two templates attached to the back of the support assembly. In one embodiment, there is one template attached to a side of the support assembly. In one embodiment, there is one template attached to each side of the support assembly.
Each embodiment of the system may include optional removable or permanent “fixtures” for sorting or storing items, which fixtures are not required to be attached to the template. As used herein, “fixture” is used to refer to a variety of items which can be used for sorting or storing items such as bins, clips, containers, organizers, trays, closures, straps, and other items as known in the art. These optional removable or permanent fixtures may include open or multi-component bins or containers for storing items such as brushes, swabs, cotton balls, lipsticks, pencils or nail polish; removable or permanent fixtures which may be rolled or otherwise closed; and other fixtures known to a person of ordinary skill in the art without undue experimentation. In one embodiment, fixtures include one or more members of the group consisting of: shelves, bins, and clips. Fixtures may be attached to the template using one or more holes, depending, in part, on the size and weight of the fixture, as well as the amount of holding strength required for the fixture, among other factors. Fixtures may also be attached to other portions of the support assembly or other portions of the storage system. In one embodiment, a fixture is attached to the template using one hole. In one embodiment, a fixture is attached to the template using more than one hole. In one embodiment, a fixture is a bin, and the bin is attached to the template using four holes. In one embodiment, the fixture is a clip, and the clip is attached to the template using three holes. In one embodiment, the fixture is a clip, and the clip is attached to the template using two holes. Clips include clamps and other devices which are intended to hold an item, such as a brush or container. Shelves include any embodiment which is designed to be used in a relatively horizontal manner, including a solid surface, or a surface having holes or perforations, or other embodiment. In one embodiment, items are placed on a shelf. Items may also be placed in depressions or openings in or on a shelf. Bins include any embodiment which is intended to at least partially form an enclosure. Bins may be round, square, rectangular, triangular, or any other desired shape. Bins do not need to be a fixed or permanent shape, such as if fabric is used to form one or more “walls” of the bin. In one embodiment, items are placed in a bin.
The template may be any suitable size and shape to be used in attaching the desired number and type of fixtures. As will be appreciated, there may be more than one type or size of fixture attached to the template. In one embodiment, the user may select the types and numbers of fixtures desired, as well as the placement of those fixtures. In addition to fixtures, other items may be attached to the template or other portions of the storage system, such as bags, pockets, and other items.
As used herein, “attachment” indicates components are permanently, semi-permanently or removably joined. “Attachment” can be used for various items, such as a template which is “attached” to a case component such as a door or back; two case components “attached” together; or fixtures which are “attached” to a template. Alternatively, when the template is “attached to” a component, the component and template may be fabricated together so that the component and template are not designed to be easily separable. As used herein, “case” is intended to mean at least a template and a support assembly. There may be other components included in the use of the term “case” which can be appreciated by the description provided.
The template can have many different ways to perform the same functions. All embodiments of the examples of the operation and fabrication of the template are intended to be used with all embodiments of the system disclosed herein.
The following nonlimiting description is provided to illustrate specific embodiments of the invention.
Provided is a modular makeup storage system. The modular makeup storage system can have different embodiments and arrangements, such as a system having different sizes designed for placement on a vanity top, a travel-size system, and other embodiments and arrangements which are evident from the description provided herein, and well understood by one having ordinary skill in the art.
In one embodiment, the support assembly comprises a back and an optional attached or removable front. In one embodiment, the support assembly comprises the components: two doors which close vertically upon a main compartment, said main compartment having a top, a back, two sides and a bottom; and wherein a template is attached to at least one component. As known in the art, other components may be present.
All embodiments of the system include at least one template as described further herein. In one embodiment, the template has a predetermined vertical and horizontal arrangement of holes, which holes allow attachment of fixtures, as further described herein (see
Another embodiment, shown in
The template can be used to support any of several types of fixtures, including those designed specifically to hold makeup jars or containers. A template and various sized fixtures with containers are shown in
In one embodiment, the fixture is any device which resists gravity, such as a shelf. The fixture can have optional features such as a retaining device to prevent horizontal movement (such as the walls on a bin), a tension device to limit or prevent horizontal movement and to resist vertical movement, or a retainer bar to limit vertical movement. In one embodiment, the retainer bar is shaped so it can be used to brace a finger against when containers are removed.
In one embodiment, the fixture is a clip for attaching jars or other containers to the template. In one embodiment, provided is a one-piece clip for releasably holding a jar-type vessel, comprising: a bottom shelf; a back attached to the bottom shelf; one or more arm members attached to the back; a front-facing top bar attached to the arm member; an upward-extending hook attached to the arm member; and two rear-facing attachment members attached to the back. In one embodiment, the “arm member” is one arm that attaches at the back of the center of the arm. In one embodiment, there are two arm members attached to the back. As used herein “attachment members” means any portion that allows attachment to the template. In one embodiment, “attachment member” means a snap. In one embodiment, “attachment member” is a piece of material that is flexible enough to insert into a hole of the template, and rigid enough so that the clip is held in place until sufficient force is applied to remove the attachment member from the template.
One embodiment of a clip is shown in
Clips described elsewhere can also be used. Alternatively, or in combination, a row, column or cluster of two or more clips that attaches to the template can be used. The individual clip or cluster can also be inserted directly into the case (i.e., without the use of a template). In one embodiment, each clip or jar cavity has a built-in mechanism that works like a ballpoint click-pen, or magnetic push-click opening stereo cabinet doors. In this embodiment, the jars are stored very close together without the requirement for room for fingers in between them. To remove a jar, the user presses the jar, activating the jar ejection system. When the user removes pressure from the jar, the ejection system propels the jar or cluster forward far enough for the user to grip it. To reinsert the jar or cluster, the jar or cluster is placed into the cavity to reactivate the ejection system.
Another embodiment of the clip uses deflectable retainer bar instead of arms, and an indented bottom shelf to hold the jar horizontally. The jar insertion motion is the same as described elsewhere herein, but uses a single ‘arm’/retainer bar which presses down on the jar. Another embodiment of the clip uses two wide, vertically-opposed retainer bars, with jar-shaped indentations (no shelf per se, and no arms). In one embodiment, a general description of the clip described herein is an apparatus which allows removable retainment or attachment of a jar, pot or other item.
Another aspect of the storage system is the use of a mechanism to release the jar or container from the clip. This embodiment allows the storage of more jars or containers since the amount of space required to remove and re-insert the jars may be less than if each jar or container is removed and re-inserted by hand. In this embodiment, a mechanism having a click-pen or spring-loaded access method is used. The jar or container fixtures may one or more of a variety of embodiments.
The storage system is designed to be modular, so that the user can decide how many of which type of fixture to insert in the template at any time. If the user does not wish to put makeup jars in the case or template, shelves or bins can be inserted in the case to hold any other container having makeup or other items. The case or template can also be used to hold a combination of jar makeup and other types of makeup. The case or template can also be used to hold brushes, cotton balls, lotions, and other items.
Additional organizational features such as lipstick caddies and brush bins can also be added to the system for increased functionality. These features can be free-standing and placed in a suitable area of the case or template, or made as fixtures to fit into the template. Any combination of free-standing or modular features can be used.
One embodiment contains one or more drawers which are accessible from inside or outside the system. The drawer, if present, can be any suitable size. In one embodiment, the bottom of the drawer does not touch the bottom of the system. In one embodiment, the drawer forms the bottom of the system. Drawers and their fabrication and use are well known in the art.
The doors of the case can be closed in any suitable way, such as by using a lock, a latch, a tie, a magnetic closure, a zipper, or other methods known in the art.
The system can be used for many purposes, such as a table-top or portable organizer for personal and/or professional use. The modular design can be used to customize the organization to fit the user's needs. For example, some users may use the templates and fixtures to store and organize makeup jars, such as loose powder makeup, pressed powder, creams, glosses, gels, and other items. The fixtures may be used to hold a container in any desired orientation. This variable orientation feature may be designed into the template, by arranging the angle of hole or slot, or by the fixture itself. Some users may use the templates and fixtures to store and organize various makeup brushes and applicators. Some users may use the templates and fixtures to store and organize various lipstick items. Some users may use the templates and fixtures to store and organize lotions and cleansing items. Some users may use the templates and fixtures to store and organize various nail polish items. Some users may use the templates and fixtures to store and organize a combination of different items used to apply and/or remove cosmetics and other similar beauty products. As the user's needs or the manufacturer's products change, the modular makeup storage system can be adapted. For example, if a manufacturer produces items which are square in shape, the fixtures can be adapted to hold these items.
As known in the art, different materials, colors, and sizes of the modular makeup case are envisioned. The modular makeup storage systems of the invention may be made from any suitable material, including one or more of wood, composite materials, fabric, vinyl, plastic, leather or leather-like, or other pliable material. In one embodiment, materials used to make a laptop case, luggage or handbags may be used. In one embodiment, the outside is made from heavy-duty nylon denier fabric (such as 1680D); the lining is made from durable PVC and clear vinyl. Any color and pattern may be used. Different materials may be used for different portions of the case, if desired. In one embodiment, the case is made from wood or wood that is covered with another material, such as a veneer or metal or metallic or vinyl material. In one embodiment, the case is made from plastic or polymer material. In one embodiment, the case is made from metal, such as aluminum. In one embodiment, the case is made from wood, such as particle board or solid wood, such as walnut. In one embodiment, the case is made from a combination of materials. In one embodiment, the case is made from a natural or artificial fabric, such as vinyl, cloth, or leather. In this embodiment, the sides fold by virtue of the pliability of the fabric. If the case is made from fabric, stiffeners, such as cardboard, may be added, if desired, as known in the art. Alternatively, it may be desired to have no stiffeners.
The various aspects of the case can be attached together using any suitable attachment method, including screws, zippers, hook and loop fabrics, locks, hinges, sewing, rivets, and other methods known to one of ordinary skill in the art without undue experimentation.
In one embodiment, the case is sized to fit on top of a counter. In one embodiment, the case is sized to fit in a carry-on luggage bag. In one embodiment, the case is sized to fit in a purse or handbag. In one embodiment, the case is sized to be easily carried. In one embodiment, the case is carry-on luggage sized.
The travel-size system is designed to be used while traveling, although users may find it convenient for everyday or other uses, as well. Additional nonlimiting description of the travel-size system is provided herein. One embodiment of a travel-size system is shown in
The front may be fully removable from the main compartment by any suitable means, such as a zipper or snaps. The front may include optional pouches and other compartments. The inner surface of the front may be lined with material, such as vinyl to form a pocket. The pocket can be opened and closed with a zipper, snap, or hook-and-loop closure, or other methods as known in the art. There may be optional pockets which may be gusseted incorporated into the front. The front portion may include a hook for hanging the front portion of the case. There may be a separate zippered pocket on the outside of the front, for access when the case is closed. These various features are shown in
To give the case enough support to be placed on a desired surface, rigid or semi-rigid inserts may be placed one or more of the back, top, and sides of the case. These inserts may be made from any desired material, such as cardboard, masonite, paperboard, wood, plastic, or other suitable materials as known in the art. The inserts can be attached to the components by any suitable method, such as sewn, glued, stapled, riveted, friction, or any other methods known in the art. Alternatively, the case may be fabricated out of material which possesses sufficient strength to provide the desired level of case support.
The interior of one or more sides of the case may include any desired feature, such as a pocket which can be attached to the side of the case with hook and loop material (shown in
As shown in more detail in
Also provided is an improved lid for jars. In one embodiment, the jar contents are powdered or finely divided particles, such that upon opening, some of the particles are sent out of the jar. This improved lid allows easier, faster, and cleaner access to jar contents. The lid may be a screw-cap design, which is designed to form a lid to the jar. The lid may also be a replacement for any insert present in the jar design. In this embodiment, the lid may be press-fit into the opening of the jar.
The alternate lid is a screw-cap design, and is a 2-component product in one embodiment. On top of the screw-on lid is a hinged cover. This cover is actuated by pushing up on a small feature protruding over the edge of the body of the lid. The cover is equipped with a stopper (solid or open with a solid outline), attached to the inside of the cover. This stopper fits down inside a hole in main body of the lid, preventing spillage of makeup powder. The hole is small compared to the size of the entire lid-25% or less, in one embodiment, but can be any suitable size. The lid is made of any suitable material, such as polymer, such as nylon.
One feature of this lid is useful for vacuum control. When a suction-fit lid is opened, the air rushing into the container disturbs the powder and sends it flying, making a mess. However, if the vacuum created from pushing the lid up could be controlled, the mess would be dramatically reduced or eliminated. This invention solves that problem by having a lip that sticks up around the access hole. In the front of that lip (the face farthest from the hinge) are small vent slots/holes, in any suitable shape, such as circular, square, rectangular, or oval. As the stopper lifts out of the access hole, it moves beyond the vent slots before it releases from the access hole. Air can enter the jar and relieve the vacuum caused by the moving stopper before the access hole is open. This prevents a large rush of air from disturbing the powder and making a mess.
The inside cover may also contain a liner material, ideal for mixing powder makeup on. The lid may be translucent or any desired color or pattern.
The system and all aspects of the system including the template may be fabricated and assembled using methods known in the art.
Although this description contains many specificities, this should not be construed as limiting the scope of the invention. Other dimensions, materials, configurations and the like are easily used by one of ordinary skill in the art and are included in this invention, even if not specifically listed.
All references throughout this application, for example patent documents including issued or granted patents or equivalents; patent application publications; and non-patent literature documents or other source material; are hereby incorporated by reference herein in their entireties, as though individually incorporated by reference, to the extent each reference is at least partially not inconsistent with the disclosure in this application (for example, a reference that is partially inconsistent is incorporated by reference except for the partially inconsistent portion of the reference).
All patents and publications mentioned in the specification are indicative of the levels of skill of those skilled in the art to which the invention pertains. References cited herein are incorporated by reference herein in their entirety to indicate the state of the art, in some cases as of their filing date, and it is intended that this information can be employed herein, if needed, to exclude (for example, to disclaim) specific embodiments that are in the prior art.
Every formulation or combination of components described or exemplified can be used to practice the invention, unless otherwise stated. One of ordinary skill in the art will appreciate that device elements other than those specifically exemplified can be employed in the practice of the invention without resort to undue experimentation. All art-known functional equivalents, of any such device elements are intended to be included in this invention.
As used herein, “comprising” is synonymous with “including,” “containing,” or “characterized by,” and is inclusive or open-ended and does not exclude additional, unrecited elements or method steps. As used herein, “consisting of” excludes any element, step, or ingredient not specified in the claim element. As used herein, “consisting essentially of” does not exclude materials or steps that do not materially affect the basic and novel characteristics of the claim. Any recitation herein of the term “comprising”, particularly in a description of components of a composition or in a description of elements of a device, is understood to encompass those compositions and methods consisting essentially of and consisting of the recited components or elements. The invention illustratively described herein suitably may be practiced in the absence of any element or elements, limitation or limitations which is not specifically disclosed herein.
The terms and expressions which have been employed are used as terms of description and not of limitation, and there is no intention in the use of such terms and expressions of excluding any equivalents of the features shown and described or portions thereof, but it is recognized that various modifications are possible within the scope of the invention claimed. Thus, it should be understood that although the present invention has been specifically disclosed by preferred embodiments and optional features, modification and variation of the concepts herein disclosed may be resorted to by those skilled in the art, and that such modifications and variations are considered to be within the scope of this invention as defined by the appended claims.
In general the terms and phrases used herein have their art-recognized meaning, which can be found by reference to standard texts, journal references and contexts known to those skilled in the art. The following definitions are provided to clarify their specific use in the context of the invention.
One skilled in the art readily appreciates that the present invention is well adapted to carry out the objects and obtain the ends and advantages mentioned, as well as those inherent in the present invention. The methods, components, materials and dimensions described herein as currently representative of preferred embodiments are provided as examples and are not intended as limitations on the scope of the invention. Changes therein and other uses which are encompassed within the spirit of the invention will occur to those skilled in the art, are included within the scope of the claims.