US 3774241 A
A garment such as a loincloth or the like and a spreader therefor effective to maintain the shape of the garment by preventing transverse collapse or bunching thereof. The loincloth includes a length of material adapted to extend between and upwardly from the leg juncture of one wearing the garment, and such length of material is equipped both along the front and rear of the torso adjacent the hips thereof with transversely oriented spreaders or stiffeners. A hip encircling band is attached to the spreader in one form of the garment to support the same therethrough, and the band is movable transversely with respect to the spreader to enable the garment to accommodate substantial body movements without significant displacement from the position intended therefor.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 1 Zerkle [451 Nov. 27, 1973 LOINCLOTH AND SPREADER THEREFOR  Inventor: John A. Zerkle, 7 Lomas Cantados,
Orinda, Calif. 94563 22 Filed: Feb. 16,1972
21 Appl. No.: 226,762
 US. Cl. 2/67, 2/224 A  Int. Cl A4ld 7/00  Field of Search 2/224 A, 224 R, 67, 2/238; 128/289, 284
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,401,457 6/1946 Bryant 2/224 A 2,085,425 6/1937 Goodwin 2/224 A Primary Examiner-H. Hampton Hunter Attorney-Joseph B. Gardner  ABSTRACT A garment such as a loincloth or the like and a spreader therefor effective to maintain the shape of the garment by preventing transverse collapse or bunching thereof. The loincloth includes a length of material adapted to extend between and upwardly from the leg juncture of one wearing the garment, and such length of material is equipped both along the front and rear of the torso adjacent the hips thereof with transversely oriented Spreaders or stiffeners. A hip encircling band is attached to the spreader in one form of the garment to support the same therethrough, and the band is movable transversely with re spect to the spreader to enable the garment to accommodate substantial body movements without significant displacement from the position intended therefor.
5 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures Patented Nov. 27, 1973 FIG- 2 FIG. I
l lrllliusi uih Nimwihlnl, Humming:
FIG-3 LOINCLOTH AND SPREADER THEREFOR This invention relates to wearing apparel and, more particularly, to a garment adapted for use in covering portions of the lower trunk and leg juncture of the human body. In still more particular reference, the present invention is concemedwith an article of clothing in the nature of a loincloth or the like which covers the areas of the torso requiring concealment by present mories or standards of modesty, while leaving adjacent areas exposed; and it further relates to a spreader for such loincloth to maintain the shape thereof.
An object of the invention is to provide an article of clothing of the type described that is aesthetically attractive, comfortable to wear, and is easy to don and remove.
Another object of the invention is in the provision of a loincloth or the like adapted for use in covering at least portions of the lower trunk and leg juncture of the human body, and a spreader or stiffener for the garment enabling it to maintain its shape and contours during use even though the person wearing the same may subject the garment to substantial motion and stress incident thereto.
Still another object is that of providing a loincloth or the like and spreader therefor all of the type described and which loincloth may be used as leisure wear, for sun bathing, and as a swimsuit, if desired, and is effective even when wet and subjected to the extensive body movements characterizing the. act of swimming to maintain its shape and position on the body without causing discomfort to one wearing the garment.
A further object of the invention is to provide a loincloth or the like having a band or belt adapted to encircle the trunk of a person wearing the same adjacent the waist area thereof, and further having a length of material adapted to extend between the wearers legs and upwardly therefrom along both the back and front of the trunk toward the waist thereof and adjacent which the length of material is equipped with spreader and connector structure attaching the same to the band so as to be supported thereby; the connector structure having components located along both the front and rear of the torso, and each such component including a spreader or stiffener effective to resist transverse collapse of the length of material in the vicinity thereof and being attached to the band so as to accommodate transverse movements of the latter with respect thereto and thereby enable the garment to accommodate substantial body movements without significant distortion or displacements from the intended position therefor.
Additional objects and advantages of the invention, especially as concerns particular features and characteristics thereof, will become apparent as the specification continues.
An embodiment of the invention is illustrated in the accompanying drawing, in which:
FIG. 1 is a front view in elevation of the garment illustrating the same in position on a person wearing the same, portions of the front covering flap of the garment being broken away to reveal structural details otherwise hidden thereby;
FIG. 2 is a rear view in elevation of the garment showing the same in position upon a person wearing the same, portions of the rear flap of the garment being broken away to illustrate structural details otherwise concealed thereby;
FIG. 3 is a side view in elevation of the garment in the approximate position thereof when being worn, portions of the lower trunk and legs being shown bybroken lines; and
FIG. 4 is an enlarged broken vertical sectional view taken generally along the line 4--4 of FIG. I.
The garment under consideration may take various specific forms, as heretofore suggested, and the particular embodiment shown is that of a loincloth adapted for use in covering at least portions of the lower trunk and leg juncture of the human body and, in still more particular reference, the crotch and immediately adjacent areas of the body, all as is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. The garment for identification is designated in its entirety with the numeral 10, and it includes a crotch strap or length of material 11 adapted to extend be tween the legs of the body and upwardly'therefrom along the front and rear of the trunk toward the waist thereof. It may be of convenience hereinafter in further describing the length of material 11 to subdivide the same into a crotch area or cover 12, a front cover or area 13, and a rear cover or area 14. In the particular form of the invention being considered, the length of material 111 is unitary or integral throughout the areas 12, 13, and 14 thereof, however, as respects the present invention such length of material may be made from two or more pieces stitched or otherwise interconnected one with another.
Comparison of FIGS. 1 and 2 and reference to FIG. 3 makes it evident that the front and rear cover areas 13 and M have different transverse dimensions with the rear area 14 being substantially wider than the front area 13, thereby enabling it to more readily accommodate the contours and characteristics of the human body. Such differences in transverse dimensions or widths may be provided by cutting the length of material 11 to form the requisite shapes, or the front cover 13 and crotch l2 might be appropriately reduced in dimension by folding and stitching material sufficiently wide to accommodate the larger rear cover 14. The length of material 11 may be fabricated from any suitable and usual substance which, for comfort, will ordinarily be soft and compressible as well as flexible. A specific example thereof is clotlh materials such as those made from natural fibers including cotton, wool, and silk, although fabrics made in whole or in part of synthetic fibers such as rayon, nylon, and dacron may be as readily used. As respects the present invention, substantially all fabrics and materials presently used for clothing garments may be employed, and the precise sizes of the garment 10 are not critical so that one of greater or lesser modesty may be provided all in accordance with the tastes of the individual to wear the same.
The garment M) further includes a front flap l5 and a rear flap 16 that respectively extend downwardly, when the garment is being worn, generally along the front and rear areas 13 and 14, as shown in the draw ing. Thus, the front flap 15 generally extends over and conceals the front cover 13, and the flap 16 similarly extends over and generally conceals the rear cover 14. The length and width of each flap l5 and 16 may be varied to suit the tastes of one wearing the garment, and the flaps may be formed integrally with the length of material 1 l, as shown in the drawing, or they may be separate components stitched or otherwise secured to the respectively adjacent areas of the length of material 11. Ordinarily, the length of material 11 may be a plain fabric of appropriate color whereas the flaps 15 and 16 may be decorated or ornamented at least along the exposed outer surfaces thereof so as to make the garment l aesthetic pleasing as well as functionally advantageous. It will be apparent that as respects the decorative effect to be obtained there is substantially no limitation or restriction as to the materials, colors, and other ornamentation provided.
The garment further includes a band 17 adapted to encircle the trunk of one wearing the garment adjacent the waist area, although the band 17 is advantageously located below the exact position of the waist and generally along the hips, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 of the drawing. The band 17 is in the nature of a belt and is adapted to be secured to the length of material 11 so as to support the same. The band 17 may be formed from any suitable material and may be either stiff or relatively soft, the latter being preferred for purposes of comfort. In the particular garment 10 being considered, the band 17 is formed from cloth (the same material as the rest of the garment) stitched to provide an elongated hollow tube reinforced along the interior thereof with a stiffening member 18 such as webbing, buckram, plastic, plastic coated fabric, or comparable materials. Although stiffened slightly, the band 17 may be a relatively soft, readily bent or folded component so that it does not cause discomfort to one wearing the garment. The band may be equipped along the length thereof with buckles or other fastener devices (not shown) or it may be a continuous component usually with a piece of elastic therealong and sufficiently large to enable it to be worked over the hips of one wearing the garment and then engage or grip the same so as to hold the garment in place.
The garment 10 further includes connector structure for attaching the length of material 11 to the band 17 so as to be supported thereby. In the form being considered, the connector structure comprises two separate elements respectively associated with the front and rear of the garment and denoted for identification with the numerals 19 and 20. The separate connector structures 19 and 20 are substantially identical as respects the present invention both structurally and functionally, but they need not be identical. Comparison of FIGS. 1 and 2 makes it evident that the structures 19 and 20 are of substantially the same length and width although the ends of the structure 19 tapper downwardly and inwardly whereas the corresponding end portions of the structure 20 are generally oriented at right angles with respect to the longitudinal edges thereof.
In each instance, the connector structure 19 and 20 include a stiffener secured to the length of material 18 so as to resist transverse collapse thereof in the vicinity of the stiffener. Thus, in the form shown each of the stiffeners extends substantially from edge-to-edge of the material 11 at the point of attachment of the material thereto. Each stiffener or stiffening member 19,20 in the particular form shown is a tubular component formed from flat stock folded or rolled upon itself and joined by stitching or otherwise along the contiguous longitudinal edges thereof. The stiffener is also attached to the length of material 11 along the joined longitudinal edges either by the same or additional stitching or by other comparable means, as shown by the stitch areas 21 in FIGS. 1 and 4 and 22 in FIG. 2. Otherwise, the stiffeners are essentially free from the material 11, as is best seen in FIG. 4. The stitched areas 21 and 22, it will be observed, are located along the lower edge portions of the respectively associated connector stiffeners 19 and 20 such that the stiffeners extend upwardly therefrom. The covers 13 and 14 respectively extend along the inner surface portions of the connector stiffeners 19 and 20, and the flaps l5 and 16 respectively extend over the stiffeners and then depend therefrom so as to hang freely or loosely in overlying relation with the front and rear covers 13 and 14, as described hereinbefore.
In the embodiment of the invention being considered, the band 17 is attached to the length of material 1 1 through the connector stiffeners or spreaders 19 and 20 and is movable transversely with respect thereto, thereby enabling the garment 10 to accommodate substantial body movements without significant displacements from the primary position intended therefor. As respects such attachment, each stiffener or spreader is of generally hollow, tubular configuration, as previously explained, and defines a passage 23 from end to end thereof (see FIG. 4) through which the band extends. The passage 23 is sufficiently large relative to the band 17 so as to accommodate relative transverse movements of the band and connector spreaders. Each spreader 19,20 may be formed from a variety of materials that have sufficient stiffness to resist transverse collapse of the length of material 11, and specific examples thereof are relatively stiff buckrum, plastic-coated fabric (heavy plastic-type wall covering having a fabric backing, for example), and similar materials. The spreaders 19,20 may vary from the specific configurations illustrated and, by way of example, may comprise a plurality of transversely spaced loops interconnected one with another by stiff transverse members which may be sufficiently bendable or flexible otherwise to conform to the body contours, a fiat transversely extending bar-like component, a transversely extending wire loop, etc.
In use of the garment 10, it is worn as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 so that the length of material 11 extends between the legs and upwardly therefrom along the front and rear of the lower torso. The garment is held in place by the hip-encircling band 17 (the garment shown being of the hip-hugger type) with the front and rear flaps 15 and 16 depending from the band as illustrated in the drawing. The garment is retained in this general configuration, shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, until removed, departing little from such configuration irrespective of the type and extent of the body movements to which it is subjected.
Generally, the spreaders or stiffeners l9 and 20 (which are also connector components in the form shown) maintain the initial shape and contours of the garment in conjunction with the band 17, the latter of which constrains the garment against downward slippage, and the form constraining the garment and length of material 11 thereof against transverse collapse or bunching. One wearing the garment may move considerably, articulating the hips and legs or otherwise executing generally violent, erratic or other unusual movements without significantly displacing the garment 10 or altering the appearance thereof. That is to say, the band 17 necessarily rides with or accompanies the hips as they move, whereas the remainder of the garment and particularly the length of material 11 thereof may tend to remain in the position shown because of its being confined between the legs throughout the area 12 and constrained against collapse by the connectorspreaders or stiffening elements 19 and 20. Further, the band 17 is freely movable in transverse directions relative to the length of material 11 and connector structures associated therewith and, in more particular terms, is slidable or otherwise freely clisplaceable through the passages 23 defined by the connector stiffeners 19 and 20. Thus, the garment maintains the desired degree of modesty or body coverage for the person wearing thesame irrespective of the motion to which the lower torso is subjected, and it accomplishes this result without creating discomfort to the wearer while at the same time being aesthetically attractive.
While in the foregoing specification an embodiment of the invention has been set forth in considerable detail for purposes of making an adequate disclosure thereof, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that numerous changes may be made in such details without departing from the spirit and principles of the invention.
What is claimed is:
l. A garment adapted for use in covering at least portions of the lower trunk and leg juncture of the human body, comprising: a length of material adapted to extend between such legs and upwardly therefrom along the front and rear of such trunk toward the waist thereof; a spreader structure secured to an upper end of said length of material to resist transverse collapse thereof in the vicinity of said spreader structure; and a waist encircling band being slidably connected with the upper end of said length of material so as to support the same, said band being slidable transversely with respect to said length of material so as to enable said garment to accommodate substantial body movements of said body.
2. The garment of claim 1 in which said spreader structure includes separate hollow components respectively secured to said length of material adjacent the front and rear of such torso, and said band extending through and being slidable in each of said components.
3. The garment of claim 2 and further comprising front and rear flaps respectively secured to said length of material and combined with said length of material to enclose and conceal the front and rear of said spreader components.
4. The garment of claim 2 in which each of said spreader components is tubular and said band extends slidably therethrough to effect the aforesaid attachment therewith.
5. A garment comprising a loincloth or the like of relatively nonform-retaining material formed to extend between such legs and upwardly therefrom along the front and rear of such trunk toward the waist thereof, tubular spreader structures, one at the front and one at the rear upper terminus of the material, and a hip encircling band extending through each of the spreader structures and slidable therein, said spreader structures being composed of material which is relatively stiff along its length so as to prevent transverse collapse and bunching of such length of material, said spreader structure being relatively flexible inwardly and outwardly referenced to such trunk so as to enable accommodation to the contours thereof, said spreader structure also being relatively stifi' in generally vertical directions referenced to such trunk so as to maintain the horizontal line of such garment along the area of atstructure.