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Publication numberUS3867771 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 25, 1975
Filing dateMar 13, 1974
Priority dateMar 13, 1974
Publication numberUS 3867771 A, US 3867771A, US-A-3867771, US3867771 A, US3867771A
InventorsLevine Beth
Original AssigneeLevine Beth
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Resilient retainer for heel strap of a shoe
US 3867771 A
Abstract
A shoe is described which includes a recess or depression in the insole in the region thereof adapted to support the lower arch of a human foot. A V-shaped elastic strip is disposed within the recess. The elastic strip has the apex thereof pointing towards the front of the shoe with the lateral ends thereof being respectively connected to the free ends of a continuous heel strap. A shoe liner covers the insole and the elastic strip, the liner being provided with indentations forming arcuate flaps disposed above the respective connected ends of the heel strap. The arcuate flaps are sufficiently resilient to permit free movements of the heel strap without interferring therewith. With this construction, the free ends of the heel strap are orientable and disposable in selective positions relative to the insole in response to the stretching and deformation of the elastic strip. In this manner, the effective length and position of the heel strap can be changed and the latter can accommodate itself to feet of different sizes and shapes and changing positions of the foot during walking while maintaining a comfortable fit for the wearer.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 Levine Feb. 25, 1975 RESILIENT RETAINER FOR HEEL STRAP OF A SHOE [76] Inventor: Beth Levine, c/o' Herbert Levine,

Inc., 161 Sixth Ave., New York, N.Y. 10013 [22] Filed: Mar. 13, 1974 21 Appl. No.:.450,89l

[52] US. Cl. 36/ll.5

[51] Int. Cl A43b 3/12 [58] Field of Search 36/1 1.5, 2.5 R, 7.5, 7.6

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,015,479 9/1935 Koomruian 36/] 1.5 2,669,036 2/1954 Israel 36/l1.5 3,001,302 9/1961 Farley 36/ll.5

3,707,784 l/1973 Stafford 36/11.

Primary ExarrtinerPatrick D. Lawson Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Friedman & Goodman [57] ABSTRACT A shoe is described which includes a-recess or depression in the insole in the region thereof adapted to support the lower arch of a human foot. A V-shaped elastic strip is disposed within the recess. The elastic strip has the apex thereof pointing towards the front of the shoe with the lateral ends thereof beingrespectively connected to the free ends of a continuous heel strap. A shoe liner covers the insole and the elastic strip, the

. liner'being provided with indentations forming arcuate flaps disposed above the respective connected ends of the heel strap. The arcuate flaps are sufficiently resilient to permit free movements of the heel strap without interferring therewith. With this construction, the free ends of the heel strap are orientable and disposable in selective positions relative to the insole in response to the stretching and deformation of the elastic strip. In this manner, the effective length and position of the heel strap can be changed and the latter can accommodate itself to feet of different sizes and shapes and changing positions of the foot during walking while maintaining a comfortable fit for the wearer.

10 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures lllll PATENTEI] FEBZSIQTS SHEET 2 [IF 3 FIGS FIGS

PATENTEIJFEBZSIQYS SHEET 3 OF 3 FlG IO BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention generally relates to shoes, and more particularly to'a resilient heel strap retainer or mounting member which increases the degrees of movement and the number of positions which a heel' strap may assume to provide a more comfortable fit for the wearer under differing conditions.

As is well known, heel straps are frequently provided in ladies shoes as well as in the sandals of different types. However, to provide a good fit for wearers having different size or shape feet, the heel strap is commonly provided with an adjustable buckle or other conventional connecting means for increasing or decreasing the effective length of the heel strap. By making the necessary adjustments, an appropriate length can be selected which provides a comfortable and secure fit when the heel strap is engaged with the arch of the foot above the heel.

With typical heel strap arrangements, the free ends of the heel strap are secured to the sole of the shoe and thereby become fixed with respect to the latter. Accordingly, once such permanent connection is made, the relative positions and orientations of the free ends of the heel strap become fixed and the heel strap can no longer be easily deformed or stretched to accommodate feet of different sizes and shapes. Additionally, because many heel straps are themselves rigid in nature and cannot be stretched, the known heel strap arrangements fail to-provide the desirable resiliency or biasing action against the arch of the foot abovethe heel with walking while maintaining a comfortable fit for the wearer.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a heel strap arrangement as described in the above objects wherein the elastic strip connected to the sole of the shoe is disposed within a recess of the latter.

changing positions of the foot during walking to thereby cause the heel to follow the foot.

The heel strap arrangement of the present invention overcomes the above described disadvantages by resiliently mounting the free ends of the heel strap which are fixed to the insole of the shoe. Such an arrangement permits elongation, when required, to accommodate feet of different sizes and shapes as well as providing the necessary biasing action to cause the shoe to follow the foot during walking. This is achieved with a simple and economical construction which can be utilized in manufacturing most shoes of this type without compromising other structural features which enhance the comfort of the wearer.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is an object of the present invention to provide a heel strap arrangement which is not characterized by the above described disadvantages.

It is another object of the present invention to provide a heel strap arrangement which is simple in construction and economical to manufacture.

It is still another object of the present invention to provide a heel strap arrangement of the type generally under discussion which mounts the free ends of a heel strap to the sole of a shoe by means of an elastic strip which is stretchable and deformable to thereby in crease the number of positions and degrees of movement which the heel strap may assume.

It is yet another object of the present invention to provide a heel strap arrangement of the type under discussion whose effective length can be changed and which can accommodate itself to feet of different sizes and shapes and changing positions of the foot during configuration of the, strip when the opposing edges of It is still a further object of the present invention to provide an elastically mounted heel strap and a liner which covers the sole of the shoe and the elastic, with the liner being provided with lateral indentations and resulting arcuate flaps which are disposed above the connected ends of the heel strap, the flaps being movable and deformable to prevent interference with the free movements of the heel strap.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS With the above and additional objects and advantages in view, as will hereinafter appear, this invention comprises the devices, combinations and arrangements of parts hereinafter described by way of example and illustrated in the accompanying drawings of a preferred embodiment in which:

FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of a shoe in accordance with the present invention, showing a foot disposed within the shoe and the heel strap of the present invention in its normal position;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the shoe shown in FIG. 1, with the foot removed, and showing indentations in a shoe liner and the resulting arcuate flaps disposed above the connected ends of the heel strap;

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of an insole of the shoe shown in FIG. 1, showing a recess or cutout portion in the region of the lower arch of the human foot which is adapted to receive an elastic means to which the heel strap is connected;

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the resilient elastic means positionable within the recess shown in FIG. 3 and connectable to the insole as well as to the free ends of the heel strap. This FIGURE shows, in solid outline, the blank of. the strip and, in dashed outline, the ultimate the wedge-shaped cutout in the blank are joined together such as by sewing;

FIG. 5 is a fragmented top plan, view showing the elastic strip connected at the lateral ends thereof to the free ends of the heel strap;

FIG. 6 is similar to FIG. 5 and further showing an adhesive cloth or ribbon disposed on one side of the clastic strip;

FIG. 7 is similar to FIG. 6 but showing the adhesive ribbon fully encircling and providing a protective cover for the stitching as well as serving as a central support or filling member to equalize the thicknesses of the heel strap and the elastic ribbon;

FIG. 8 is similar to FIG. 3 but showing a patch provided on the insole which at least partially covers the recess or cutout in the regions of the sides or lateral peripheries of the insole;

FIG. 9 is similar to FIG. 8 but showing the heel strap arrangement stapled to the exposed portion of the recess or cutout; and

FIG. 10 is a cross'section of the arrangement shown in FIG. 9, taken along line 10-10, further showing a shoe liner covering the insole and the elastic heel strap retainer, with the flaps shown in FIG. 2 abutting against the connected ends of the heel strap.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFFERED EMBODIMENTS Referring now to the drawings, in which similar or identical parts have been designated by the same reference numerals throughout, and first referring to FIG. 1, a shoe incorporating the present invention is generally designated by the reference numeral 10.

The shoe 10, which is shown to be a ladys shoe, includes a sole 12, a vamp 14, which is a shoe upper which covers the forepart of a foot 15. A conventional heel 16 is provided and the heel strap which is mounted in accordance with the present invention is indicated by the reference numeral 18.

Referring to FIG. 2, it will be noted that a liner 20 is provided which is configurated in the shape of the sole and positioned coextensively therewith. An important feature of the present invention, to be more fully described hereafter, is the provision of indentations 22 in the region of the shoe adapted to support the lower arch of the human foot. The indentations 22 form arcuate flaps 24 which are respectively disposed above each connected end of the heel strap 18. As will become evident from the description that follows, the heel strap 18 is mounted so that the connected free ends thereof are given degrees of freedom of movement not heretofore available in the prior art. The indentations 22 and the arcuate flaps 24 are configurated not to interfere with the movement of the heel strap.

The present invention is primarily concerned with the manner in which the free ends of the heel strap 18 are connected to the sole of the shoe. The description of the connecting means will now be described in connection with FIGS. 31() which respectively correspond to the steps of the process of manufacture of the shoe in accordance with the invention.

In FIG. 3, an insole 26 is shown which is provided with a V-shaped cutout, recess or depression 28. The recess 28 has an apex which points towards the front of the shoe. The recess 28 extends laterally towards the sides or edges of the insole 26.

In FIG. 4, an elastic retaining member is generally designated by the reference numeral 30'. In accordance with a presently preferred embodiment of the invention, the elastic retaining member 30 is in the general shape of the recess 28. One manner of achieving such a configuration is suggested in FIG. 4 wherein a member 30 is formed from a substantially continuous flat strip of elastic material 32 having parallel opposing edges 34. In forming the elastic retaining member 30', the strip 32 is provided with two inclined coverging edges 36 which do not, however, meet. A notch 37 is formed at an intermediate position between the inclined edges 36. The notch 37 is formed by two converging edges 38 originating at one edge of the strip and extending proximate to the other edge of the strip as shown.

When the V-shaped strip 32 is deformed and brought to the position shown in dashed outline, the resulting strip 30 is formed which corresponds to the general shape or outline of the recess 28. To maintain the shape of the elastic retainer 30, any suitable joining means such as stitching 40 may be provided which retains the opposing edges 38 in parallel proximity to one another. By forming retaining member 30' in this fashion, the elastic connecting strips of the present invention may be formed from a continuous parallel edge strip of elastic material which is cut to an appropriate size and pro vided with a V-shaped notch. In this manner, the' elastic retainers 30 can be formed from conventional strip or ribbon materials which may, advantageously, be provided with finished reinforced edges.

After the elastic strip 30 has been formed into the V-shaped configuration receivable within the complementary recess 28, the free ends of the heel strap 18 are connected to the strip 30 along the edges 36 by any suitable means, such as stitching 42. Referring to FIGS. 6 and 7, a cloth or ribbon 44 is wrapped around the central portion of the elastic 30. Firstly, the ribbon or cloth 44 covers and protects the stitching 40 to prevent the same from opening due to wear. Secondly, the ribbon 44 enlarges the thickness in the central region of the elastic 30 to closer approach the thickness of strap 18. This is desirable to avoid sharp discontinuities which may produce great discomfort to the wearer. Advantageously the inside surface of the ribbon is provided with adhesive so that the ribbon remains adhered to the elastic 30' as shown in FIG. 7.

The heel strap 18, as connected to elastic 30, is now ready to be joined or connected to the insole 26. Before fixing the elastic to the insole, a covering material in the form of a patch 46 is attached to the insole 26 as shown in FIG. 8. The patch 46 need not necessarily have the rectangular shape shown, it only being desirable that the patch include portions extending and covering the lateral or side portions of the recess 28. The purpose of the patch 46 is to cover the recess when the insole 26 is covered by the shoe liner 20.

The elastic is now disposed within the recess 28 as shown in FIG. 9 and staples 48, or other suitable connecting means, are utilized to secure the elastic retaining member 30 to the insole. The shoe liner 20 is now disposed above and coextensively with the insole 26, with the arcuate flaps 24 above or in abutment against the fixed ends of the heel strap 18 as shown in FIGS. 2 and 10.

By configurating the elastic retaining member 30' in the V-shape shown, the ends of the elastic retaining member are substantially aligned with the end of the heel strap which are to be connected thereto. The resulting structure of the present invention greatly facilitates the free movement of the heel strap to accommodate feet of different sizes and shapes. For example, the elastic retaining member 30' can be stretched laterally, as suggested by the arrows 52 in FIG. 10, to increase the effective overall length of the heel strap 18. Similarly, the connected ends of the heel strap 10 can be moved upwardly, as suggested by the arrows 54. In this connection, it should be noted that the arcuate tongues 24 do not interfere with the movements in the directions 54 due to their flexible and deformable nature. The connected ends of the heeel strap 18 can also move in frontal and rearward directions as suggested by the arrow 50 in FIG. 9. From the above, it becomes clear that the versatile heel strap mounting means 30 of the present invention permits the connected ends of the strap to orient and dispose themselves in selective positions relative to the insole in response to stretching and deformation of the elastic member 30'. Not only does such freedom of movement accommodate the weareres feet, but also accommodates changing positions of the foot during walking while maintaining a comfortable fit for the wearer. When the heel strap 18 abuts against the arch above the heel, as shown in FIG.

l, and the wearer raises the foot 15, there may be slight deflected elongation of the heel strap. However, because the restoring forces of the elastic retaining member tend to bias the heel strap continuously against the arch above the heel, forces are established which cause the shoe, generally, and the heel of the shoe 16, particularly, to follow the foot of the wearer during walking. This is a desirable feature since it results in greater comfort and safety in the wear of the shoes.

The principal features of the invention have above been described. However, slight changes, such as changing the specific configuration of the elastic retaining member 30' would not change the basic principle of the present invention. In effect, the present invention contemplates the connection of heel strap ends to an elastic device of the type generally above described which is connected to the sole of the shoe to result in the above described degrees of freedom of movement of the heel strap. Also, while the above invention has been described as being incorporated in a ladys shoe, it should be clear that the same type of heel strap arrangement may be provided in mens shoes and sandals of various types. It may be further observed that the elastic retaining member 30, formed from a parallel edge strip 32, may initially be molded in the desired configuration of V-shape shown.

Once assembled, the patch 46 covers the portions of the insole 26 which would normally be covered by the shoe liner 20. However, due to the indentations 22 and the normally elevated conditions of the flaps 24, the liner does not cover those portions. The cover or patch 46 covers the insole in the region of connection to the heel strap 18 so that despite upward flexure of the flaps 24, the insole 26 remains hidden from view. To this end, it is advantageous to make the patch 46 from the same material or color as the liner 20.

Numerous alterations of the structure herein disclosed will suggest themselves to those skilled in the art. However, it is to be understood that the present disclosure relates to a preferred embodiment of the invention which is for purposes of illustration only and is not to be construed as a limitation of the invention.

What is claimed is:

1. In a shoe, an insole; elastic means fixed to said insole in the region adapted to support the lower arch of a human foot; said elastic means including free end portions substantially directed in respective opposing lateral sides of said insole; a substantially inelastic heel strap having each free end thereof connected to a respective end portion of said elastic means and suitable for extending behind and resiliently engaging the arch of the foot above the heel when the foot is fully received in the shoe, the free ends of said heel strap being orientable and disposable in selective positions relative to said insole in response to stretching and deformation of said elastic means, whereby the effective length of said heel strap can be changed and the latter can accommodate itself to feet of different sizes and shapes and changing positions of the foot during walking while maintaining a comfortable fit for the wearer.

2. In a shoe as defined in claim 1, wherein said insole is provided with a recess in said lower arch supporting region, said recess being sufficiently deep to receive therein the major portion of said elastic means.

3. In a shoe as defined in claim 2, wherein said elastic means is fixed to said insole within said recess by means of staples.

4. In a shoe as defined in claim 2, further comprising cover means connected to said insole for covering peripheral portions of said recess extending adjacent to the lateral sides or edges of said insole; and a shoe liner configurated in the shape of said insole and positioned coextensively therewith with said heel strap extending between said cover means and said insole, whereby said recess is substantially covered and not visible during normal use of the shoe and movement of said heel strap.

5. In a shoe as defined in claim 1, wherein said elastic means comprises a V-shaped elastic strip with the apex thereof pointing towards the front of the shoe.

6. Elastic means as defined in claim 5, wherein said elastic strip includes a strip portion of elastic material having a V-shaped notch formed by two opposing and.

8. In a shoe as defined in claim 7, wherein said ribbon is adhesive and is adhered to said elastic means.

9. In a shoe as defined in claim 1, further comprising a shoe liner configurated in the shape of said insole and positioned coextensively therewith, said shoe liner covering said elastic means and provided with indentations in the region above each free end portion in said elastic means, whereby said heel strap is provided with a greater degree of freedom of movement without being restrained by said shoe liner.

10. In a shoe as defined in claim 9, wherein each identation in said shoe liner forms an arcuate flap, said shoe liner with the exception of said flap being fixed to said inside, whereby said flaps are movable and deformable in response to movements of said heel strap irrespective of thefixed condition of said shoe liner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2015479 *Mar 5, 1935Sep 24, 1935Harry KoomruianSandal
US2669036 *Aug 7, 1951Feb 16, 1954Sidney IsraelFlexible footwear
US3001302 *Sep 23, 1959Sep 26, 1961Benay Farley AileenBroadly to wearing apparel and more particularly to footwear of the type known as a sandal or slipper
US3707784 *Oct 19, 1971Jan 2, 1973Stafford CCushion insole for shoes
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7162814 *Aug 4, 2004Jan 16, 2007David BergShoe with interchangeable strap system
US8322054Jul 7, 2009Dec 4, 2012Craig FellerShoe with interchangeable strap system
WO2008100979A1 *Feb 13, 2008Aug 21, 2008David G BergShoe with interchangeable strap system
Classifications
U.S. Classification36/11.5
International ClassificationA43B3/00
Cooperative ClassificationA43B3/00
European ClassificationA43B3/00