Title:
Cover
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Embodiments of methods, and/or articles for protecting at least a portion of a child seat are disclosed.



Inventors:
Karr, Stephanie F. (Tigard, OR, US)
Application Number:
11/105778
Publication Date:
10/19/2006
Filing Date:
04/13/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47C31/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
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20010050499School bus underseat storage container and methodDecember, 2001Deloach et al.
20090127906Automobile Seat With Fatigue Reduction FunctionMay, 2009Sugiyama
20090218869Collapsible Seat and SystemSeptember, 2009Larsen et al.
20080136239Synchronizing mechanism for a chairJune, 2008Bock
20070194615Guide Device For Guiding An Adjuster Element On An Adjuster Device For Motor VehiclesAugust, 2007Fischer
20060249996Air-distribution system for a structural unit in a vehicle passenger compartmentNovember, 2006Eberl et al.
20030067197Chair for a body-sensible acoustic deviceApril, 2003Komatsu
20090315382MODULAR FURNITURE ASSEMBLYDecember, 2009Nelson



Primary Examiner:
GARRETT, ERIKA P
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BERKELEY LAW & TECHNOLOGY GROUP (1700NW 167TH PLACE, SUITE 240, BEAVERTON, OR, 97006, US)
Claims:
1. An article, comprising: a cover fitted to protect at least a portion of a child seat having a liner, wherein the cover includes a securing portion capable of at least partially securing the cover to the child seat.

2. The article of claim 1, wherein said cover is configured to have a generally oblong shape.

3. The article of claim 1, wherein said cover is formed from one or more materials, including terrycloth, cotton, polyester, plastic, and/or combinations thereof.

4. The article of claim 1, and further comprising at least one slot formed in at least a portion of the cover.

5. The article of claim 4, and further comprising a plurality of slots configured such as to allow portions of a five-point harness coupled to the child seat to pass at least partially through the cover.

6. The article of claim 5, and further comprising at least one slot configured such as to allow at least one tray post to at least partially pass through the cover.

7. The article of claim 5, and further comprising one or more harness cover portions configured to cover at least a portion of the five-point harness.

8. The article of claim 1, wherein said child seat comprises one or more of the following: a high chair, a stroller, a car seat, a shopping cart, a booster seat, a bicycle seat, an infant swing, an infant “bouncy” seat, and/or combinations thereof.

9. The article of claim 1, wherein said at least one securing portion comprises one or more of the following: elastic, drawstring, snaps, Velcro®, buttons, clips, and/or combinations thereof.

10. The article of claim 1, wherein said cover is at least partially machine-washable.

11. An article, comprising: means for protecting a child seat having a liner, wherein the means for protecting comprises: means for covering at least a portion of the child seat; and means for securing the means for covering to the child seat.

12. The article of claim 11, wherein said means for protecting comprises a cover, wherein the cover is fitted to cover at least a portion of the child seat and at least a portion of the liner, and wherein the cover is comprised of one or more materials.

13. The article of claim 12, wherein said one or more materials includes: terrycloth, cotton, polyester, plastic and/or combinations thereof.

14. The article of claim 11, wherein said child seat comprises one or more of the following: a high chair, a stroller, a car seat, a shopping cart, a booster seat, a bicycle seat, an infant swing, an infant “bouncy” seat, and/or combinations thereof.

15. The article of claim 11, wherein said means for securing comprises one or more of the following: elastic, drawstring, snaps, Velcro®, buttons, clips, and/or combinations thereof.

16. The article of claim 12, wherein said cover is at least partially machine-washable.

17. A system, comprising: a child seat; a liner coupled to the child seat; and a cover coupled to the child seat, wherein said cover is fitted to cover at least a portion of the child seat and at least a portion of the liner.

18. The system of claim 17, and further comprising at least one securing portion capable of at least partially securing the cover to the child seat.

19. The system of claim 18, wherein said at least one securing portion comprises one or more of the following: elastic, drawstring, snaps, Velcro®, buttons, clips, and/or combinations thereof.

20. The system of claim 17, wherein said cover is formed from one or more materials, including terrycloth, cotton, polyester, plastic, and/or combinations thereof.

21. The system of claim 17, and further comprising a plurality of slots configured such as to allow portions of a five-point harness coupled to the child seat to pass at least partially through the cover.

22. The system of claim 17, wherein said child seat comprises one or more of the following: a high chair, a stroller, a car seat, a shopping cart, a booster seat, a bicycle seat, an infant swing, an infant “bouncy” seat, and/or combinations thereof.

23. The system of claim 17, wherein said cover is at least partially machine-washable.

24. A child seat and child seat liner kept clean in the following manner: securing a cover to at least a portion of the child seat, wherein said cover is fitted to cover at least a portion of the child seat and at least a portion of the liner.

25. The child seat and child seat liner of claim 24, wherein said cover further comprises at least one securing portion capable of at least partially securing the cover to the child seat, wherein said at least one securing portion comprises one or more of the following: elastic, drawstring, snaps, Velcro®, buttons, clips, and/or combinations thereof.

26. The child seat and child seat liner of claim 24, wherein said cover is formed from one or more materials, including terrycloth, cotton, polyester, plastic, and/or combinations thereof.

27. The child seat and child seat liner of claim 24, and further comprising a plurality of slots configured such as to allow portions of a five-point harness coupled to the child seat to pass at least partially through the cover.

28. The child seat and child seat liner of claim 24, wherein said child seat comprises one or more of the following: a high chair, a stroller, a car seat, a shopping cart, a booster seat, a bicycle seat, an infant swing, an infant “bouncy” seat, and/or combinations thereof.

Description:

BACKGROUND

Numerous differing types and categories of child or infant seats exist, and may include, for example, high chairs, strollers, infant swings, infant seats, such as “bouncy” seats, car seats and booster seats. Additionally, numerous other types of devices, while not generally referred to as seats, may be configured to provide a convenient place to secure a child, toddler or infant during a task such as shopping, feeding or dining, for example. Devices such as these may be referred to as seating devices, and, in this context, seating devices may include any device capable of securing a child or infant, for example. Occasionally, seating devices such as these may become soiled, and it may be desirable to clean at least a portion of the seating device, for example. The process of cleaning seating devices such as these may be difficult and/or may be time consuming, which may be due in part to the process of removing and/or cleaning portions of the seating device. For a variety of reasons, including the reasons set forth above, it may be desirable to produce a device that may address one or more of these limitations.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIGURES

Subject matter is particularly pointed out and distinctly claimed in the concluding portion of the specification. Claimed subject matter, however, both as to organization and method of operation, together with objects, features, and advantages thereof, may best be understood by reference of the following detailed description when read with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a bottom plan view of a cover in accordance with one embodiment;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a seating device fitted with a cover, in accordance with one embodiment;

FIGS. 3a and 3b are side views of numerous covers, in accordance with one or more embodiments; and

FIGS. 4a and 4b are side views of numerous covers, in accordance with one or more embodiments.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

In the following detailed description, numerous specific details are set forth to provide a thorough understanding of claimed subject matter. However, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that claimed subject matter may be practiced without these specific details. In other instances, well-known methods, procedures and/or components have not been described in detail so as not to obscure claimed subject matter.

Numerous differing types and categories of seating devices exist, and, in this context, seating devices may include devices primarily designed to provide seating for a child, and may additionally include devices that may not be primarily designed for child seating, but may have the capability to provide seating for a child. Seating devices such as these may include a liner, which may be padded, for example, and the liner may be permanently and/or removably coupled to the seating device. A liner, in this context, may comprise one or more materials that may be at least partially flexible, and may be configured to be attached to the seating device, such as to provide functions such as padding for one or more seating surfaces of the seating device. Seating devices may include high chairs, strollers, car seats, shopping carts, booster seats, infant swings, infant seats, such as “bouncy” seats, and/or bicycle seats, although numerous other types of seating devices may exist, and are not listed herein. Devices such as these may be referred to throughout the specification as seating devices or child seats, regardless of whether the devices are used primarily for seating, for example. Additionally, although referred to as a child seat, a seating device in accordance with one or more embodiments may be particularly configured to seat infants, toddlers or children, and child seat refers generally to devices capable of seating children having a variety of ages, for example.

Child seats or portions thereof, such as a liner, as described above may, for numerous reasons, occasionally be cleaned, or may be cleaned frequently, such as after every use, for example. Additionally, it may be desirable for a child to have little direct contact with the child seat, such as if the child seat is utilized by multiple children, for example, such as in a nursery or day care, and may be potentially unsanitary as a result. The process of cleaning seating devices such as these may be difficult and/or may be time consuming, which may be due in part to the process of removing and/or cleaning the liner, and/or cleaning other portions of the seating device. Additionally, it may be customary to clean the liner regularly, such as after regular use of the seating device. In this case, if the liner is cleaned multiple times, the liner may become discolored, misshapen and/or weakened, such as due to the multiple washing processes, for example. However, it is desirable to note that the claimed subject matter is not so limited, and in alternative embodiments no liner may be utilized, as explained previously.

In at least one embodiment, a child seat may comprise a high chair, and the high chair may include a liner. The high chair may further include harness straps, such as harness straps comprising a five-point harness, and/or may comprise a tray and/or tray post, as will be explained in more detail later. A high chair such as described herein may be utilized to secure a child, such as during a meal or during craft activities, for example. The high chair and/or portions thereof, such as the liner or harness straps may, for example, become soiled during one or more of the above-described uses, for example, and, as a result, it may be desirable to clean the high chair, which may include cleaning the liner and/or harness straps. The liner may be removable, for example, but may be difficult to remove, which may be due to the manner by which it is secured to a chair, such as by use of multiple snaps, for example. Additionally, the liner may not be removable, and/or removal and cleaning of the liner may not thoroughly clean the chair, or may result in wear and tear of the liner, such as due to multiple washings, described previously. It may, therefore, be desirable to produce a cover that may be fitted to protect at least a portion of a child seat and/or liner, such as by covering at least a portion of the child seat and/or the liner. Fitted, as used in this context, refers generally to the capability of a cover to at least partially conform to the shape of portions of a seating device. For example, a cover may be fitted to conform to a seating device, wherein the seating device includes a liner, for example. Fitting may be aided by the use of securing portions, as will be explained in more detail later. The cover fitted to protect at least a portion of the child seat and/or liner may be more easily or readily removable than the liner, may be less susceptible to wear and tear due to multiple washings such as by being comprised of a more readily washable material or combination of materials, may be less expensive than a liner, and/or may protect and/or cover a greater portion of the child seat than is protected and/or covered by the liner, for example. This may provide easier clean up after a meal or other activity, may provide a convenient way to protect and/or cover a child seat that may be unsanitary, and/or may reduce wear and tear of the liner, such as discoloration or disfigurement of the liner, although claimed subject matter is not so limited. Additionally, although referred to as a cover, it is desirable to note that a cover formed in accordance with at least one embodiment may not necessarily cover an entire child seat, for example, but may in some embodiments cover only portions of the child seat, such as by draping over and/or conforming to portions of a seat, for example. However, a cover such as described above may be better understood with reference to the figures, below.

Referring now to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a bottom plan view of a cover 100, in accordance with at least one embodiment. Cover 100 may be fitted to cover and/or protect portions of a child seat and/or liner. Although illustrated as having a generally oblong shape, it is worthwhile to note that cover 100 may comprise a variety of shapes and/or configurations, and the particular shape and/or configuration may depend at least in part on the child seat and/or child seats that the cover is shaped and/or fitted to protect, for example. Additionally, cover 100 may be formed from one or more materials, including terrycloth, cotton, polyester, plastic, vinyl, microfiber, and/or combinations or blends of materials, such as blends of synthetic and/or natural materials, such as a combination of cotton and polyester, for example, although claimed subject matter is not so limited. Cover 100 may be comprised of one or more materials suitable for use as cover material, and may include materials having one, any all or none of the following properties: washable, at least partially flexible, absorbent, waterproof and/or hypo-allergenic, as just a few examples. Additionally, numerous combinations of materials may be utilized in at least one embodiment, such as a combination of absorbent and/or waterproof materials, including terrycloth in combination with plastic, for example, and/or one or more materials may have decorative colors and/or patterns, although, again, claimed subject matter is not so limited. Cover 100 may include securing portions 102, which may additionally be referred to as fitting portions. Securing portions 102, in this particular embodiment, are illustrated as a plurality of elastic portions coupled to the cover. However, claimed subject matter is not so limited, as will be explained in more detail later. Securing portions 102 may provide particular functionality such as providing the capability of the cover to conform to portions of a seating device, such that the cover is fitted to portions of the seating device, for example. The securing portions 102 may alternatively comprise a portion of elastic material. The portion of elastic material may be formed along a substantial portion of the periphery of the cover, such as by being sewn into a portion of the cover, as just an example.

Cover 100 may have one or more holes and/or slots 104 formed therein. For example, in this embodiment, referring to FIG. 1, a plurality of slots 104 may be formed in the cover, and the slots 104 may allow one or more harness straps to pass through the cover, such as if implemented as a cover for a child seat, wherein the child seat has one or more harness straps, for example. The one or more harness straps may comprise portions of a five-point harness, for example. Although illustrated as five slots that may be configured to allow the harness straps for a five-point harness to pass through the cover, it is worthwhile to note that claimed subject matter is not limited in this respect, and alternative configurations of slots, holes and/or other apparatuses in the cover not illustrated may be in accordance with at least one embodiment. Additionally, no slots and/or holes may be formed in a cover. Cover 100 may, in at least one embodiment, comprise expansion portions 106. Expansion portions 106 may comprise cuts and/or folds, for example, and may be configured to allow the slot 104 to expand and/or open such as to allow a post to pass through. For example, cover 100 may be implemented as a cover for a high chair. A high chair, in at least one embodiment, may include a post. The post may be utilized to provide securing functions for a child in the high chair, and/or may be utilized to allow a tray (not shown) to be coupled to portions of the chair and/or post, for example. The post may pass though cover 100, such as by expanding slot 104 by use of expansion portions 106. However, this embodiment may be better understood with reference to FIG. 2, below.

Referring now to FIG. 2, there is illustrated a perspective view of a cover 110 coupled to a seating device, illustrated as a child seat 112, although, as stated previously, claimed subject matter is not so limited. Seating device 112 may comprise a high chair, and may include a post 126 and a tray (not shown), and may additionally include legs 124, for example, although this is just an example and the claimed subject matter is not so limited. In this embodiment, cover 110 may be fitted to provide covering and/or protection for a substantial portion of seating surface 114 of the child seat 112, and may additionally be fitted to cover other portions of seat 112, such as the back and/or bottom of seat 112, including behind the seating surface 114 to at least partially secure cover 110 to seat 112. Cover 110, here, includes securing portions 116, which may comprise elastic, drawstring, or one or more other securing components, but the clamed subject matter is not so limited. Securing portions 116 may be configured to provide fitting of the cover 110 to seat 112, and may, when implemented to secure cover 110 to seat 112, result in portions of cover 110 conforming to portions of seat 112, for example. Additionally, in this embodiment, cover 110 has one or more slots 118 formed therein, which may provide the capability to pass one or more harness straps 120 through the cover. Harness straps 120 may comprise portions of a five-point harness, in at least one embodiment. Cover 100 may additionally include expansion portions 122. Expansion portions 122 may comprise cuts and/or folds, for example, and may provide expansion capabilities for one or more slots 118. This may allow for a post 126 to pass through one or more slots 118, such as illustrated, although claimed subject matter is not so limited, and one or more other slot and/or expansion portion configurations may vary from the configuration as illustrated in FIG. 2, and numerous other configurations are included within the scope of the claimed subject matter. Cover 100 may have one or more strap cover portions 128. Strap cover portions 128 may comprise flaps configured to providing covering functions, such as by covering portions of harness straps 120 when the cover 110 is implemented as a cover for a seating device having harness straps. Strap cover portions 128 may be formed from the same material(s) used to form cover 110, for example, or may comprise differing material. Additionally, although not illustrated, strap cover portions may include securing portions to provide securing functions between the strap cover portions and one or more straps, for example. Additionally, it is worthwhile to note that a cover within the scope of the claimed subject matter may not cover a child seat in the same manner as illustrated. For example, subject matter in an alternative embodiment may be configured to protect portions of a seating surface, and/or may be configured to protect a liner and/or pad (not shown) that may be coupled to a seating surface, for example.

Referring now to FIGS. 3a and 3b, there are illustrated a plurality of covers 132 and 134, which may have differing configurations, such as by having differing securing components 136 and 138, respectively. Illustrated in FIG. 3a is cover 132. Cover 132, for example, may be fitted to protect at least a portion of a child seat (not shown), and may include securing or fitting portions, which in this embodiment comprise a plurality of snaps 136. Snaps 136 may be capable of snapping to a child seat and/or to one another, such as to secure the cover 132 to a child seat, which may result in portions of the cover conforming to portions of a child seat. Illustrated in FIG. 3b is cover 134. Cover 134 may additionally be fitted to protect at least a portion of a child seat (not shown), and may include securing or fitting portions 138. Securing or fitting portions 138, in this embodiment, may include a plurality of Velcro® portions 138, which may be capable of securing to a child seat and/or to one another, such as to secure the cover 134 to a child seat, which may result in portions of the cover conforming to portions of a child seat, for example. Referring now to FIGS. 4a and 4b, there are illustrated a plurality of covers 140 and 144, which may have differing configurations, such as by having differing securing components 146 and 148, respectively. Illustrated in FIG. 4a is cover 140. Cover 140 may be fitted to protect at least a portion of a child seat (not shown), and may include securing or fitting portions 146. Securing or fitting portions 146, in this embodiment, may comprise a draw string 146, which may be coupled to the cover 140, and may be utilized to secure the cover 140 to a child seat, which may result in portions of the cover conforming to portions of a child seat, for example, such as by being drawn if the cover is fitted over a seating device. Illustrated in FIG. 4b is cover 144. Cover 144 may be fitted to protect at least a portion of a child seat (not shown), and may include securing or fitting portions 148. Securing or fitting portions 148, in this embodiment, may comprise one or more elastic portions 148, which may be coupled to the cover 144, and may be utilized to secure the cover 144 to a child seat, for example, such as by stretching to result in fitting the cover over a seating device or resulting in the cover conforming to portions of the child seat. However, although numerous differing securing components and/or portions may be illustrated and described herein, it is desirable to note that the claimed subject matter is not so limited, and a cover formed in accordance with at least one embodiment may comprise differing securing components, including for example buttons, clips, Velcro®, elastic, drawstrings, or may not include securing components, for example.

It is, of course, now appreciated, based at least in part on the foregoing disclosure, that although particular embodiments have just been described, claimed subject matter is not limited in scope to a particular embodiment or implementation. For example, a cover formed in accordance with one or more of the foregoing embodiments may be suited to at least partially cover a seating device, as previously described. Additionally, in the preceding description, various aspects of claimed subject matter have been described. For purposes of explanation, specific materials and/or configurations were set forth to provide a thorough understanding of claimed subject matter. However, it should be apparent to one skilled in the art having the benefit of this disclosure that claimed subject matter may be practiced without the specific details. In other instances, well-known features were omitted and/or simplified so as not to obscure claimed subject matter. While certain features have been illustrated and/or described herein, many modifications, substitutions, changes and/or equivalents will now occur to those skilled in the art. It is, therefore, to be understood that the appended claims are intended to cover all such modifications and/or changes as fall within the true spirit of claimed subject matter.