Title:
ARTICLE FOR STORING AND ORGANIZING MATERIALS
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention relates to an article for storing and organizing materials. The article has opposing front and rear panels. Each panel has an inside surface and an outside surface. The panels are substantially similar in geometry as defined by a perimeter. The panels are joined substantially along the entire perimeter such that at the inside surface of the front panel is proximate to the inside surface of the rear panel. An opening disposed within the front panel away from the perimeter. Finally, an adhesive disposed on at least a portion of the outside surface of the rear panel. A stack of a plurality of the articles is also provided.



Inventors:
Trotter, Byron E. (St. Paul, MN, US)
Hanley, Kenneth J. (Eagan, MN, US)
Donovan, Eser Ozdeger (Prescott, WI, US)
Evans, Dwight L. (Cedar Park, TX, US)
Benjamin, Sharon R. (Woodbury, MN, US)
Newbould, Peter J. (Milano, IT)
Babic, Ivana (Milano, IT)
Love, Lisa L. (White Bear Lake, MN, US)
Application Number:
11/275205
Publication Date:
06/21/2007
Filing Date:
12/19/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D85/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
NEWHOUSE, NATHAN JEFFREY
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
3M INNOVATIVE PROPERTIES COMPANY (PO BOX 33427, ST. PAUL, MN, 55133-3427, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An article for storing and organizing materials comprising: opposing front and rear panels that are substantially similar in geometry as defined by a perimeter, each panel having an inside surface and an outside surface, wherein the front and rear panels are joined along the perimeter such that at the inside surface of the front panel is proximate to the inside surface of the rear panel; an opening disposed in the front panel; and an adhesive disposed on at least a portion of the outside surface of the rear panel.

2. The article of claim 1, wherein the opening is disposed entirely within the front panel.

3. The article of claim 1, wherein the front panel has a major axis, the opening has a major axis that is shorter than the major axis of the front panel.

4. The article of claim 13 wherein the front panel further includes a minor axis, and the major axis of the opening is longer than the minor axis of the front panel.

5. The article of claim 1, further comprising a liner disposed on the adhesive.

6. The article of claim 1, wherein the adhesive is in the form of at least one stripe.

7. The article of claim 1, wherein the adhesive is a repositionable adhesive.

8. The article of claim 7, wherein the repositionable adhesive is a microsphere adhesive.

9. The article of claim 8, wherein the microsphere adhesive is a polyacrylate adhesive.

10. The article of claim 1, further comprising a gusset disposed between and joining the front and rear panels.

11. The article of claim 1, further comprising indicia on the outside surface of the front panel.

12. The article of claim 1, wherein the front panel, the rear panel, and the opening are simple geometric shapes or irregularly shaped.

13. The article of claim 1, wherein the front and rear panels are of similar materials or are of dissimilar materials.

14. The article of claim 1, wherein the front and rear panels are selected from the group consisting of paper, plastic, canvas, non-woven, fabric, metal-based film, and combinations thereof.

15. The article of claim 1, wherein the front and rear panels are joined together by a means selected from the group consisting of adhesive means, mechanical fastener means, ultrasonic welding means, lamination means, sewing means, and combinations thereof.

16. The article of claim 1 further comprising a release coating disposed on the outside surface of the front panel.

17. The article of claim 1, wherein the outside surface of the front panel is writeable or imageable.

18. The article of claim 1 further comprising a label having opposing first and second surfaces, the first surface comprising a repositionable adhesive, the label disposed on the outside surface of the front panel such that the first surface of the label is proximate to the outside surface of the front panel.

19. The article of claim 18, wherein the second surface of the label is writeable and or imageable.

20. The article of claim 1, wherein the opening comprises a means for closing the opening.

21. The article of claim 20, wherein the means for closing the opening is selected from the group consisting of mechanical fastening means and adhesive fastening means.

22. The article of claim 1, further comprising an internal seam joining the front and rear panels creating a plurality of pockets, each pocket having its own opening.

23. The article of claim 22, wherein the plurality of pockets is of substantially similar size or is of different size.

24. The article of 22, wherein the openings for the plurality of pocket are of similar shapes or of dissimilar shapes.

25. The article of claim 22, wherein the internal seam forms at least one pocket selected from the group consisting of partially enclosed pocket and fully enclosed pocket.

26. The article of claim 22, wherein each of the front panel of the plurality of pockets has a major axis, the opening of each pocket has a major axis that is shorter than the major axis of the front panel of the pocket.

27. The article of claim 26, wherein each of the front panel of the plurality of pockets further includes a minor axis, and the opening of each pocket is longer than the minor axis of the front panel of the pocket.

28. The article of claim 22, wherein the internal seam forms fully enclosed pockets and the internal seams are perforated.

29. A stack of a plurality of articles for storing and organizing materials, each article comprising: opposing front and rear panels substantially similar in geometry as defined by a perimeter, each panel having an inside and an outside surface, wherein the front and rear panels are joined along the perimeter such that the inside surface of the front panel is proximate to the inside surface of the rear panel; an opening disposed in the front panel; an adhesive disposed on at least a portion of the outside surface of the rear panel; wherein the outside surface of the rear panel of a first article is proximate to the outside surface of the front panel of a second subsequent article in the stack.

30. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the opening is disposed entirely within the front panel.

31. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the front panel has a major axis and the opening has a major axis that is shorter than the major axis of the front panel.

32. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 31, wherein the front panel further includes a minor and the major axis of the opening is longer than the minor axis of the front panel.

33. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, further comprising a liner disposed on the adhesive of the last article.

34. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the adhesive is in the form of at least one stripe.

35. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the adhesive is a repositionable adhesive.

36. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 35, wherein the repositionable adhesive is a microsphere adhesive.

37. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 36, wherein the microsphere adhesive is a polyacrylate adhesive.

38. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, further comprising a gusset disposed between and joining the front and rear panels.

39. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, further comprising indicia on the outside surface of the front panel.

40. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the front panel, the rear panel, and the opening are simple geometric shapes or irregularly shaped.

41. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the front and rear panels are of similar materials or are of dissimilar materials.

42. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the front and rear panels are selected from the group consisting of paper, plastic, canvas, non-woven, fabric, metal-based film, and combinations thereof.

43. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the front and rear panels are joined together by a means selected from the group consisting of adhesive means, mechanical fastener means, ultrasonic welding means, lamination means, sewing means, and combinations thereof.

44. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the outside surface of the front panel is writeable.

45. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, further comprising an internal seam joining the front and rear panels creating a plurality of pockets, each having its own opening.

46. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 45, wherein the plurality of pockets is of substantially similar size or is of a different size.

47. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 45, wherein the openings for the plurality of pockets is of substantially the same shape or is of dissimilar shapes.

48. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 45, wherein the internal seam forms at least one pocket selected from the group consisting of partially enclosed pocket and fully enclosed pocket.

49. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 45, wherein the front panel has a major axis and the opening has a major axis that is shorter than the major axis of the front panel.

50. The article of claim 49, wherein the front panel further includes a minor axis, and the major axis of the opening is longer than the minor axis of the front panel.

51. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 45, wherein the internal seam forms fully enclosed pockets and the internal seams are perforated.

52. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein the outside surface of the front panel of each article further comprises a release coating.

53. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 29, wherein each article further comprises a label having opposing first and second surfaces, the first surface comprising a repositionable adhesive, the label disposed on the outside surface of the front panel such that the first surface of the label is proximate to the outside surface of the front panel.

54. The stack of plurality of articles of claim 53, wherein the second surface of the label is writeable and or imageable.

Description:

FIELD OF INVENTION

The present invention relates to articles, enclosures, and pockets useful for storing and organizing materials such as documents.

BACKGROUND

Even with the proliferation of electronic technology, today's consumers still have paper documents that need to be managed. Illustrative paper documents include, but are not limited to, receipts for purchased goods, bills for services, such as telephone and utility bills, coupons, tickets for events, shopping lists and the like. At work, the employee may have a variety of documents that needs to be managed, including but not limited to, incoming and outgoing mail, notes left by coworkers, papers in transition, such as papers that need to be filed. In general, when the documents are organized as they are received, most consumers and workers spend less time to later organize or find the documents when they are needed.

Document organization tools such as envelopes with flaps can be cumbersome to use as the flaps seal the envelope and they are prone to being torn off with repeated use. The envelopes can also be easily misplaced or lost in a pile of paperwork or in a drawer.

While a variety of organization tools are commercially available, other solutions and tools are needed.

SUMMARY

In one aspect, the present invention pertains to an article for storing and organizing materials. The article comprises: (1) opposing front and rear panels that are substantially similar in geometry as defined by a perimeter, each panel having an inside surface and an outside surface, wherein the front and rear panels are joined along substantially the entire perimeter such that at the inside surface of the front panel is proximate to the inside surface of the rear panel; (2) an opening disposed in the front panel; and (3) an adhesive disposed on at least a portion of the outside surface of the rear panel.

In another aspect, the present invention pertains to a stack of a plurality of articles for storing and organizing materials. The stack forms a pad of articles. Each article in the stack comprises: (1) opposing front and rear panels that are substantially similar in geometry as defined by a perimeter, each panel having an inside and an outside surface, wherein the front and rear panels are joined along substantially the entire perimeter such that the inside surface of the front panel is proximate to the inside surface of the rear panel; (2) an opening disposed in the front panel; (3) an adhesive disposed on at least a portion of the outside surface of the rear panel; wherein the outside surface of the rear panel of a first article is proximate to the outside surface of the front panel of a second subsequent article in the stack.

The inventive articles are particularly suited for use in organizing documents, such as receipts, bills, tickets, mail, magazines, lists and the like, and office supplies products such as writing utensils, paperclips, and repositionable notes. The article can further include indicia or images that engender artistic expression, have aesthetic appeal, and or have functional utility. In use, the consumer typically removes the liner (if present) from the article and attaches it to a display surface, such as a wall or a refrigerator door, and as documents are received, organize and store them therein. The article can be displayed on vertical surfaces (such as the wall) or horizontal surfaces, such as in a folder or a binder. New articles can be displayed for different durations of time, such as, a new week or a new month. The article can also be used for a specified project or a specified event. For example, at income tax reporting time, such an article can be used for the tax year, and the various pockets can be used for different categories of documents, such as W-2 wage statements, stock sales, dividends earned, child care expenses, medical expenses, home interest payments, and the like.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention can further be described with reference to the drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a front plan view of one embodiment of an article for storing and organizing materials in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view of the embodiment of FIG. 1 taken along line 2-2;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 4 is a front plan view of another embodiment of the present invention showing two partially enclosed pockets;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention showing four fully enclosed pockets;

FIG. 6 is a front plan view of another embodiment of the present invention showing a plurality of pockets of different sizes;

FIGS. 7a to 7c are perspective views of the embodiment of FIG. 6 in various folding stages;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention showing a pad of articles for storing and organizing materials in accordance with the present invention; and

FIG. 9 is a side view of another embodiment of the present invention showing a pad of articles in a z-stacked configuration.

The figures are ideal, are not drawn to scale, and are intended only for illustrative purposes.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 is a front plan view of article 10 useful, in one aspect, for organizing and storing materials. FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view of the article in FIG. 1 taken along line 2-2. The article includes opposing front panel 12 and rear panel 14 and has a longitudinal axis (not shown) disposed generally along the length of the article. The front panel includes opposing inside surface 12a and outside surface 12b. Similarly, the rear panel includes opposing inside surface 14a and outside surface 14b. Opening 20 is disposed in the front panel and has a major axis, L20, which is the longest dimension across the opening. Discounting for the opening, the panels have substantially similar geometry as defined by a perimeter of the panels.

The front and rear panels are joined along the top perimeter forming top seam 22a, along the bottom perimeter forming bottom seam 22b, and along side perimeter forming side seams 22c and 22d. The seams can be formed through any suitable attachment means, such as, e.g., through adhesive 17. Other attachment means can be used, as described in detail below. The choice of the attachment means will depend on the materials used to construct the front and rear panels. The attachments means should join the two panels securely together. In the embodiment of FIGS. 1 and 2, the opening is disposed entirely within the front panel away from the top seam. The opening, however, could start from the top seam, the bottom seam, or the side seams, if desired.

The front panel has a major axis, L10, disposed substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis of the article. The major axis defines the longest dimension of the front panel. The front panel may further include a minor axis, defining a shortest dimension across the panel. In the embodiment of FIGS. 1 and 2, the minor axis lies orthogonal to the major axis and substantially parallel to the top seam, 22a. In this particular embodiment, the major axis of the opening, L20, is shorter than the major axis of the front panel, L10, and shorter than the minor axis of the front panel.

Optionally, the front panel may further include release coating 13 disposed on a portion thereof or on substantially the entire outside surface of the front panel. The release coating used should be compatible with the material used for the front and rear panels. In one embodiment, the release coating is of a composition that allows the consumer to write or to image the panels. Imaging techniques would include, but are not limited to, using any digital printers. Suitable release coatings include those that based on straight chain alkane derivatives, polydialkyl siloxane derivatives, or fluorocarbon derivatives. One exemplary release coating is described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,032,460 (Kanter et al.). Yet another exemplary release coating is disclosed throughout U.S. Pat. No. 6,251,512 (Gustafson et al.) such as disclosure starting at column 5, line 18 to 52 and the various examples, such as examples RC1 to RC4.

The opening, the front panel, and the rear panel can be of any configuration, such as a simple geometric shape or irregularly shaped. The term “simple geometric shape” generally means polygons (such as, but not limited to, rectangles, squares, and trapezoids) and ovals (such as, but not limited to, circle and ellipse). The term “irregularly shaped” generally means a bounded shape, and such shapes may include combinations of straight and curves lines. In the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the front and rear panels are rectangles, and the opening is generally an ellipse. Other geometries are shown in the various embodiments described below.

Article 10 further includes adhesive 16 disposed on outside surface 14b of rear panel 14. In one embodiment, the article further includes liner 18 to protect the adhesive. FIG. 2 shows the liner disposed directly on top of the adhesive and it further shows in phanthom that the liner can be in more than one position. In this particular embodiment, the liner is in the form of a flap that is attached to the outside surface of the rear panel proximate to the adhesive. When the article is in a display mode, the liner would be disposed substantially collinear with the outside surface of the rear panel so as not to cover the adhesive. When the consumer no longer wants to display the article, he/she can fold the flap over the adhesive area and store or archive the article without having exposed adhesive. The adhesive can be on a portion of the article or it can cover substantially the entire outside surface of the rear panel. One advantage of having the adhesive on a portion of the article, in a format such as, but not limited to, a stripe, is that it allows for easy attachment to and removal of the article from the display surface, such as a wall. While FIG. 2 shows the adhesive in the form of one stripe offset from the top seam 22a, a plurality of stripes can be used in a variety of different orientations. In another embodiment, the adhesive can be coated in the form of discrete portions, such as, e.g., discrete islands.

FIG. 3 shows a perspective view of another embodiment where article 30 has front panel 32 joined to rear panel 34 along top perimeter forming top seam 42a, along the bottom perimeter forming bottom seam 42b, and along the side perimeters forming side seams 42c and 42d. Opening 40 is disposed in the front panel. Two striped liners 38 protect the stripes of adhesive (not shown). The article also includes gusset 44 to allow it to expand, as more content is stored therein. In this particular embodiment, discounting for the opening, the front panel and the rear panels are substantially similar in geometry, both being a rectangle. The opening is of an irregular shape.

The article in FIG. 3 further includes label 41, shown partially peeled off, having opposing first and second surfaces, 41a and 41b, respectively. The first surface of the label includes a repositionable adhesive. The second surface of the label is writeable and or imageable. In use, when the consumer wishes to seal the opening, s/he can remove the label and place it over the opening. Because the adhesive is repositionable, the user can reopen and reseal the opening on demand. Furthermore, the adhesive used for opening can be of a construction that is tacky on the periphery of the label, while the center of the label is substantially non-tacky so that the documents inside the article do not inadvertently adhere to the exposed adhesive. Illustrative adhesives are disclosed in US Patent Application Publication US2005/0170174 and PCT application WO 2005/077672, both documents being assigned to the same assignee as the instant document. Another exemplary construction would include a label having horizontal stripes of repositionable adhesive near the periphery of the label with substantially no adhesive on that portion of the label that would cover the opening.

FIG. 4 shows a front plan view of another embodiment where article 50 having a plurality of pockets. The article has front panel 52 in the form of a circle. The front panel is joined to a rear panel (not shown) along the circumference at external seam 62. The article further includes internal seam 66 bisecting the front panel, the internal seam attaching the front and rear panels to create two substantially equal pockets 51 and 53, each having it own opening 60 and 61 respectively. The internal seam joins the panel so that the inside surface of the front panel is proximate to the inside surface of the rear panel. In this embodiment, because the internal seam does not completely bisect the front panel, the pockets are partially enclosed. Also, in this embodiment, the openings are of an irregular shape. Article 50 has a major axis that coincides with the diameter of the circle. Each pocket also has a major axis that is of a dimension that is less than the diameter of the circle and a minor axis, denoted as L51. In this particular embodiment, the major axis of the opening is less than the major axis and the minor axis of the pocket.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of another embodiment where article 70 includes a plurality of pockets. Article 70 includes front panel 72 joined with rear panel 74 at top perimeter to form top seam 76a, at bottom perimeter to form bottom seam 76b, and at side perimeter to form side seam 76c. Although FIG. 5 shows only one reference number 76c, one skilled in the art will understand that the side seams are present on both the left and right hand side of the article. In this embodiment, the front and rear panels are substantially square.

The article further includes internal seams 84 and 86 disposed substantially orthogonal to each other. The internal seams attach the front and rear panels creating four substantially equal pockets 71, 73, 75, and 77, each pocket having its own opening 80, 81, 82 and 83 respectively. Because the internal seams bisect the entire length and width of the front and rear panels, the pockets are fully enclosed. The openings can be self sealing using mechanical means such as zippers, hook and loop fasteners, or polymeric based zip and lock type fasteners commonly used in Ziploc® bags. If desired, the internal seams may be perforated. By tearing along the perforations, the consumer can create plurality of articles with a smaller footprint for storage or for other application.

Continuing on with FIG. 5, opening 80 is irregular shaped. Opening 81, schematically shown as a zipper, is in a substantially closed position. Opening 82 is shown in a partially open condition. Opening 83 is shown to be in a fully open condition. This embodiment further includes gusset 87 disposed between the front and rear panels and continuously joining the front and rear panel at side seams 76c, the gusset allowing for expansion of the pocket upon use. Although a side gusset is shown, it is within the scope of the present invention to use gussets on the top and bottom perimeter of the article. On the outside surface of the rear panel, two stripes of adhesive (not shown) along with liner 88 are provided to allow for attachment to a desired substrate.

FIG. 6 shows a front plan view of another embodiment where article 100 includes a plurality of pockets of different sizes. Article 100 includes front panel 102 joined continuously with rear panel (not shown) at top perimeter to form top seam 102a and at bottom perimeter to form bottom seam 102b and at side perimeter to form side seams 102c. The front and rear panels are substantially rectangular. The article further includes internal seams 126 and 128 disposed substantially orthogonal to one another, internal seam 132 disposed orthogonal to internal seam 128, and internal seam 130 disposed orthogonal to internal seam 132. The internal seams form fully enclosed pockets 101, 106, 112, 116, and 122, each having its own opening 104, 108, 114, 118, and 124 respectively. As shown, the openings are of varying sizes to accommodate different size documents. Article 100 includes major axis L100. Each opening in each pocket includes a major axis having a dimension that is shorter than major axis L100 of the article. Taking pocket 101 for discussion purposes, it has a major axis L101 and minor axis W101. Opening 104 has a major axis L104 that is shorter than the major axis of the article, L100, and shorter than the major axis of the pocket, L101, and equal to or longer than the minor axis of the pocket W101. Documents, such as mail 110 or receipts 120, can be stored and organized in the pockets. In this particular embodiment, generic calendar 103 can be part of the article, to provide further solutions and convenience to the consumer when using the article. The article further includes means for securing 140, where, if desired, a consumer can fold the article to reduce its footprint allowing for easy transport.

FIGS. 7a to 7c show perspective views of the embodiment of FIG. 6 in transition to a folded form. In FIG. 7a, article 100 is in a substantially open state with the article divided two substantially equal halves. In FIG. 7b, article 100 is folded and in a nearly closed state. In FIG. 7c, article 100 is in a fully closed state with means for securing 140 folded over to the outside surface of the rear panel. One useful means for securing the article is a hook and loop combination, where the hook or the loop portion is disposed on the portion 140 and the mating hook or loop is disposed on the outside surface of the rear panel. Other useful means for securing would include use of repositionable adhesives, other mechanical fasteners, such as zippers or ribbons, yarns, threads to tie the two halves of the articles together.

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of another embodiment where there is shown a stack of plurality of articles that form pad 90. For ease of understanding, only the top two articles, first article 91 and subsequent second article 96 are shown in detail. First article 91 includes front panel 92 joined continuously with rear panel 94 at top perimeter to form top seam 92a, at bottom perimeter to form bottom seam 92b, and side perimeters to form side seams 92c. The first article includes opening 93. Both the front and rear panels and the opening are of simple geometric shape, that being rectangular and oval, respectively. The first article further includes adhesive 95 disposed on the rear panel and near the top seam. Second article 96 includes front panel 98 also joined continuously with a rear panel (not shown) at top, bottom, and side perimeters to form top, bottom, and side seams respectively. The second article further comprises opening 97. Pad 90 of articles is formed such that the rear panel 94 of first article 91 with its adhesive 95 is in direct contact with front panel 98 of second article 96. In such an embodiment, it is preferable that the front panel of the article further includes a release agent so that the adhesive of one article releases cleanly and relatively easily from the subsequent article. While FIG. 8 shows the first and second article to be substantially similar in shape, i.e., both being rectangular with oval openings, it is within the scope of the present invention to have different shaped articles accompanied by different shaped openings. For example, while the first article is rectangular of a certain dimension, the second article can also be rectangular but have a different dimension or it can be of a totally different geometry.

FIG. 9 cross-sectional view of another embodiment where pad 150 includes a plurality of articles stacked on top of one another in a configuration where the adhesive is not stacked at one end but at alternating ends of the pad. Such a stacking arrangement has been commonly referred to as “z” stacking. As can be seen, first article 160 with its adhesive 166 is stacked at a first end of the pad while second article 170 with its adhesive 176 is stacked at the opposite end of the pad.

If desired, at least one of the front and rear panels can include graphics or other indicia to create an article with artistic expression or functional utility or for aesthetic purposes. For example, in embodiment of FIG. 4, the front panel can include images to form a face with the opening forming the eyes to appeal to young consumers. As shown in FIG. 6, calendars or “To Do” lists can be imaged on to the front panel, or the individual pockets can be labeled to identify the contents in the pocket. As an example, the individual pockets could be labeled as “receipts”, “bills to pay”, “tickets”, and the like to help organize the various documents the consumer would like to retain for some duration of time.

A variety of materials can be used as the front and rear panels. In one embodiment, the front and rear panels are of the same or substantially similar materials. In another embodiment, the front and rear panels are of different materials. Suitable materials for the front and rear panels include, but are not limited to, paper, plastic, canvas, non-woven, fabric, and metal-based film. Combinations of these materials can be used. In one embodiment, a portion of the front and or rear panel can be transparent to provide a window thereby allowing the consumer to see the contents inside the article. An exemplary material useful for the panel includes the writeable matte article disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 6,251,512 (Gustafson et al.).

On a portion of the front and or rear panels of the article, color-coding can be added to help the consumer visually organize the articles. For example, different colors can be used for different days in the week or different types of documents stored in the article. The inventive article could further include tabs that can be adhesive or mechanically attached to anywhere along the perimeter of the article. Such tabs can be helpful when the consumer intends to store or archive the article in a filing system.

The front and rear panels are joined together along the perimeter using a variety of methods. The method chosen depends on the type of material used. The joining of the front and rear panels does not have to be continuous throughout the perimeter of the panels. Suitable methods include, but are not limited to, adhesives means, mechanical fastener means, ultrasonic welding means, lamination means, and sewing means. Combinations of these methods can also be used. For example, adhesive means is very versatile and can be used when the front and rear panels are of the same material or of different materials. Adhesive means include but are not limited to tape, such as double sided tape, liquid adhesives such as glues, solid adhesives, such as glue sticks, and the like. Ultrasonic welding means is more particularly suited for plastics and non-wovens. Ultrasonic welding means typically create localized spot welding of the front and rear panels so that overall, the panels are jointed, but they are not continuously joined along the entire perimeter. Sewing means is more particularly suited for canvas and fabrics. An illustrative mechanical fastener means would be the hook and loop combination, where the hook can be disposed on one panel while the loop can be disposed on the other panel. Lamination means generally refer to using heat and or pressure to attach the front and rear panels. Lamination means are particularly suited for non-wovens, especially where the non-woven fibers contains a plurality of different polymeric constituents and one of the constituent exhibits adhesive properties at elevated temperature and pressure.

An adhesive is disposed on the outside surface of the rear panel. Any permanent or repositionable adhesive can be used in the present invention. Various repositionable adhesives can be used. Suitable repositionable adhesives are disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,691,140 (Silver); U.S. Pat. No. 3,857,731 (Merrill et al.); U.S. Pat. No. 4,166,152 (Baker et al.); U.S. Pat. No. 4,495,318 (Howard); U.S. Pat. No. 5,045,569 (Delgado); U.S. Pat. No. 5,073,457 (Blackwell) and U.S. Pat. No. 5,571,617 (Cooprider et al.), U.S. Pat. No. 5,663,241 (Takamatsu et al.); U.S. Pat. No. 5,714,237 (Cooprider et al.); U.S. RE 37,563 (Cooprider et al.); and U.S. Pat. No. 5,756,625 (Crandall et al.) and U.S. Pat. No. 5,824,748 (Kesti et al.). The repositionable adhesive can be solvent based, water based, or can be a solvent-less, hot melt adhesive.

The adhesive can be coated on the outside surface of the rear panel in any configuration. For example, the rear panel can include a fully adhesive coated or partially adhesive coated outside surface. Suitable partially coated configurations include, but are not limited to stripes of adhesive, discrete islands of adhesives, or patches of adhesives. The type of adhesive coating configuration depends on the type of adhesive used, the size of the inventive article, and to some extent, the display surface.

The liner is used to protect the repositionable adhesive until application. The liner can be any paper or plastic sheet that bonds to the repositionable adhesive securely during storage and while passing through the feed mechanism of a printer. The liner releases cleanly and easily from the repositionable adhesive after printing the photo paper. The liner may be treated with a release coating to achieve the desired release performance. Suitable silicone-based release liners are commercially available from Loparex, Inc., Willowbrook, Ill.

The inventive article can be made from a variety of methods. One illustrative method is to provide front and rear panels, where the front panel optionally has been coated with a release agent and has a precut opening therein. If desired, graphics and indicia have been preprinted on the outside surface of the front panel to add artistic or functional expression or aesthetic utility. On the outside surface of the rear panel, an adhesive is coated on the rear panel. Optionally, a liner is laminated to the adhesive. The front and rear panels are joined continuously along the panels' perimeter to form the inventive article.

In the case of pad, the enclosures are made substantially under the same method as the individual article, as described in the preceding paragraph. A liner is used for the last enclosure in the pad. In one embodiment, the liner covers substantially the entire outside surface of the rear panel.