Title:
Decorative structures
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A decorative structure (10) comprising a body section (12), a head section (14), at least two appendage sections (16), and a multiplicity of body fur clusters (18). The body section (12), head section (14) and at least two appendage sections (16) are each formed over a three-dimensional lattice frame (20) that is constructed of a multiplicity of longitudinal members (24) that are spaced by a multiplicity of integral lateral member (22). Extending outward from the three-dimensional lattice frames (20) are a multiplicity of pins (28). Each body fur cluster (18) is comprised of a lower surface (34) having a cavity (36), and a plurality of resilient needles (38) that extend upward from the lower surface (34). The upward-extending pins (28) are designed to frictionally fit into the cavity (36) on the lower surface (34). Once all the clusters (18) are attached to the pins (28), the structure (10) will have an enveloping fur-like appearance.



Inventors:
Li, Wing Hon (Kwai Chung, CN)
Application Number:
11/656029
Publication Date:
07/24/2008
Filing Date:
01/22/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63H3/02
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20060281388Game call device and method of use thereofDecember, 2006Quarles
20020182975Sports demonstration figureDecember, 2002Schaffer
20050136789Multipurpose saucer-shaped toyJune, 2005Liu
20090104842Emunational AnimalApril, 2009Gu
20010049248Computerized toyDecember, 2001Choi
20030073376Puppet assemblyApril, 2003Lee
20090004947MOLDED FABRIC DOLL ACCESSORYJanuary, 2009Dale et al.
20100009788Ball Segment and Coupling Elements which are used to form a functional ballJanuary, 2010Hasbach Lugo et al.
20090130950Jointed ToyMay, 2009Deutschman
20060189252Step activated sound producing toyAugust, 2006Harrell et al.
20070037479Slotless toy racetrack and radio-controlled toy racecar kitFebruary, 2007Margay X



Primary Examiner:
STANCZAK, MATTHEW BRIAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
PATENT LAW INC (5460 WHITE OAK AVE SUITE A-331, ENCINO, CA, 91316, US)
Claims:
1. A decorative structure comprising a body section and a multiplicity of body fur clusters, wherein said body section is comprised of a three-dimensional lattice frame that is constructed of a multiplicity of longitudinal members that are integrally separated by a multiplicity of lateral members, wherein extending outward from the three-dimensional lattice frame are a multiplicity of pins, wherein each said body fur cluster is comprised of a lower surface having a cavity and a plurality of resilient needles that extend upward from the lower surface, and wherein the multiplicity of pins extending outward from the three-dimensional lattice frame are dimensioned to frictionally fit into the cavity on each body fur cluster's lower surface.

2. The decorative structure as specified in claim 1 wherein said body section and said multiplicity of body fur clusters are made of a material selected from the group consisting of: polyethylene, ABS, phenolic and polypropylene.

3. The decorative structure as specified in claim 1 further comprising a head section.

4. The decorative structure as specified in claim 1 further comprising at least two appendage sections.

5. A decorative structure comprising: a) a body section, b) a head section, c) at least two appendage sections, and d) a multiplicity of body fur clusters, wherein said body section, said head section and said at least two appendage sections are formed over a three-dimensional lattice frame that is constructed of a multiplicity of longitudinal members, that are integrally separated by a multiplicity of lateral members, wherein extending outward from each said section's three-dimensional lattice frame are a multiplicity of equidistant pins, wherein each said body fur cluster is comprised of a lower surface having a cavity, and a plurality of resilient needles that are integrally attached to, and extend upward from, the lower surface, wherein the multiplicity of outward-extending equidistant pins on the three-dimensioned lattice frames are each dimensioned to frictionally fit into the cavity on the lower surface of each body fur cluster, and wherein once each body fur cluster is frictionally attached to each outward-extending pin on the three-dimensioned lattice frames, said decorative structure is provided with an enveloping fur-like appearance.

6. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein the structure is shaped as an animal.

7. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein the structure is shaped as an inanimate object.

8. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said body section, said head section, and said at least two appendage sections are made of a material selected from the group consisting of: polyethylene, ABS, acrylic, phenolic, and polypropylene.

9. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein each said body fur cluster is made of a material selected from the group consisting of: polyethylene, ABS, acrylic, phenolic, and polypropylene.

10. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said body fur clusters are further trimmed to form a planar surface.

11. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said head section is integrally attached to said body section.

12. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said head section is attached to said body section by an attachment means.

13. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said at least two appendage sections are integrally attached to said body section.

14. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said at least two appendage sections are attached to said body section by an attachment means.

15. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said head section is further comprised of a unitary member having a multiplicity of outward-extending equidistant pins.

16. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said at least two appendage sections are further comprised of a unitary member having a multiplicity of outward-extending equidistant pins.

17. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein the lateral and longitudinal members are integrally attached together.

18. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein the attachment means for attaching said head section to said body section, said at least two appendages to said body section is comprised of an adhesive.

19. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein the attachment means for attaching said head section to said body section, and said at least two appendage sections to said body section is comprised of a tab having a bore extending therethrough located on said body section, and a pin that is dimensioned to frictionally fit into the bore extending through the tab which is located on said head section and said appendage sections.

20. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said head section further comprising a pair of eyes, a nose and a mouth, wherein the pair of eyes, nose and mouth are attached by an attachment means.

21. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said at least two appendage sections further comprising a pair of hands.

22. The decorative structure as specified in claim 5 wherein said at least two appendage sections further comprise at least two feet, wherein the feet are designed to function as supporting members to enable said decorative structure to be maintained in an upright position.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

The invention generally pertains to decorative structures or figurines, and more particularly to a decorative structure that utilizes a plurality of outward-extending needles to provide a fur-like appearance.

BACKGROUND ART

From our earliest history, it is evident that people have sought to accentuate their living and working environments by adding decorative items. As the name implies, a decorative item is typically primarily used to decorate a location. Most people tend to be selective when choosing decorative items in order to present a theme and/or a reflection of the person's preferences and personality.

One of the most popular and widely used decorative items is a statue or figurine depicting a human or animal. Ancient civilizations, such as the Romans and Greeks, are two examples of people who placed great emphasis on displaying statues depicting many different subjects. Until relatively recently, the construction method employed to make most statues and figurines was hand carving of stone or wood. Additionally, whenever a large number of a certain design for a statue was desired, a mold could be made and the statues would then be cast from a metal such as bronze.

Modern technology has provided more efficient manufacturing techniques as well as materials. The most common material used today for many decorative items, including statues and figurines, is plastic. As a result of the easier manufacturing means, and the relative low cost, the number and variety of decorative items such as statues and figurines is enormous. Unfortunately, although there are many different human and animal representations, there is often a consistency in the stylistic approach. Most plastic status and figurines that are manufactured from a mold share common visual characteristics. One of the most prevalent is that human and animal statues and figurines have a smooth surface. While it is true that some human and animal statues and figurines are made with raised surfaces to give the appearance of clothing (for humans) or fur/hair (for animals), the effect is typically not very realistic, especially from a tactile perspective.

Obviously, if a statue or figurine was manufactured with a more realistic looking and feeling fur and/or clothing surface, a new and unique type of decorative item would be provided.

A search of prior art patents and industry literature did not disclose any decorative structures that read on the claims of the instant invention.

DISCLOSURE OF THE INVENTION

The decorative structure disclosed herein is comprised of a body section, a head section, at least two appendage sections, and a multiplicity of body fur clusters.

The body section, head section and at least two appendage sections are formed over a three-dimensional lattice frame that is constructed of a multiplicity of longitudinal members that are separated by a multiplicity of lateral members. Extending outward from each section's three-dimensional lattice frame is a multiplicity of equidistant pins.

Each body fur cluster is comprised of a lower surface having a cavity, and a plurality of resilient needles that are integrally attached to the lower surface. The multiplicity of outward-extending equidistant pins on the three-dimensional lattice frames are each dimensioned to frictionally fit into the cavity on the lower surface of each body fur cluster.

The body fur clusters can be attached manually or by an automated process. Once each body fur cluster is frictionally attached to each outward-extending pin on the three-dimensional lattice frames, the decorative structure is provided with an enveloping fur-like appearance.

In view of the above disclosure, the primary object of the invention is to produce a decorative structure that can be shaped as a human, animal or inanimate object, and that utilizes a plurality of outward-extending needles to give a fur-like appearance.

In addition to the primary object of the invention, it is also an object of the invention to produce a decorative structure that:

    • can be made in various sizes,
    • can be made of various colors,
    • can be utilized indoors or outdoors,
    • can be utilized as a deterrent against smaller animals in a garden or other area,
    • can be custom ordered for any type of human or animal shape,
    • can be utilized as an educational tool,
    • has the appearance of a CHIA PET™ without the need for watering or other care and will never die, and
    • is cost effective from both a manufacturer's and a consumer's point of view.

These and other objects and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the subsequent detailed description of the preferred embodiment and the appended claims taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of a decorative structure simulating a bear having an outer covering consisting of a multiplicity of body fur clusters.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a decorative structure simulating a chicken having an outer covering consisting of a multiplicity of body fur clusters.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a decorative structure simulating a frog having an outer covering consisting of a multiplicity of body fur clusters.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a decorative structure simulating a squirrel having an outer covering consisting of a multiplicity of body fur clusters.

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view of a decorative structure comprised of a pot that is covered with a multiplicity of body fur clusters.

FIG. 6 is an exploded front view of a decorative bear having a partial cutaway section of a three-dimensional lattice frame having means for attaching the appendage sections of the bear.

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of a typical three-dimensional lattice frame. For clarity only one-half of the frame is shown.

FIG. 8 is a top plan view of a body fur cluster.

FIG. 9 is a side elevational view of a body fur cluster. FIG. 9 also shows a pin that is dimensioned to be inserted into a pin cavity located on the lower surface of a body fur cluster.

FIG. 10 is a bottom plan view of a body fur cluster.

FIG. 11 is a front elevational view of a unitary member that can be used to form a head section or an appendage.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

The best mode for carrying out the invention is presented in terms of a preferred embodiment with multiple design configurations for a decorative structure 10. The decorative structure, as shown in FIGS. 1-10, can be shaped as a human, such as a warrior or angel (not shown), or as an animal, such as a bear 72, as shown in FIG. 1, a chicken 74, as shown in FIG. 2, a frog 76, as shown in FIG. 3, or a squirrel 78, as shown in FIG. 4. The decorative structure can also be shaped as an inanimate object, such as a pot 80, as shown in FIG. 5. For purposes of this disclosure only an animal shape is referenced.

The decorative structure 10 is comprised of the following elements: a body section 12, a head section 14, at least two appendage sections 16, a plurality of body fur clusters 18 and a three-dimensional lattice frame 20. All the elements that typically comprise the decorative structure 10 are shown in an exploded view in FIG. 6. All four elements 12, 14, 16 and 20, as well as the body fur clusters 18, are made of a material selected from the group consisting of: polyethylene, ABS, acrylic, phenolic and polypropylene and the like. The three-dimensional lattice frame 20, as shown partially in FIG. 6 and as a typical frame 20 in FIG. 7, forms the inner structure for the body section 12, the head section 14 and the at least two appendage sections 16.

The three-dimensional lattice frame 20, as best shown in FIG. 7, is constructed of a multiplicity of longitudinal members 24, that are separated by a multiplicity of lateral members 22. Extending outward from each section's 12, 14, 16 three-dimensional lattice frame 20 is a multiplicity of equidistant pins 28, as also shown in FIG. 7. At the front end of the three-dimensional lattice frame is a flat section 30 having a pin 28 extending outward and a base section 32. The pin 28 is typically used to attach a head section 14 via a cavity 33, as shown in FIG. 6. For clarity, only one-half of the three-dimensional lattice frame 20 is shown in FIG. 7.

The body fur clusters 18, as shown removed from the invention in FIGS. 8, 9 and 10, are each comprised of a lower surface 34 having a cavity 36, and a plurality of resilient needles 38, which are integrally attached to and extend upward from each body fur cluster's lower surface 34. Depending on each of the cluster's location and purpose, the number of needles 38 in each cluster 18, and the distance the needles 38 in each cluster extend upward, may vary. Additionally, the body fur clusters 18 can be trimmed to form a planar surface. For example, the majority of body fur clusters 18 that are utilized for the frog 76 will be shorter than the clusters 18 utilized for the bear 72. It should be noted that although the element designation is “a plurality of body fur clusters 18”, the clusters 18 are utilized on areas other than just the body, such as the head section 14 and appendage sections 16. The body fur clusters 22 can be attached manually or by an automated process.

As shown in FIGS. 9 and 10, the multiplicity of outward-extending equidistant pins 28 on the three-dimensional lattice frame 20 are each dimensioned to frictionally fit into the cavity 36 located on the lower surface 34 of each body fur cluster 18. Additionally, an adhesive 50, as shown in FIG. 6, can be utilized to further maintain each body fur cluster 18 on each respective pin 28 on the three-dimensional lattice frame 20. Once each body fur cluster 18 is attached to each outward-extending pin 28 on the frames 20, the decorative structure 10 is provided with an enveloping fur-like appearance.

Depending on the shape and type of decorative structure 10 that is created, the head section 14 and the appendage sections 16 can either be integrally attached, or attached by an attachment means, to the body section 12. When the attachment means is utilized, either a combination pin 30 and cavity 33, as shown in FIG. 6, or an adhesive 50, as shown in FIG. 6, are employed. Additionally, as also shown in FIG. 6, a tab 52 having a bore 54 extending therethrough can be located on the body section 12. A pin 56 can extend from the head section 14, as well as the appendage sections 16, as shown in FIG. 6. The pin 56 is dimensioned to frictionally fit into the bore 54 on the tab 52, thereby maintaining the head section 14 and/or the appendage sections 16 to the body section 12.

As shown in FIG. 7, the lateral members 22, the longitudinal members 24 and the spacers 26 that comprise the three-dimensional lattice frame 20 are integrally attached together.

The head section 14 and the appendage sections 16 can also be constructed as a unitary member 60, as shown in FIG. 11. Both the head unitary member and the appendage sections unitary members have a multiplicity of outward-extending pins 28, which function in the same manner as the pins 28 extending outward from the three-dimensional lattice frame 20.

To further add to the appearance of the decorative structure 10 when a human or animal is portrayed, the head section 14 can be further comprised a pair of eyes 62, a nose or a beak 64, and a mouth 66, that are attached by an attachment means. The appendage sections 16 can further comprise a pair of hands or paws 68, as shown in FIG. 4, or at least two feet 70, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 4. The feet 70 can also be designed to function as supporting members, which enable the decorative structure 10 to be maintained in an upright position. When certain animals are portrayed, additional elements, such as a tail 71, as shown in FIG. 4, or ears (not shown) can be included to add to the realistic appearance of the animal.

As the name implies, the decorative structure 10 is primarily designed to be utilized for decorative purposes. As a result of the unique construction process, and the preferred material for construction, any of the design configurations of the decorative structure 10 can be used indoors or outdoors, do not require any maintenance, and can be provided in any size and/or color desired. In addition to decorative purposes, the structure 10 can also be utilized as a toy for make-believe and other games, as a deterrent against smaller animals entering a garden or other area, or as an educational too.

While the invention has been described in detail and pictorially shown in the accompanying drawings it is not to be limited to such details, since many changes and modifications may be made to the invention without departing from the spirit and scope thereof. Hence, it is described to cover any and all modifications and forms which may come within the language and scope of the appended claims.