Title:
ADJUSTABLE FIT JACKET
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Various embodiments may provide an adjustable fit garment that allows the fit of the garment to be adjusted by a user according to the user's preferences. In various embodiments, the garment may be a jacket configured to be worn on an upper body of the user. The jacket may have an outer surface and an inner surface, and a front side and a back side. In various embodiments, one or more zippers may be disposed along the outside surface of the jacket. Each zipper may include two sets of opposing zipper teeth (e.g., first and second sets of zipper teeth) configured to be coupled together. The jacket may further include a gusset coupled between the sets of zipper teeth (e.g., on an interior portion of the zipper) to allow for a limited expansion of the jacket when the zipper is open.



Inventors:
Johnson, Rebecca (Portland, OR, US)
Application Number:
13/278097
Publication Date:
04/26/2012
Filing Date:
10/20/2011
Assignee:
Columbia Sportswear North America, Inc. (Portland, OR, US)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
2/69
International Classes:
A41D1/00; A41D1/02
View Patent Images:
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20070294798Wrist-napkin (wrist-nap)December, 2007York et al.
20070192941Men's underwear with an adjustable support slingAugust, 2007Soderstrom
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20040123375Hat apparatusJuly, 2004Walters
20050150035Canning screw band charm clip and assemblyJuly, 2005Marks
20070186931Infant headgear for supporting a patient airway interface deviceAugust, 2007Zollinger et al.



Foreign References:
KR20090124720A
Primary Examiner:
ANDERSON, AMBER R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt (PACWEST CENTER, SUITE 1900 1211 SW FIFTH AVENUE PORTLAND OR 97204)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A garment, comprising: a body having an outer surface and an inner surface; one or more zippers disposed on the outer surface of the garment, at least one of the zippers positioned from a shoulder region of the garment to a hip region of the garment, and each of the one or more zippers including first and second sets of zipper teeth; and a gusset coupled between the first and second sets of zipper teeth of the one or more zippers.

2. The garment of claim 1, wherein at least a first zipper of the one or more zippers is a two-way zipper and includes a top zipper pull and a bottom zipper pull.

3. The garment of claim 2, wherein the first zipper is configured so that the first zipper is closed when the top zipper pull is at a top end of the first zipper and the bottom zipper pull is at a bottom end of the first zipper.

4. The garment of claim 2, wherein the first zipper is configured so that the first zipper is open when the top zipper pull is at a top end of the first zipper and the bottom zipper pull is at a bottom end of the first zipper.

5. The garment of claim 1, wherein the gusset is made of the same material as a material of the outer surface of the garment.

6. The garment of claim 1, wherein the gusset is made of a different material from a material of the outer surface of the garment.

7. The garment of claim 1, wherein at least one of the zippers extends to a bottom edge of the garment.

8. The garment of claim 1, wherein one or more of the zippers is disposed along a princess seam of the garment.

9. The garment of claim 1, wherein the one or more zippers include: a first zipper disposed generally from a front right shoulder portion to a front right hip portion of the garment; a second zipper disposed generally from a front left shoulder portion to a front left hip portion of the garment; a third zipper disposed generally from a rear left shoulder portion to a rear left hip portion of the garment; and a fourth zipper disposed generally from a rear right shoulder portion to a rear right hip portion of the garment.

10. A garment, comprising: a body portion configured to be worn on an upper body of a user, the body portion having an outer surface and an inner surface; and a plurality of zippers, each zipper including a pair of zipper teeth coupled to the outer surface and separated by a distance, thereby defining a gusset between the zipper teeth.

11. The garment of claim 10, wherein the plurality of zippers include: a first zipper disposed generally from a front right shoulder portion to a front right hip portion of the garment; a second zipper disposed generally from a front left shoulder portion to a front left hip portion of the garment; a third zipper disposed generally from a rear left shoulder portion to a rear left hip portion of the garment; and a fourth zipper disposed generally from a rear right shoulder portion to a rear right hip portion of the garment.

12. The garment of claim 11, wherein the gusset is the same material as the outer surface of the garment.

13. The garment of claim 10, wherein each of the plurality of zippers comprises two-way zippers, each zipper including a top zipper pull and a bottom zipper pull.

14. The garment of claim 13, wherein the zippers are configured so that the zipper is closed when the top zipper pull is at a top end of the zipper and the bottom zipper pull is at a bottom end of the zipper.

15. The garment of claim 13, wherein the first zipper pull is configured so that the zipper is open when the top zipper pull is at a top end of the zipper and the bottom zipper pull is at a bottom end of the zipper.

16. The garment of claim 10, wherein at least one of the zippers extends to a bottom edge of the garment.

17. A jacket, comprising: a body having an outer surface; a first zipper disposed generally from a front right shoulder portion to a front right hip portion of the jacket; a second zipper disposed generally from a front left shoulder portion to a front left hip portion of the jacket; a third zipper disposed generally from a rear left shoulder portion to a rear left hip portion of the jacket; and a fourth zipper disposed generally from a rear right shoulder portion to a rear right hip portion of the jacket, wherein each of the first, second, third, and fourth zippers includes a pair of zipper teeth, and the jacket includes a gusset coupled between the zipper teeth of each zipper.

18. The jacket of claim 17, wherein the gussets are made of the same material as a material of the outer surface of the jacket.

19. The jacket of claim 17, wherein the first, second, third, and fourth zippers each extend to a bottom edge of the garment such that opening a bottom portion of the zipper increases a circumference of the bottom edge of the garment.

20. The jacket of claim 17, wherein the first, second, third, and fourth zippers are two-way zippers.

Description:

Cross Reference to Related Applications

The present application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/405,113, filed Oct. 20, 2010, entitled “ADJUSTABLE FIT JACKET,” the entire disclosure of which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

TECHNICAL FIELD

Embodiments of the present disclosure relate generally to outerwear, and in particular to adjustable fit jackets.

BACKGROUND

Upper body garments, such as outerwear including performance jackets, raincoats, parkas, and windbreakers are designed to be worn on the upper body of a user. While people come in all shapes and sizes, a particular outerwear product typically is only available in one shape in a set number of sizes, e.g., small, medium, large, etc. That is, the shape of outerwear does not adjust to the unique shape of each user who wears it. Because of this, for each model of outerwear, there will be some users who find it uncomfortable, unflattering and/or inhibiting.

Furthermore, people often vary the type and amount of clothing that they wear underneath their outerwear. For instance, one day a user may wear several layers of bulky clothing underneath the outerwear, e.g., a sweater, fleece jacket, etc., while another day the user may wear less bulky clothing underneath the outerwear, e.g., a t-shirt. However, the fit of the outerwear does not adjust depending on what the user is wearing underneath it.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Embodiments will be readily understood by the following detailed description in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. Embodiments herein are illustrated by way of example and not by way of limitation in the figures of the accompanying drawings.

FIGS. 1A-E illustrate several views of an adjustable fit jacket with zippers of the jacket closed, including: (A) a front view; (B) a rear view; (C) a left side view; (D) a right side view; and (E) a perspective view, in accordance with various embodiments;

FIG. 2 illustrates a front view of the jacket from FIGS. 1A-E with the front zippers substantially open and the top and bottom zipper pulls of each zipper at the bottom of the zipper, in accordance with various embodiments;

FIG. 3 illustrates a rear view of the jacket from FIGS. 1A-E with the rear zippers open and top and bottom zipper pulls of each zipper at the top of the zipper, in accordance with various embodiments;

FIGS. 4A and 4B illustrate a front view and a right side view, respectively, of the jacket of FIGS. 1A-E with the top zipper pull of each zipper at the top of the zipper and the bottom zipper pull of each zipper positioned about halfway up the zipper, in accordance with various embodiments; and

FIG. 5 illustrates a right side view of the jacket of FIGS. 1A-E with the top zipper pull of each zipper positioned about halfway down the zipper and the bottom zipper pull of each zipper positioned at the bottom of the zipper.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EMBODIMENTS

In the following detailed description, reference is made to the accompanying drawings which form a part hereof, and in which are shown by way of illustration embodiments in which the disclosure may be practiced. It is to be understood that other embodiments may be utilized and structural or logical changes may be made without departing from the scope of the present disclosure. Therefore, the following detailed description is not to be taken in a limiting sense, and the scopes of embodiments, in accordance with the present disclosure, are defined by the appended claims and their equivalents.

Various operations may be described as multiple discrete operations in turn, in a manner that may be helpful in understanding embodiments herein; however, the order of description should not be construed to imply that these operations are order dependent.

The description may use perspective-based descriptions such as up/down, back/front, and top/bottom. Such descriptions are merely used to facilitate the discussion and are not intended to restrict the application of embodiments of the present disclosure.

The terms “coupled” and “connected,” along with their derivatives, may be used. It should be understood that these terms are not intended as synonyms for each other. Rather, in particular embodiments, “connected” may be used to indicate that two or more elements are in direct physical or electrical contact with each other. “Coupled” may mean that two or more elements are in direct physical or electrical contact. However, “coupled” may also mean that two or more elements are not in direct contact with each other, but yet still cooperate or interact with each other.

For the purposes of the description, a phrase in the form “NB” or in the form “A and/or B” means (A), (B), or (A and B). For the purposes of the description, a phrase in the form “at least one of A, B, and C” means (A), (B), (C), (A and B), (A and C), (B and C), or (A, B and C). For the purposes of the description, a phrase in the form “(A)B” means (B) or (AB) that is, A is an optional element.

The description may use the phrases “in an embodiment,” or “in embodiments,” which may each refer to one or more of the same or different embodiments. Furthermore, the terms “comprising,” “including,” “having,” and the like, as used with respect to embodiments of the present disclosure, are synonymous.

Various embodiments may provide an adjustable fit garment that allows the fit of the garment to be adjusted by the user according to the user's preferences. In various embodiments, the garment may be a jacket configured to be worn on an upper body of the user. The jacket may have an outer surface and an inner surface, and a front side and a back side. In various embodiments, one or more zippers may be disposed along the outside surface of the jacket. Each zipper may include two sets of opposing zipper teeth (e.g., first and second sets of zipper teeth) configured to be coupled together. The jacket may further include a gusset coupled between the sets of zipper teeth (e.g., on an interior portion of the zipper) to allow for a limited expansion of the jacket when the zipper is open. Any suitable orientation of the one or more zippers may be used. For instance, in some embodiments the one or more zippers may be oriented vertically, e.g. generally oriented between a trunk opening (e.g., a hip portion) and a shoulder area or a neck opening of the jacket.

Each zipper may further include one or more zipper pulls. The zipper pull may include a slider configured to open and/or close the zipper. The slider may engage (e.g., interlock) the first set of zipper teeth with the second set of zipper teeth as the slider moves in a first direction along the zipper to close the zipper and/or may disengage the first set of zipper teeth from the second set of zipper teeth as the slider moves in a second direction along the zipper to open the zipper. The zipper pull may further include a handle coupled to the slider to facilitate moving the slider to open and/or close the zipper.

In some embodiments, each of the one or more zippers may be a two-way separating zipper. That is, each zipper may include a top zipper pull and a bottom zipper pull, and may be opened and/or closed in both directions. In some embodiments, the zipper may be configured such that the zipper is closed when the zipper pulls are located at opposite ends of the zipper, i.e., when the top zipper pull is at a top portion of the zipper and the bottom zipper pull is at a bottom portion of the zipper. In such a two-way separating zipper, the zipper may be opened from the top, from the bottom, or from both directions by pulling on the corresponding zipper pull. In various embodiments, one or more of the zippers may be designed so that the zipper pull maintains its position along the zipper under normal conditions. For example, the zipper may be a semi auto-lock zipper.

In other embodiments, one or more of the zippers may be configured such that the zipper is substantially closed when the two zipper pulls are in close proximity to each other along the zipper. In various embodiments, the one or more zippers on the expandable fit jacket may be in any combination of configurations.

In various embodiments, each zipper may define an interior portion between the sets of zipper teeth of the zipper that is hidden from view when the zipper is closed. The gusset may be coupled between the sets of zipper teeth in the interior portion of the zipper. The gusset may be disposed along the entire length of the zipper. In some embodiments, the gusset may be a portion of material that is fastened to inside edges of the zipper teeth. In other embodiments, the gusset may be a continuation of the outer surface of the jacket, and the zipper teeth may be coupled to the outer surface of the jacket to define the gusset. In some embodiments, the gusset may include a box pleat to facilitate expansion of the gusset and/or reduce bunching of the gusset. By adjusting the one or more zippers with gussets, the user of the jacket can expand or contract the outer surface area of the jacket to selectively shape the jacket, e.g. to conform the jacket to the shape of the user's body.

In various embodiments, the gusset and the outer surface of the jacket may be made of any desirable material. For instance, the gusset and/or outer surface of the jacket may be made of a waterproof and/or breathable material, a relatively elastic material, and/or a fleece. In some embodiments the gusset may be made of the same material as the outer surface of the jacket. In such embodiments, the gusset may serve to expand the surface area of the outer surface of the jacket when the one or more zippers are opened without substantially changing the water-resistance, breathability, and/or other properties of the jacket.

In other embodiments, the gusset may be made of a different material from that of the outer surface of the jacket. For example, the gusset may be made of a more breathable material than the material of the outside surface of the jacket. In embodiments where a more breathable material is used, in addition to opening and closing the one or more zippers to adjust the fit of the jacket, the user may open one or more of the zippers as desired to increase ventilation and/or air flow to the interior of the jacket. In some embodiments, the gusset may be made of a more elastic material to facilitate expanding the fit of the jacket and/or comfort to the user.

In various embodiments, the adjustable fit jacket may have any number of zippers disposed along the outside surface of the jacket. For instance, the jacket may have about one to ten zippers, or more particularly about two to six zippers disposed along the outside surface of the jacket. The zippers may be oriented in any suitable orientation on the outer surface of the jacket, such as generally vertically, generally horizontal, and/or at an angle.

In some embodiments, at least one zipper may run generally from a shoulder area of the jacket to a hip area of the jacket on either the left or the right of the jacket and on either the front side or the back side of the jacket. The one or more zippers may be of any desirable shape, such as straight, curved, etc. In some embodiments, one or more of the zippers may run along a princess seam of the jacket, such that altering the zipper position (either the top zipper pull, bottom zipper pull or both) will cause expansion of the jacket in certain areas particularly relevant to the shape of a woman's body. The princess seam may be generally oriented from the shoulder area to a hip area with a slight curvature over a bust portion of the jacket.

In some embodiments, at least one zipper may extend to a bottom edge of the jacket (e.g., through the hip area). Opening the zipper at a bottom portion of the zipper (such as by lifting the bottom zipper pull) may increase a circumference of the bottom edge of the jacket. This may allow the user to adjust the fit of the jacket around the hips of the user.

According to one particular embodiment, the adjustable fit jacket may have four two-way zippers disposed along the outside surface of the jacket: one zipper disposed generally from the left shoulder to the left hip on the front side of the jacket, one zipper disposed generally from the left shoulder to the left hip along the back side of the jacket, one zipper disposed generally from the right shoulder to the right hip on the front side of the jacket, and one zipper disposed generally from the right shoulder to the right hip on the back side of the jacket. Each zipper may extend to the bottom edge of the jacket.

In various embodiments, each of the one or more zippers disposed along the adjustable fit jacket may be manipulated by the user to create the desired fit. Taking the above-described embodiment of an adjustable fit jacket with four two-way separating zippers as an example, the zippers may be configured such that when all four zippers are closed, e.g. one zipper pull is at the top of the zipper and the other zipper pull is at the bottom of each zipper, the jacket fits a person with an average body shape. To adjust the fit of the adjustable fit jacket for a person who has relatively smaller dimensions in the shoulders and bust, but relatively larger dimensions in the hips (e.g. a pear shape), the bottom zipper pull on each zipper may be pulled up to about the middle of the zipper. In this configuration, the jacket remains tight around the bust and mid-section, but provides more room in the hips. Alternatively, to adjust the fit of the adjustable fit jacket for a person with relatively larger dimensions in the bust, waist and hips (e.g. an apple shape), the bottom zipper pull on each zipper may be pulled all the way to the top of the zipper. This configuration may provide more room in the bust, waist and hips. Furthermore, to adjust the fit of the adjustable fit jacket for a person with relatively larger dimensions in the bust and hips, but relatively smaller dimensions in the waist and mid-section, the bottom zipper pull and the top zipper pull may both be pulled to about the middle of the zipper. In this configuration, the adjustable fit jacket may provide more room in the bust and hips, while remaining tighter in the waist. In some embodiments, one or more of the zippers may allow adjustment in the shoulder area of the jacket to adapt to user's with broader or narrower shoulders. As can be seen from these examples, the adjustable fit jacket may be adjusted in any combination to create the desired fit for the user.

Furthermore, in various embodiments each of the two-way zippers may be adjusted independently of the other zippers, allowing for many variations and fine tuning of fit. As such, various embodiments of the adjustable fit jacket may be adjusted to fit any body type. Additionally, an individual user may choose to adjust the fit differently for different activities, or when wearing different interior layers of clothing.

Some embodiments may include one or more zippers oriented horizontally on the jacket, with a gusset coupled on an interior portion of the zipper to allow a length of the jacket to be adjusted. The length of the jacket may be adjusted to provide a desired fit for the user and/or to adapt the jacket for use in different activities, such as use during heavy snow conditions.

In various embodiments, the adjustable fit jacket may include one or more areas of a relatively elastic material, such as a material containing Spandex™, to facilitate adjusting the fit of the adjustable fit jacket. For example, some embodiments of the adjustable fit jacket may include an elastic material along the lateral sides of the jacket and/or an elastic thread sewn into a lining of the jacket.

Various embodiments of the adjustable fit jacket may be particularly suitable for a manufacturer of outerwear who wishes to manufacture a jacket that will be suitable for a larger number of users, i.e. will fit people with different body shapes. Similarly, the adjustable fit jacket may be particularly suitable for people who otherwise find it difficult to find jackets that fit them comfortably. Additionally, the adjustable fit jacket may be suitable for adjusting the fit of the jacket based on the layers of clothing the user is wearing beneath the jacket. For instance, a user may wish to have a looser fitting jacket when the user is wearing bulkier clothing underneath the jacket, while the user may wish to have a tighter fitting jacket when the user is not wearing bulky clothing underneath. Furthermore, the adjustable fit jacket may be suitable for people whose body shape may change and/or fluctuate over time, e.g. normal weight gain, normal weight loss, pregnancy, etc.

While the above described embodiments describe zippers with which to adjust the fit of the jacket, the adjustable fit jacket may employ any type of detachable fasteners in place of the zippers described above, such as snaps, buttons, hook and loop type fasteners (e.g. Velcro™), and/or any combination of different detachable fasteners.

FIG. 1A shows a front view of an adjustable fit jacket 100, in accordance with various embodiments. Jacket 100 includes a first zipper 10 and a second zipper 12 disposed along a front side 14 of an outer surface 16 of jacket 100. Zippers 10 and 12 are two-way separating zippers, each including a top zipper pull 18 or 20 and a bottom zipper pull 22 or 24, respectively. From the perspective of the user when wearing the jacket, first zipper 10 may be disposed generally from the right shoulder to the right hip of jacket 100 along front side 14, while second zipper 12 may be disposed generally from the left shoulder to the left hip of jacket 100 along front side 14. Zippers 10 and 12 are disposed along princess seams of the jacket 100 and extend to a bottom edge 25 of jacket 100.

FIG. 1B illustrates a rear view of jacket 100. As shown, jacket 100 further includes a third zipper 26 and a fourth zipper 28 disposed along a back side 30 of the outer surface 16 of jacket 100. Zippers 26 and 28 are two-way separating zippers, each including a top zipper pull 32 or 34 and a bottom zipper pull 36 or 38, respectively. From the perspective of the user when wearing the jacket, third zipper 26 may be disposed generally from the left shoulder to the left hip of jacket 100 along back side 30, while fourth zipper 28 may be disposed generally from the right shoulder to the right hip of jacket 100 along back side 30. Zippers 26 and 28 both extend to the bottom edge 25 of jacket 100.

FIGS. 1C, 1D, and 1E show additional views of jacket 100, including: (C) a left side view; (D) a right side view; and (E) a perspective view. FIGS. 1A-E show jacket 100 with all of zippers 10, 12, 26, and 28 closed (with the top zipper pull of each zipper at the top of the zipper and the bottom zipper pull at the bottom of the zipper). In use, the fit of jacket 100 may be adjusted by moving any combination of zipper pulls 18, 20, 22, 24, 32, 34, 36, and/or 38 along their respective zippers. Inside edges of zippers 10, 12, 26, and 28 each may be coupled to a gusset (as shown in FIGS. 2-5) to allow a surface area of the outer surface 16 of jacket 100 to expand as zippers 10, 12, 26, and 28 are opened.

For example, FIG. 2 illustrates a front view of jacket 100 with zippers 10 and 12 substantially open and the top zipper pulls 18 and 20 of zippers 10 and 12, respectively, positioned near the bottom of each zipper. Zippers 10 and 12 remain closed over a portion of the bottom of each zipper. Gussets 40 and 42 are coupled between the zipper teeth of zippers 10 and 12, respectively, on the inside portion of the zipper. This configuration of zippers 10 and 12 may give the user additional room in the bust and waist, while remaining relatively tight around the hips.

FIG. 3 shows a rear view of jacket 100 with zippers 26 and 28 open and bottom zipper pulls 36 and 38 positioned near the top of zippers 26 and 28, respectively. Gussets 44 and 46 are coupled between the zipper teeth of zippers 26 and 28, respectively, on the inside portion of the zipper. In this configuration, jacket 100 may provide additional room for the user in the bust, waist and hip areas. The circumference of the bottom edge 25 is increased compared with the configurations in which the bottom portion of the zipper is closed (e.g., the configurations shown in FIGS. 1A-E and 2).

FIG. 4A shows a front view of the adjustable fit jacket 100 with bottom zipper pulls 22 and 24 positioned about halfway up zippers 10 and 12, respectively. Top zipper pulls 18 and 20 are positioned at the top of zippers 10 and 12, respectively. In this configuration, jacket 100 may maintain a tighter fit in the shoulders, bust and midsection areas, but may provide additional room in the waist and hips. The circumference of the bottom edge 25 is increased compared with the configurations in which the bottom portion of the zipper is closed (e.g., the configurations shown in FIGS. 1A-E and 2).

Similarly, FIG. 4B shows a side view of jacket 100 with bottom zipper pulls 24 and 36 positioned about halfway up zippers 12 and 26, respectively.

FIG. 5 shows a side view of jacket 100 with top zipper pulls 20 and 32 positioned about halfway down zipper 12 and 26, respectively. Bottom zipper pulls 24 and 36 are positioned at the bottom of zippers 12 and 26, respectively. This configuration may provide the user with additional room in the bust while maintaining a relatively tight fit in the waist and hips.

Although certain embodiments have been illustrated and described herein, it will be appreciated by those of ordinary skill in the art that a wide variety of alternate and/or equivalent embodiments or implementations calculated to achieve the same purposes may be substituted for the embodiments shown and described without departing from the scope of the present disclosure. Those with skill in the art will readily appreciate that embodiments herein may be implemented in a very wide variety of ways. This application is intended to cover any adaptations or variations of the embodiments discussed herein. Therefore, it is manifestly intended that embodiments in accordance with the present disclosure be limited only by the claims and the equivalents thereof.