Title:
COMBINATION GARMENT- TRAVEL BAG-SLEEPING SACK-BLANKET AND RELATED METHODS
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention provides a multipurpose travel device that may provide multiple functionalities and reduce the amount of baggage and items that the user takes with her on a trip or excursion. The present invention provides a multipurpose device that can be configured to serve as a blanket, a garment, a sleeping sack, and a travel bag. The device may include two or more layers of material, where one of the layers of material may be waterproof and one or more other layers may provide cushion and/or warmth.



Inventors:
Sosa, Lynette (Fresno, CA, US)
Application Number:
14/821734
Publication Date:
02/09/2017
Filing Date:
08/08/2015
Assignee:
Sosa Lynette
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A45F4/06; A47G9/08
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
MCNURLEN, SCOTT THOMAS
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Sierra IP Law, PC (P.O. Box 5637, Fresno, CA, 93755-5637, US)
Claims:
What is claimed:

1. A multipurpose travel device, comprising: a. an outer layer of waterproof material, wherein said outer layer includes a first hole for receiving a person's head and located at or near a center of said outer layer; b. at least one inner layer of insulating material, wherein said inner layer includes a second hole for receiving a person's head and located at or near a center of said inner layer; c. at least one fastener for attaching said at least one inner layer to said outer layer, wherein: i. said inner layer is removable from said outer layer, and ii. when said outer layer and said inner layer are attached to one another said first hole for receiving a person's head and said second hole for receiving a person's head are aligned and said device can be worn as a garment; d. one or more fasteners for connecting a perimeter edge of said outer layer such that when said when said outer layer is folded in half along a line of symmetry, the device can be fastened along the perimeter to form a sleeping sack configuration; e. at least one fastening belt about parallel to said line of symmetry, wherein when said outer layer is further folded along its length, said device is divided into first and second rollable sections by a center line that is about perpendicular to said line of symmetry and ends of the first and second rollable sections can each be rolled inward to meet said center line and said at least one fastening belt can be fastened to bind the rolled first and second rollable sections together to form a travel bag configuration; and f. at least one shoulder strap on said outer layer, and located adjacent to said first hold for receiving a person's head such that at least one shoulder strap can be placed over a person's shoulder when said device is in said travel bag configuration.

2. The device of claim 1, further comprising a detachable hood that can be attached to said device at said first hole in said out layer.

3. The device of claim 1, wherein said detachable hood is water proof

4. The device of claim 1, further comprising at least one pocket on said outer layer storing items.

5. The device of claim 1, wherein said device includes at least two shoulder straps and said travel bag configuration is a backpack configuration.

6. The device of claim 1, wherein said one or more fasteners for connecting a perimeter edge of said outer layer is a zipper and an insertion pin and pin box of said zipper are located at or adjacent to said line of symmetry.

7. A multipurpose garment—blanket—sleeping sack—travel bag device, comprising: a. a waterproof outer layer of material and an insulative inner layer of material connected by layer fasteners along the outer edges of said outer layer and said inner layer, wherein said connected outer layer and inner layer are operable to be laid on the ground as a blanket; b. a garment configuration in which said outer layer includes a first central hole at or near a center of said outer layer and said inner layer includes a second central hole at or near center of said inner layer, said first and second holes are aligned, and said first and second holes have sufficient size to receive a person's head; c. a sleeping bag configuration in which said outer layer is folded in half along a line of symmetry such that the perimeters of the folded halves of the outer layer align and at least a portion of the aligned perimeters of the outer layer is fastened together by one or more perimeter fasteners; and d. a travel bag configuration in which said outer layer is further folded along its length and is divided into first and second rollable sections by a center line that is about perpendicular to said line of symmetry and ends of the first and second rollable sections are rolled inward to meet said center line and at least one fastening belt binds said first and second rollable sections together.

8. The device of claim 7, further comprising at least one shoulder strap on said outer layer located adjacent to said first hole for receiving a person's head such that said at least one shoulder strap can be placed over a person's shoulder when said device is in said travel bag configuration.

9. The device of claim 8, wherein said device includes at least two shoulder straps and said travel bag configuration is a backpack configuration.

10. The device of claim 7, further comprising a detachable hood that can be attached to said device at said first hole in said out layer.

11. The device of claim 7, further comprising at least one pocket on said outer layer storing items.

12. The device of claim 7, wherein said one or more fasteners for connecting a perimeter edge of said outer layer is a zipper and an insertion pin and pin box of said zipper are located at or adjacent to said line of symmetry.

13. A method of manufacturing a multipurpose garment—blanket—sleeping sack—travel bag device, comprising: a. forming a first sheet of flexible waterproof material having at least one layer fastener along a perimeter thereof; b. forming a second sheet of flexible insulative fabric for connecting to said first sheet, wherein said second sheet hays at least one layer fastener receiver along a perimeter thereof, and said at least one layer fastener and said at least one layer fastener receiver are aligned when said first sheet and said second sheet are connected; c. forming a first hole in said first sheet at or near a center of said first sheet, wherein said first hole is sized to receive a person's head; d. forming a second hole in said second sheet at or near a center of said second sheet, wherein said first and second holes are aligned when said first and second sheets are connected; e. attaching at least one perimeter fastener operable to fasten at least a portion of a perimeter of said first sheet when said first sheet is folded in half along a line of symmetry such that outer edges of the folded halves of the first sheet align; f. attaching at least one shoulder strap to said first sheet adjacent to said first hole; and g. attaching at least one fastening belt about parallel to said line of symmetry, wherein when said first is folded in half along said line of symmetry, said device is divided into first and second rollable sections by a center line that is about perpendicular to said line of symmetry and ends of the first and second rollable sections can each be rolled inward to meet at said center line and said at least one fastening belt can be fastened to bind the rolled first and second rollable sections together to form a travel bag configuration.

14. The method of claim 13, further comprising forming a detachable hood having one or more hood fasteners that can be attached to one or more hood fastener receivers on said first sheet at said first hole.

15. The method of claim 13, further comprising forming at least one pocket on said first sheet for storing items.

16. The method of claim 13, wherein at least two shoulder straps are attached to said first sheet adjacent to said first hole.

17. The method of claim 13, wherein said at least one perimeter fastener is a zipper and an insertion pin and pin box of said zipper are located at or adjacent to said line of symmetry.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to an improved multi-purpose device that can serve as a garment, sleeping bag, a blanket, and a travel bag, without the need to add or remove portions thereof to convert the device from one use to the next.

DISCUSSION OF THE BACKGROUND

Certain simple multipurpose garments (e.g., reversible coats, blanket/garments, etc.) and travel items are known. For example, Agyagos, U.S. Pat. No. 4,188,988, discloses a sheet assembly for use as a multipurpose tote bag. As a further example, Holbrook, U.S. Pat. No. 5,048,975, discloses a sheet assembly that can be converted into a tote bag and blanket. However, the presently known multipurpose garments and travel items are limited in their utility and versatility. It is therefore desirable to provide convertible and multi-purpose devices that provide more functionality.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a multipurpose device that can be configured to serve as a blanket, a garment, a travel bag, and a sleeping sack. The device may include two or more layers of material, wherein one of the layers of material (e.g., the outer layer) may be waterproof. The device may have additional layers as well that provide cushion and/or insulation. The present invention provides a multipurpose travel item that may provide multiple functionalities that may reduce the amount of baggage and items that the user takes with her on a trip or excursion. Thus, the present invention provides improved utility and convenience over known multipurpose garments, luggage, and travel devices.

The present invention may be used as an all-in-one travel device that may provide a single package for the user to take with her on hiking, camping, or other outdoor excursions or activities. The invention has several configurations that have independent utility, including a blanket configuration (e.g., a waterproof blanket configuration), a garment configuration (e.g., a water-proof pancho), a sleeping sack configuration, and a travel bag configuration (e.g., a backpack). The device allows the user to store food and other essentials in the device while traveling (e.g., by foot, vehicle, etc.), provides a sleeping sack for rest, provides a blanket (e.g., a waterproof blanket) to rest on and/or lay out items such as food on a clean surface, and provides a warm (and optionally weather-proof) garment to wear during cold and/or inclement weather.

The device may include at least two layers of flexible material, including an outer layer and at least one inner layer. The outer layer may be made from one or more tough fabric materials such as aliphatic or semi-aromatic polyamides (e.g., nylon), expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (e.g., Gore-Tex), para-aramid synthetic fiber (e.g., Kevlar, poly-paraphyenylene terephthalamide, Technora fiber, Twaron fiber, etc.), PTFE fluoropolymer (e.g., Teflon), polyester, polypropylene, polyurethane, polyethylene (e.g., Spectra Fiber), flame-resistant meta-aramid materials (e.g., Nomex), canvas, and other materials. The outer layer may be partially or wholly made from a waterproof material, such that rain and snow cannot penetrate the layer. For example, and without limitation, the outer layer may include a polytetrafluoroethylene fabric (e.g., Gore-Tex) that is impervious to water.

In other implementations, and without limitation, the outer layer may include natural fabrics (e.g., canvas) and/or synthetic fabrics (e.g., polyester, semi-aromatic polyamides, polypropylene, etc.) that are laminated or coated with a waterproofing material such as a rubber, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyurethane (PU), silicone elastomer, fluoropolymers, and/or wax. In other implementations, and without limitation, the outer layer may be a composite fabric comprising multiple kinds of fibers. For example, and without limitation, the outer layer may be a fabric that includes polytetrafluoroethylene fiber (e.g., Gore-Tex), and semi-aromatic polyamides (e.g., nylon), such that the fabric is water-proof and tough.

In still other implementations, and without limitation, the outer layer may be a composite layer that includes multiple layers of different fabrics that are adhered together to provide the outer layer with multiple qualities. For example, and without limitation, the outer layer may include an outer semi-aromatic polyamide (e.g., nylon) or polyester fabric that provides strength and an inner polyurethane fabric to provide water resistance. In another example and without limitation, the outer layer of the device may include a tough outer fabric made from a para-aramid synthetic fiber (e.g., poly-paraphyenylene terephthalamide, Kevlar, etc.), a first inner fabric made from a water-proof material (e.g., PTFE fluoropolymer, Teflon, etc.), and a second inner fabric made from a flame-resistant material (e.g., a meta-aramid fabric, Nomex, etc.). The outer layer may be a composite layer of fabrics that includes various combinations of the materials discussed herein to provide a tough, durable layer that may protect the wearer from the elements.

The device of the present invention may also include one or more inner layers that are attachable to the outer layer and serve as interior layers for the garment, sleeping sack, and travel bag configurations. The one or more inner layers may be directed toward providing warmth and comfort to the user of the device, and may include soft and/or insulative fabrics or materials that may be attached to the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, the inner layer of the device may be a soft cotton, wool, or synthetic (e.g., polyester, acrylic, etc.) material, such as a fleece, felt, microfiber, or other woven forms of fabric that provide a soft surface for comfort and insulation to the wearer. The inner layer of the device may include multiple fabrics including (1) an innermost fabric layer made of a soft cotton, wool, or synthetic (e.g., polyester, acrylic, etc.) material, such as a fleece, felt, microfiber, or other woven fabric for direct contact with the wearer, and (2) a soft compressible layer that may be sandwiched between the outer layer and the innermost fabric layer (a middle or intermediate layer). The soft compressible layer may be included in the device to provide cushion while the device is used as a sleeping bag or a blanket, providing comfort to the user even though the device is placed over the ground (e.g., a rocky or otherwise hard surface). For example, and without limitation, the device may include a compressible foam layer such as batting or polymeric foam (e.g., polyurethane foam, viscoelastic polyurethane foam or “memory foam”, etc.) that is positioned between the inner layer and the outer layer. Additional layers are contemplated within the scope of the present invention as well, such as an electrical warming layer (e.g., similar to an electric blanket), etc.

The inner layer and any intermediate layers may be separable form the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, the inner layer of the device may be attached to the outer layer by one or more detachable fasteners, such as flexible interlocking hood fasteners (e.g., Velcro), snap fasteners, buttons, one or more zippers, and other fasteners. In embodiments in which the travel device includes an inner layer and one or more intermediate layers, each of the inner and intermediate layers may be separately attached to the outer layer by a separate set of fasteners, such that either or both of the fabric layers of the inner layer may be removed. For example, and without limitation, the user may remove the compressible middle layer and leave the innermost layer attached, if the additional middle layer provides too much insulation and is making the user uncomfortably hot or the user does not intend to use the device as a sleeping sack or blanket. In some embodiments, and without limitation, the inner layer and one or more intermediate layers may have the same pattern of fasteners, such that any of the layers of the inner layer is operable to be attached directly to the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, in implementations where the device includes an innermost layer and a middle layer of compressible material, the innermost layer is connected to the middle layer when the middle layer is in use, but may be attached directly to the outer layer if the user removes the middle layer.

The outer and inner layers of the device may have any of various perimeter shapes. For example, and without limitation, the outer and inner layers may have a rectangular shape, a circular shape, an elliptical shape, Reuleaux shapes (e.g., triangle, polygons, etc.), superellipses (e.g., rounded rectangles), and other shapes that are practical for a fabric structure of the current invention for use as a blanket, sleeping sack, garment, and travel bag. The outer, middle, and inner layers may have substantially the same shape such that the perimeters of the layers match up and can be fastened together. In some implementations, and without limitation, the inner layer and/or any middle layers may have a smaller shape and size than the outer layer, such that fasteners for attaching the inner and/or middle layers to the outer layer are locating between the center and the perimeter of the outer layer.

As mentioned above, the device may include a garment configuration that may be worn during cold and/or inclement weather. For this configuration, the device may include a neck hole for receiving the head and neck of the wearer. Both the inner and outer layers (and any middle layers) may include neck holes that align when the layers are attached to each other. The neck holes may be located at or near the center of each of the layers, such the device drapes evenly over the wearer when it is donned. The neck hole may allow the device to be worn as a rain slicker or pancho style garment. This configuration may be particularly appropriate for cold and inclement weather (e.g., rain, snow, etc.). In some embodiments, and without limitation, the outer layer may be waterproof (as discussed above) keeping out any moisture from rain or snow and the inner layer (and/or any middle layers) may be insulative and keep the wearer warm. The inner layer may be removed, if the ambient temperature is sufficiently high that the inner layers trap too much heat and make the wearer uncomfortable (e.g., during a summer rain). In some embodiments, and without limitation, the device may include one or more fasteners (e.g., buttons, snaps, flexible hook fasteners, a zipper, etc.) at the neck hole for closing the neck hole when it is not in use. For example, and without limitation, the one or more fasteners (e.g., a zipper) may be positioned along the neck hole in the outer layer such that the neck hole can be closed when the device is being used as a blanket, sleeping sack, or travel bag.

In some embodiments, and without limitation, the device may include a hood located adjacent to the neck hole for the garment configuration. The hood may allow the wearer of the garment configuration to cover her head to keep warm or to deflect precipitation from her head. In some implementations, and without limitation, the hood may be detachable from the device. For example, the hood may be attached to the outer layer of the device around the neck hole by one or more fasteners (e.g., buttons, snaps, flexible hook fasteners, a zipper, etc.). In some implementations, and without limitation, the fasteners on the outer layer of the device for closing the neck hole may have a dual role, also being operable to attach the hood to the outer layer when the device is being used as a garment. In other implementations, the device may include separate sets of fasteners for closing the neck hole and attaching the hood.

As mentioned above, the device may include a travel bag configuration (e.g., a backpack configuration). In some embodiments, and without limitation, the device may include one or more pockets thereon for storing items. In the travel bag (e.g., backpack) configuration, the pocket may be packed with items prior to the device being rolled into the travel bag configuration (from the sleeping sack configuration). In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may include a pocket on and near the center of the outer layer (e.g., adjacent to the neck hole). Such a pocket may be used to store items (including the detachable hood). It is to be understood that items may also be stored in the rolled section of the device when the device is in the travel bag configuration. For example, and without limitation, items may be inserted into the inside the sleep sack configuration prior to the ends thereof being rolled up into the travel bag configuration. In further implementations, and without limitation, the device may include several pockets on the outer layer thereof, which may vary in size.

The device may also include at least one shoulder strap for carrying the device in the travel bag configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may include two shoulder straps (e.g., in the backpack configuration) located near the center of the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, the upper end of the straps may be located on the outer layer near and flanking the neck hole and the lower end of the straps may be located closer to the edge of the outer layer such that the user may slide each arm under one of the straps and don the travel bag on her back. In some implementations, and without limitation, the one or more straps may have adjustable lengths such that they may be worn tighter or looser on the wearer. In some implementations, and without limitation, the straps may be removable so that they may be stored when the device is used in configurations other than the travel bag. For example, the straps may be attached at each end to the outer layer with clips, zippers, latches, etc.

The present invention may include various other features in addition to those described above, and the scope of the present invention may be further understood by the examples provided herein.

In one aspect, and without limitation, the present invention relates to a multipurpose device of the present invention may include an outer layer of waterproof material, the outer layer including a first hole for receiving a person's head and located at or near a center of the outer layer; at least one inner layer of insulating material that includes a second hole for receiving a person's head and is located at or near a center of the inner layer; at least one fastener for attaching the at least one inner layer to the outer layer, where the inner layer is removable from the outer layer, and when the outer layer and the inner layer are attached to one another the first hole for receiving a person's head and the second hole for receiving a person's head are aligned and the device can be worn as a garment; one or more fasteners for connecting a perimeter edge of the outer layer such that when the when the outer layer is folded in half along a line of symmetry, the device can be fastened along the perimeter to form a sleeping sack configuration; at least one fastening belt about parallel to the line of symmetry, wherein when the outer layer is further folded along its length, the device is divided into first and second rollable sections by a center line that is about perpendicular to the line of symmetry and ends of the first and second rollable sections can each be rolled inward to meet the center line and the at least one fastening belt can be fastened to bind the rolled first and second rollable sections together to form a travel bag configuration; and at least one shoulder strap on the outer layer, and located adjacent to the first hold for receiving a person's head such that at least one shoulder strap can be placed over a person's shoulder when the device is in the travel bag configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the sleeping bag configuration may be folded in thirds along its length to create the first and second rollable sections. In other implementations, and without limitation, the sleeping bag configuration may be folded in half along a line of symmetry such that the perimeters of the folded halves of the outer layer align such that the sleeping bag configuration is folded in half longitudinally. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may include a detachable hood that can be attached to the device at the first hole in the out layer. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may further include at least one pocket on the outer layer storing items. In some implementations, and without limitation, the detachable hood may be water proof. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device includes at least two shoulder straps and the travel bag configuration is a backpack configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the one or more fasteners for connecting the perimeter edge of the outer layer is a zipper and an insertion pin and pin box of the zipper are located at or adjacent to the line of symmetry.

In another aspect, and without limitation, the present invention relates to a multipurpose garment—blanket—sleeping sack—travel bag device of the present invention includes a waterproof outer layer of material and an insulative inner layer of material connected by layer fasteners along the outer edges of the outer layer and the inner layer, wherein the connected outer layer and inner layer are operable to be laid on the ground as a blanket; a garment configuration in which the outer layer includes a first central hole at or near a center of the outer layer and the inner layer includes a second central hole at or near center of the inner layer, the first and second holes are aligned, and the first and second holes have sufficient size to receive a person's head; a sleeping bag configuration in which the outer layer is folded in half along a line of symmetry such that the perimeters of the folded halves of the outer layer align and at least a portion of the aligned perimeters of the outer layer is fastened together by one or more perimeter fasteners; and a travel bag configuration in which the outer layer is folded on itself providing first and second rollable sections that are divided by a center line that is about perpendicular to the line of symmetry and ends of the first and second rollable sections are rolled inward to meet the center line and at least one fastening belt binds the first and second rollable sections together. In some implementations, and without limitation, the sleeping bag configuration may be folded in thirds along its length to create the first and second rollable sections. In other implementations, and without limitation, the sleeping bag configuration may be folded in half along a line of symmetry such that the perimeters of the folded halves of the outer layer align such that the sleeping bag configuration is folded in half longitudinally. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may include at least one shoulder strap on the outer layer located adjacent to the first hole for receiving a person's head such that the at least one shoulder strap can be placed over a person's shoulder when the device is in the travel bag configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may include at least two shoulder straps and the travel bag configuration is a backpack. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may further include a detachable hood that can be attached to the device around at least a portion of the first hole in the out layer. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may further include at least one pocket on the outer layer storing items. In some implementations, and without limitation, the one or more fasteners for connecting a perimeter edge of the outer layer is a zipper and an insertion pin and pin box of the zipper are located at or adjacent to the line of symmetry.

In a further aspect, and without limitation, the present invention relates to a method of manufacturing a multipurpose garment—blanket—sleeping sack—travel bag device, including forming a first sheet of flexible waterproof material having at least one layer fastener along a perimeter thereof; forming a second sheet of flexible insulative fabric for connecting to the first sheet, wherein the second sheet have at least one layer fastener receiver along a perimeter thereof, and the at least one layer fastener and the at least one layer fastener receiver are aligned when the first sheet and the second sheet are connected; forming a first hole in the first sheet at or near a center of the first sheet, wherein the first hole is sized to receive a person's head; forming a second hole in the second sheet at or near a center of the second sheet, wherein the first and second holes are aligned when the first and second sheets are connected; attaching at least one perimeter fastener operable to fasten at least a portion of a perimeter of the first sheet when the first sheet is folded in half along a line of symmetry such that outer edges of the folded halves of the first sheet align; attaching at least one shoulder strap to the first sheet adjacent to the first hole; and attaching at least one fastening belt about parallel to the line of symmetry, wherein when the first is folded in half along the line of symmetry, the device is divided into first and second rollable sections by a center line that is about perpendicular to the line of symmetry and ends of the first and second rollable sections can each be rolled inward to meet at the center line and the at least one fastening belt can be fastened to bind the rolled first and second rollable sections together to form a travel bag configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the method may further include forming a detachable hood having one or more hood fasteners that can be attached to one or more hood fastener receivers on the first sheet at the first hole. In some implementations, and without limitation, the method may further include forming at least one pocket on the first sheet for storing items. In some implementations, and without limitation, at least two shoulder straps are attached to the first sheet adjacent to the first hole. In some implementations, and without limitation, the at least one perimeter fastener is a zipper and an insertion pin and pin box of the zipper are located at or adjacent to the line of symmetry.

In a still further aspect, and without limitation, the present invention relates to a method of converting a multipurpose garment—blanket—sleeping sack—travel bag device of the present invention into various configurations including attaching a waterproof outer layer of material to an insulative inner layer of material using layer fasteners along the outer edges of the outer layer and the inner layer, wherein the connected outer layer and inner layer are operable to be laid on the ground as a blanket; opening a hole at or near a center of the device that may be used as a head hole for a garment configuration; folding the outer layer and inner layers in half along a line of symmetry such that the perimeters of the folded halves of the outer layer align and fastening together at least a portion of the aligned perimeters of the outer layer using one or more perimeter fasteners to convert the device into a sleeping bag configuration; and starting from the sleeping sack configuration, folding the outer layer into first and second rollable sections, rolling the first and second rollable sections inward toward a center line that is about perpendicular to the line of symmetry, and fastening the first and second rolled sections together using at least one fastening belt. In some implementations, and without limitation, the method may include slinging over the user's shoulder at least one shoulder strap on the outer layer located adjacent to the hole for receiving a person's head. In some implementations, and without limitation, the device may include at least two shoulder straps and the travel bag configuration is a backpack.

The multi-purpose travel device of the present invention may include additional features and functionalities, some of which will be evident from the description and drawings herein. Exemplary embodiments of the multi-purpose travel device of the present invention are provided below

The advantages of the present invention are further illustrated by the embodiments described herein. It is to be understood that there are several variations in the multipurpose travel device, and that the embodiments described herein are presented for purposes of illustration and description. They are not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise forms disclosed.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a multipurpose device that may be serve the purposes of several articles to thereby reduce the number of items that a person needs to bring when traveling.

It is also an object of the present invention to provide a multipurpose travel garment/device that includes at least an outer waterproof layer and an inner insulating layer.

It is also an object of the present invention to provide a waterproof garment/blanket that can be converted into a sleeping bag and a backpack.

It is also an object of the present invention to provide a multipurpose device with a backpack configuration that can carry objects within the rolled portions of the device and that may include one or more pockets therein.

It is also an object of the present invention to provide a multipurpose device with a pancho configuration that provides a waterproof (and optionally hooded) garment that allows the wearer to remain dry and warm in inclement conditions.

Additional aspects and objects of the invention will be apparent from the detailed descriptions and the claims herein.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the assembly of and an assembled travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of one side of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is side view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in the garment configuration and donned by a person.

FIG. 4 is a rear view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in the garment configuration and donned by a person.

FIG. 5 is a frontal view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in the garment configuration and donned by a person.

FIG. 6 is side view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in the garment configuration and donned by a person, with a detachable hood removed from the garment.

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in a blanket configuration and demonstrates the step of folding the blanket configuration in the process of converting the blanket configuration to a sleeping sack configuration.

FIG. 8 is a view of one side of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in a sleeping sack configuration.

FIG. 9 is a view of another side of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in a sleeping sack configuration.

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in a sleeping sack configuration and demonstrates the step of folding the sleeping sack configuration in the process of converting the sleeping sack configuration to a travel bag configuration.

FIG. 11 is a perspective view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention in a folded condition prior to the step of rolling the travel device in the process of converting the sleeping sack configuration to a travel bag configuration.

FIG. 12 is a perspective view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention that demonstrates the step of rolling the sleeping sack configuration in the process of converting the sleeping sack configuration to a travel bag configuration.

FIG. 13 is a perspective view of a travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention that further demonstrates the step of rolling the sleeping sack configuration in the process of converting the sleeping sack configuration to a travel bag configuration.

FIG. 14 is a rear view of a travel bag configuration of the travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 16 is a side view of a travel bag configuration of the travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 17 is a front view of a travel bag configuration of the travel device according to an embodiment of the present invention donned by a person.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Reference will now be made in detail to certain embodiments of the invention, examples of which are illustrated in the accompanying drawings. While the invention will be described in reference to these embodiments, it will be understood that they are not intended to limit the invention. To the contrary, the invention is intended to cover alternatives, modifications, and equivalents that are included within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the claims. In the following disclosure, specific details are given to provide a thorough understanding of the invention. However, it will be apparent to one skilled in the art that the present invention may be practiced without these specific details.

Referring to the drawings wherein like reference characters designate like or corresponding parts throughout the several views, and referring particularly to FIGS. 1-17, it is seen that the present invention includes various embodiments of a multi-purpose travel device that may allow a user to reduce the number of travel items that she requires on a trip, such as a camping trip, day hike, etc. It is also evident in the drawings that the invention includes methods of using the multi-purpose travel device. The present invention also includes methods of making such a travel device.

The travel device of the present invention may include multiple layers that may be attached to each other to form a single unit travel device. In some embodiments, and without limitation, the travel device may include at least two layers: an outer and an inner layer, where the outer layer is a tougher layer that may protect the user and her other travel items from inclement weather and outdoor conditions, and the inner layer is provided for insulation and/or padding. In other embodiments, and without limitation, the travel device may include more than two layers. For example, the travel device may include a tough outer layer, an insulative and/or soft inner layer, and one or more middle layers for providing additional functionality, such as padding for a more comfortable sleeping sack configuration.

As shown in FIG. 1, a travel device 100 may include an outer layer 101 and an inner layer 102 that may be attached to one another by fasteners. Outer layer 101 includes a plurality of fasteners 103 along its perimeter and inner layer 102 includes a plurality of fasteners 104 along its perimeter. In the example embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the shapes and sizes of the inner and outer layers 101 and 102 are substantially the same, and the fasteners 103 and 104 align with one another when the outer and inner layers 101 and 102 are brought together for attachment. The dashed arrows in FIG. 1 show how the outer and inner layers 101 and 102 may be brought together with the corners aligned, allowing the fasteners 103 and 104 to be engaged with one another. Once the fasteners are connected, the travel device may be a single unit having two layers. In other embodiments, and without limitation, the inner layer may have a different size and/or shape than the outer layer. For example, the inner layer may be smaller, such that its outer perimeter does not reach the outer perimeter of the outer layer when the outer and inner layers are attached. In such examples, the fasteners on the outer layer may be located inward from the outer perimeter of the outer layer, such that they align with the outer perimeter of the inner layer.

FIG. 1 shows the travel device 100 in the blanket configuration, which may be used for various purposes. The outer layer may be waterproof as described above, allowing the blanket configuration to be laid on damp ground while preventing moisture from reaching the inner layer. The blanket may be used for laying out food or other items or for resting. As previously mentioned, the device may include a padding layer to provide comfort to the user.

The travel device of the present invention includes multiple configurations for providing various functionalities, and includes features that enable the invention to be converted to the various configurations. The invention may include various straps, fasteners, pockets, and other features that allow for the versatility of the device.

FIG. 2 shows the reverse side of the device 100 from the view shown in FIG. 1, showing the outer layer 101. The outer layer 101 may have various features thereon that provide for the multi-functionality of the travel device 100. The device may include one or more pockets, such as pocket 150 shown in FIG. 2. The device 100 may include a hole 105 at or near the center of the device 100. The hole 105 may run through both the outer layer 101 and the inner layer 102 and be of sufficient size to allow the user's head to pass through the hole 105. The hole 105 allows the device to be worn as a garment (e.g., a pancho) as shown in FIGS. 3-6. The user's head may be passed through the hole 105 from the inner side of the device 100, such that the inner layer 102 is adjacent to the user's body and the outer layer 101 faces outward to provide protection against the weather. The hole 105 may be closable, such that it can be closed and the outer layer can be made to be waterproof and prevent moisture from seeping through the hole 105. In such implementations, and without limitation, a zipper (e.g., a waterproof zipper) or other fastening device may be included on the outer layer around the hole. In some implementations, and without limitation, the fastener for closing the hole 105 may be watertight (e.g., a watertight zipper).

The device may also include a hood 106 that may be worn over the user's head. The hood may be may be made from the same material as the outer layer 101, and may provide waterproof protection and/or protection from the wind and cold for the wearer. The hood may include an interior liner (e.g., a soft fabric such as fleece, plush cotton, soft acrylic fabric, etc.) that provides a comfortable wear for the user. The hood may be attached to the outer layer permanently or it may be detachable as shown in example provided in FIG. 6. In implementations in which the hood is permanently attached to the outer layer, the hood may be tucked into hole 105 when the travel device 100 is not being used as a garment, such that the hole 105 can be closed by fasteners, as described above. In implementations in which the hood is detachable, it may be attached to the outer layer by various fasteners, such as a zipper, flexible hook fasteners (e.g., velcro), snap fasteners, etc. When the travel device is not being used as a garment, the hood may be removed, and the hole 105 may be closed by fasteners, as described above.

In some embodiments, and without limitation, the travel device may include sleeves in the outer layer of the device, such that the garment version of the device may be worn as a jacket or slicker. The sleeves may be located a comfortable distance (e.g., about 8 to 12 inches) from the hole and/or hood such that users of various heights and sizes to wear the travel device as a jacket. The inner layer (and any intermediate layers) may include arm holes that align with the sleeves, such that the wearer can place her arms through the inner layer and into the sleeves in the outer layer. In some embodiments, and without limitation, the sleeves may be tucked between the outer and inner layers of the device when the travel device is not be used as a garment. In some embodiments, and without limitation, the sleeves may be removable and may be attached by fasteners (e.g., zipper, flexible hook fasteners [e.g., Velcro], snap fasteners, etc.) to the outer layer of the travel device. The travel device may additionally include a fastening device around each arm hole to seal the outer layer (e.g., when the sleeves are removed or tucked between the outer and inner layer). For example, and without limitation, there may be a zipper that closes off the arm holes in the outer layer. Other types of fasteners (e.g., flexible hook fasteners [e.g., Velcro], snap fasteners, etc.) may be used in other examples.

As mentioned above, the travel device 100 includes a sleeping sack configuration. FIG. 7 demonstrates how the blanket configuration may be converted into the sleeping sack configuration. The travel device 100 may be folded in half along a center line or line of symmetry 110, such that folded halves 100a and 100b meet with their perimeter edges aligned. The travel device 100 may have one or more additional fasteners for holding the two folded halves 100a and 100b together in the sleeping sack configuration. For example, and without limitation, the travel device 100 may have a zipper 111 that has an insertion pin and a pin box that flank the center line 110. The zipper pin and pin box may be slotted together when the perimeters of the folded halves 100a and 100b are aligned, and the sleeping sack configuration may be zipped up around the outer edge of the folded halves 100a and 100b. FIGS. 8-9 provide views of each side of the sleeping sack configuration. As previously mentioned, in some implementations the travel device includes a soft compressible layer that may be sandwiched between the outer layer and the inner layer and may provide comfort while the device is used as a sleeping sack, even though the device is placed over the ground (e.g., a rocky or otherwise hard surface). For example, and without limitation, the device may include a compressible foam layer such as batting or polymeric foam (e.g., polyurethane foam, viscoelastic polyurethane foam or “memory foam”, etc.) that is positioned between the inner layer and the outer layer. In other implementations, and without limitation, the inner layer may be a compressible layer (e.g., a foam layer) to provide cushion to the user.

Referring back to FIG. 2, the travel device 100 may have various other attachments that provide functionality for the various configurations of the travel device. A pair of shoulder straps 107 may be included for the travel bag configuration to allow the user to hang the travel bag over one or both shoulders. The shoulder straps may be attached at one end near the neck hole 105 and at the other end between the neck hole 105 and the perimeter of the travel device 100. The upper end of the straps may be located on the outer layer near and flanking the neck hole and the lower end of the straps may be located closer to the edge of the outer layer such that the user may slide each arm under one of the straps and don the travel bag on her back. In some implementations, and without limitation, the one or more straps may have adjustable lengths such that they may be worn tighter or looser on the wearer. The travel device may also include one or more cinching straps for holding the travel device in the travel bag configuration. In the example shown in FIG. 2, the travel device includes cinching straps 108a and 108b, which are used to hold the travel device 100 in the travel bag configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the cinching straps may have adjustable length (e.g., they may include a cinching buckle) to adjust for various sizes and amounts of items that may be stored in the travel bag configuration.

The travel device 100 may be converted into the travel bag configuration (e.g., a backpack) by a series of specific folding and rolling steps. First, the travel device 100 may be placed in the sleeping sack configuration as demonstrated in FIG. 7, and as discussed above. Subsequent steps for converting the exemplary travel device 100 into the travel bag configuration are shown in FIGS. 10-12. The sides of the sleeping sack configuration may be folded to one side of the sleeping sack, that side being opposite to the hood 106 and the shoulder straps 107, as shown in FIG. 10 (the dotted lines are provided in FIG. 10 to show where the sleeping sack may be folded and do not represent a physical feature of the exemplary travel device 100 depicted in the figure). The resulting folded arrangement can be seen in FIG. 11, showing the neck hole 105 exposed so that the user can pack items within the folded arrangement before the travel device 100 is completely converted into the travel bag configuration, and the shoulder straps are on the outer surface of the folded arrangement facing the ground. As shown in FIGS. 12-13, each end of the folded arrangement may then be rolled toward the center of the folded arrangement to place the travel device in a neat and tight travel bag package. Once each end of the folded arrangement is rolled up to the center of the folded arrangement such that the two rolled portions meet, the cinching straps 108a and 108b may be connected around the perimeter of the rolled portions are bound by the cinching straps 108a and 108b in a tight backpack-like arrangement, as shown in 14-16. The cinching straps 108a and 108b may have interlocking buckle fasteners that allow them to connect to each other. The user of the travel device 100 may then don the backpack by positioning the shoulder straps 107 on each of her shoulders as shown in FIG. 17, allowing the user to comfortably carry the travel bag configuration while traveling.

It is to be understood that various features that provide the functionality of the travel bag configuration may be altered, and the method of converting the travel device to the travel bag configuration may be altered. For example, and without limitation, the travel device may include a single shoulder strap that allows the user to wear the travel bag configuration as a satchel or sling. In other examples, and without limitation, the travel device may include two shoulder straps and one or more cross straps between the shoulder straps that may be fastened across the wearer's abdomen and/or chest. In other examples, and without limitation, the travel device may include two stretchable flaps (e.g., elastic or neoprene flaps) that may be attached to the outer layer and may be used to cover and contain the two rolled portions of the travel bag configuration, instead of or in addition to the cinching straps shown in the example provided in the drawings. In such implementations, and without limitation, the flaps may be pulled over the rolled portions of the travel bag configuration and may be bound together by one or more fasteners (e.g., a zipper), thereby containing the rolled portions and any items stored therein. In still further implementations, and without limitation, the shoulder straps may be about parallel with the length of the sleeping sack configuration (rather than about perpendicular thereto), and thus the rolled portions of the travel bag configuration may be horizontal (rather than vertical) when the travel bag is worn by the user. In still further implementations, and the without limitation, the travel device may have a plurality of pockets in the outer layer, such that the user can store items in the pockets when the travel device is in travel bag configuration. The scope of the present invention encompasses still other variations and additional features of the travel bag configuration.

A further aspect of the present invention relates to a method of manufacturing a travel device as described herein. The manufacturing process may include forming the two or more layers of the travel device such that they fit and attach to one another in a manner that enables the travel device to be used in its various configurations discussed herein. In some embodiments, and without limitation, the outer layer may be made from one or more tough fabric materials such as aliphatic or semi-aromatic polyamides (e.g., nylon), expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (e.g., Gore-Tex), para-aramid synthetic fiber (e.g., Kevlar, poly-paraphyenylene terephthalamide, Technora fiber, Twaron fiber, etc.), PTFE fluoropolymer (e.g., Teflon), polyester, polypropylene, polyurethane, polyethylene (e.g., Spectra Fiber), flame-resistant meta-aramid materials (e.g., Nomex), canvas, and other materials. The outer layer may be partially or wholly made from a waterproof material, such that rain and snow cannot penetrate the layer. For example, and without limitation, the outer layer may include a polytetrafluoroethylene fabric (e.g., Gore-Tex) that is impervious to water. In other implementations, and without limitation, the outer layer may include natural fabrics (e.g., canvas) and/or synthetic fabrics (e.g., polyester, semi-aromatic polyamides, polypropylene, etc.) that are laminated or coated with a waterproofing material such as a rubber, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyurethane (PU), silicone elastomer, fluoropolymers, and/or wax. In other implementations, and without limitation, the outer layer may be a composite fabric comprising multiple kinds of fibers. For example, and without limitation, the outer layer may be a fabric that includes polytetrafluoroethylene fiber (e.g., Gore-Tex), and semi-aromatic polyamides (e.g., nylon), such that the fabric is water-proof and tough. In still other implementations, and without limitation, the outer layer may be a composite layer that includes multiple layers of different fabrics that are adhered together to provide the outer layer with multiple qualities. For example, and without limitation, the outer layer may include an outer semi-aromatic polyamide (e.g., nylon) or polyester fabric that provides strength and an inner polyurethane fabric to provide water resistance. In another example and without limitation, the outer layer of the device may include a tough outer fabric made from a para-aramid synthetic fiber (e.g., poly-paraphyenylene terephthalamide, Kevlar, etc.), a first inner fabric made from a water-proof material (e.g., PTFE fluoropolymer, Teflon, etc.), and a second inner fabric made from a flame-resistant material (e.g., a meta-aramid fabric, Nomex, etc.). The outer layer may be a composite layer of fabrics that includes various combinations of the materials to provide a tough, durable layer that may protect the wearer from harsh weather and temperatures.

The outer layer may be shaped during the manufacturing process such that it can effectively be configured into each of the different configurations discussed herein. For example, and without limitation, the outer and inner layers may have a rectangular shape, a circular shape, an elliptical shape, Reuleaux shapes (e.g., triangle, polygons, etc.), superellipses (e.g., rounded rectangles), and other shapes that are practical for a fabric structure of the current invention for use as a blanket, sleeping sack, garment, and travel bag.

The manufacturing process may include forming one or more inner layers that are attachable to the outer layer and serve as interior layers for the garment, sleeping sack, and travel bag configurations. The one or more inner layers may be formed from materials that provide warmth and comfort to the user of the device, and may include soft and/or insulative fabrics or materials that may be attached to the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, the inner layer of the device may be formed from a soft cotton, wool, or synthetic (e.g., polyester, acrylic, etc.) material, such as a fleece, felt, microfiber, or other woven forms of fabric that provide a soft surface for comfort and insulation. The inner layer of the device may include multiple fabrics including (1) an innermost fabric layer made of a soft cotton, wool, or synthetic (e.g., polyester, acrylic, etc.) material, such as a fleece, felt, microfiber, or other woven fabric for direct contact with the wearer.

The manufacturing process may also include forming a soft compressible layer that may be sandwiched between the outer layer and the innermost fabric layer (a middle or intermediate layer). The soft compressible layer may be formed and included in the device to provide cushion while the device is used as a sleeping bag or a blanket, providing comfort to the user even though the device is placed over the ground (e.g., a rocky or otherwise hard surface). For example, and without limitation, the middle layer may be made from a compressible foam layer such as batting or polymeric foam (e.g., polyurethane foam, viscoelastic polyurethane foam or “memory foam”, etc.) that is positioned between the inner layer and the outer layer. The formation of additional layers are contemplated within the scope of the present invention as well, such as an electrical warming layer (e.g., similar to an electric blanket), etc.

The manufacturing process may include installing fasteners on each of the layers of the travel device, such that the inner layer and any intermediate layers may be separable from and reattachable to the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, one or more detachable fasteners, such as flexible interlocking hood fasteners (e.g., Velcro), snap fasteners, buttons, one or more zippers, and other fasteners may be installed on the inner and outer layers in complementary patterns such that the layers align and attach to one another in the proper orientation. To form travel devices that include one or more intermediate layers, fasteners may be installed on the intermediate layer(s) such that the intermediate layer(s) may be separately attached to the outer layer and either or both of the inner and intermediate layers may be removed from the outer layer. In some embodiments, and without limitation, the inner layer and one or more intermediate layers may be formed such that they have the same pattern of fasteners and any of the layers of the inner layer is operable to be attached directly to the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, the innermost layer and a middle layer may be formed such that the innermost layer is connected to the middle layer when the middle layer is in use, but may be attached directly to the outer layer if the user removes the middle layer.

The inner and intermediate layers of the device may be formed to have any of various perimeter shapes. For example, and without limitation, the inner and intermediate layers may be formed to have a rectangular shape, a circular shape, an elliptical shape, Reuleaux shapes (e.g., triangle, polygons, etc.), superellipses (e.g., rounded rectangles), and other shapes that are practical for a fabric structure of the current invention for use as a blanket, sleeping sack, garment, and travel bag. The inner and intermediate layers may be formed to have substantially the same shape as the outer layer such that the perimeters of the layers match up and can be fastened together at the perimeter of the outer layer. In some implementations, and without limitation, the inner layer and/or any middle layers may be formed to have a smaller shape and size than the outer layer, such that fasteners for attaching the inner and/or middle layers to the outer layer are locating between the center and the perimeter of the outer layer.

The manufacturing process may additionally include forming various features on and in the layers of the travel device, such as a neck hole for receiving the head and neck of the wearer, one or more pockets for storing items, straps for configuring the device as a travel bag, straps for carrying the travel bag configuration, and various other features. Both the inner and outer layers (and any middle layers) may be formed to include neck holes that align when the layers are attached to each other. The neck holes may be located at or near the center of each of the layers, such the device drapes evenly over the wearer when it is donned. One or more fasteners (e.g., buttons, snaps, flexible hook fasteners, a zipper, etc.) may be installed at the neck hole for closing the neck hole when it is not in use. For example, and without limitation, one or more fasteners (e.g., a zipper) may be installed along the neck hole in the outer layer such that the neck hole can be closed when the device is being used as a blanket, sleeping sack, or travel bag.

In some embodiments, and without limitation, a hood may be formed and attached adjacent to the neck hole for use the garment configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, the hood may be formed to be detachable from the device. For example, the hood may be formed with one or more fasteners (e.g., buttons, snaps, flexible hook fasteners, a zipper, etc.) along its perimeter to allow it to attach to the outer layer of the device around the neck hole; complementary fasteners may be installed on the outer layer around the neck hole. In some implementations, and without limitation, the fasteners on the outer layer of the device around the neck hole may be formed to have a dual role: both closing the neck hole when not in use and also being operable to attach the hood to the outer layer when the device is being used as a garment. In other implementations, separate sets of fasteners may be attached to the outer layer for closing the neck hole and attaching the hood.

The manufacturing process may include forming one or more pockets on the layers of the travel device. In some implementations, and without limitation, a pocket may be formed on and near the center of the outer layer (e.g., adjacent to the neck hole). Such a pocket may be used to store items (including the detachable hood). In further implementations, and without limitation, several pockets may be formed on the layers of the device, which may vary in size.

The manufacturing process may include forming and attaching at least one shoulder strap for carrying the device in the travel bag configuration. In some implementations, and without limitation, two shoulder straps (e.g., in the backpack configuration) may be attached to the travel device near the center of the outer layer. For example, and without limitation, the upper end of the straps may be attached on the outer layer near and flanking the neck hole and the lower end of the straps may be attached closer to the edge of the outer layer such that the user may slide each arm under one of the straps and don the travel bag on her back. In some implementations, and without limitation, the one or more straps may be formed to have adjustable lengths such that they may be worn tighter or looser on the wearer. In some implementations, and without limitation, the straps may be removable so that they may be stored when the device is used in configurations other than the travel bag. For example, the straps may be formed to be attachable at each end to the outer layer with clips, zippers, latches, etc.

The manufacturing process may further include forming and attaching at least one cinching strap that may be used to hold the travel device in the travel bag configuration (see, e.g., FIGS. 8-17). The cinching straps may be formed to have adjustable length (e.g., they may include a cinching buckle) to adjust for various sizes and amounts of items that may be stored in the travel bag configuration.

The manufacturing process may further include installing one or more fasteners (e.g., a zipper, snaps, buttons, flexible interlocking hook fasters [e.g., Velcro], etc.) along a perimeter edge of the outer layer for holding two folded halves of the travel device together in the sleeping sack configuration. For example, and without limitation, a zipper may be installed on the travel device that has an insertion pin and a pin box that flank a center line of the travel device. The zipper pin and pin box may be slotted together when the travel device is folded in half along the center line such that the perimeter of the two halves of the travel device match up, allowing the travel device to be zipped up around the outer edge of the folded halves to form a sleeping sack configuration.

The above described embodiments provide examples of the multifunctional travel device of the present invention, but do not limit the scope of the present invention. The present invention provides a multifunctional travel device that includes at least a blanket configuration, a garment configuration, a sleeping sack configuration, and a travel bag configuration for use in travel and outdoor activities, such as hiking, camping, hunting, and other outdoor travel and activities. It is to be understood that there are several variations in the travel device of the present invention, and that the foregoing descriptions of specific embodiments of the present invention have been presented for purposes of illustration and description. They are not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise forms disclosed, and many modifications and variations are possible in light of the above teaching. The embodiments were chosen and described in order to best explain the principles of the invention and its practical application, to thereby enable others skilled in the art to best utilize the invention and various embodiments with various modifications as are suited to the particular use contemplated. It is intended that the scope of the invention be defined by the claims appended hereto and their equivalents.