Title:
Self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric that includes a first portion, and a second portion. The first portion includes a retainer, and a first projection that extends from the retainer and is a hollow coil that is helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern that pierces and threads through the fabric. The second portion includes a fastener that is button-shaped, and a second projection that depends from the fastener and engages with the first projection. In a first embodiment, the retainer is disk-shaped, and the second projection is cylindrically-shaped and has a socket that threadably receives the first projection. In a second embodiment, the retainer is the proximal end of the first projection enlarged. In a third embodiment, the second projection is another hollow coil that is helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern that threadably engages with the first projection.



Inventors:
Okun, Milton R. (Canton, MA, US)
Application Number:
09/752473
Publication Date:
07/04/2002
Filing Date:
01/02/2001
Assignee:
OKUN MILTON R.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A44B1/40; (IPC1-7): A44B1/40
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
SAKRAN, VICTOR N
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Milton R. Okun (Milton, MA, US)
Claims:

The invention claimed is:



1. A self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric, wherein the fabric has an inner side and an outer side, said button comprising: a) a first portion for puncturing through the fabric; and b) a second portion engaging said first portion and being for capturing the fabric between itself and said first portion.

2. The button as defined in claim 1, wherein said first portion comprises: a) a retainer for abutting against the inner side of the fabric; and b) a first projection that extends axially from, and is narrower than, said retainer, and is for puncturing and threading through the fabric, from said inner side thereof, to said outer side thereof, with said retainer for limiting travel of said first projection through the fabric.

3. The button as defined in claim 2, wherein said second portion comprises: a) fastener; and b) a second projection that depends axially from said fastener and selectively engages with said first projection, and when engaged therewith, causes the fabric to be captured between said retainer and said fastener.

4. The button as defined in claim 2, wherein said first projection is a hollow coil that is slender, elongated, and helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern for threading through the fabric, from the inner side thereof, to the outer side thereof.

5. The button as defined in claim 2, wherein said first projection has: a) a proximal end that cooperates with said retainer, and is for positioning on the inner side of the fabric; and b) a distal end that is sharp for facilitating puncturing the fabric.

6. The button as defined in claim 3, wherein said fastener is button-shaped.

7. The button as defined in claim 3, wherein said fastener has a lowermost surface with a center for facing the outer side of the fabric.

8. The button as defined in claim 2, wherein said retainer is disk-shaped.

9. The button as defined in claim 5, wherein said retainer has an uppermost surface with a center for abutting against the inner side of the fabric.

10. The button as defined in claim 9, wherein said proximal end of said first projection is attached to said center of said uppermost surface of said retainer, and extends upwardly therefrom, to said distal end of said first projection.

11. The button as defined in claim 3, wherein said second projection is cylindrically-shaped.

12. The button as defined in claim 7, wherein said second projection has: a) a proximal end; and b) a distal end for abutting against the outer side of the fabric.

13. The button as defined in claim 12, wherein said proximal end of said second projection is attached to said center of said lowermost surface of said fastener, and depends axially therefrom, to said distal end of said second projection.

14. The button as defined in claim 12, wherein said second projection further has a throughbore that extends axially therethrough, from said proximal end thereof, to said distal end thereof, and is threaded so as to form a socket that selectively and threadably receives said first projection, and when received, causes the fabric to be captured between said retainer and said fastener.

15. The button as defined in claim 5, wherein said retainer is said proximal end of said first projection enlarged circularly laterally.

16. The button as defined in claim 3, wherein said second projection is another hollow coil that is slender, elongated, and helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern that threadably engages with said first projection.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention:

[0002] The present invention relates to a button for a fabric. More particularly, the present invention relates to a self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric.

[0003] 2. Description of the Prior Art:

[0004] Broken or lost buttons on garments, such as shirts and blouses usually result from mechanical stress of washers and dryers, commercial pressing equipment, and normal wear. The discovery that a button has been broken or lost is often made at an inconvenient time, for example, while dressing, at work, traveling, or when the garment is unpackaged from the laundry. At such times, it may be inconvenient or impossible to repair the button using the tried and trued techniques of needle and thread or sewing machine. Even if a needle and thread or sewing machine is available, many individuals have difficulties manipulating these devices due to poor eyesight, coordination or the like, or are simply disinclined to engage in such activity.

[0005] Thus, a need exists for quickly and easily replacing lost buttons to garments, regardless of the circumstances surrounding the discovery of a lot button.

[0006] Numerous innovations for fastener devices have been provided in the prior art that will be described. Even though these innovations may be suitable for the specific individual purposes to which they address, however, they differ from the present invention.

[0007] FOR EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 3,678,797 to Seckerson teaches a resilient fastener comprising a head and a shank which is mountable in a workpiece formed with a circular aperture. The shank comprises a substantially flat and rigid stem, which is integral with the head and which extends lengthwise of the shank in a plane containing the longitudinal axis of the shank. Extending lengthwise of the shank on opposite sides of the stem are two resilient tongues each of which is joined to the stem along one longitudinal edge and each of which has a free longitudinal edge which is flexible towards the stem in a plane perpendicular to the plane of the stem. Preferably, an outwardly projecting rib is provided extending lengthwise along the free longitudinal edge of each tongue and each rib is shouldered adjacent the head.

[0008] ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 3,776,092 to Sseckerson teaches a resilient synthetic plastics fastener having a head and a shank extending outwardly from the undersurface of the head and comprising a longitudinal stem and two longitudinal flanges lying one on each side of the stem. The flanges are joined to the stem by resilient webs and are compressible inwardly of the shank towards the stem. Each flange has a longitudinal edge remote from the web and an outer surface which comprises a longitudinal operative face adjacent the said edge and a longitudinal inoperative face between the operative and the web. The operative face of each flange is convexly curved in section and is adapted to engage the rim of a circular aperture when the shank is inserted through the aperture and the inoperative face is adapted to clear the rim of the aperture so as to substantially reduce the area of interference between the flanges and the rim of the aperture.

[0009] STILL ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,001,923 to Frankel et al. teaches a jewelry clasp that is provided with a female member and a complementary male member adapted to cooperate with a releasable locking member disposed within the body of the female member, where the locking member engages the male member to hold the male member within the female member to prevent removal thereof. The locking member includes an integral one-piece construction having a locking portion for engaging the male member, a resilient portion for biasing the locking portion against the male member, and an actuating portion for moving the locking portion relative to the pressure of the resilient portion for releasing the male member to permit retraction of the male member from the female member. A holding member disposed within the female member positions the resilient portion relative to the female member. In a modified embodiment, the female member is provided with two integral one-piece locking members to function as a safety precaution to prevent accidental retraction of the male member from the female member.

[0010] YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,063,312 to Braillard teaches a button-securing device that comprises a spacing piece having flat opposite faces holding a button spaced apart from a fabric. An integral, flexible elongate attachment extends from the piece to a pointed end with fixing barbs. This attachment can be brought to a looped button-securing configuration by passing it through openings in the button, through the fabric, and back through the fabric into an opening in the spacing piece where it is held.

[0011] STILL YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,091,962 to van Buren, Jr. teaches a panel hole closure that is composed of a rigid plate having an integral array of resilient fingers projecting from one surface of the plate inboard of the plate rim. A integral stiffener is provided for each finger which stiffens the finger against inward deflection toward the axis of the plate so that once the closure is seated in a panel aperture, it is difficult to dislodge. A plastic sealing ring encircling the plate rim may be melted and flow to provide a fluid-tight seal between the closure plate and panel.

[0012] YET STILL ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,137,607 to Kramer et al. teaches a double-layered counter holder plate having a support bent from an inner layer thereof, the support supporting the inner and outer layers spaced opposite one another by resting on an inner surface of the spaced layer, the latter layer serving as a support for rolling the claws of a closure, the inner layer being overlapped by the claws.

[0013] STILL YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,333,182 to Seibt teaches a button anchor apparatus that has an elongated elastic thread having an elongated needle portion formed on one end thereof and an elongated ferrule formed on the other end of said elongated elastic thread and having a bore formed in one end thereof. The ferrule bore is adapted to accept the needle for locking the button to the garment. A method of attaching a button with a button anchor apparatus is also provided including the steps of pushing the needle through the garment, threading the elastic thread through the button and back through the garment, then attaching the end of the needle into the open end of the ferrule by stretching the elastic thread to allow the elongated needle to be aligned with and inserted into the ferrule bore.

[0014] YET STILL ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,773,343 to Riche teaches a method for attaching a button to a piece of fabric or clothing is provided. The method includes the step of pre-threading a two or four-holed button with a piece of tying thread connected at both ends to a pair of needles and then inserting the needles through the fabric or clothing in order to attach the button. Once the needles are pulled through the fabric, a double knot is tied close to the fabric on the needle end side and the needles are then discarded by cutting the thread at a point adjacent to the fabric. The method enables the offsetting of the button from the fabric or garment and also avoids the complications of having to thread the button holes and the fabric sequentially as part of the attachment process.

[0015] STILL YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 4,927,287 to Ohkawa et al. teaches a fastener that includes a female body and male body. By forcibly inserting the male body into a male body insertion hole of the female body, the two bodies are temporarily coupled together. By further inserting the male body into the female body from this state, leg portions of the female body are caused to flare outwardly so that overlapped plates are fastened together between the flared leg portions and a head portion of the female body. By further inserting the male body into the female body from this state, the leg portions are released from the flared state, so that the plates can be unfastened. When and only when the leg portions are inserted through a hole of a plate to be fastened by means of the fastener disposed in the temporarily coupled state, can the male body be further inserted within the female body so as to fasten the two plates to each other.

[0016] YET STILL ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 5,301,396 to Benoit teaches a fastener assembly for engagement with an aperture in an article including a fastener having at least a shank, a head at a first end of the shank and a resilient retaining member along the shank for releasably retaining the fastener to the article after insertion of at least a portion of the retaining member within the aperture, and an engagement member for compressing the retaining member prior to insertion within the aperture and contact of the retaining member with the article, and for preventing compression of the retaining member by the article about the aperture.

[0017] STILL YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 5,416,954 to Sobin teaches a flexible fastener that has an apex region, a first cantilevered leg and a second cantilevered leg, joined to one another at an apex region. A distributed spring action area is positioned off of the apex region, and along at least one of the cantilevered legs, and is formed by providing the apex with a relatively thick head compared with the thickness of the leg members, so that flexure is limited to the legs, and kept away from the apex region. The flexible fastener is particularly suited for use in a catch assembly for jewelry, especially a bangle. Preferably the flexible fastener is substantially planar, and flexes within its plane of construction. Although the flexible fastener can be constructed from any material which acts as a spring, preferably the fastener is constructed from heat treatable carat gold alloy spring material.

[0018] YET STILL ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 5,724,709 to Kittmann et al. teaches an expansion anchor to be anchored in a hole of one member to connect thereto another member that includes a head to abut a surface of the one member. A shaft extends from the head to be inserted through the hole in the one member. The shaft has extending therefrom fins that are deflectable toward the shaft upon insertion of the fins with the shaft into a hole and that are resiliently expandable away from the shaft when the fins have passed through the hole. Thus, the fins abut the opposite surface of the one member to prevent removal of the anchor from the hole. At least one stopper member is positioned relative to the shaft to cooperate with an inner edge of the hole to maintain a desired position of the shaft laterally relative to the hole. The fins have respective projections dimensioned such that, when the fins have passed through the hole, the projections extend into the hole and cooperate with the inner edge thereof to maintain the desired lateral position. The stopper member and the projections are located at different, non-overlapping positions relative to the shaft.

[0019] STILL YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE, U.S. Pat. No. 5,937,486 to Bockenheimer teaches a closure element that is made of plastic, particularly for sealing off at least one opening in at least one support member, in particular, in a automotive body, the closure element including a head section located above the support, and a basic body portion extending through the support. At least one region of the closure element is made of a material which expands under the influence of temperature. The basic body portion and the head section of the closure element is preferably formed of a single piece of thermal plastic material, which, is with increased thermal influence, media-tight bondable via a gluing action within the openings.

[0020] It is apparent that numerous innovations for fastener devices have been provided in the prior art that are adapted to be used. Furthermore, even though these innovations may be suitable for the specific individual purposes to which they address, however, they would not be suitable for the purposes of the present invention as heretofore described.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0021] ACCORDINGLY, AN OBJECT of the present invention is to provide a self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric that avoids the disadvantages of the prior art.

[0022] ANOTHER OBJECT of the present invention is to provide a self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric that is simple and inexpensive to manufacture.

[0023] STILL ANOTHER OBJECT of the present invention is to provide a self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric that is simple to use.

[0024] BRIEFLY STATED, YET ANOTHER OBJECT of the present invention is to provide a self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric that includes a first portion, and a second portion. The first portion includes a retainer, and a first projection that extends from the retainer and is a hollow coil that is helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern that pierces and threads through the fabric. The second portion includes a fastener that is button-shaped, and a second projection that depends from the fastener and engages with the first projection. In a first embodiment, the retainer is disk-shaped, and the second projection is cylindrically-shaped and has a socket that threadably receives the first projection. In a second embodiment, the retainer is the proximal end of the first projection enlarged. In a third embodiment, the second projection is another hollow coil that is helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern that threadably engages with the first projection.

[0025] The novel features which are considered characteristic of the present invention are set forth in the appended claims. The invention itself, however, both as to its construction and its method of operation, together with additional objects and advantages thereof, will be best understood from the following description of the specific embodiments when read and understood in connection with the accompanying drawing.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

[0026] The figures of the drawing are briefly described as follows:

[0027] FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic side elevational view of a first embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric;

[0028] FIG. 2 is an exploded diagrammatic perspective view of the first embodiment of the present invention being attached to the fabric as shown in FIG. 1;

[0029] FIG. 3 is an exploded diagrammatic perspective view of a second embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric;

[0030] FIG. 4 is a diagrammatic perspective view of a third embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric; and

[0031] FIG. 5 is an exploded diagrammatic perspective view of the third embodiment of the present invention being attached to the fabric as shown in FIG. 4.

LIST OF REFERENCE NUMERALS UTILIZED IN THE DRAWING

First Embodiment

[0032] 10 self-fastening and replaceable button of present invention for fabric 12

[0033] 12 fabric

[0034] 14 inner side of fabric 12

[0035] 15 outer side of fabric 12

[0036] 16 first portion for puncturing through fabric 12

[0037] 18 second portion for capturing fabric 12 between itself 18 and first portion 16

[0038] 20 retainer of first portion 16 for abutting against inner side 14 of fabric 12 and for limiting travel of first projection 22 through fabric 12

[0039] 22 first projection of first portion 16 for puncturing and threading through the fabric 12

[0040] 24 fastener of second portion 18

[0041] 26 second projection of second portion 18

[0042] 28 proximal end of first projection 22 for positioning on inner side 14 of fabric 12

[0043] 30 distal end of first projection 22

[0044] 32 lowermost surface of fastener 24 for facing outer side 15 of fabric 12.

[0045] 34 center of lowermost surface 32 of fastener 24

[0046] 36 uppermost surface of retainer 20 for abutting against inner side 14 of fabric 12

[0047] 38 center of uppermost surface 36 of retainer 20

[0048] 40 proximal end of second projection 26

[0049] 42 distal end 42 of second projection 26 for abutting against outer side 15 of fabric 12

[0050] 44 throughbore extending axially through second projection 26

Second Embodiment

[0051] 110 self-fastening and replaceable button of present invention

[0052] 120 retainer

[0053] 122 first projection

[0054] 128 proximal end of first projection 122

Third Embodiment

[0055] 210 self-fastening and replaceable button of present invention

[0056] 222 first projection

[0057] 228 second projection

[0058] 240 proximal end of second projection 226

[0059] 242 distal end of second projection 226

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0060] Referring now to the figures, in which like numerals indicate like parts, and particularly to FIGS. 1 and 2, which are, respectively, a diagrammatic side elevational view of a first embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric, and an enlarged exploded diagrammatic perspective view of the first embodiment of the present invention being attached to the fabric as shown in FIG. 1, a first embodiment of the self-fastening and replaceable button of the present invention is shown generally at 10 for a fabric 12, wherein the fabric 12 has an inner side 14 and an outer side 15.

[0061] The configuration of the self-fastening and replaceable button 10 can best be seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, which again are, respectively, a diagrammatic side elevational view of a first embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric, and an enlarged exploded diagrammatic perspective view of the first embodiment of the present invention being attached to the fabric as shown in FIG. 1, and as such, will be discussed with reference thereto.

[0062] The self-fastening and replaceable button 10 comprises a first portion 16 for puncturing through the fabric 12, and a second portion 18 that engages the first portion 16, and is for capturing the fabric 12 between itself 18 and the first portion 16.

[0063] The first portion 16 comprises a retainer 20 for abutting against the inner side 14 of the fabric 12, and a first projection 22 that extends axially from, and is narrower than, the retainer 20 and is for puncturing and threading through the fabric 12, from the inner side 14 thereof, to the outer side 15 thereof, with the retainer 20 for limiting travel of the first projection 22 through the fabric 12.

[0064] The second portion 18 comprises a fastener 24, and a second projection 26 that depends axially from the fastener 24 and selectively engages with the first projection 22, and when engaged therewith, causes the fabric 14 to be captured between the retainer 20 and the fastener 24.

[0065] The first projection 22 is a hollow coil that is slender, elongated, and helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern for threading through the fabric 12, from the inner side 14 thereof, to the outer side 15 thereof.

[0066] The first projection 22 has a proximal end 28 that cooperates with the retainer 20 and is for positioning on the inner side 14 of the fabric 12, and a distal end 30 that is sharp for facilitating puncturing the fabric 12.

[0067] The fastener 24 is button-shaped.

[0068] The fastener 24 has a lowermost surface 32 with a center 34 for facing the outer side 15 of the fabric 12.

[0069] The retainer 20 is disk-shaped.

[0070] The retainer 20 has an uppermost surface 36 with an center 38 for abutting against the inner side 14 of the fabric 12.

[0071] The proximal end 28 of the first projection 22 is attached to the center 38 of the uppermost surface 36 of the retainer 20, and extends upwardly therefrom, to the distal end 34 of the first projection 22.

[0072] The second projection 26 is cylindrically-shaped.

[0073] The second projection 26 has a proximal end 40, and a distal end 42 for abutting against the outer side 15 of the fabric 12.

[0074] The proximal end 40 of the second projection 26 is attached to the center 34 of the lowermost surface 32 of the fastener 24, and depends axially therefrom, to the distal end 42 of the second projection 26.

[0075] The second projection 26 further has a throughbore 44 that extends axially therethrough, from the proximal end 40 thereof, to the distal end 42 thereof, and is threaded so as to form a socket that selectively and threadably receives the first projection 22, and when received, causes the fabric 12 to be captured between the retainer 20 and the fastener 24.

[0076] The configuration of a second embodiment of the self-fastening and replaceable button 110 of the present invention can best be seen in FIG. 3, which is an exploded diagrammatic perspective view of a second embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric, and as such, will be discussed with reference thereto.

[0077] The self-fastening and replaceable button 110 is similar to the self-fastening and replaceable button 10, except that the retainer 120 is the proximal end 128 of the first projection 122 enlarged circularly laterally.

[0078] The configuration of a third embodiment of the self-fastening and replaceable button 210 of the present invention can best be seen in FIGS. 4 and 5, which are, respectively, a diagrammatic perspective view of a third embodiment of the present invention being attached to a fabric, and an exploded diagrammatic perspective view of the third embodiment of the present invention being attached to the fabric as shown in FIG. 4, and as such, will be discussed with reference thereto.

[0079] The self-fastening and replaceable button 210 is similar to the self-fastening button 110, except that the second projection 226 is another hollow coil that is slender, elongated, and helically-shaped so as to form a thread pattern that threadably engages with the first projection 222.

[0080] The second projection 226 has a proximal end 240, and a distal end 242.

[0081] The proximal end 240 of the second projection 26 is attached to the center 234 of the lowermost surface 232 of the fastener 224, and depends axially therefrom, to the distal end 242 of the second projection 26.

[0082] It will be understood that each of the elements described above, or two or more together, may also find a useful application in other types of constructions differing from the types described above.

[0083] While the invention has been illustrated and described as embodied in a self-fastening and replaceable button for a fabric, however, it is not limited to the details shown, since it will be understood that various omissions, modifications, substitutions and changes in the forms and details of the device illustrated and its operation can be made by those skilled in the art without departing in any way from the spirit of the present invention.

[0084] Without further analysis, the foregoing will so fully reveal the gist of the present invention that others can, by applying current knowledge, readily adapt it for various applications without omitting features that, from the standpoint of prior art, fairly constitute characteristics of the generic or specific aspects of this invention.