Title:
Velcro adjustable strap
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An adjustable strap for adjusting the fit of a hat or other article of clothing that includes a strap that wraps around and through a link opening, attaches securely by use of a hook and loop fastener device.



Inventors:
Yan, Suen Ching (US)
Application Number:
10/238402
Publication Date:
03/11/2004
Filing Date:
09/09/2002
Assignee:
YAN SUEN CHING
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A42B1/22; A42C5/00; (IPC1-7): A42B1/22
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
HOEY, ALISSA L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Daniel M. Cislo (Los Angeles, CA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. An adjustable strap for securing an article of clothing to a body, comprising: a link with an opening, attached to an article of clothing; and a strap having a first end secured to said article of clothing and a second end with means for removable attachment to said first end, wherein said second end wraps through said opening of said link and removably attaches to said first end.

2. The adjustable strap of claim 1 wherein said link is attached to said article of clothing by a loop of elastic fabric.

3. The adjustable strap of claim 2 wherein said means for removable attachment comprises a hook and loop connection.

4. The adjustable strap of claim 3 wherein said strap includes printed characters.

5. The adjustable strap of claim 4 wherein a protective flap covers said first and second ends when they are attached.

6. An adjustable strap for securing an article of clothing to a body, comprising: a link with an opening, whereby said link is attached to an article of clothing; and a strap, with a first end and a second end, said first end having a first face and a second face, whereby said first face is attached to said article of clothing and said second face comprises a plurality of loops, and said second end having a third face and a fourth face, whereby said third face comprises a plurality of hooks, and a protective flap, said protective flap being attached to said article of clothing adjacent to said first face, whereby said second end passes through said opening of said link, and said third face engages with said second face to removably fasten said first and second ends together, and said protective flap covers said second face and said third face to provide a barrier for shielding a wearer's body from said second and third faces.

7. The adjustable strap of claim 7 whereby said first face includes embroidered characters.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] This invention relates to adjustable clothing, and specifically to hats that can be adjusted to fit a particular wearer.

[0003] 2. Description of the Related Art

[0004] If the United States has a national hat, it is surely the baseball cap. Even golfers, tennis players, and football players wear them, either when playing or while standing on the sidelines. Mail carriers, truck drivers, and Boy Scouts wear them, too. Hats express things about their wearers. They stand out and frame the face—the most expressive part of the body. Some hats are practical, like the hard hat; some are symbolic, like the police officer's hat; and some hats are both, like the baseball cap.

[0005] When hats are worn for practical reasons: they help us accomplish certain tasks, whether for work, sports or recreation. Materials and design for these practical hats are vitally important, especially those that contribute to a secure fit so that the hat stays in place on a wearer's head. The present invention addresses this problem by providing an apparatus for adjusting the diameter of a hatband that is reliable, easy to use, economical and does not cause irritation to the wearer. This apparatus may also be applied to trousers, vests, coats, or any other article of clothing where a proper, secure fit is a necessity.

[0006] Adjustable clothing articles require a mechanism to secure the variable element, such as a belt or strap, once a position for that element has been selected. Typically, various styles of conventional belt links of various sizes have been used for this purpose, and more recently, plastic snapping tabs have become popular with athletic caps. However, the aforementioned approaches are usually constructed from rigid materials that cut, bind or scratch, resulting in discomfort to the wearer of the article of clothing that employs these devices. In contrast, “hook and loop” fasteners can achieve the goal of reliable attachment without the use of rigid materials. In the early 1940's, Swiss inventor George de Mestral noticed that cockleburs had a tendency to attach themselves to clothing, and animal fur. His inventor's curiosity led him to study the burrs under a microscope, where he discovered their natural hook-like shape. This was to become the basis for a unique, two-sided fastener—one side with stiff “hooks” like the burrs and the other side with the soft “loops” like the fabric of his pants. The result was VELCRO® brand hook and loop fasteners, named for the French words “velour” and “crochet.”

[0007] Several prior art approaches have attempted to address the problems of adjustable clothing using both hook and loop fasteners and more traditional means.

[0008] U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,915,535 and 5,600,854—each disclose the use of an adjustable strap which loops around a link comprising dual rings and is secured with Velcro®.

[0009] U.S. Pat. No. 1,423,829—discloses the use of an adjustable strap which loops around a link.

[0010] U.S. Pat. No. 2,684,484—discloses the use of an elastic band in conjunction with an adjustable strap.

[0011] U.S. Pat. No. 5,099,524—discloses the use of an elastic adjustable strap.

[0012] U.S. Pat. No. 5,875,488—discloses the use of an elastic band.

[0013] U.S. Pat. No. 4,878,274—discloses a securement system having a strap with multiple rings, wherein the strap is looped through the rings and fastened to itself by Velcro™.

[0014] In view of the prior art, it is clear that a need exists for a device for adjusting the diameter of a hat band that is reliable, easy to use, economical and does not cause irritation to the wearer.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0015] The general purpose of the present invention, which will be described subsequently in greater detail, is to provide an adjustable strap for securing an article of clothing, such as a hat, to a body, which has many of the advantages of the devices in the prior art and many novel features that result in a new adjustable strap that is not anticipated, rendered obvious, suggested, or even implied by any of the prior art devices, either alone or in any combination thereof.

[0016] The present invention is an adjustable strap for adjusting the fit of a hat or other article of clothing that includes a link with an opening attached to an article of clothing, a strap having a first end secured to the article of clothing and a second end with means for removable attachment to the first end, where the second end wraps through the opening of the link and removably attaches to the first end. The link may be attached to the article of clothing by a loop of elastic fabric, or may be integral to the clothing article. The means for removable attachment is preferably a hook and loop connection such as Velcro®, and the strap may include printed characters, such as a team name, logo or trademark. The invention also includes a protective flap that covers the first and second ends when they are attached, to provide a barrier between the hook and loop connection, and a wearer's skin.

OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION

[0017] It is an object of the present invention to provide a device for adjusting the fit of clothing articles such as hats, coats trousers or the like that is reliable, easy to use, economical and does not cause irritation to the wearer.

[0018] These and other objects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from a review of the following specification and accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0019] FIG. 1 is rear elevation view of an embodiment of the present invention as applied to a baseball cap.

[0020] FIG. 2 depicts front and rear views of an adjustable strap.

[0021] FIG. 3 is an interior view of an embodiment of the present invention as applied to a baseball cap.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT(S)

[0022] The detailed description set forth below in connection with the appended drawings is intended as a description of presently-preferred embodiments of the invention and is not intended to represent the only forms in which the present invention may be constructed and/or utilized. The description sets forth the functions and the sequence of steps for constructing and operating the invention in connection with the illustrated embodiments. However, it is to be understood that the same or equivalent functions and sequences may be accomplished by different embodiments that are also intended to be encompassed within the spirit and scope of the invention.

[0023] Referring to FIG. 1, baseball cap 11 includes link 13, connector 15, strap 17, and flap 19. Connector 15 is preferably formed from a polymeric material, and is looped around link 13 as shown, and attached to cap 11 through a conventional means such as bonding, stitching or may be an integral portion of cap 11. Connector 15 is preferably formed from an elastomeric material, but may also be formed from any natural or synthetic material that will securely connect to cap 11. Link 13 is depicted in FIG. 1 as being of rectangular shape, however may be circular or oval shaped if desired. Link 13 is preferably formed from a polymeric material, but also may be formed from wood or metal if preferred. Strap 17 is attached to cap 11 on one end as shown, a second end is looped through an opening of link 13 so that the second end fold back around to connect to the first end at cap 11 as shown. First and second ends of straps 17 reside within the flap 19, which is shown schematically here and may be a separate flap capable of rotating about the cap as shown, or may also be an integral part of the cap such that it is immovable with respect to rotation about the band.

[0024] FIG. 2 illustrates strap 17 in greater detail. FIG. 2a illustrates the inner surfaces of strap 17. Strap 17 includes a first end 21, a second face 22, a third face 24 and a second end 25. First end 21 contains second face 22, which includes the loops that will cooperate with the hooks of third face 24 to complete the hook and loop fastener. Second end 25 which contains third face 24 folds around link 13 as shown in FIG. 1 above to enable third face 24 operatively engage with second face 22.

[0025] FIG. 2b illustrates strap 17 from the outer face, with first end 21, first face 23, second end 25, fourth face 27 and characters 29. First face 23 integral with first end 21, attached to cap 11 in the approximate area of flap 19, as shown in FIG. 1 above. First face 23 may be attached to cap 11 by adhesive bonding, glue, stitching, be formed as an integral portion of cap 11. Characters 29 may be silk screened, embroidered, attached by an adhesive or can be written on strap 17 in any manner known to those in the art. The characters may include numerals, letters, trademarks or any logo that a user may want to appear on the back of a piece of apparel, such as a hat.

[0026] Turning to FIG. 3, an interior view of this embodiment of the invention illustrates strap 35 as being sealed on three edges, 35a-c sides rather than as a flap secured on one edge as depicted in FIG. 1 above.

[0027] While the present invention has been described with regards to particular embodiments, it is recognized that additional variations of the present invention may be devised without departing from the inventive concept.





 
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