Title:
Interconnected strings of beads
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Articles fabricated from prefabricated strings of beads. The strings of beads are joined perpendicularly by applying pressure such that the cords cross and remain crossed due to the tension in the cords. The strings of beads are thus assembled into a mesh or fabric, two such fabrics being optionally interleaved to form a denser fabric; the strings are also assembled into items so as to fit a person's body or cover some other article. The strings of beads are also formed into loops, and formed into fringes to further adorn the articles. Many colors and styles of strings of beads are assembled, both singly and in combination, and designs are incorporated into the articles, producing multiple appearances. A great variety of articles are produced, including all manner of clothing, flags, bags, containers, novelties, wraps, etc.



Inventors:
Oliver, David Charles (San Antonio, TX, US)
Application Number:
10/702986
Publication Date:
07/15/2004
Filing Date:
11/06/2003
Assignee:
OLIVER DAVID CHARLES
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
63/38
International Classes:
A41D31/00; A45C13/08; D04D1/04; (IPC1-7): A44C25/00
View Patent Images:
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20010008075Device for regulating the length of the string of a necklaceJuly, 2001Zen
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Primary Examiner:
REESE, DAVID C
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
David C. Oliver (San Antonio, TX, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A bead article comprising: a plurality of prefabricated strings of beads, wherein each said prefabricated string of beads is joined to at least one of the other said prefabricated strings of beads; wherein each join in said prefabricated strings of beads is effected by pressing an adjacent pair of beads on a first prefabricated strings of beads perpendicularly across an adjacent pair of beads on a second prefabricated strings of beads until the first prefabricated strings of beads and the second prefabricated strings of beads snap together; whereby joining said plurality of prefabricated strings of beads forms a useful or decorative structure.

2. The bead article of claim 1, wherein said prefabricated strings of beads are interconnected in a mesh two beads or more apart, whereby said prefabricated strings of beads form an open fabric.

3. The bead article of claim 1, wherein a first prefabricated strings of beads mesh is interwoven with a second prefabricated strings of beads mesh, whereby said prefabricated strings of beads form a dense fabric.

4. The bead article of claim 1, wherein said prefabricated strings of beads are interconnected so as to conform to the shape of a part of a person, whereby said prefabricated strings of beads form a garment.

5. The bead article forming a garment of claim 4, wherein said prefabricated strings of beads are interconnected so as to form a seamless garment.

6. The bead article forming a garment of claim 4, wherein a plurality of said prefabricated strings of beads extend from the body of said garment, whereby said plurality of strings provide straps for said garment.

7. The bead article of claim 4, wherein a plurality of said prefabricated strings of beads extend from the body of said garment, whereby said plurality of strings provide a decorative fringe for said garment.

8. The bead article of claim 4, wherein a plurality of said prefabricated strings of beads reenter the body of said garment in a perpendicular or parallel manner, whereby said plurality of strings provide decorative or functional loops for said garment.

9. The bead article of claim 1, further including additional prefabricated strings of beads are joined onto the article, whereby said additional strings ornament said bead article.

10. A bead garment comprising: a plurality of prefabricated strings of beads, wherein each said prefabricated string of beads is joined to at least one of the other said prefabricated strings of beads; wherein each join in said prefabricated strings of beads is effected by pressing an adjacent pair of beads on the first string perpendicularly across an adjacent pair of beads on the second string until the strings snap together; whereby joining said prefabricated strings of beads forms a decorative article of clothing.

11. The bead garment of claim 10, wherein said prefabricated strings of beads are interconnected in whole or part, in a mesh two beads or more apart, whereby said prefabricated strings of beads render said bead garment semi-transparent.

12. The bead garment of claim 10, wherein a plurality of sets of said prefabricated strings of beads are interconnected in interwoven meshes two beads apart, whereby said prefabricated strings of beads render said bead garment wholly or partially opaque.

13. The bead garment of claim 10, wherein a plurality of said prefabricated strings of beads extend from the body of said bead garment, whereby said plurality of strings provide straps for said bead garment.

14. The bead garment of claim 10, wherein a plurality of said prefabricated strings of beads extend from the body of said bead garment, whereby said plurality of strings provide a decorative fringe for said bead garment.

15. The bead garment of claim 10, further including additional prefabricated strings of beads joined onto said bead garment, whereby said additional prefabricated strings of beads ornament said bead garment.

16. The bead garment of claim 10, wherein a plurality of said prefabricated strings of beads reenter the body of said garment in a perpendicular or parallel manner, whereby said plurality of strings provide decorative or functional loops for said garment.

17. A method for joining a plurality of prefabricated strings of beads comprising the steps of: (a) placing a first prefabricated string of beads perpendicularly across a second prefabricated string of beads, such that the gap between a pair of adjacent beads on the first prefabricated strings of beads is juxtaposed with the gap between a pair of adjacent beads on the second prefabricated strings of beads; (b) applying pressure on the said adjacent pairs of beads until the strings snap together; (c) repeating steps (a) and (b) until a bead article with a desired structure has been formed.

18. The method of claim 17, wherein the said prefabricated sets of beads are joined into an interconnected mesh, with the interconnections two or more beads apart, such that meshes are interwoven so as to form a loosely formed fabric.

19. The method of claim 17, wherein two distinct sets of said prefabricated sets of beads are each alternately joined into an interconnected mesh, with the interconnections two beads apart, such that meshes are interwoven so as to form a tightly formed fabric.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application is entitled to the benefit of Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/424,133 filed Nov. 6, 2002.

FEDERAL RESEARCH STATEMENT

[0002] Not Applicable.

SEQUENCE LISTING

[0003] Not Applicable.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0004] 1. Technical Field

[0005] This invention relates to the fabrication of articles from strings of beads. More particularly, the present invention relates to garments and other articles fabricated by snapping prefabricated strings of decorative beads together perpendicularly.

[0006] 2. Description of Prior Art

[0007] Decorative beads have previously been applied to substrates as taught by Hambright in U.S. Pat. No. 5,352,120, and Kurihara in U.S. Pat. No. 5,481,993, and otherwise embroidered onto fabrics in various traditional manners. Beads have also been assembled into frameworks as taught by Hector in U.S. Pat. No. 6,378,334. Beads have been incorporated into the weave of a fabric as taught by Blatz in U.S. Pat. No. 1,992,856. Each of these techniques produces an effect approximating to a continuous surface of beads, but each requires further materials additional to the beads, or strings of beads, themselves and requires significant labor or equipment to produce.

[0008] Continuous strings of beads have also been assembled into necklaces and the like by fastening them using clasps or buckles as taught by Lineberry in U.S. Pat. No. 4,486,925.

[0009] Continuous strings of often brightly colored beads are manufactured in large quantity to be used as Christmas decorations and the like and are therefore economical to produce. Such beads are permanently fixed to their cord and hence cannot slip off, using economical techniques taught by Bateholts in U.S. Pat. No. 1,958,841. Strings of beads manufactured in this way are referred to as “Manufactured On Thread” or M.O.T.

[0010] Manufacturers make simple loops of such beads to be used as necklaces at Mardi Gras celebrations and the like. Such necklaces may be furthermore ornamented with pendants and may be illuminated as taught by Day, et al in U.S. Pat. No. 6,296,364; such ornamentation is either done during manufacture of the beads or by using fastenings. Each of these techniques can produce only essentially linear arrangements, rather than fabrics or general garment forms.

[0011] Braginsky teaches in U.S. Pat. No. 6,241,572 how to produce a manipulable beaded string toy by interconnecting strings of beads strings so as create geometric figures. Such beads are strung on elastic cord without being fixed to the cord (except for the end beads) and are normally held in contact by the elastic, and are useful as an educational toy.

[0012] Accordingly there is a need in the art to produce two-dimensional surfaces of beads, both flat and shaped, so as to produce ornamental garments, decorations, flags and the like, without the need for clasps, substrates or frameworks. This needs to be achieved without requiring laborious assembly stages or complex machinery, which would preclude producing individually customized items. It is to such that the present invention is directed.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0013] The present invention meets the need in the art by producing a variety of fabrics, garments and other articles from prefabricated strings of decorative beads, such as the so-called M.O.T. (“Manufactured on Thread”) beads, having the following advantages:

[0014] 1. The beads are readily available, in many sizes and appearances, and produce a wide variety of visual effects.

[0015] 2. The strings are joined together perpendicularly, without the need for glue, sewing, frameworks or the like.

[0016] 3. The articles produced may be in any of a wide variety of shapes and sizes.

[0017] 4. The articles may be in the form of a continuous surface, or formed to fit to a body, or hung in loops or fringes, or any combination.

[0018] 5. The articles may be made more opaque by interleaving multiple sets of strings.

[0019] 6. The articles may be patterned by careful choice of variously colored strings of beads.

[0020] 7. The articles may be further decorated by similarly attaching additional strings of beads of appropriate lengths, colors and appearances.

[0021] Further objects, advantages and features of the present invention will become apparent from a reading of the following detailed description of the invention and claims in view of the appended drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0022] FIGS. 1a-c each illustrate a fabric formed by repeatedly joining strings of beads. FIG. 1 is a perspective projection; FIG. 1b is a bird's eye view and FIG. 1c shows a cross section.

[0023] FIGS. 2b, 3b and 4b illustrate how two strings of beads are pushed towards and across each other until they snap into place connected laterally; FIGS. 2c, 3c and 4c show the same in cross section.

[0024] FIGS. 5a-c similarly illustrate a double density fabric formed by interweaving two fabrics.

[0025] FIGS. 6a-c illustrates how a fabric can be augmented by the addition of further sections of strings of beads so as to decorate the fabric.

[0026] FIG. 7 illustrates a flag made from a fabric made from strings of beads.

[0027] FIGS. 8a-b illustrate a bikini made from strings of beads.

LIST OF REFERENCE NUMERALS

[0028] Cords 103, 123, 143 and 163 are in strings of beads in the vertical direction.

[0029] Cords 213, 233, and 253 are a second set in strings of beads in the vertical direction.

[0030] Cords 104, 124, 144 and 164 are in strings of beads in the horizontal direction.

[0031] Cords 214, 234, and 254 are a second set in strings of beads in the horizontal direction.

[0032] Cords 304a/b, 324a/b, 344a/b, 364a/b are in string sections of beads ornamenting the fabric in the horizontal direction.

[0033] Beads 101a, 101b . . . 101h are threaded on cord 104.

[0034] Beads 121a . . . h, 141a . . . h, and 161a . . . h are threaded on cords 124, 144, and 164 respectively.

[0035] Beads 102a, 102b . . . 102h are threaded on cord 103.

[0036] Beads 122a . . . h, 142a . . . h, and 162a . . . h are threaded on cords 123, 143, and 163 respectively.

[0037] Beads 211a . . . h, 231a . . . h, and 251a . . . h are threaded on cords 214, 234, and 254 respectively.

[0038] Beads 212a . . . h, 232a . . . h, and 252a . . . h are threaded on cords 213, 233, and 253 respectively.

[0039] Beads 201b-c and 201f-g are threaded on string sections 304a and 304b respectively.

[0040] Beads 221b-c, 221f-g, 241b-c, 241f-g, 261b-c, and 261f-g, are threaded on string sections 324a/b, 344a/b, and 364a/b respectively.

[0041] 105, 115, and 125 are 45-degree edges in the bikini preferred embodiment.

[0042] 106, 116, 126, and 136 are bikini straps.

[0043] 107, 117, 127, 137, 147, and 157 are fringes on the bikini preferred embodiment.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0044] Referring now in more detail to the drawings in which like parts have like identifiers, FIG. 1a illustrates a perspective view of a set of four prefabricated strings of beads 101a-h, 121a-h, 141a-h, and 161a-h, threaded on cords 104, 124, 144, and 164 respectively. Perpendicular to these is an additional set of four strings of beads 102a-h, 122a-h, 142a and 162a-h, threaded on cords 103, 123, 143, and 163 respectively. These two sets of strings are “snapped” together to form a fabric, as explained later. The strings of beads are preferably 7 to 8 mm. diameter M.O.T. beads, in metallic plastic and all similarly sized; however any size of bead may be used such as the 5 mm. (or even smaller), or 55 mm. (or even larger), which are available commercially; likewise any suitable composition of bead may be used.

[0045] FIG. 1b illustrates the same in bird's eye view and FIG. 1c illustrates a cross section through the fabric at cord 124. In the preferred embodiments of the present invention, these drawings should be considered as showing a small part of a larger fabric, garment or other article.

[0046] The sets of strings are “snapped” together between alternate pairs of beads (121a-b, 121c-d, 121e-f, etc.), giving a lacy result. The cross sectional view in FIG. 1c illustrates how the “snapped” together strings of beads are interconnected, and how alternate beads are slightly turned from the plane, causing the separation between them to be reduced, making the alternate pair arrangement preferable.

[0047] FIGS. 2b-c, 3b-c, and 4b-c illustrate the stages of “snapping” together two perpendicular strings of beads; this operation is repeated in a natural manner to form fabrics, garments and other articles.

[0048] FIG. 2b illustrates, in bird's eye view, sections of two strings of beads laid across each other perpendicularly. The upper string has beads 121a, 121b, 121c, 121d, permanently attached to cord 124 in the usual manner for such strings of beads; the lower string has beads 122a, 122b, 122c, 122d, permanently attached to cord 123 likewise. Note that beads 121b and 121c of the upper string rest upon beads 2b and 2c of the lower string. This may be better seen in FIG. 2c, which is a cross sectional view corresponding to the line 2c-2c in FIG. 2b.

[0049] FIG. 3b illustrates the same bird's eye view of the two strings of beads as FIG. 2b after the upper string has been pushed down by pressing on beads 121b and 121c, forcing cord 124 to be stretched slightly between beads 121b and 121c, and for cord 123 to be similarly stretched between beads 122b and 122c. This may be better seen in the corresponding cross-sectional view in FIG. 3c, where it can be seen that as the beads are separated, cords 123 and 124 touch and start to distort each other.

[0050] FIG. 4b illustrates the same bird's eye view of the two strings of beads as FIGS. 2b and 3b after the upper string has been pushed down further until beads 121b and 121c pass beads 122b and 122c, and each of the pair of beads 121b-c and 122b-c are able to move together, causing cords 124 and 123 to relax respectively. This may be better seen in the cross sectional view in FIG. 4c, where it can be seen that although cords 124 and 123 are relaxed, they are now intertwined, thus holding the two strings of beads together. These strings I refer to as being “snapped” together.

[0051] FIG. 5a illustrates a projection view of a section of double thickness fabric formed by interweaving two single thickness fabrics, which gives an opaque result. Due to the complexity of the drawing, several labels have been omitted for clarity, where their numbering can be inferred from their neighbors. Initially, the string of beads 101a-h on cord 104 is snapped together with perpendicular strings of beads 102a-h, 122a-h, 142a-h, and 162a-h, threaded on cords 103, 123, 143, and 163 respectively, in the manner of assembling the fabric shown in FIGS. 1a-c. Further strings of beads 212a-h, 232a-h, and 252a-h threaded on cords 213, 233, and 253 respectively are laid across cord 104 between beads 101b-c, 101d-e, and 101f-g respectively. The string of beads 211a-h, on cord 214, is placed below cords 103, 123, 143, and 163, between beads 102b-c, 122b-c, 142b-c, and 162b-c respectively, and above cords 213, 233, and 253, between beads 212b-c, 232b-c, and 252b-c respectively. Bead pairs 211b-c and 212b-c are “snapped” together, as are pairs 211d-e and 232b-c, and pairs 211f-g and 252b-c. This process is continued adding the further strings of beads on cords 124, 234, 144, 254, and 164, “snapping” the strings alternately to the strings of beads on cords 103, 123, 143, and 163, and to the strings on the cords 213, 233, and 253.

[0052] FIG. 5b illustrates a bird's eye view of the same double thickness fabric as in FIG. 5a. The corresponding cross sectional view in FIG. 5c illustrates how for each string of beads, exactly half of the intersecting strings are “snapped” to the first string.

[0053] FIGS. 6a-c illustrates the same double thickness fabric as shown in FIGS. 5a-c, with the addition of additional ornamentation, here shown as simple pairs of beads. These decorative beads are added to the fabric as it is assembled, beads 201b-c and 201f-g being “snapped” between beads 212a-b, and beads 252b-c respectively just before assembling the string on cord 104 into the fabric. This process is repeated as needed with further ornamentation beads as desired. In addition to pairs of beads, ornamentation may be in any form including fringes, loops, symbols or lettering.

[0054] FIG. 7 illustrates how a double thickness fabric, constructed as in FIG. 6a is assembled to form a flag, making use of existing multi-color strings of beads to form stripes, and ornamented with pairs of beads to give the impression of stars.

[0055] FIG. 8 illustrates how a garment, in this case a bikini, is constructed, generally in the manner shown in FIGS. 5a-c, modified to form diagonal edges 105, 115 and 125 by changing the direction of each strings by 90 degrees at the line of the diagonal. In addition, long strings of beads 106, 116, 126, and 136 comprises straps for the bikini, and the ends of each string continue for a few beads so as to form fringes 107, 117, 127, 137, 147, and 157.

[0056] These preferred embodiments are illustrative of the unlimited uses for the technique for snapping beads into garments and fabrics. Other such uses include but are not restricted to: bags, purses, fanny packs, cans and bottle holders, decorative packaging, Christmas stockings and other ornaments, wall hangings, banners, vests, skirts, tops, dancewear, headbands and hats, garter belts and other lingerie, bracelets, anklets, necklaces, collars and other jewelry, and fancy dress wear.

[0057] While this invention has been described in detail with particular reference to the preferred embodiments thereof, the principles and modes of operation of the present invention have been described in the foregoing specification. The invention is not to be construed as limited to the particular forms disclosed because these are regarded as illustrative rather than restrictive. In particular, the invention may be applied to strings of beads of any size, appearance or composition, or to strings of beads where the snap-together or other fastenings substitute for the string's cord. Moreover, modifications, variations and changes may be made by those skilled in the art without departure from the spirit and scope of the invention as described by the following claims.





 
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