Title:
Practical souvenir competition hats
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A self-adjustable baseball-style cap and a non-domed hat can fully commemorate a competition or game. It consists of two identical fixed visors or bills positioned opposite to each other, without overlap, that provide shade for both the eyes and the neck of the wearer. It has an adjustable feature that promotes the fitting of a plurality of head sizes through the use of stretchable material in the lateral, not rear, aspects of both the crown and the headband. A harlequin type of color scheme (front versus rear) and a permanent twin logos mounting format depict, simultaneously, two opponents or contenders in a competition that is also memorialized by a third, laterally placed event logo. A fourth event year and location marker is placed on the contra-lateral side. Finally, it features a built in fan reversibility mechanism that involves a simple front to rear rotation of the cap.



Inventors:
Marsh, Lou M. (Del Mar, CA, US)
Stolzenberg, Ruth Anne (Del Mar, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/693412
Publication Date:
04/28/2005
Filing Date:
10/25/2003
Assignee:
MARSH M. L.
STOLZENBERG RUTH A.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A42B1/06; A42B1/22; A42B1/24; (IPC1-7): A42B1/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
QUINN, RICHALE LEE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
M. LOU MARSH (DEL MAR, CA, US)
Claims:
1. A self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap comprising: a crown portion that consists of a multiple of laterally seamed, substantially triangular fabric panels or gores, of which only the two laterally located members are made of a bi-axially stretchable material that facilitates the accommodation of a plurality of head sizes, which formation creates a dome effect having inner, outer and inferior rim surfaces in addition to front, rear and lateral (2) designated areas; said crown portion's outer surface is divided into front half and rear half sections, each of which represents, by coloration of its fabric, one or the other of the two teams or contenders in the subject competition; said crown portion's outer surface provides area for the attaching, painting, embossing, monogramming or otherwise non-detachably affixing of the names/logos or indicia that further define the name, date, location and the rivals or contenders of the competition such that the name/logo of the first contender is affixed to the front section of the crown in its appropriate and respective field of team coloration, the other contender's name/logo is similarly affixed to the rear section of the crown portion in its respective field of team coloration, the name and/or symbol or logo of the competition is affixed to one lateral section of the crown portion and the date, possibly with the location, of the competition is similarly affixed to the opposite lateral section of the crown portion; a headband composed primarily of a non-stretchable fabric, but having laterally incorporated segments of a bi-axially stretchable material that further facilitates the accommodation of a plurality of head sizes, is circumferentially attached to the inner inferior rim surface of the crown portion; two functionally interchangeable, identically shaped and sized visors or bills of substantially rigid material are positioned and attached just beneath the location of the contenders' names/logos and directly opposite to each other at the mid-points of the base of the front and rear sections of the crown portion, each visor or bill having an upper surface and an under surface wherein the fabric color of the upper surface of each visor depicts the same team color scheme as the section of the crown portion to which it is attached while the fabric of the under surface may be of a different, light absorbing or reflecting color, both visors being separated on each side by that area of the inferior rim of the crown portion that is faced, on its inner surface, with the bi-axially stretchable portions of the headband, each visor potentially providing shade for the wearer's eyes or nape while demonstrating support for one contender or the other, depending on the forward facing of the respective visor/logo/color complex.

2. A self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 1. wherein the laterally located gores consist of uni-axially stretchable material.

3. A self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 1. wherein the laterally incorporated segments of the otherwise non-stretchable headband fabric consist of a uni-axially stretchable material.

4. A self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 1. wherein both the lateral gores and the laterally incorporated segments of the otherwise non-stretchable headband fabric consist of uni-axially stretchable material.

5. A non self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap comprising: a crown portion that consists of a multiple of laterally seamed, substantially triangular fabric panels or gores, which formation creates a dome effect having inner, outer and inferior rim surfaces in addition to front, rear and lateral (2) designated areas; said crown portion's outer surface is divided into front half and rear half sections, each of which represents, by coloration of its fabric, one or the other of the two teams or contenders in the subject competition; said crown portion's outer surface provides area for the attaching, painting, embossing, monogramming or otherwise non-detachably affixing of the names/logos or indicia that further define the name, date, location and the rivals or contenders of the competition such that the name/logo of the first contender is affixed to the front section of the crown in its appropriate and respective field of team coloration, the other contender's name/logo is similarly affixed to the rear section of the crown portion in its respective field of team coloration, the symbol, name/logo of the competition is affixed to one lateral section of the crown portion and the date, possibly with the location, of the competition is similarly affixed to the opposite lateral section of the crown portion; a headband composed of a non-stretchable fabric is circumferentially attached to the inner inferior rim surface of the crown portion; two functionally interchangeable, identically shaped and sized visors or bills of substantially rigid material are positioned and attached just beneath the location of the contenders' names/logos and directly opposite to each other at the mid-points of the base of the front and rear sections of the crown portion, each visor or bill having an upper surface and an under surface wherein the fabric color of the upper surface of each visor depicts the same team color scheme as the section of the crown portion to which it is attached while the fabric of the under surface may be of a different, light absorbing or reflecting color, both visors being separated on each side by an area of the inferior rim of the crown portion.

6. A self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 1. and a non-self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 2. wherein the cap colors and the affixed set of names/logos represent a single team or contender in the subject competition.

7. A self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 1. and a non-self-adjusting baseball-style competition cap as claimed in 2. wherein the cap colors and the affixed set of names/logos represent a single team without reference to a specific competition.

8. A self-adjusting competition hat comprising: a non-domed crown portion, consisting of fabric tip and side cover portions, has an inner, outer and lower peripheral surfaces as well as front, rear and lateral (2) area designations; said crown portion's outer surface is divided into front half and rear half sections, each of which represents, by coloration of its fabric, one or the other of the two teams or contenders in the subject competition; said crown portion's outer surface provides area for the attaching, painting, embossing, monogramming or otherwise non-detachably affixing of the names/logos or indicia that further define the name, date, location and the rivals or contenders of the competition such that the name/logo of the first contender is affixed to the front section of the crown in its appropriate and respective field of team coloration, the other contender's name/logo is similarly affixed to the rear section of the crown portion in its respective field of team coloration, the symbol, name/logo of the competition is affixed to one lateral section of the crown portion and the date, possibly with the location, of the competition is similarly affixed to the opposite lateral section of the crown portion; a headband composed primarily of a non-stretchable fabric, but having laterally incorporated segments of a bi-axially stretchable material, is circumferentially attached to the inner lower peripheral surface of the crown portion; a broad brim comprised of substantially oval or circular shaped fabric that is reinforced by stiffeners that are attached by concentric rows of stitching, consisting of an upper and a under surface as well as front, rear and lateral (2) area designations, wherein the fabric of the upper surface of the front section is of the same team coloration as the section of the crown portion to which it is attached and the fabric of the upper surface of the rear section is of the same team coloration as the crown portion to which it is attached while the under surface of the entire broad brim may be of a different and light deflective color.

9. A self-adjusting competition hat as claimed in 6. wherein the laterally incorporated segments of the headband consist of uni-axially stretchable material.

10. A competition hat comprising: a non-domed crown portion, consisting of fabric tip and side cover portions, has an inner, outer and lower peripheral surfaces as well as front, rear and lateral (2) area designations; said crown portion's outer surface is divided into front half and rear half sections, each of which represents, by coloration of its fabric, one or the other of the two teams or contenders in the subject competition; said crown portion's outer surface provides area for the attaching, painting, embossing, monogramming or otherwise non-detachably affixing of the names/logos or indicia that further define the name, date, location and the rivals or contenders of the competition such that the name/logo of the first contender is affixed to the front section of the crown in its appropriate and respective field of team coloration, the other contender's name/logo is similarly affixed to the rear section of the crown portion in its respective field of team coloration, the symbol, name/logo of the competition is affixed to one lateral section of the crown portion and the date, possibly with the location, of the competition is similarly affixed to the opposite lateral section of the crown portion; a headband composed a non-stretchable fabric is circumferentially attached to the inner lower peripheral surface of the crown portion; a broad brim comprised of substantially oval or circular shaped fabric that is reinforced by stiffeners that are attached by concentric rows of stitching, consisting of an upper and a under surface as well as front, rear and lateral (2) area designations, wherein the fabric of the upper surface of the front section is of the same team coloration as the section of the crown portion to which it is attached and the fabric of the upper surface of the rear section is of the same team coloration as the crown portion to which it is attached while the under surface of the entire broad brim may be of a different and light deflective color.

Description:

The invention relates to hats that commemorate a particular sporting event or other competition and designate the rivals or contenders through the use of a unique combination of visors, colors and logos.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

Hats serve many purposes and functions. They may protect the wearer's head, eyes and nape from natural elements, including wind, rain and sun, as well as from trauma of a blunt or sharp nature. One such hat, a baseball-style cap, generally consists of a hemispherical crown or dome portion that fits on the wearer's head plus a single visor or bill that attaches to and projects outwardly from the front region of the crown or dome. The crown is composed of a plurality of substantially triangular fabric or leather sections or panels called gores that are joined laterally by seams. A fabric headband is circumferentially attached along the inner base of the crown to provide structural support while facilitating the engagement of the wearer's head. Occasionally, the headband fabric is selected to provide either absorption of forehead and scalp perspiration or elasticity for adjustability of fit or both.

Such caps are used by athletes in the course of their games and by fans or supporters to demonstrate their team loyalties or affiliations as best reflected in the use of team colors and various indicia, usually located on the front of the crown of the cap just above the insertion of the visor element or on the upper surface of the visor itself. The economic pressure to reduce marketers' inventory volumes has prompted the evolution of caps or hats that may be adjusted to fit a plurality of head sizes.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PRIOR ART

For nearly a century, many have described the use of caps, hats or visors, with or without nape coverings, to protect wearers from the effects of the sun's glare and radiation. Rochet, No. 822,986; Silverstein, No. 1,816,346; Lipkin, No. 4,622,007; Shedd, No. 5,081,717; Shorts, No. 5,161,259; and Oates, No. 5,091,995 taught about caps with detachable nape or neck flaps. Klein, No. 1,648,551; Leibson, No. 1,677,187; and Robinson, No. 5,253,364 introduced caps and sun visors with single visors or bills that were movable from the front to the rear of the cap or sun visor. Though Oates, No. 5,091,995 described a two-brim sporting hat, those brims were made of mesh material to achieve water buoyancy and to minimize air resistance. They overlapped each other and were neither symmetric nor functionally interchangeable.

Recent efforts to achieve cap adjustability have focused on the use of uni-axially or bi-axially expandable or elastic materials: Lipkin, No. 4,662,007; Beckerman, No. 5,615,415; Cho, No. 5,715,540; and Cunliffe, No. 5,966,742 suggested that the rear gores of the crown consist of a uni-axially stretchable material. Beckerman, No. 5,615,415; Cho, No. 5,715,540; and Green, No. 5,632, 046 called for a headband with a uni-axially stretchable component while Cunliffe, No. 5,966,742; and Lee, No. 6,347,410 described a bi-axially stretchable, sweat absorbent headband. In all instances, headband elasticity extended circumferentially, but did not include the area at the front of the crown where the visor is attached.

Cap wearers have customarily identified with a particular competitive event and/or with one sports team or another by the fabric colors and the names and/or logos that are painted, embossed or detachably affixed to the front of the crown or to the upper surface of the visor. To facilitate a wearer's ability to identify with more than one team on more than one occasion, Proctor, No. 5,862,523; and Tapia, Nos. 4,873,726 and 5,070,545 taught about the detachable application of indicia or logos to the front crown of a cap or modular headwear system while Connelly, No. 5,410,761 described the placement of pictorial displays on an insert located in the upper surface of the visor.

None of the prior art provides for a baseball-style cap or hat that concurrently incorporates all of the following: (1) two identical fixed visors or bills, functionally interchangeable, positioned opposite to each other, without overlap, that provide shade for both the eyes and the neck of the wearer; (2) an adjustable feature to allow the fitting of a plurality of head sizes which involves the use of stretchable material in the lateral, not rear or circumferential, aspects of both the crown and the headband, (3) a harlequin or half and half color scheme and a permanent twin logos mounting format that depict, simultaneously, two opponents or contenders in a competition that is also memorialized by (4) a third, laterally placed event logo, (5) a fourth contra-laterally placed event year and location marker and (6) a built in mechanism for reversing fan loyalty or affiliation that involves a simple front to rear rotation of the cap.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a baseball-style competition cap or hat that commemorates a special sporting event, such as the Super Bowl, or other competition by name and/or symbol, date (year) and location. It further identifies the two opponents/contenders in the event or competition by their respective color(s), names and/or logos that mark one half of the crown and the particular visor attached to it. The cap or hat adjusts in size to accommodate a plurality of head sizes. It simultaneously shades the wearer's eyes and neck from the sun. As such, it is both a functional and a decorative souvenir of the competition.

The invention provides a baseball-style cap or hat that consists of a crown portion, a headband and two visors. The crown comprises a multiple of substantially triangular fabric panels or gores that are seamed together along their lateral edges to form a dome to fit over the wearer's head. The laterally located gores consist of a bi-axially stretchable material. The fabric of the front one half of the crown is in the color(s) of one contender while the rear half is in the color(s) of the opponent. A non-stretchable fabric headband, with laterally incorporated segments of a bi-axially stretchable material, is circumferentially attached to the inner lower perimeter surface of the crown. Two functionally interchangeable, identically shaped and sized visors or bills, made of substantially rigid material, are positioned opposite to each other at the front and at the rear base of the crown. Their respective color(s) schemes are the same as those of the respective crown regions to which they are attached. These visors are separated on each side by that portion of the perimeter of the base of the crown that is faced with the stretchable portions of the headband.

On the crown portion immediately above the front visor insertion, the name and/or logo of the team or contender represented by its respective color(s) is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or otherwise non-detachably affixed; the name and/or logo of the opposing team or contender is similarly affixed to the crown portion above the rear visor. On one lateral aspect of the crown portion, the name and/or symbol of the competition, e.g., the Super Bowl, is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or non-detachably affixed. On the opposite lateral aspect of the crown portion, the date (year) and, possibly, the location of the competition are similarly affixed.

In a variation of the invention, the laterally located gores consist of a uni-axially stretchable material.

In another variation of the invention, the laterally incorporated segments of the headband consist of a uni-axially stretchable material.

In still another variation of the invention, both the lateral gores and the laterally incorporated segments of the headband consist of uni-axially stretchable material.

In yet another variation of the invention, the cap colors and the affixed set of name and/or logo represent a single team in the subject competition.

In another discernible variation of the invention, the cap colors and the affixed name and/or logo depict a single team or contender without reference to a particular competitive event.

In another distinctive variation of the invention, a non-adjustable version of the cap, all gore panels and the entire headband are made of non-elastic material.

In a different variation of the invention, the hat consists of a non-domed crown portion, a headband and a broad non-rigid circumferential brim. The crown portion consists of a fabric tip and side cover the interior base of which is attached circumferentially to the fabric headband that laterally incorporates segments of uni-axially or bi-axially stretchable material. The exterior base of the crown portion is attached circumferentially to a broad brim comprised of substantially oval or circular shaped fabric that is reinforced by stiffeners that are attached by concentric rows of stitching. The fabric of the front one half of the non-domed crown and of the broad brim is in the color(s) of one contender while the rear half is in the color(s) of the opponent. On the front crown portion immediately above the attachment of the broad brim, the name and/or logo of the team or contender represented by its respective color(s) is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or otherwise non-detachably affixed; the name and/or logo of the opposing team or contender is similarly affixed to the rear crown portion above the broad brim attachment. On one lateral aspect of the crown portion, the name and/or symbol of the competition, e.g., the Super Bowl, is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or otherwise non-detachably affixed. On the opposite lateral aspect of the crown portion, the date (year) and, possibly, the location of the competition are similarly affixed.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the present invention on a model's head.

FIG. 2 is one side elevation view of the present invention illustrating the logos and color shadings that distinguish the contenders plus the symbol of the subject competition.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the present invention in an inverted position demonstrating the stretchable lateral segment of the headband and the stretchable lateral gores of the crown portion of the adjustable cap.

FIG. 4 is a top view of the present invention illustrating the cap shown in FIG. 2 with the additional display of the year of the subject competition.

FIG. 5a is a front elevation view of the present invention illustrating the logo and non-shaded coloring of one team or contender.

FIG. 5b is a rear elevation view of the present invention illustrating the logo and shaded coloring of the other team or contender.

FIG. 6a is one side elevation view of the hat version of the present invention illustrating the logos and color shadings that distinguish the contenders plus the symbol of the subject competition.

FIG. 6b is a top, angled view of the hat shown in FIG. 6a illustrating the broad circumferential brim.

FIG. 6c is an under view of the hat in FIG. 6a, demonstrating the stretchable lateral segments of the headband.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

FIGS. 1 through 5b of the drawings offer perspective views of an adjustable baseball-style double-billed competition cap 1 according to the first preferred embodiment of the present invention. The cap 1 consists of a crown portion 2 that covers or crowns the top of the wearer's head. This hemispheric or domed crown portion 8 is formed by the lateral seaming, from apex to base, of a plurality of substantially triangular fabric panels or gores 3. The circular opening or base of the crown has both an outer surface 5 and an inner surface 4 of the lower peripheral edge 7 to which an elongated rectangular fabric strip is circumferentially attached to form a headband 21. The fabric material of the headband is symmetrically interrupted in its lateral aspect by the insertion of segments of stretchable material 22 to facilitate the adjustment of the cap 1 to fit a plurality of head sizes. The two lateral gores 11, not the rear gores 13 or the front gores 12, also consist of a stretchable material that further contributes to the adjustability of the cap 1.

The stretchable materials making up the two laterally inserted segments of the headband 22 and the two laterally positioned gores 11 are preferably bi-axially stretchable, that is, simultaneously stretchable in a diagonal as well as a horizontal direction. Bi-axial stretch ability of the material is achieved when the fabric is woven from perpendicular warp and weft yarns consisting of a variety of polyester and rubber blends.

The front 12 and rear 13 gore sections that comprise the front and rear portions of the crown are backed by several layers of material to add support and shape to the front and rear sections of the crown portion 2.

Two functionally interchangeable, identically shaped and sized visors or bills 9, 10, made of substantially rigid material, are attached to the outer surface 5 of the lower peripheral edge of the crown 7 at positions exactly opposite to each other at the front 9 and at the rear 10 of the crown. The visors 9, 10 are separated on each side by that portion of the lower peripheral edge of the crown 7 that is faced with the stretchable portions 22 of the headband.

The fabric of the exterior surface 5 of the front one half section of the crown portion 2 and the upper surface of its respective attached visor is in the color(s) of one contender 14; the fabric of the exterior surface 5 of the rear one half section of the crown portion 2 with its attached visor is in the color(s) of the other contender 15. The color of the fabric covering the under surface of the front visor 19 and the rear visor 20 may have a light absorbing or reflecting quality and, therefore, need not be the same as that of the upper surface.

On the front section of the crown portion 2, immediately above the point of insertion of the front visor 9, the name and/or logo (indicia) 16 of the team or contender represented by its respective color(s) 14 is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or otherwise non-detachably affixed; the name and/or logo (indicia) 17 of the opposing team or contender is similarly affixed to the rear section of the crown portion 2 above the insertion of the rear visor 10.

On one lateral aspect of the crown portion 2, the name and/or symbol 18 of the competition, e.g., the Super Bowl, is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or otherwise non-detachably affixed.

On the other and opposite lateral aspect of the crown portion 2, the date (year) 23 of the competition and, possibly, the location 24 of the competition are similarly affixed.

In a variation of the invention, the laterally located gores 11 consist of uni-axially stretchable material.

In another variation of the invention, the laterally incorporated segments of the headband consist of a uni-axially stretchable material 22.

In still another variation of the invention, both the lateral gores 11 and the laterally incorporated segments of the headband 22 consist of uni-axially stretchable material.

In yet another variation of the invention, the cap colors 14 and the affixed set of name and/or logo 16 represent a single team in the subject competition 18.

In another discernible variation of the invention, the cap colors 14 and the affixed name and/or logo 16 depict a single team or contender without reference to a particular competitive event.

In another distinctive variation of the invention, a non-adjustable version of the cap 1, all gore panels, 11, 12 and 13, and the entire headband 21 are made of non-elastic material.

FIGS. 6a through 6c of the drawings offer perspective views of an adjustable competition hat 25 according to the second preferred embodiment of the present invention. In this variation of the invention, the hat 25 consists of a non-domed crown portion 26, a headband 28 and a broad non-rigid oval or circular circumferential brim 27. The non-domed crown portion 26 is comprised of a fabric tip 34 and side cover 35. The interior base 30 of the crown portion 26 is attached circumferentially to the fabric headband 28 that laterally incorporates segments of bi-axially stretchable material 29. The exterior base 31 of the crown portion 26 is attached circumferentially to a broad brim 27 that is reinforced by stiffeners that are attached by concentric rows of stitching 6. The fabric of the front one half of the non-domed crown portion 26 and of the broad brim 27 is in the color(s) of one contender 32 while the fabric of the rear one half of the crown 26 portion and of the attached broad brim 27 is in the color(s) of the opponent 33.

On the front of the non-domed crown portion 26 immediately above the attachment of the broad circumferential brim 27, the name and/or logo 16 of the team or contender represented by its respective color(s) 32 is attached, painted, embossed, monogrammed or otherwise non-detachably affixed; the name and/or logo 17 of the opposing team or contender is similarly affixed to the non-domed crown portion 26 above the broad brim 27 attachment.

In a variation of the second preferred embodiment of the present invention, an adjustable competition hat 25, the laterally incorporated segments of the headband consist of uni-axially stretchable material 29.

In another variation of the second preferred embodiment of the present invention, a non-adjustable competition hat 25, there is no laterally incorporated segment of stretchable material and the entire headband is made of a non-stretchable material.

Although the preferred embodiments of the invention with the methods of use have been described with considerable specificity, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that modifications, changes and adaptations may be made to the disclosed embodiments without departing from the scope of the invention which should be determined by the appended claims and their legal equivalents.