Title:
Sanitary beverage hat
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A drink container cover formed to resemble a hat in miniature has a sealing ring with an upwardly concave, down facing surface which fits over the lip of a drink container having an upwardly facing annular lip. The sealing ring rests on the annular lip and the container cover extends over the drink container for preventing debris and insects from entering the container. When one is ready to drink from the container, the hat is easily lifted off the rim of the container and replace between sips or drinks.



Inventors:
Redshaw, Leslie (St. Paul, CA)
Application Number:
11/103914
Publication Date:
10/12/2006
Filing Date:
04/11/2005
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
220/376
International Classes:
B65D51/00; B65D43/08
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
HYLTON, ROBIN ANNETTE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
PATENT LAW & VENTURE GROUP, PLLC (Las Vegas, NV, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An apparatus comprising in combination: a drink container cover formed to resemble a hat in miniature, the container cover providing a sealing ring having an upwardly concave, down facing surface; and a drink container providing an upwardly facing annular lip; the sealing ring resting on the annular lip, the container cover extending over the drink container for preventing debris and insects from entering the container.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the drink container is one of: a glass, a mug, a cup, and a bottle.

3. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the container cover resembles one of: a fedora, a beret, a cap, a straw hat, a sun bonnet, a helmet, and a kerchief.

4. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the drink container cover provides a brim extending outwardly from the drink container.

5. A cover apparatus for covering a drink container, the cover apparatus comprising: a drink container cover formed to resemble a hat in miniature, the container cover providing a sealing ring having an upwardly concave, down facing surface with a diameter for sealing an upwardly facing lip of the drink container when the sealing ring is rested on the drink container lip; the cover apparatus adapted in size and shape for extending over the drink container for preventing debris and insects from entering the container.

6. The apparatus of claim 5 wherein the container cover resembles one of: a fedora, a beret, a cap, a straw hat, a sun bonnet, a helmet, and a kerchief.

7. The apparatus of claim 5 wherein the drink container cover provides a brim of a size for extending outwardly from the drink container.

8. An apparatus in combination comprising: a drink container having an up-facing rim; and a container cover providing a central portion of such height as to extend the total height of the drink container when the cover is placed over the drink container, and further providing an annular brim extending radially outwardly from the central portion for shading the container, and a sealing ring configured for resting contact with the rim of the container.

9. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein the cover is made of a porous material to enable vapors to escape from the container when the cover is rested over the container.

10. The apparatus of claim 8 wherein the cover is made of a non-porous material to prevent vapors from escaping from the container when the cover is rested over the container.

Description:

RELATED APPLICATIONS

None

INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

Applicant hereby incorporates herein by reference, the U.S. patents and U.S. patent applications, if any, referred to in the Description of Related Art section of this application.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

This invention relates generally to covers and covering devices and more particularly to a cover for a glass or mug that is able to assure that the lip of the container remains sanitary. Further, the cover of the present invention is made in the form of a hat so that it is possible to know instinctively what the apparatus if used for.

2. Description of Related Art

The following art defines the present state of this field and each disclosure is hereby incorporated herein by reference:

Whitley, U.S. Pat. No. 5,102,002 describes a reusable lid for a beverage cup or can that includes a round flat cover plate which covers the rim of the cup to prevent dirt and insects from entering. The cover plate is held in place by a rubber torsion rod, which attaches perpendicularly to the plate near the edge. The other end of the rod is attached to a suction cup, which holds to the side of the cup. The plate is normally in a position to close the cup; it is shown displaced to one side in the drawing, as when drinking. The plate is pushed to one side with a finger. The rubber rod returns the plate to the closed position upon release. A strap with Velcro® buckle, or an elastic band around the cup, may substitute for the suction cup. The torsion rod may also be permanently attached to the cup.

Fuuler, U.S. Pat. No. 4,867,214 describes an insulator-decorative cover for a wine bottle that includes an inner layer of thin flexible insulation that substantially covers the side surface area of the bottle excepting a neck portion through which the pour spout projects. An outer cover is decoratively designed to simulate; e.g. a tuxedo or other festive clothing associated with wine.

Porter, U.S. Pat. No. 5,115,939 describes An insulated shielded beverage carrier includes an insulated sleeve for housing a beverage container therein, a support housing for receiving the insulated beverage, and an umbrella supported by and anchored to the support housing for shading the insulated beverage from harmful heating effects of the sun.

Gorka et al., U.S. Pat. No. 5,186,196 describes a holder for an individual open top beverage container with an umbrella pivoted to the holder which is biased to a protective position over the top of the container when the holder is supported on a table or the like and is tilted out of the way when the holder is tilted to drinking position.

Drape et al., U.S. Ser. No. 361,018 is an ornamental design for a coaster.

King, U.S. Ser. No. 394,589 is an ornamental design for a beverage shader.

Zigterman, U.S. Ser. No. 403,209 is an ornamental design for a decorative bottle covering.

Miller, U.S. Pat. No. 6,276,551 describes a novel drink cap for preventing foreign substances from entering an opening of a beverage container, the drink cap comprising at least one flexible non-wetting sheet that has an outer surface, an inner surface, an edge portion located at the outermost periphery of the flexible sheet, a skirt portion located adjacent to the edge portion, an elastic periphery region located adjacent to the skirt portion, and a central web portion, whereby the central web portion of the inner surface of the at least one flexible sheet covers the opening of the beverage container. The present invention is also directed to a method for covering an opening of a beverage container using the novel drink cap.

Olsen, U.S. Ser. No. 460,359 is an ornamental design for a beverage can cap.

Abrams, U.S. Ser. No. 475,293 is an ornamental design for a bottle topper.

Our prior art search with abstracts described above teaches various types of drink container and beverage bottle covers and adornments. This shows that there is a strong felt need for such devices and apparatus. However, the prior art does not teach such a cover with a sanitary liner. The present invention fulfills these needs and provides further related advantages as described in the following summary.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention teaches certain benefits in construction and use which give rise to the objectives described below.

The present invention is a drink container cover formed to resemble a hat in miniature. The cover has a sealing ring with an upwardly concave, down facing surface which fits over the drink container's upwardly facing annular lip. The sealing ring rests on the annular lip and the container cover extends over the drink container for preventing debris and insects from entering the container. The cover is able to be lifted of the container when ready to drink from it.

A primary objective of the present invention is to provide an apparatus and method of use of such apparatus that yields advantages not taught by the prior art.

Another objective of the invention is to provide a drink container cover with a sanitary liner capable of maintaining the lip of the container in a sanitary condition.

A further objective of the invention is to provide such a cover that is formed so that it is easy to place the cover onto the container to seal the lip.

A further objective of the invention is to provide such a cover that is formed so that it is difficult to dislodge the cover inadvertantly.

A still further objective of the invention is to provide a cover that is formed to resemble a hat so that a user is able to identify their drink container uniquely.

A still further objective of the invention is to provide a cover formed as a hat so that it is immediately known, by a user, as to what the device is used for.

Other features and advantages of the embodiments of the present invention will become apparent from the following more detailed description, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, which illustrate, by way of example, the principles of at least one of the possible embodiments of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying drawings illustrate at least one of the best mode embodiments of the present invention.: In such drawings:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a sealing ring having an arced cross-section;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the sealing ring shown in association with a hat;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the sealing ring placed within the hat and engaged therewith;

FIGS. 4, 5, and 7-11 are perspective views of various style hats shown as drink container covers; and

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 6-6 in FIG. 5.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The above described drawing figures illustrate the present invention in at least one of its preferred, best mode embodiments, which is further defined in detail in the following description. Those having ordinary skill in the art may be able to make alterations and modifications in the present invention without departing from its spirit and scope. Therefore, it must be understood that the illustrated embodiments have been set forth only for the purposes of example and that they should not be taken as limiting the invention as defined in the following.

In one embodiment of the present invention apparatus a drink container cover 10 is formed to resemble a miniature hat as shown in the figures. The container cover 10 provides a sealing ring 20 having an upwardly concave, down facing surface 22 as best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3. The sealing ring 20 is preferably engaged with the container cover 10 using a bonding agent 40 (FIG. 6) or any other common fastening means. The shape of the sealing ring is such as to prevent the sealing ring from touching a rest surface such as a table top when the cover 10 is placed thereon.

A drink container 30 provides an upwardly facing annular lip 32. The down facing surface 22 of the sealing ring 20 rests on the annular lip 32, and the container cover 10 extends contiguously over the drink container 30 so as to prevent debris and insects from entering the container 30. It should be noted that the relationship between the lip 32 and the surface 22 is one of simple rest, but the shape of the surface 22 makes it difficult for the ring 20 to be easily dislodged from the lip 32. Its shape also maintains a sanitary state on the surface 22 where the surface 22 rests in contact with the lip 32. The container 30 may be made of glass, porcelain, wood, plastic or metal, common materials in wide use for such articles. The cover 10 may be made of any of the foregoing materials or of typical materials used for hats such as cloth, felt, straw and other well known materials.

Preferably, the drink container 30 is one of a drinking glass 31 as used for iced tea, water, and fruit juices, for instance, FIG. 10, a mug 33 as might be used for tea, coffee or hot chocolate, FIG. 7, a cup, such as a teacup (not shown), and a bottle 35 as used for beer, soft drinks and other beverages, FIG. 11. The container 30 may also be a wine glass 37, as shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, or any other article that is used for drinking a liquid and that has a uniform annular upward facing lip 32.

Preferably, the container cover 10 resembles a fedora, a beret, a cap, a straw hat, a bowler hat, a sun bonnet, a helmet, a kerchief, or any other form of headwear or head-gear, but is preferably an article that has a center portion 11 that extends upwardly from the container, and an annular rim 15 that extends outwardly from the center portion 11. This brim 15 is able to shade the container 30 so as to prevent the container 30 from being heated by sunlight and to prevent debris from falling onto the outer surface of the container 30. The center portion 11 may be of a porous material such as a loose weave material so as to allow the aroma of the beverage in the container 30 to fill the room, such as would be desirable when the beverage is an aromatic coffee. The center portion 11 may also be of an impermeable material when it is desired to prevent the beverage from cooling off by preventing its vapors from escaping.

In a further embodiment of the present invention the combination of the cover apparatus 10 the drink container 30 form a novel pairing of articles that serve each other; the hat 10 providing the above described utility to the container 30, while the container 30 provides its own utility of containing a beverage, and of providing the lip 32 for resting the surface 22 upon so as to maintain the surface in a sanitary condition. The cover apparatus 10 also serves the purpose of identifying each container 30 uniquely.

The enablements described in detail above are considered novel over the prior art of record and are considered critical to the operation of at least one aspect of one best mode embodiment of the instant invention and to the achievement of the above described objectives. The words used in this specification to describe the instant embodiments are to be understood not only in the sense of their commonly defined meanings, but to include by special definition in this specification: structure, material or acts beyond the scope of the commonly defined meanings. Thus if an element can be understood in the context of this specification as including more than one meaning, then its use must be understood as being generic to all possible meanings supported by the specification and by the word or words describing the element.

The definitions of the words or elements of the embodiments of the herein described invention and its related embodiments not described are, therefore, defined in this specification to include not only the combination of elements which are literally set forth, but all equivalent structure, material or acts for performing substantially the same function in substantially the same way to obtain substantially the same result. In this sense it is therefore contemplated that an equivalent substitution of two or more elements may be made for any one of the elements in the invention and its various embodiments or that a single element may be substituted for two or more elements in a claim.

Changes from the claimed subject matter as viewed by a person with ordinary skill in the art, now known or later devised, are expressly contemplated as being equivalents within the scope of the invention and its various embodiments. Therefore, obvious substitutions now or later known to one with ordinary skill in the art are defined to be within the scope of the defined elements. The invention and its various embodiments are thus to be understood to include what is specifically illustrated and described above, what is conceptually equivalent, what can be obviously substituted, and also what essentially incorporates the essential idea of the invention.

While the invention has been described with reference to at least one preferred embodiment, it is to be clearly understood by those skilled in the art that the invention is not limited thereto. Rather, the scope of the invention is to be interpreted only in conjunction with the appended claims and it is made clear, here, that the inventor(s) believe that the claimed subject matter is the invention.