Title:
Multi-purpose furniture article
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An article of furniture including a frame, a cushion member, a cover member, and at least one carrying strap. The frame includes first and second opposing end members and a plurality of cross-supports coupled between the end members. Each end member defines a triangle shape having an open center. The frame defines at least three side support surfaces between the end members and the end members define opposing end support surfaces. The frame member also defines a cavity that is accessible through the open center of each end member. The cushion member is attached at one end thereof to the frame and is configured to wrap around the side support surfaces of the frame. The cover member is coupled to the frame to cover the open center of one of the end members. The at least one carrying strap is coupled to the frame and is configured for moving the article when the cushion member is wrapped around the frame.



Inventors:
Karen, Berry-cayre (Tucson, AZ, US)
Application Number:
11/156779
Publication Date:
12/21/2006
Filing Date:
06/20/2005
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
5/420
International Classes:
A47G9/06
View Patent Images:
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20100005594CUSHIONING STRUCTURES FOR BODY PARTSJanuary, 2010Rancourt et al.
20090276960Adjustable Pillow DeviceNovember, 2009Chou
20020092098Leg and knee support devices for squatting and kneelingJuly, 2002Michalow
20080289104Bed sheet attachment system and methodsNovember, 2008Rowson et al.
20050166330Particulate filler mattressAugust, 2005Williams
20090249543Side Rail Pad/Panel Method for Patient Support ApparatusOctober, 2009Vrzalik et al.
20070191706PATIENT TABLE SYSTEM AND APPARATUSAugust, 2007Calderon et al.
20040060113Restraint for bed coversApril, 2004Lantagne



Primary Examiner:
CONLEY, FREDRICK C
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KAREN BERRY-CAYRE (TUCSON, AZ, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. An article of furniture, comprising: a frame including first and second opposing end members and a plurality of cross-supports coupled between the end members, each end member defining a triangle shape having an open center, the frame defining at least three side support surfaces that extend between the end members, the end members defining opposing end support surfaces, and the frame member defining a cavity that is accessible through the open center of each end member; a cushion member attached at one end thereof to the frame and configured to wrap around the side support surfaces of the frame; a cover member coupled to the frame to cover the open center of one of the end members; and at least one carrying strap coupled to the frame, the carrying strap being configured for moving the article when the cushion member is wrapped around the frame.

2. The article of claim 1, wherein the end members in a first article orientation are arranged perpendicular to a horizontal plane, and in a second article orientation the end members are arranged parallel to the horizontal plane with one of the end members supported on a ground surface.

3. The article of claim 2, wherein the cushion member in the first article orientation is configured for at least partial unwrapping from the frame, the unwrapped portion providing a seating surface for a user and the wrapped portion providing a back rest for the user.

4. The article of claim 2, wherein the cushion in the first article orientation is configured for complete unwrapping from the frame, the unwrapped portion providing a bed surface for a user lying in a generally horizontally extended orientation.

5. The article of claim 2, further comprising a table top defining a generally planar primary surface, wherein when the article is in the second article orientation the table top is supported on a end member that is positioned on an upward facing side of the article.

6. The article of claim 1, further comprising first and second carrying straps, opposing end of the first straps being secured to one of the end member and opposing ends of the second strap being secured to the other of the end members, wherein the carrying straps are configured for use against a user's shoulders with the wrapped cushion member positioned between the frame and the user's back.

7. The article of claim 1, wherein a first end of the strap is coupled to an end member at one intersection the legs and a second end of the strap is coupled to the end member at a different intersection of the legs.

8. The article of claim 1, wherein the cushion member includes a plurality of sections, the sections being defined along a length of the cushion member.

9. The article of claim 1, wherein cushion member includes at least two sections arranged and configured to cover each side support surface of the frame.

10. The article of claim 9, wherein at least one of the sections is detachable from the cushion member.

11. The article of claim 1, comprising first and second carrying straps, wherein opposing ends of one of the straps are attached to the first side of the frame and opposing ends of the other are is attached to the second side of the frame.

12. The article of claim 1, wherein the at least one cover member is configured as a table top and includes a generally planar primary surface and comprises a rigid or semi-rigid material.

13. The article of claim 1, wherein the frame includes attachment members exposed on an outward facing surface at each of the three corners of each of the sub-frame members.

14. The article of claim 1, wherein the cover member comprises a fabric material.

15. The article of claim 1, wherein the frame includes a shelf member extending parallel to the cross-support between two of the support surfaces.

16. The article of claim 1, wherein the frame comprises material selected from a group consisting of fibrous wood material, polymer based material, and metal material.

17. A method of assembling a furniture member, the furniture member including a frame, a cushion member, at least one cover, and at least one carrying strap, the frame including opposing generally triangular shaped end members and a plurality of cross-supports coupling the end members together, the end members including open center portions and the frame defining a cavity therein, the method comprising the steps of: coupling the end members together with the cross-supports; securing one end of the cushion member to the frame; wrapping the cushion member around the frame wherein the open center portions are exposed to provide access to the cavity; securing the at least one cover to one of the end members to at least partially cover the open center portion; and securing the at least one carrying strap to the frame.

18. The method of claim 17, wherein the furniture member is moveable using the at least one carrying strap.

19. An article of furniture, comprising: a frame including first and second opposing end members and a plurality of cross-supports coupled between the end members, each end member including at least three legs coupled together to define a triangle shape having an open center, the cross-supports defining three side support surfaces that extend between the end members, the end members defining opposing end support surfaces, and the frame member defining a cavity that is accessible through the open center of each end member; a cushion member attached at one end thereof to the frame and configured to wrap around the side support surfaces of the frame; and at least one detachable accessory coupled to the frame, the detachable accessory selected from the group consisting of a cover member configured to cover the open center of one of the end members, a carrying strap, and a table top supported on one of the end support surfaces when the frame is supported on the other end support surface.

20. The article of claim 19, wherein the carrying strap comprises a pair of shoulder straps, each shoulder strap having opposing ends that are coupled to an opposing end member, and the cover member includes a pair of cover members, each cover member being coupled to a separate end member.

21. An article of furniture, comprising: a frame having a triangular cross-section, opposing first and second end support surfaces, and at least three side support surfaces that extend between the opposing end surfaces, the frame defining a cavity that is accessible through an opening defined in at least one of the end support surfaces and the at least three side support surfaces; a cushion member attached at one end thereof to the frame and configured to wrap around the side support surfaces of the frame; and a cover member coupled to the frame, the cover member being configured and arranged to removably cover an opening into the cavity.

22. The article of claim 21, further comprising at least one carrying strap coupled to the frame, the carrying strap being configured for moving the article when the cushion member is wrapped around the frame.

23. The article of claim 21, further comprising a table top defining a generally planar primary surface, wherein the table top is supported on an end support surface.

24. The article of claim 21, further comprising a movable member positioned within the frame, the movable member defining a storage space, wherein the movable member is rotatable relative to the frame about an axis of rotation of the frame.

25. The article of claim 24, wherein the movable member includes a cylindrical shape having at least one open end.

26. The article of claim 24, further comprising a shelf member mounted within the movable member, wherein the shelf and movable member are configured to maintain a horizontal orientation when the frame rotates about an axis of rotation of the frame.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

The present disclosure relates to furniture articles, and more specifically relates to multi-purpose furniture articles.

BACKGROUND

There are many different styles of furniture that convert between a chair structure and a bed structure. A futon is an example style of convertible furniture. Futons typically include a rigid frame coupled together with a plurality of hinged connections. The futon frame is adjustable between an upright position in the form of a chair with a backrest to a generally horizontal position in the form of a bed. Futons, like most other convertible furniture, are large and bulky. Futons also require significant space and are difficult to move/transport. A convertible furniture article that addresses these and other disadvantages would be an advance in the art.

SUMMARY

The present disclosure relates to furniture articles, and more specifically relates to furniture articles that convert into different forms for different uses. An example furniture article according to principles of the present disclosure includes a frame member having a triangular cross-section and at least one open end. An elongate cushion member can be wrapped or unwrapped from the frame to alter an amount of exposed cushion for sitting or lying or for resting against the frame member. The furniture article can include attachments that provide additional functionality. For example, a cover member may be secured to the frame to removably cover the open end of the frame to conceal items stored in an inner cavity defined by the frame. Another example attachment is a carrying strap such as a shoulder strap that is attached to the frame and used to carry the furniture article. The furniture article may also be turned on its end and used to support a table top on an upward facing end of the frame.

Another aspect of the invention relates to an article of furniture that includes a frame, a cushion member, a cover member, and at least one carrying strap. The frame includes first and second opposing end members and a plurality of cross- supports coupled between the end members. Each end member defines a generally triangular shape having an open center. The cross-supports define three side support surfaces that extend between the end members. The end members define opposing end support surfaces. The frame member defines a cavity that is accessible through the open center of each end member. The cushion member is attached at one end thereof to the frame and is configured to wrap around the side support surfaces of the frame. The cover member is coupled to the frame to cover the open center of one of the end members. The at least one carrying strap is coupled to the frame and is configured for moving the article when the cushion member is wrapped around the frame.

A further aspect of the invention relates to a method of assembling a furniture member. The furniture member includes a frame, a cushion member, at least one cover, and at least one carrying strap. The frame includes opposing generally triangular shaped end members and a plurality of cross-supports coupling the end members together. The end members include open center portions, wherein the frame defines a cavity that is accessible through the open center portions. The method includes the steps of coupling the end members together with the cross-supports, securing one end of the cushion member to the frame, and wrapping the cushion member around the frame wherein the open center portions are exposed to provide access to the cavity. The method further includes securing the at least one cover to one of the end members to at least partially cover the open center portion, and securing the at least one carrying strap to the frame for lifting or moving of the furniture article.

A still further aspect of the invention relates to an article of furniture that includes a frame, a cushion member, and at least one detachable accessory coupled to the frame. The frame includes first and second opposing end members and a plurality of cross-supports coupled between the end members. Each end member includes at least three legs coupled together to define a triangle shape having an open center. The cross-supports define at least three side support surfaces that extend between the end members. The end members define opposing end support surfaces, wherein the frame member defines a cavity that is accessible through the open center of at least one of the end members. The cushion member is attached at one end thereof to the frame and is configured to wrap around the side support surfaces of the frame. The at least one detachable accessory is selected from the group consisting of a cover member configured to cover the open center of one of the end members, a carrying strap, and a table top supported on one of the end support surfaces when the frame is supported on the other end support surface.

Other methods of using and adjusting of the furniture article may also be possible according to the inventive principles disclosed herein.

The above summary of the present invention is not intended to describe each disclosed embodiment or every implementation of the present invention. The Figures and the detailed description that follow more particularly exemplify certain embodiments of the invention. While certain embodiments will be illustrated and describe embodiments of the invention, the invention is not limited to use in such embodiments.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION

The invention may be more completely understood in consideration of the following detailed description of various embodiments of the invention in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an example convertible furniture article;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the article shown in FIG. 1 with a cushion partially mounted on a frame;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the article shown in FIG. 1 with a cushion completely mounted on a frame;

FIG. 4 is perspective view of the frame shown in FIG. 1 oriented upright on an end of the frame and a tabletop supported on an opposing end of the frame;

FIG. 4A is a bottom perspective view of another example tabletop;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a frame of another example convertible furniture article that includes carrying straps;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a frame of another example convertible furniture article that includes end cover members and support webbing;

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of a frame of another example convertible furniture article that includes an interior mounted shelf;

FIG. 7A is a perspective view of the frame of FIG. 7 in an upright position having a different interior mounted shelf positioned therein;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of another example convertible furniture article having a cushion with multiple separable sections;

FIG. 9 is a perspective view of a double wide convertible furniture article;

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a frame of another example convertible furniture article that includes solid end and side support surfaces; and

FIG. 11 is a perspective view of a frame of another example convertible furniture article that includes a rotatable cylinder positioned within the frame.

While the invention is amenable to various modifications and alternate forms, specifics thereof have been shown by way of example and the drawings, and will be described in detail. It should be understood, however, that the intention is not to limit the invention to the particular embodiments described. On the contrary, the intention is to cover all modifications, equivalents, and alternatives falling within the spirit and scope of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The present disclosure relates to furniture articles that are adjustable into different shapes and sizes for different uses. An example furniture article includes a frame member, a cushion member, and at least one attachment that provides additional functionality. The frame member has a generally triangular cross-section with opposing end support surfaces and at least three side support surfaces defined between the end support surfaces. The cushion member is configured to wrap around the side support surfaces. The frame defines a cavity that is accessible through an opening in at least one of the end support surfaces and the side support surfaces. The cushion member may help further define the cavity by enclosing portions of the cavity.

An example attachment for the furniture article is a cover member that removably covers the opening into the cavity through one of the end support surfaces or the side support surfaces. Another example attachment is a carrying strap such as a shoulder strap that is attached to the frame, wherein the furniture article can be carried, for example, on a person's back side using the shoulder strap. A still further example attachment is a tabletop that is supported by the frame when the frame is turned so that the frame is supported by one of the end support surfaces. The cushion member may be wrapped around the frame to improve aesthetics and the tabletop can serve as a serving area or work surface that is spaced apart from the ground by the frame member.

By wrapping or unwrapping the cushion member from the frame member, the amount of cushion member exposed on the flooring on which the furniture article rests can vary according to a user's preference. For example, if a user would like to use the cushion member as a bed that extends substantially horizontally, the cushion member can be completely or substantially unwrapped from the frame. If the user would like only a short seating surface and a backrest, a small part of the cushion member can be unwrapped from the frame and used for sitting upon while the covered portion of the frame can be used as the backrest. If the user would prefer to store the furniture article or use the furniture article and frame as a seating surface to sit on top of, the cover member may be wrapped completely around the frame. It may be possible to double wrap portions of the cushion member over itself around the frame to provide additional cushioning for sitting or carrying, or to maximize size reduction for the furniture article.

The cushion member may be unwrapped from the frame member and rolled upon itself into a size that can be inserted into the cavity defined by the frame. This option provides even further minimizing of the overall size of the furniture article for the purpose of, for example, storage and transport of the furniture article.

The cover member attachment may be especially useful for concealing items stored within the furniture article. The cover member may have many different sizes and shapes that provide covering of, for example, openings into the frame cavity, portions of the frame itself, and portions of the cushion member. In this way, the internal cavity defined by the frame member can also be used for concealing stored articles. In some embodiments, multiple cover members may be used to cover or conceal various portions of the frame, openings defined by the frame, or portions of the cavity defined by the frame.

Preferably, the furniture article is made from relatively lightweight materials so that the article is easier to transport. The combination of lightweight materials and a compact size when the cushion member is completely wrapped around the frame provides improved ease in transporting and carrying the furniture article. The furniture article may include the strap attachments noted above for the purpose of transporting the furniture article between, for example, a user's residence (e.g., inside a user's home or on a patio, deck or pool at the residence) and a park, beach, pool, campsite, etc.

The frame member of the furniture article preferably includes sufficient structural rigidity and strength to support a user sitting on the furniture article when the furniture article is resting on one of the side support surfaces, or to support the tabletop accessory noted above when the frame is turned onto one of its ends and supported on one of the end support surfaces. The height of the tabletop from the ground is determined by the frame width between the end support surfaces (e.g., single, twin, or queen sized width).

While many of the example furniture articles described below include features and comprise materials that enhance portability of the furniture article, these are examples only. Other features and materials may be used within the scope of the present disclosure that may be more useful for stationary and less mobile furniture articles.

Referring now to FIGS. 1-3, an example furniture article 10 is shown and described. Article 10 includes a frame 12 and a cushion 14. The cushion 14 has a length L and a width W1 and the frame 12 has a width W2 that substantially matches the width W1 of the cushion 14. Providing substantially equal widths W1 and W2 permits the frame 12 to overlap with outer edges of the cushion 14 to provide support for the cushion 14. In some embodiments, the width W1 may be less than the width W2 so that more of the frame 12 is exposed. In some embodiments, portions of the frame 12 may include a recess wherein the cushion 12 can reside to provide, for example, a flush mounting of an exposed top surface of the cushion 14 with the frame 12. In other embodiments, the W1 may be greater than the width W2 so that the cushion 14 overlaps and covers more of the frame 12.

The frame 12 includes first and second end members 20, 22, and first, second and third cross supports 24, 26, 28. Each of the end members 20, 22 includes first, second and third legs 30, 32, 34. The end members 20, 22 define end support surfaces 21, 23 on opposing ends of the frame 12, and the cross supports 24, 26, 28 define side support surfaces 25, 27, 29 that extend parallel to each other between the end members 20, 22. The side support surfaces 25, 27, 29 may be further defined by portions of the end members 20, 22 that face in a direction perpendicular to the end support surfaces 21, 23.

The frame 12 may include a plurality of mounting members 26 exposed on either the end members 20, 22 or on the cross supports 24, 26, 28. The mounting members 36 may be configured for attachment of various attachment members to the frame 12, such as attachment of the cushion 14 to the frame 12. The mounting members 36 may be in the form of, for example, pegs, screws, hooks, buckles or fastening materials such as Velcro or fabric ties, or an aperture through which a fastener, tie, or other structure can pass through for attachment to the frame 12.

While the illustrated frame 12 comprises a triangle-shaped frame, other frame cross-sections may also be useful. A triangle cross-section provides the desired support, strength, and angled backrest surfaces for many applications. A triangle cross- section can be altered slightly to provide different support surface angles by adjusting the length of one or more of the three legs of the triangle portion, thereby providing at least two different back rest angles. Frame cross-sections other than triangles may be used in other designs wherein specific functions (e.g., backrest angles, structural strength, storage space, etc.) are desired.

The end members 20, 22 may be single piece, integral members, or may include a plurality of pieces that are assembled together. The legs 30, 32, 34 are coupled together at corner junctions that define a curved shape. This curved shape may provide easier wrapping of the cushion member 14 around the frame 12. The curved shape may also improve comfort when the frame 12, covered by the cushion 14, is used as a seating surface. The cross supports 24, 26, 28 extend between the end members 20, 22 in this embodiment. In other embodiments, the cross supports may have a greater width such that portions of the cross member extend to the end support surfaces 21, 23 or even beyond the end support surfaces. In further embodiments, the cross supports may be integrally formed with the end members such that the frame is formed as a single unitary piece. In still further embodiments, individual legs (e.g., leg 30) on each of the end members 20, 22 may be separately attached to or integrally formed with at least one of the cross supports 24, 26, 28 such that the frame 12 is provided with at least three separate primary pieces that when secured together provide the elongate frame member 12 having a triangular cross-section as shown in FIGS. 1-3.

The end members 20, 22 may be coupled to the cross supports 24, 26, 28 with any desired attachment means such as, for example, bolts and other types of fasteners, adhesives, rope or other types of lashing material (e.g., leather, wicker, etc.), welding, etc. In some embodiments, the end members 20, 22 may be coupled to the cross supports 24, 26, 28 with a quick release mechanism that provides relative ease in breaking down the frame into smaller subcomponents. Breaking down the frame may be useful for repair or replacement of portions of the frame, or for storage of the frame 12.

The frame 12 may include different cross support designs that provide advantages for some furniture article configurations. For example, the cross supports may cross diagonally between the end members to form a crisscross pattern. The cross supports may have different cross sectional shapes (e.g., circular or rectangular) that provide different amounts of contact surface area for the cushion 14. These and other considerations for the cross supports are possible in different frame designs.

Various portions of the frame may define openings through which the internal cavity of the frame can be accessed. Any of these openings may be used to access the cavity. For example, FIGS. 1-4 illustrate a frame 12 that defines openings into the cavity of the frame through the ends 20, 22 and through the side support surfaces 25, 27, 29. FIG. 10 illustrates a frame 512 that defines an opening 521 in a side support surface 525 between ends 520, 522. The opening 521 is covered by a door 560, wherein the door 560 controls access into the frame internal cavity. The door 560 may be secured to the frame 512 with hinges 566 and a latch mechanism 564. In other embodiments, a cover member may be used to cover some or all openings into the frame separate from or in addition to the covering function of the cushion member when wrapped around the frame.

The frame 12 may comprise many different types of material that provide different advantages for the furniture article 10. Relatively lightweight materials such as, for example, bamboo, rattan, polymer based material (e.g., plastic), aluminum, composites, and the like, may provide improved maneuvering and portability of the furniture article. The use of heavier materials such as hardwood, metals materials such as stainless steel and hammered copper, and some types of polymer based materials may provide maximum stability and durability but less portability of the furniture article. The use of different frame material can also significantly influence the style of the furniture article. For example, some types of material may be perceived as being more modern, traditional, casual, or rustic style.

The cushion 14 includes a plurality of sections 40 along its length. Each section 40 preferably has a width W1 and is coupled to the adjacent section via a continuous piece of fabric that extends along a bottom surface 42. The top surface 44 is exposed for engagement by the user whereas the bottom surface 42 is intended to engage the supporting ground surface or the side support surfaces of the frame 12. In some embodiments, the top and bottom surfaces 42, 44 may have the same configuration and features (e.g., flat or including section breaks for each section), or may have a different configuration and features (e.g., different material patterns, material texture).

The cushion 14 includes first and second ends 46, 48 and a plurality of ties 49 attached to each end 46, 48. The ties 49 can be used to secure the cushion member 14 to the frame 12 for positive attachment thereto. The mounting members 36 may be used to help retain the ties 49 in a certain location on the frame 12. The ties 49 may be coupled directly to the mounting members 36 or directly to the frame ends 20, 22 or cross-supports 24, 26, 28. In some embodiments, the ties 49 may be permanently secured to the frame 12 and the cushion 14 includes rings or other attachment structure at various locations along the length and across a width of the cushion 14 to which the ties can be removably secured.

The cushion may have different numbers of sections 40 along its length L in different embodiments. The cushion may also have different section sizes for each side support surface of the frame. Varying the number of sections for a given side support surface may provide different types of padding and wrapping for different uses of the furniture article Also, the sections 40 may be provided as separate segments that are detachable or added on to the cushion to adjust the overall length of the cushion 14. The cushion 14 may include a single section defined across the width W1 and along its length L rather than having a plurality of sections.

The cushion 14 may comprise any desired material for the cushion filler and the cover that retains the filler. For example, the filler may be a synthetic material such as open or close cell foam, or a natural material such as down or cotton. The cover material may include properties such as being waterproof and high durability, which are especially useful for outdoor applications (e.g., the pool, camping, or the beach), or other properties that are better suited for interior applications. The style and patterns associated with the cushion can be matched with, for example, the interior or exterior d├ęcor of a user's residence.

FIG. 1 illustrates the cushion 14 completely unwrapped from the frame 12. In this bed orientation, the cushion may be best suited for a user-sleeping surface. FIG. 2 illustrates the cushion 14 partially wrapped around the frame 12 and supported on support surface 27 (see FIG. 1 for support surface 27). In this chair arrangement, the wrapped portion of the cushion 14 provides a backrest for a user while the unwrapped portion provides a seating surface for the user. In other arrangements, the cushion 14 can be wrapped around two or three of the side support surfaces 25, 27, 29 of the frame 12 while still providing at least one section 40 along a supporting ground surface upon which the user can sit.

FIG. 3 illustrates the cushion 14 completely wrapped around the frame 12 and supported against the side support surfaces 25, 27, 29. In this orientation, the furniture article 10 can be transported easily because of the compact arrangement of the cushion around the frame. With the cushion 14 covering portions of the frame 12, the furniture article 10 (e.g., frame 12 covered by cushion 14) may also be used as a seat for sitting on top of, for example, in a straddle mount position. In the orientation shown in FIG. 3, the interior of the furniture article, which is accessible through the open ends defined by the end members 20, 22, may be used as a storage space that is substantially concealed from view by the cushion 14. In this arrangement, the furniture article 10 is also arranged for compact storage.

Referring now to FIG. 4, the frame 12 is shown reoriented into a vertical orientation resting upon end member 22 with the opposing end member 20 supporting a tabletop 50. The tabletop 50 defines an exposed primary surface 51. The tabletop 50 may have any shape or size desired. In the illustrated embodiment, the tabletop is triangle shaped and has a circumference greater than a circumference of the end members 20, 22. In other embodiments, the tabletop may have, for example, a circular shape different from the cross-sectional shape of the frame 12 with a circumference equal to or less than the circumference end members 20, 22.

The tabletop 50 may include attachment devices to provide a positive attachment between the frame 12 and the tabletop 50. For example, a bottom side of the tabletop 57 shown in FIG. 4A may include a rim 53 that is shaped and sized to fit within the opening defined by end members 20, 22. The rim 53 helps to retain the tabletop 50 on the frame 12. In other embodiments, other attachment features such as latches, hooks, brackets, etc. may be used to mate with or otherwise engage the mounting members 36 extending from the end member 20 or other portions of the frame 12. The tabletop 50 may also include features such as the hinges 55 that permit adjustment of the tabletop 50 into different sizes. In some embodiments, the tabletop can be adjusted in size for use with different frame sizes. In other embodiments, the tabletop can be sized or adjustable in size to fit into the internal cavity of the frame for storage of the tabletop.

The cushion 14 is not shown wrapped around the frame 12 in FIG. 4, but may be wrapped around the frame 12 for aesthetic and storage purposes. In some embodiments, the frame member 12 may have an ornate or otherwise decorative, aesthetically pleasing structure that can be used without the cushion 14 wrapped around the side surfaces 25, 27, 29 or fit within the cavity of the frame 12.

Referring now to FIG. 5, another example frame 112 is shown and described. Frame member 112 includes first and second end members 120, 122, and first, second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth cross supports 124-129. A pair of shoulder straps 52, 54 are coupled to mounting members 36 on respective first and second end members 120, 122. The shoulder straps 52, 54 may include any desired attachment structure or device (e.g., clips, buckles, etc.) for coupling the shoulder straps to the frame 112. The straps 52, 54 may include additional padding for improved comfort in carrying the furniture article.

In some configurations, the shoulder straps 52, 54 may be coupled between the first and second end members 120, 122 rather than having separate shoulder straps 52, 54 designated for each separate end member. This attachment arrangement would reorient the frame 112 in a vertical orientation when carried by the straps 52, 54 with one of the end members 120, 122 facing upward while the other of the end members 120, 122 facing downward. FIG. 5 also illustrates the end members 120, 122 having a more clearly defined triangular shape with more pointed corners than the embodiment shown with reference to FIGS. 1-4. This different triangular design for the end members 120, 122 merely illustrates that different end member configurations are possible and may provide different advantages.

The additional cross supports 125, 127, 129 shown in FIG. 5 can provide additional support for a cushion member (not shown) and rigidity of the frame 112. Still further cross supports (not shown) may be used in other embodiments.

Referring now to FIG. 6, the frame 12 is shown further including a cover member 56 and cushion supports 57. The covers 56 are coupled to each of the end members 20, 22 to at least partially cover the opening into the internal cavity defined by the frame 12, which opening is accessible through the opening defined by each of the end members 20, 22. The covers 56 may be secured to the frame 12 with any desired attachment structure or device such as ties, buckles, straps, hooks, etc. The frame 12 may include additional mounting members 36 to help couple the covers 56 to the frame 12.

The covers 56 are preferably detachable from the frame to provide access into the internal cavity defined by the frame 12. In some embodiments, one or more of the covers may be permanently attached to the frame. Some cover member configurations may provide, for example, a complete seal over the opening defined by the end member to which it is attached. In some embodiments, the covers may comprise a fabric material or any other flexible, collapsible material. In other embodiments, the covers may comprise a relatively rigid, lightweight material such as plastic or other polymer based materials. The covers may be modified in some embodiments to cover other portions of the frame 12 such as the side supports 24, 26, 28. In some embodiments, one or more of the covers may be used to cover or otherwise encapsulate all or most portions of the frame 12 separate from the covering function of a cushion that wraps around the frame 12.

The covers 56 could comprise a material type and pattern that matches the cushion 14 and straps 52, 54 so that the look and style of the furniture article is coordinated.

The cushion supports 57 extend between at least some of the cross supports 24, 26, 28 to provide additional support for portions of the cushion member 14 that are wraps around the frame 12. The cushion supports 57 may be continuous pieces that wrap around all of the supports 24, 26, 28, or may extend between and attach to only adjacent pairs of the supports 24, 26, 28. The cushion supports 57 may comprise strips of fabric or other pliable or otherwise elastic material. Such material can provide additional cushioning and comfort for a user resting against the cushion member provided by the cushion supports 57. In some embodiments, further cushion supports may extend between the end members 20, 22, for example, to form a lattice support structure with those cushion supports 57 shown in FIG. 6. In still further embodiments, the cushion supports 57 may comprise relatively rigid material to provide maximum strength and support for the cushion 14.

Referring now to FIG. 7, the frame 12 includes first and second end members 20, 22, and first, second and third cross supports 224, 226, 228 having a different configuration. A plurality of shelf brackets 60 are coupled to the end members 20, 22 to provide support for, for example, a shelf 58 positioned within the internal cavity defined by the frame 12. The shelf brackets 60 are positioned at a mid-point along each leg of each of the end members 20, 22 thereby positioning the shelf 58 generally at a vertical center within the cavity of frame 12. In other embodiments additional shelf brackets may be included at different vertical heights (e.g., positions along the length of each leg of the end members) so as to provide additional shelf positions. In some embodiments, each leg of each end member 20, 22 may include a plurality of shelf brackets so as to provide a shelf mounting structure regardless of the rotated position of the frame 12 that corresponds to a desired amount of cushion member wrapped around the frame 12.

FIG. 7 also illustrates a plurality of intermediate mounting members 37 positioned at a mid point along the legs of each of the end members 20, 22. The intermediate mounting members 37 may have the same or different configurations as compared to the mounting members 36. The intermediate mounting members 37 also provide mounting or attachment of additional or different attachment devices to the frame 12. For example, the covers 56 illustrated in FIG. 6 may be additionally secured to the ends 20, 22 at the intermediate-mounting members 37 to provide further connection of the cover 56 to the frame 12. Other orientations for the additional mounting members 37 may be provided on the frame at any desired location.

FIG. 7A illustrates the frame 12 including shelf brackets 61 positioned along the side supports 224, 226, 228 for mounting of a separate internal shelf 59. In other embodiments, a plurality of additional brackets 61 can be positioned along the length of the supports 224, 226, 228 to provide height adjustment of the shelf 59 within the internal cavity defined by the frame 12.

The shelves 58, 59 could comprise different material types for different functions. For example, the shelves 58, 59 may comprise rigid materials for supporting heavier objects or comprise fabric or other flexible material for supporting lighter objects or to merely spatially divide the frame cavity into compartments. The shelves 58, 59 may be removable from the frame interior cavity or adjust in, for example, shape, size and orientation.

Referring now to FIG. 8, another furniture article 310 is shown and described. Article 310 includes a frame 312 having a width W4 and a support surface length L2. The article 310 also includes a cushion 314 having a plurality of sections 340 each having a width W3 and a length L1. Ends of the cushion 314 may be coupled to the frame 312 with ties 49. Preferably, each section 340 is sized with a length L1 and width W3 that match with the length L2 and width W4 of the frame 312 so that one section completely covers a separate side support surface of the frame 312. The width of the frame 312 is greater than the overall width of those embodiments discussed with reference to FIGS. 1-8.

The frame 312 is shown having three separate triangular shaped end members 320, 321, 322 along its width W4 and a plurality of cross supports extending between each of these end members 320, 321, 322. In other embodiments, more or fewer end members and cross supports may be used while still providing the necessary support and structural soundness required for any width W4 and length L2 of the frame 312.

Referring now to FIG. 9, another furniture article 410 is shown including a frame 412 and a cushion 414. The frame 12 includes at least one end member 420 defining an opening that is at least partially covered with a door 62. The door 62 is attached to the end member 420 with a pair of hinges 66 and a latch 64, but may be attached to the end member 420 with any desired structure. The door 62 can provide access into as well as restrict access into an internal cavity defined by the frame 412 that is accessible through the opening of the end member 420.

The cushion 414 includes a plurality of sections 440 and extensions 70, 72. The sections 440 may have a length L3 that is small enough such that three or more sections 440 are required to cover each length L2 of the frame 414. The segments 70, 72 may include one or more sections 440 and may be secured to each other via a plurality of ties 49 or other attachment structures (e.g., Velcro, buckles, pins, etc.). The extensions 70, 72 provide customizing of the overall length of the cushion 414 regardless of the amount of the cushion 414 that is wrapped around the frame 412.

The cushion 414 may have a width that is less than or greater than the width the frame 412. In some embodiments, two or more cushions 414 may be used across the width of the frame 412 to cover the cushion support surfaces of the frame 412.

Referring to FIG. 11, a frame 612 of another example furniture article includes end members 620, 622 and side supports 624, 626, 628 that define a cavity where a rotatable cylinder 692 is retained. A shelf member 658 is retained in the cylinder 692 with a plurality of mounting brackets 660. The cylinder 692 is secured to the frame 612 in a way that permits rotation of the cylinder 692 relative to the frame 612 as the frame rotates about its longitudinal axis (e.g., the axis extending between the end members 620, 622).

FIG. 11 illustrates an example structure (cylinder 690) for securing the cylinder 692 to the frame 612 while permitting relative rotation of the cylinder 692. The cylinder 690 is fixed to the frame in a predefined rotated position. The cylinder 692 is rotatable within the cylinder 692. A contact surface between the cylinders 690, 692 may include, for example, bearing or other low friction interfaces that permit the desired rotation of cylinder 692. In other embodiments, the cylinder 690 may be replaces with brackets, bearing, or the like, that retain the cylinder 692 while still proving positive attachment of the cylinder 692. The ability of the cylinder 692 to rotation relative to the frame 612 provide the ability of the frame 612 to roll when wrapping a cushion (e.g., cushion 14) around the frame while maintaining a shelf 658 at constant horizontal orientation. As a result, items supported on the shelf 658 or at any other position within the internal cavity of the cylinder 692 will be less likely to tip over or be damaged when using the frame 612 in the different ways described above.

The cylinder 692 may include solid sidewalls as shown in FIG. 11 that extend around a circumference of the cylinder 692. In other embodiments, the cylinder 692 may include partial sidewalls that extend around a portion of the cylinder circumference, or may include only a frame of circular end members and a plurality of cross supports coupling the end members together.

The cylinder 692 may include one or more doors or covers that restrict access and further enclose an interior cavity defined by the cylinder 692. The doors/covers may be positioned over the openings defined at opposing ends of the cylinder 692 or along the sidewall of the cylinder 692.

The shelf 658 may be positioned at any orientation within the internal cavity defined by the cylinder 692, and may have any shape or size. The shelf 568 may comprise a solid, rigid material or may comprise a flexible, collapsible material such as fabric. Preferably, the shelf 658 is removable from the cylinder 692 and adjustable (e.g., in size, shape, or orientation).

The present invention should not be considered limited to the particular examples or materials described above, but rather should be understood to cover all aspects of the invention as fairly set out in the attached claims. Various modifications, equivalent processes, as well as numerous structures to which the present invention may be applicable will be readily apparent to those of skill in the art to which the present invention is directed upon review of the instant specification.