Title:
Device and method for shoe covering
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An easy wearing disposable shoe cover and a wearing method are provided. The shoe cover has a rear portion, distinguished from a front portion, being capable of flipping around a sole. An elastic band, being omitted from front portion, strains the rear portion to be lower than front portion, which exposes the front portion of the shoe cover widely for an easy insertion of the shoe into the shoe cover without using hands.



Inventors:
Chen, Stephen Liye (El Monte, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/352725
Publication Date:
08/16/2007
Filing Date:
02/13/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A43B1/10
View Patent Images:
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20040020081Sport bootFebruary, 2004Symons et al.
20030208926Shoe sole structuresNovember, 2003Frampton III
20030097771Specialized mass distribution footwear and handwear to modify the internal leverage of athletesMay, 2003Tuttle
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20090007459FOOTWEAR ADORNMENT, FOOTWEAR ACCESSORY HOLDER, AND METHODS THEREFORJanuary, 2009Barnett
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Primary Examiner:
BAYS, MARIE D
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Stephen Liye Chen (El Monte, CA, US)
Claims:
1. A device for covering a shoe, comprising: a sole isolating said shoe from contacting a floor; a cover, joining to said sole, being distinguishable into a front portion and a rear portion, wherein said rear portion, made more flexible than said front portion, yielding to said shoe during insertion of said shoe into said front portion of said shoe cover.

2. A device for covering a shoe, comprising: a sole isolating said shoe from contacting a floor; a cover, joining to said sole, being distinguishable into a front portion and a rear portion, wherein said rear portion being more flexible than said front portion; and an elastic member, associating with said rear portion, straining said rear portion lower than said front portion to create a clear view of said front portion during an insertion of said shoe.

3. The device of claim 2 wherein said rear portion is lower than said sole.

4. A method for covering a shoe, comprising the steps of: (a) having a device, comprising, a sole isolating said shoe from contacting a floor; a cover, joining to said sole, being distinguishable into a front portion and a rear portion, wherein said rear portion being more flexible than said front portion; and an elastic member, associating with said rear portion, straining said rear portion lower than said front portion to create a clear view of said front portion of said shoe cover; (b) inserting said shoe into said front portion of said device; and (c) stretching said elastic member to release said rear portion upwards for securing said shoe cover onto said shoe.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to shoe covers. More specifically, it relates to disposable shoe covers used for working in clean rooms.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Shoe covers are usually required for working in medical laboratories, operating rooms, animal room, high-tech facilities, as well as real estate industries and house services. For protection purposes, these shoe covers are often made with low cost material in a single piece format, usually a piece of flexible fabrics plus elastic band. The elastic band strains the flexible fabrics into a wrinkled irregular configuration, which causes difficulties for users to wear it. Valuable time of doctors and nurses has been wasted for wearing the cheapest shoe covers.

An easy wearing disposable shoe cover is highly desirable.

Some attempts have been made to create easier disposable shoe covers. March, in U.S. Pat. No. 6,584,704 B2, for example, teaches a translucent polyurethane shoe cover using a roll over method to wear. While keeping the shoe visible, March has failed to make the wearing of shoe cover easier. Mills, in U.S. Pat. No. 5,842,290, teaches a step-in shoe cover without using hands. Unfortunately, Mills has failed to design the shoe cover simple for disposability. The shoe cover is not suitable for working in a medical operating room. Overfield, in U.S. Pat. D455,894 S, teaches a disposable shoe cover with a dispenser.

Overfield has also failed to create an easy wearing shoe cover even though a dispenser is used.

The long-felt desire of easy wearing disposable shoe cover remains unanswered.

SUMMARY OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

It is, therefore, an object of the invention to create an easy wearing disposable shoe cover.

The advance of the invention over prior arts can be summarized as follows:

    • (1) It creates a two-piece shoe cover. Elastic band is omitted from front piece of the shoe cover so that the front portion of the shoe cover opens widely.
    • (2) It uses an elastic band to strain rear piece lower than front piece to facilitate easy insertion of the shoe, like wearing a sandal.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is an illustrative diagram of a presently preferred embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 2 is a side view of the shoe cover showing a rear piece being folded under a sole.

FIG. 3 shows the rear piece has been flipped up to secure the shoe cover on a shoe.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

A main cause of wearing difficulties has been identified as a hidden entry of the shoe covers.

The key feature of the present invention is to make the disposable shoe cover in a sandal-like format. Users can easily insert a shoe into widely opened front portion of a shoe cover without using hands. Then a rear piece can be flipped over from bottom to top for securing the shoe cover on the shoe.

In FIG. 1, an illustrative diagram of a currently preferred embodiment, four elements are demonstrated as a sole 150, a front piece 120, a rear piece 180, and an elastic band 191. Sole 150 is the bottom boundary of shoe cover 100 for isolating a shoe from a floor. Sole 150 can be divided into two regions, a front region 140 towards toe area and a rear region 160 towards heel area. Front piece 120 has a body 121, a first line 111, and a second line 131. Body 121 defines top boundary of shoe cover 100. First line 111 joins to sole 150 along edges of front region 140. Second line 131 remains open as the entry of shoe cover 100 for shoe insertion. Now front piece 120, together with sole 150, forms a sandal-like shoe cover, which can be easily put on by a shoe insertion without using hands.

Also in FIG. 1, a rear piece 180 is distinguished from front piece 120. Rear piece 180 has a third line 170, a fourth line 190, and a body 181. Third line 170 joins to sole 150 along edges of rear region 160. Rear piece 180 is made with a very flexible fabrics, which enables rear piece 180 the capacity of free flipping up and down around sole 150, called an up position and a down position. An elastic band 191 is attached to rear piece 180 along its fourth line 190. For illustrative purpose, elastic band 191 in FIG. 1 is shown as its stretched condition. Elastic band 191 has two functions. Its first function is to strain rear piece 180 to be lower than front piece 120 so that shoe cover 100 can be accessed easily like a sandal, as shown in FIG. 2. Its second function is to secure shoe cover 100 on the shoe.

FIG. 2 shows rear piece 180 being strained underneath sole 150 by elastic band 191. A shoe 145 has been inserted into the space between front piece 120 and sole 150.

FIG. 3 shows rear piece 180 being flipped to up position above sole 150. Body 181 covers shoe 145. Elastic band 191 secures shoe cover 100 on shoe 145.

If desired, it is an option for the user to just wear shoe cover 100 like a sandal without flipping rear piece 180 to up position. It is also feasible to wear shoe cover 100 in an alternative way. That is, rear piece 180 remains in up position instead of being flipped under the bottom of sole 150 during the insertion of shoe 145. Elastic band 191 strains rear piece 180 down on top face of sole 150 and create a clear view of front portion of shoe cover 100. In this option, rear piece 180 will yield to shoe 145 and be folded between shoe 145 and sole 150.

To wear shoe cover 100 onto shoe 145, the basic steps are:

  • 1. Have shoe cover 100 with rear piece 180 being strained lower than front piece 120.
  • 2. Insert shoe 145 into front portion of shoe cover 100.
  • 3. Stretch elastic band 191 to raise rear piece 180 higher than sole 150 for securing shoe cover 100 onto shoe 145.

To meet a variety of application specialties, sole 150 should be made with a suitable material, such as water proof sheets, synthetic fabrics, or cardboard. The joints from sole 150 to front piece 120 and rear piece 180 can be done by means of sawing, molding, or adhesives, depending on the materials chosen.

Although the descriptions above contains specifications, it is apparent to those who skilled in the art that a number of other variations and modifications can be made to the invention without departing from its spirit and scope. Rear piece 180, for example, can join front piece 120 into one piece. Elastic band 191 can be omitted from rear piece. Sole 150 and front piece 120 can be made in one piece. Therefore, the descriptions as set out above should not be constructed as limiting the scope of the invention but as merely providing illustration of the presently preferred embodiment of the invention.