Title:
Multiple-ply neck collar and method for making same
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A multiple-ply neck collar for attachment to a neck opening of a garment body is provided. The neck collar is constructed of a first strip, a second strip and at least one insert strip. The neck collar includes a first stitching to affix the top edge portion of the insert strip, the top edge portion of the first strip and the top edge portion of the second strip together to form a joined unit. The joined unit includes two side edge portions when the joined unit is opened flat with a stitched portion disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions. The neck collar further includes a second stitching to affix the two side edge portions of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit such that the stitched portion extends along an outer face of the tubular unit. The multiple-ply neck collar is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the at least one insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip.



Inventors:
Kim, Jessica Chin-young (Aurora, CO, US)
Application Number:
11/368952
Publication Date:
09/20/2007
Filing Date:
03/06/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A41B3/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
QUINN, RICHALE LEE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Walter T. Kim (Irvine, CA, US)
Claims:
1. A neck collar comprising: a first strip of fabric material having a top edge portion, wherein the first strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a first width; a second strip of fabric material having a top edge portion, wherein the second strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a second width that is different from the first width; an insert strip of stretchable fabric material having a top edge portion, wherein the insert strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a width that is different from at least one of the first width and the second width; a first stitching to affix the top edge portion of the insert strip, the top edge portion of the first strip and the top edge portion of the second strip together to form a joined unit, wherein the joined unit includes two side edge portions when the joined unit is opened flat with a stitched portion disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions; and a second stitching to affix the two side edge portions of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit such that the stitched portion extends along an outer face of the tubular unit, wherein the neck collar is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip.

2. The neck collar of claim 1, wherein the first strip has the first width which is less than the second width of the second strip, wherein the width of the insert strip is substantially the same as the first width of the first strip, wherein the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar, and wherein the insert strip having substantially the same width as the width of the first strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip of the neck collar.

3. The neck collar of claim 1, wherein the first strip has the first width which is less than the second width of the second strip, wherein the width of the insert strip is substantially the same as the second width of the second strip, wherein the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar, and wherein the insert strip having substantially the same width as the width of the second strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip of the neck collar.

4. The neck collar of claim 1, wherein the neck collar is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that an outer edge of the stitched portion points towards the top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

5. The neck collar of claim 1, wherein the neck collar is attached to a neck opening of a garment.

6. The neck collar of claim 5, wherein each of the strips of fabric material has a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment.

7. The neck collar of claim 1, wherein the insert strip is formed from a material different from both the first strip and the second strip.

8. The neck collar of claim 1, wherein the insert strip is formed from same material as at least one of the first strip and the second strip.

9. A garment comprising: a garment body having a neck opening; a first strip of fabric material having a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment body, wherein the first strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a first width; a second strip of fabric material having a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment, wherein the second strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a second width that is different from the first width; at least one insert strip of stretchable fabric material having a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment, wherein the insert strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a width that is different from at least one of the first width and the second width; a first stitching to affix a top edge portion of the insert strip, a top edge portion of the first strip and a top edge portion of the second strip together to form a joined unit, wherein the joined unit includes two side edge portions when the joined unit is opened flat with a stitched portion disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions; and a second stitching to affix the two side edge portions of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit such that the stitched portion extends along an outer face of the tubular unit, wherein the neck collar is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the at least one insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip; and a third stitching for affixing the neck collar to the neck opening of the garment body.

10. The garment of claim 9, wherein the first strip has the first width which is less than the second width of the second strip, wherein the width of the insert strip is substantially the same as the first width of the first strip, and wherein the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

11. The garment of claim 9, wherein the first strip has the first width which is less than the second width of the second strip, wherein the width of insert strip is substantially the same as the second width of the second strip, and wherein the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

12. The garment of claim 9, wherein the neck collar is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that an outer edge of the stitched portion points towards the top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

13. The garment of claim 9, wherein the insert strip is formed from a material different from both the first strip and the second strip.

14. The garment of claim 9, wherein the insert strip is formed from same material as at least one of the first strip and the second strip.

15. A method comprising: aligning a top edge portion of at least one insert strip of stretchable fabric material, a top edge portion of a first strip of fabric material and a top edge portion of a second strip of fabric material; sewing the at least one insert strip, the first strip and the second strip together along the top edges thereof to form a joined unit having a stitched portion; opening flat the joined unit after being sewn together such that the stitched portion of the joined unit is disposed extending longitudinally between two side edge portions of the joined unit; folding the joined unit such that one of the side edge portions is aligned with the other side edge portion with the stitched portion of the joined unit facing outward; and sewing the side edges of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit; and turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip to form a neck collar, wherein the first strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a first width, wherein the second strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a second width that is different from the first width, wherein the insert strip is substantially rectangular in shape and has a width that is different from at least one of the first width and the second width.

16. The method of claim 15, wherein the first strip has the first width which is less than the second width of the second strip, wherein the width of the insert strip is substantially the same as the first width of the first strip, and wherein the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

17. The method of claim 15, wherein the first strip has the first width which is less than the second width of the second strip, wherein the width of the insert strip is substantially the same as the second width of the second strip, and wherein the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

18. The method of claim 15, wherein turning at least a portion of the tubular unit comprises: turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that an outer edge of the stitched portion points towards the top peripheral edge of the neck collar.

19. The method claim 15, further comprising: providing a garment body having a neck opening; and affixing the neck collar to the neck opening of the garment body.

20. The method claim 15, wherein the insert strip is formed from a material different from both the first strip and the second strip.

21. The method of claim 15, wherein the insert strip is formed from same material as at least one of the first strip and the second strip.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention generally relates to clothes, and, in particular, to a neck collar to be attached to the neck opening of a shirt body and a method of making the neck collar.

2. Description of the Related Art

Typically, a circular neck collar or neck band is attached to the neck opening of a shirt body (e.g., T-shirt, sweat shirt) to help maintain proper shape along the neck line. Currently, only one layer of fabric (e.g., rib knit band) is typically used to form a circular collar for shirts. The preexisting one-ply neck collar such as the rib knit neck band suffers from various disadvantages. For example, the preexisting one-ply neck collar tends to weaken after each wash, decreasing its ability to maintain proper shape along the neck line and prematurely giving the shirt aged appearance. Moreover, because one-ply circular neck collar is relatively thin around its upper edge, this thin peripheral edge of the neck collar can irritate the skin around the neck area of the wearer, causing discomfort.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF EMBODIMENTS THE INVENTION

Described herein are various embodiments of a multiple-ply neck collar for attachment to a neck opening of a garment body to help maintain a proper shape along the neck line. The neck collar is constructed of a first strip, a second strip and an insert strip. The neck collar includes a first stitching to affix the top edge portion of the insert strip, the top edge portion of the first strip and the top edge portion of the second strip together to form a joined unit. The joined unit includes two side edge portions when the joined unit is opened flat with a stitched portion disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions. The neck collar further includes a second stitching to affix the two side edge portions of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit such that the stitched portion extends along an outer face of the tubular unit. The multiple-ply neck collar is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the at least one insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip.

In one aspect of one embodiment of the invention, the first strip has a width which is less than a width of the second strip. And, the insert strip has a width which is substantially the same as the width of the narrower strip (i.e., the first strip). In one embodiment, the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar. And, the insert strip having substantially the same width as the width of the narrower strip (i.e., the first strip) is disposed between the first strip and the second strip of the neck collar.

In another aspect of one embodiment of the invention, the first strip has a width which is less than a width of the second strip. And, the insert strip has a width which is substantially the same as the width of the wider strip (i.e., the second strip). In one embodiment, the second strip forming an inner layer of the neck collar extends over the stitched portion such that a longitudinal line formed between the first strip and the second strip is disposed, along an outer layer of the neck collar, a defined distance from a top peripheral edge of the neck collar. And, the insert strip having substantially the same width as the width of the wider strip (i.e., the second strip) is disposed between the first strip and the second strip of the neck collar.

In a further aspect of one embodiment of the invention, the multiple-ply neck collar uses a stitched portion residing underneath the upper edge portion of the neck collar to provide support to maintain proper shape along the neck line. This is accomplished by forming the neck collar by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that an outer edge of the stitched portion points towards the top peripheral edge of the neck collar. The multiple-ply neck collar constructed in accordance with embodiments of the invention is durable and provides comfort to the wearer.

In another characterization of the invention, a garment employing the multiple-ply neck collar is provided. The garment comprises a garment body having a neck opening. The neck collar of the garment is constructed of a first strip of fabric material having a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment body, a second strip of fabric material having a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment, and at least one insert strip of fabric material having a length to encircle the neck opening of the garment. The neck collar of the garment comprises a first stitching to affix a top edge portion of the insert strip, a top edge portion of the first strip and a top edge portion of the second strip together to form a joined unit. The joined unit includes two side edge portions when the joined unit is opened flat with a stitched portion disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions. The neck collar of the garment further comprises a second stitching to affix the two side edge portions of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit such that the stitched portion extends along an outer face of the tubular unit. The neck collar of the garment is formed by turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the at least one insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip. The garment further includes a third stitching for affixing the neck collar to the neck opening of the garment body.

In yet another characterization of the invention, a method for making a multiple-play neck collar is provided. In one embodiment, the multiple-ply neck collar is constructed of two strips of fabric material and at least one insert strip of fabric material or other suitable insert material. The method comprises aligning a top edge portion of an insert strip, a top edge portion of a first strip of fabric material and a top edge portion of a second strip of fabric material. Once the strips have been properly aligned, the method comprises sewing three strips together along the top edge portions thereof to form a joined unit. After the strips are sewn together, the method comprises opening flat the joined unit such that a stitched portion is disposed extending longitudinally between two side edge portions of the joined unit. Then, the method comprises folding the joined unit such that one of the side edge portions is aligned with the other side edge portion with the stitched portion of the joined unit facing outward. Once the joined unit has been properly folded, the method comprises sewing the side edges of the joined unit together to form a tubular unit. Finally, the method further comprises turning at least a portion of the tubular unit over the stitched portion such that the insert strip is disposed between the first strip and the second strip to form a neck collar.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Embodiments of the invention are illustrated by way of example and not by way of limitation in the figures of the accompanying drawings in which like references indicate similar elements. It should be noted that the references to “an embodiment” or “one embodiment” of this disclosure are not necessarily to the same embodiment, and such references mean at least one.

FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic perspective view of a multiple-ply neck collar according to one embodiment of the present invention attached to a shirt.

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of three strips of fabric material from which one embodiment of the multiple-ply neck collar is constructed.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the three strips of fabric material stitched together along the top edge portions thereof to form a joined unit.

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the joined unit opened flat to define a upper section, a lower section and two side edge portions with a stitched portion disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the joined unit stitched along the two side edge portions to form a tubular unit.

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the multiple-ply neck collar of the present invention formed by turning the upper section over the stitched portion.

FIG. 7 is a top plan view of three strips of fabric material from which an alternative embodiment of the multiple-ply neck collar is constructed.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

In the following description, specific details are set forth in order to provide a thorough understanding of various embodiments of the present invention. However, it will be apparent to one skilled in the art that embodiments of the present invention may be practiced without these specific details. In other instances, well-known components and techniques have not been shown in detail in order to avoid obscuring embodiments of the present invention. It should be noted that, as used in the description herein and the claims, the meaning of “in” includes “in” and “on”.

Neck collar or neck band is frequently attached to shirts to help maintain proper shape along the neck line. Embodiments of the invention provides for a neck collar which is more durable and is able to sustain a proper shape along the neck line longer than the traditional type of neck bands generally used with shirts.

FIG. 1 shows an embodiment of a multiple-ply neck collar 100 of the present invention attached to a neck opening 102 of a garment 104 such as T-shirts, sweat shirts, turtleneck type shirts, long-sleeve shirts, shirt-sleeve shirts and the like. In one embodiment, the neck collar 100 is constructed of at least three strips of fabric material having a sufficient length to encircle the wearer's neck. As seen by referring to FIG. 2, the first strip (A) 200 of fabric material has a width (W1) which is less than the width (W2) of the second strip (B) 202 of fabric material. The first and second strips 200, 202 of fabric material can be formed from any suitable stretchable material, such as, for example, a ribbed knit, spandex or jersey knit material. In one embodiment, the first and second strips 200, 202 can be formed from same material, or alternatively, the first and second strips 200, 202 can formed from a different material and/or color. For example, with respect to the first and second strips 200, 202, any of the following fabric material may be utilized: ribbed knit fabrics, jersey knit fabrics, stretch cotton knit fabrics, nylon knit fabric, polyester knit fabric, tissue knit fabrics, brushed pique knit fabrics, butter single knit fabrics, striated crepe knit fabrics, poorboy knit fabrics, soft touch knit fabrics and the like.

In accordance with one aspect of one embodiment, the neck collar 100 employs an insert layer (i.e., constructed of at least one insert strip) disposed between the first and second strips to provide additional support for the neck collar. In one embodiment, the insert layer comprises an insert strip (I) 210 having a width W1 which is preferably substantially the same as the width W1 of the first strip (A) 200, as illustrated in FIG. 2. Thus, the insert strip 210 having substantially the same width as the width of the narrower strip (i.e., the first strip 200) is sandwiched between the first strip 200 and the second strip 202 of the neck collar 100, when fabrication of the neck collar 100 is completed as shown in FIG. 6.

In an alternative embodiment, the insert strip (I) 212 has a width W1 which is preferably substantially the same as the width W2 of the second strip (B) 202, as shown in FIG. 7. Thus, the insert strip 212 having substantially the same width as the width of the wider strip (i.e., the second strip 2002) is sandwiched between the first strip 200 and the second strip 202 of the neck collar, when fabrication of the neck collar 100 is completed as shown in FIG. 6.

There are numerous types of commercially available fabric material that can potentially be used to construct the first strip 200 and the second strip 202; for example, fabrics possessing desired flexibility and stretchability characteristics for making the neck collar. In fabrication of neck collars for certain types of garments, it may be desirable to employ first strip 200 and second strip 202 that are formed from a relatively thin fabric material. When relatively thin fabric material is employed, such fabric material may are not be capable of providing sufficient support to maintain proper neck collar shape. In such instances, the insert layer is employed during the construction of the neck collar to enhance the supportability of the neck collar.

The material of the insert layer is preferably selected to provide appropriate level of supportability without compromising flexibility and stretchability of the neck collar. In addition to employing the insert layer to select the level of supportability, the designer of the neck collar can also selectively adjust the thickness of the neck collar by choosing the thickness of the insert layer. In other words, without the use of the insert layer, the designer of the neck collar is limited to fabric materials (i.e., of the first and second strips) that have sufficient thickness and stiffness to provide adequate supportability to the neck collar. To overcome such design limitations, the inventor of the present invention has recognized that by employing an insert layer during the construction of the neck collar, any desired fabric material may be utilized to construct the inner layer (e.g., the second strip) and the outer layer (e.g., the first strip) of the neck collar.

Yet another advantage of employing an insert layer within the neck collar, in accordance with one embodiment of the invention, is that the insert layer prevents undesirable see-through effect when partially transparent printed fabric is used to construct the inner layer (e.g., the second strip) and the outer layer (e.g., the first strip) of a neck collar. For example, when partially transparent printed fabric is used to construct the inner layer (e.g., the second strip) and the outer layer (e.g., the first strip) of a neck collar, the transparent printed outer layer may allow view of the transparent printed inner layer underneath the outer layer. In such cases, the inventor of the present invention has recognized that a non-transparent insert layer may be disposed between the outer layer and the inner layer of the neck collar to prevent undesirable see-through effect.

In one embodiment, the insert strip is formed from a material different both the first strip and the second strip. In another embodiment, the insert layer is formed from the same material as one or both of the first and second strips. The insert layer may be formed from any suitable insert material, including stretchable plastic material, set tape material and set binding material. Additionally, the insert layer may be formed from any suitable knitted type fabric material, including ribbed knit material, jersey knit material, stretch cotton knit fabric, nylon knit fabric and polyester knit fabric.

While in the illustrated embodiment, the insert layer is constructed of one insert strip, it should be noted that more than one insert strips may be used in the construction of the neck collar to achieve desirable level of supportability and thickness for the neck collar.

Referring to FIG. 3, the first strip (A) 200 is placed lying flat against the second strip (B) 202 with the top edges 204 of the two strips being aligned with respect to each other. Additionally, the insert strip (I) 210 is placed lying flat against the first strip (A) 200. Then, the three strips 200, 202 and 210 of fabric material are stitched together along the top edges 204 thereof to form a joined unit 300. The stitched portion is indicated by reference numeral 206. It should be noted that the three fabric pieces 200, 202 and 210 can be stitched together using any suitable stitching method including lock stitch (single or double), chain stitch (single or double), overlock stitch (three thread or four thread), safety stitch (five thread or six thread) and cover stitch.

Turning now to FIG. 4, the joined unit 300 is opened flat by lifting the first strip (A) 202 and the insert strip (I) 210 upward from the second strip (B) 202. Then, the entire joined unit 300 is rotated with respect to a vertical axis so that the stitched portion 206 is facing towards the viewer. The joined unit 300 laid open as depicted in FIG. 4 includes a upper section 302 comprising the first strip (A) 200 and insert strip (I) 210, a lower section 304 comprising the second strip (B) 202 and two side edge portions 306, 308 with the stitched portion 206 disposed extending longitudinally between the two side edge portions 306, 308. Next, the joined unit 300 is folded such that the two side edge portions 306, 308 are aligned with the stitched portion 206 faces outward. After the joined unit has been properly folded, the two side edge portions 306, 308 are stitched together to form a tubular unit 500 as shown in FIG. 5. The two side edge portions 306, 308 can be stitched together using any convention and suitable method such as lock stitch, chain stitch, overlock stitch and the like.

Referring to FIG. 6, a neck collar 100 may be formed by flipped either the upper section 302 or the lower section 304 over the stitched portion 206 such that at least a part of the upper section 302 (i.e., first strip (A) 200 and insert strip (I) 210) of the tubular unit is in overlapping relationship with the lower section 304 (i.e., second strip (B) 202) to form a circular neck collar 100. As seen by referring back to FIG. 3, when the three plies of fabric 200, 202 and 210 are aligned along the top edge 204, the bottom edges 254, 255 of the first fabric strip 200 and the insert fabric strip 210 are preferably offset from the bottom edge 256 of the second fabric strip 202. This means that, in one embodiment, the first fabric strip 200 and the insert fabric strip 210 are of shorter width than the second fabric strip 202. This is so that when the upper section 302 (i.e., first strip (A) 200 and insert strip (I) 210) is flipped over the lower section 304 (i.e., second strip (B) 202) such that the bottom edges 254, 255 of the first fabric strip 200 and the insert fabric strip 210 are displaced adjacent to the bottom edge 256 of the second fabric strip 202, as shown in FIG. 6. Further illustrated in FIG. 6 is the neck collar 100, in which the stitched portion 206 is located underneath the second fabric strip 202 at or adjacent to the top peripheral edge 602 thereof. In this manner, the stitched portion 206 gives the neck collar 100 support around the peripheral edge 602 and thereby providing comfort to the wearer and increasing the strength and durability of the neck collar. The completed neck collar 100 is now ready to be secured along an upper marginal edge of the neck opening 102 of a shirt body 104, as shown in FIG. 1.

While the foregoing preferred embodiments of the invention have been described and shown, it is understood that variations and modifications, such as those suggested and others within the spirit and scope of the invention, may occur to those skilled in the art to which the invention pertains. For example, although the illustrated neck collars are described and shown in terms of a round neck line, it should be understood by those skilled in the art that the neck collar construction of the present invention can be easily modified to form other styles of neckline such as V-neckline, square neckline, boat-shaped neckline, turtle-neck type neckline, cuff and the like. The scope of the present invention accordingly is to be defined as set forth in the appended claims.





 
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