Title:
Aesthetically pleasing article for existing footwear
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A method and apparatus for attaching an ascetically pleasing article to existing footwear. In one embodiment, the attachment means does not permanently alter the footwear and can be removed with no or relatively little effect to the existing footwear. In another embodiment, the ascetically pleasing article may be removed from the attachment means and a second ascetically pleasing article may be secured to the attachment means so the overall look of the existing footwear is changed. In another embodiment, the ascetically pleasing article contains rigid or semi-rigid extensions that extend from the ascetically pleasing article and around all or at least a portion of the existing footwear and help secure the article to the existing footwear.



Inventors:
Bounds, Sandy L. (Decatur, TX, US)
Application Number:
11/601554
Publication Date:
05/22/2008
Filing Date:
11/17/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A43B23/24
View Patent Images:
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20080148605Footwear and method of making thereofJune, 2008Edgeworth et al.
20080295360Footwear Structure with Improved ComfortablenessDecember, 2008Gazzola
20050120592Footwear combining comfort with fashionJune, 2005Rodriguez
20080022557Method of construction and footware using mated componentsJanuary, 2008Hearn
20080110056Novelty footwear item with storage chest and method of using sameMay, 2008Mann et al.



Primary Examiner:
MOHANDESI, JILA M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Law Office of J. D. Pemberton (Keller, TX, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation for decorating an existing shoe comprising: a body portion; and a body attachment portion fixedly attached to the body portion wherein the body attachment portion may be removably attached to an existing footwear without materially altering or damaging the existing footwear.

2. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 1 further comprising a shoe attachment portion wherein the shoe attachment portion is attached to the existing footwear and the body attachment portion is removably secured to the shoe attachment portion.

3. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 2 wherein the shoe attachment portion is removably attached to the existing footwear.

4. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 2 wherein the shoe attachment portion is fixedly secured to the existing footwear.

5. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 1 further comprising a semi-rigid extension extending from the body attachment portion wherein the semi-rigid extension has a general rigid U-shaped profile such that when the semi-rigid extension is placed onto the existing footwear it is held in place by tension.

6. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 5 wherein the semi-rigid extension contains a securing member that aids in securing semi-rigid extension to existing footwear.

7. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 5 wherein the body portion extends along the semi-rigid extension.

8. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 1 wherein the body portion does not extend past the body attachment portion.

9. The aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation of claim 5 wherein the body portion is proximate to the front area of the existing footwear.

10. A method for attaching an aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation to an existing footwear, the method comprising the steps of: locating an existing footwear; attaching an aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation to the located footwear wherein the aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation comprises a body portion; and a body attachment portion fixedly attached to the body portion wherein the body attachment portion may be removably attached to the existing footwear without materially altering or damaging the existing footwear.

11. The method of claim 10 further comprising the step of attaching a shoe attachment portion to the existing footwear wherein after attachment of the shoe attachment portion, the body attachment portion is removably attached to the shoe attachment portion.

12. The method of claim 11 wherein the shoe attachment portion is removably attached to the existing footwear and may be removed with relatively little damage or alteration to existing footwear.

13. The method of claim 11 wherein the shoe attachment portion is fixedly attached to the existing footwear.

14. The method of claim 10 wherein the aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation further comprises a semi-rigid extension extending from the body attachment portion wherein the semi-rigid extension has a general rigid U-shaped profile such that when the semi-rigid extension is placed onto the existing footwear it is held in place by tension.

15. The method of claim 14 wherein the semi-rigid extension contains a securing member that aids in securing semi-rigid extension to existing footwear.

16. The method of claim 14 wherein the body portion extends along the semi-rigid extension.

17. The method of claim 14 wherein the body portion does not extend past the body attachment portion.

18. The method of claim 10 wherein the body portion is proximate to the front area of the existing footwear.

19. The method of claim 14 wherein the body portion does not extend past the body attachment portion.

20. The method of claim 10 wherein the body portion is proximate to the front area of the existing footwear.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Technical Field

This invention relates to footwear, and more particularly, to an aesthetically pleasing article for footwear.

2. Description of Related Art

It is impossible to estimate at exactly what phase in development on earth that man first thought of protecting his feet from the natural hazards of weather/climate and the rough ground. It is obvious that footwear was and still is made for the shielding of feet. However, aside from their actual purpose, footwear can help to tell the story of the person who wears them. By looking at a pair of shoes one can see that they reflect the personality of the wearer and most people have several different types of footwear to reflect their mood or style at any particular moment.

Currently, once a person purchases footwear, the footwear cannot be easily changed or modified to reflect the wearer's mood or style for any particular moment. It would be beneficial if a method or apparatus existed that allowed a user to relatively easily change their existing footwear to reflect their mood or style. It would be even more beneficial if the method or apparatus could be added to existing shoes the user owned. It would be a further benefit if the method or apparatus did not damage or materially alter the footwear during attachment and removal.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

The present invention solves the above-described problem by providing a method and apparatus for attaching an ascetically pleasing article to existing footwear. Existing footwear is existing footwear commonly known in the art and is not footwear that has been specially manufactured to securely retain footwear ornamentation. In one embodiment, the attachment means does not permanently alter the footwear and can be removed with no or relatively little effect to the existing footwear. The body, or ascetically pleasing portion of the article may be almost any aesthetically pleasing design that could be worn on the existing footwear such as a decorative band, crown, chain, rope, braid, or symbol.

The ascetically pleasing article may be attached using adhesive, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system or some other means sufficiently strong to secure the ascetically pleasing article to the existing footwear yet not strong enough to permit removal of the ascetically pleasing article without damaging the existing footwear.

In another embodiment, the ascetically pleasing article may be fixedly attached to the existing footwear by a more permanent attachment means such that removal of the attachment means is relatively difficult and the existing footwear is likely to be changed by the attachment and removal of the attachment means. The attachment means may be fixedly attached to footwear when the user will almost always wear the ascetically pleasing article on the existing footwear.

In another embodiment, the ascetically pleasing article contains rigid or semi-rigid extensions that extend from the ascetically pleasing article and around all or at least a portion of the existing footwear and help secure the article to the existing footwear. In one embodiment, the extensions do not extend fully around footwear and stop before the mid portion of existing footwear.

In one embodiment, a shoe attachment is removably attached to the existing footwear and the attachment is relatively strong yet can still be removed such that the existing footwear remains in relatively the same state and condition it was in before the ascetically pleasing article was attached. The shoe attachment can accept or secure at least one ascetically pleasing article to the existing footwear and is used when a variety of ascetically pleasing articles are worn on the existing footwear at different times.

Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent upon reading the following detailed description of embodiments of the invention, when taken in conjunction with the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a top view of an existing footwear with an aesthetically pleasing article attached in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a side view of a portion of the attachment means of the aesthetically pleasing article in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a top view of the existing footwear with an alternate embodiment of the aesthetically pleasing article attached in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a top view of the existing footwear with an alternate embodiment of the aesthetically pleasing article attached in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 5 is a top view of the existing footwear with an alternate embodiment of the aesthetically pleasing article attached in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6 is a top view of the existing footwear with an alternate embodiment of the aesthetically pleasing article attached in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 7 is a top view of an aesthetically pleasing article in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

In the following detailed description, reference is made to the accompanying drawings that form a part hereof, and in which is shown by way of illustration, specific embodiments in which the invention may be practiced. These embodiments are described in sufficient detail to enable those skilled in the art to practice the invention, and it is to be understood that other embodiments may be utilized. It is also to be understood that structural, procedural and system changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention. The following detailed description is, therefore, not to be taken in a limiting sense, and the scope of the present invention is defined by the appended claims and their equivalents. For clarity of exposition, like features shown in the accompanying drawings are indicated with like reference numerals and similar features as shown in alternate embodiments in the drawings are indicated with similar reference numerals.

Referring to FIG. 7, shown is aesthetically pleasing footwear ornamentation 102 comprising body 104, body attachment 106, and shoe attachment 108. As shown in FIG. 1, footwear ornamentation 102 is worn on existing footwear 110. Existing footwear 110 is existing footwear commonly known in the art and is not footwear that has been specially manufactured to securely retain footwear ornamentation 102. Examples of existing footwear 110 include, but are not limited to, tennis shoes, athletic shoes, golf shoes, dress shoes, high heels, pumps, sandals, cowboy or cowgirl boots, hiking boots, work boots, combat boots, clogs, flats, wedges, ballerina flats or shoes, mules or slides, flip flops, sandals, or other footwear worn by the general public.

Body 104 may be almost any aesthetically pleasing design that could be worn on footwear 110 and may be located in front section 112 or may extend to or even past mid-portion 304 of footwear 110. By way of example and not of limitation, body 104 may be a decorative band, crown, chain, rope, braid, or symbol. Body 104 may extend past the general area of shoe attachment 108 and if so, body 104 may contain securing member 114. Securing member 114 helps secure body 104 to footwear 110 and may be, but is not limited to, hooks, barbed metal, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system, glue, strip adhesive, tacky putty, or a magnet wherein a magnet of opposing polarity is located inside footwear 110 proximate to where securing member 114 is located on footwear 110.

Body attachment 106 is fixedly attached to body 104 and aids in securing body 104 to shoe attachment 108. Body attachment 106 may be adhesive or one part of a mechanical attachment means such as a snap, button, zipper, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system, magnet, or any other similar fastener that requires the mating of two parts. In one embodiment, shown in FIG. 1, body attachment 106 is semi-rigid, relatively flat, and has a circular or poly-sided profile; such as a rectangular profile. In this embodiment, the profile of body attachment 106 is such that it fits securely inside or on to shoe attachment 108.

As shown in FIG. 2, shoe attachment 108 contains body side 202 and shoe side 204. Body side 202 of shoe attachment 108 contains means for attaching body attachment 106 to shoe attachment 108. As stated above, body attachment 106 may be adhesive, one part of a mechanical attachment means, or any other fastener that requires the mating of two parts and could securely attach body attachment 106 to shoe attachment 108. If body attachment 106 is one part of a mechanical attachment means, then body side 202 of shoe attachment 108 contains the mating part of the mechanical attachment means. For example, if body attachment 106 is the male portion of a snap, then body side 202 contains the mating female portion of the snap.

In one embodiment, shown in FIG. 2, body side 202 contains the mating profile of body attachment 106 such that body attachment 106 fits securely inside body side 202 of shoe attachment 108. In this instance, body side 202 of shoe attachment 108 has a rectangular profile that is slightly larger than the rectangular profile of body attachment 106. When body attachment 106 is placed in body side 202 of shoe attachment 108, body side 202 surrounds body attachment 106 and secures body attachment 106 to shoe attachment 108. It should be obvious to those skilled in the art that body side 202 of shoe attachment 108 may just as easily fit securely inside body attachment 106.

Shoe attachment 108 is removably secured to footwear 110 such that when shoe attachment 108 is attached to footwear 110, the attachment is relatively strong yet can be removed and upon removal, footwear 110 remains in relatively the same state and condition it was in before shoe attachment 108 was attached to footwear 110. Shoe attachment 108 allows for different types or configurations of body 104 to be used on a single footwear 110 without having to repeatedly remove the means for attaching body 104 to footwear 110.

Shoe attachment 108 may be secured to footwear 110 using attachment means 206 located on shoe side 204 of shoe attachment 108 (See FIG. 2). Attachment means 206 may be adhesive sufficiently strong to secure shoe attachment 108 to footwear 110 yet allow for the removal of shoe attachment 108 without damaging footwear 110. Attachment 206 may also be part of a mechanical attachment means and includes, but is not limited to, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system, glue, strip adhesive, tacky putty, or a magnet wherein a magnet of opposing polarity is located inside footwear 110 proximate to the toe area of footwear 110 but is not fixedly attached to footwear 110.

In another embodiment, attachment means 206 may fixedly attach to footwear 110 such that removal is relatively difficult and footwear is likely to be changed by the attachment and removal of shoe attachment 108. Shoe attachment 108 may be fixedly attached to footwear when the user will almost always wear some type of footwear ornamentation 102 on footwear 102. By way of example and not of limitation, shoe attachment 108 may be fixedly attached to footwear 110 with snaps, pins, wire, by sewing, tying, screwing, nailing, riveting, buckling, clamping, or otherwise fixedly securing shoe attachment 108 to footwear 110.

In another embodiment, show in FIG. 3, shoe attachment 108 contains rigid or semi-rigid extension 302 extending from shoe attachment 108 around at least a portion of footwear 110. In one embodiment, extension 302 does not extend fully around footwear 110 and stops before mid portion 304 of footwear 110. Mid-portion 304 is in the middle of footwear and extends from front portion 112 to rear portion 116 of footwear 110. Semi-rigid extension 302 is made of a rigid or semi-rigid material and has a general U-shaped profile such that when semi-rigid extension 302 is placed onto footwear 110, it is held in place by tension.

Semi-rigid extension 302 may contain securing member 114. Securing member 114 aids in securing semi-rigid extension 302 to footwear 110 and may be, but is not limited to, hooks, barbed metal, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system, glue, strip adhesive, tacky putty, or a magnet wherein a magnet of opposing polarity is located inside footwear 110 proximate to where securing member 114 is located on footwear 110.

In another embodiment, shown in FIG. 4, body 104 does not contain body attachment 106 and shoe attachment 108 is not present. In this embodiment, body 104 is secured to footwear 10 via attachment means 402. Attachment means 402 is sufficiently strong enough to secure body 104 to footwear 10 yet will permit removal of body 104 from footwear 110 without damaging footwear 110.

Attachment means 402 may be, but is not limited to, adhesive, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system wherein one portion is secured to body 104 and the mating portion is removable secured to footwear 110, glue, strip adhesive, tacky putty, or a magnet wherein a magnet of opposing polarity is inside footwear 110 proximate to the toe area of footwear 110 but not fixedly attached to footwear 110. If body 104 extends past attachment means 402, body may contain securing member 114 (not shown) similar to that shown in FIG. 1. Securing member 114 helps secure body 104 to footwear 110 and may be, but is not limited to, hooks, barbed metal, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system, glue, strip adhesive, tacky putty, or a magnet wherein a magnet of opposing polarity is located inside footwear 110 proximate to where securing member 114 is located on footwear 110.

In another embodiment, body 104 may fixedly attach to footwear 110 such that removal is relatively difficult and footwear is likely to be changed by the attachment and removal of body 104. Body 104 may be fixedly attached to footwear when the user will almost always wear some type of body 104 on footwear 10. By way of example and not of limitation, body 104 may be fixedly attached to footwear 110 with snaps, pins, wire, by sewing, tying, screwing, nailing, riveting, buckling, clamping, or otherwise fixedly securing body 104 to footwear 110.

In another embodiment, show in FIG. 5, body 104 contains rigid or semi-rigid extension 502 extending from body 104 around at least a portion of footwear 110. In one embodiment, extension 502 does not extend fully around footwear 110 and stops before mid portion 304 of footwear 110. Extension 402 is made of a rigid or semi-rigid material and has a general U-shaped profile such that when extension 502 is placed onto footwear 110, it is held in place by tension.

Rigid or semi-rigid extension 502 may contain securing member 114. Securing member 114 helps secure rigid or semi-rigid extension 502 to footwear 110 and may be, but is not limited to, hooks, barbed metal, a hook and loop system, similar to VELCRO® fastening system, glue, strip adhesive, tacky putty, or a magnet wherein a magnet of opposing polarity is located inside footwear 110 proximate to where securing member 114 is located on footwear 110.

It should be understood that the foregoing relates to exemplary embodiments of the invention and that modifications may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the following claims. For example, as shown in FIG. 6, footwear ornamentation 102, body 104, body attachment 106, and shoe attachment 108 are located on rear portion 116 of footwear 110. Similarly, the other embodiments described above may be located on rear portion 116 of footwear 110.