Title:
Recreational blanket with integral compartments
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A recreational blanket configured to maintain positional stability when superposed on a suitable support structure during periods of increased wind velocity. The recreational blanket further includes a body that is configured in a substantially planar manner. A plurality of compartments integrally formed with the body are configured to receive material therein in order to increase the weight of the recreational blanket. The compartments are proximate the peripheral edge of the body. The recreational blanket further includes a storage container configured to receive objects therein that is substantially water resistant.



Inventors:
Allen, Philip R. (Kew Gardens, NY, US)
Application Number:
11/607630
Publication Date:
06/05/2008
Filing Date:
12/01/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
5/420, 5/485
International Classes:
A47G9/06
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
LIU, JONATHAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Galasso & Associates, LP (Austin, TX, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A barrier configured to be superposed on a support structure for providing a usable area to an individual, comprising: a body, said body configured in a substantially planar manner, said body further being flexible, said body having a first surface and a second surface; and at least one compartment, said compartment being configured to receive material therein to increase the weight of said barrier.

2. The barrier as recited in claim 1, wherein said compartment is integrally formed with said first surface of said body.

3. The barrier as recited in claim 2, wherein said body further includes a peripheral edge with said compartment being integrally formed with said first surface of said boyd proximate said peripheral edge.

4. The barrier as recited in claim 3, wherein said compartment further includes a first layer and a second layer, said first layer and said second layer being configured to be releasably secured to each other such that when said first layer is secured to said second layer, said compartment operable to retain material placed in said compartment.

5. The barrier as recited in claim 4, and further including an attachment mechanism, said attachment mechanism for releasably securing said first layer to said second layer.

6. The barrier as recited in claim 5, and further including a container, said container being integrally formed with said first surface of said body, said container configured to receive objects therein.

7. The barrier as recited in claim 6, wherein said attachment mechanism is a zipper.

8. A blanket comprising: a flexible body; and a plurality of compartments, with each of said plurality of compartments being integrally formed with said body, each of said plurality of compartments having a cavity configured to receive materials therein for increasing the weight of the blanket.

9. The blanket as recited in claim 8, wherein each of said plurality of compartments further includes a first layer and a second layer with said cavity being formed intermediate thereto, said first layer and said second layer being configured to be releasably secured to each other to substantially retain materials placed in said cavity.

10. The blanket as recited in claim 9, wherein each of said plurality of compartments is operable to increase the positional stability of the blanket when said body is superposed on a suitable support structure and materials are placed in said plurality of compartments.

11. The blanket as recited in claim 10, wherein said body further includes a peripheral edge and wherein at least one of said plurality of storage compartments is integrally formed with said body proximate said peripheral edge.

12. The blanket as recited in claim 11, wherein at least one of said plurality of compartments includes an attachment mechanism, said attachment mechanisms being configured to releasably secure said first layer and said second layer of said at least one of said plurality of compartments.

13. The blanket as recited in claim 12, wherein said attachment mechanism is a zipper.

14. The blanket as recited in claim 13, and further including a container, said container being integrally formed with said body, said container being configured to receive objects therein, said container being proximate said peripheral edge.

15. A beach towel comprising: a body, said body configured in a substantially planar manner and being substantially rectangular in shape with four corners, said body having a first surface and a second surface, said body having a peripheral edge and being flexible; a plurality of compartments, each of said plurality of compartments being integrally formed with said first surface of said body, each of said compartments having a first layer and a second layer with a cavity configured to receive materials therein for increasing the weight of said beach towel to increase the positional stability of said beach towel; and a storage container, said storage container being integrally formed with said first surface of said body, said storage container being configured to receive objects therein, said storage container being positioned intermediate two of said plurality of compartments.

16. The beach towel as recited in claim 15, wherein at least four of said plurality of compartments are positioned with a compartment proximate each of said four corners of said body.

17. The beach towel as recited in claim 16, wherein each of said plurality of compartments includes an attachment mechanism, said attachment mechanism for releasably securing said first layer to said second layer to substantially retain materials disposed therein.

18. The beach towel as recited in claim 17, wherein each of said attachment mechanisms of said plurality of compartmtnes is a zipper.

19. The beach towel as recited in claim 18, wherein said storage container is further configured to be water resistant.

20. The beach towel as recited in claim 19, wherein at least one of said plurality of compartments being positioned intermediate two of said corners of said body.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a portable blanket, more specifically but not by way of limitation, a beach blanket designed with a plurality of storage compartments configured to receive material therein for increasing the overall weight of the beach blanket to assist in maintaining the positional stability of the beach blanket subsequent to placing it on a suitable support structure in instances of increased wind velocity.

BACKGROUND

Millions of individuals routinely engage in outdoor activities such as camping, hiking or going to a beach adjacent to a lake or ocean. Individuals engaging in these activities routinely include picnicking or sunbathing as part of the activities planned for the day. Most individuals that plan to engage in sunbathing or picnicking usually transport with them a barrier such as a towel or blanket to place on the ground to provide an area for placing food and other items or to provide comfort for those engaging in sunbathing.

One problem that exists when a user places a blanket or towel on the ground is that there is usually no method to secure the blanket or towel to the ground. A gust of wind can blow the towel or blanket away when the user is not sitting or laying on the towel or blanket. Commonly, a user will superpose a variety of other objects that are available such as coolers in strategic location on the perimeter of the towel or blanket in order to maintain the towel or blanket in position for use. While this solution has been proven useful to maintain the orientation of the towel or blanket, it also limits the available space remaining on the towel or blanket to be utilized by the user. Additionally, these objects can also create tripping hazards for the user. While other devices have addressed methods of securing a towel or blanket to an item such as a chair, no current devices have been shown to possess a method of integrally mounting storage compartments configured to receive materials therein for assisting in maintaining the orientation of the towel or blanket during periods of increased wind velocity.

Accordingly, there is a need for a blanket or towel that has integral storage compartments configured to receive material therein in order to assist in maintaining the orientation of the towel or blanket on a suitable support structure.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is the object of the present invention to provide a blanket being configured in such a manner as to provide assistance in maintaining the orientation of the blanket subsequent to placement of the blanket on a suitable support structure.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a blanket that has a plurality of integral storage compartments configured to receive material therein for facilitation of maintaining the orientation of the blanket.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a blanket that further includes at least one compartment that is configured in such a manner that it is water resistant.

An additional object of the present invention is to provide a blanket that is capable of maintaining a consistent position during periods of increased wind velocity that is relatively lightweight and inexpensive.

To the accomplishment of the above and related objects the present invention may be embodied in the form illustrated in the accompanying drawings. Attention is called to the fact that the drawings are illustrative only. Variations are contemplated as being a part of the present invention, limited only by the scope of the claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

A more complete understanding of the present invention may be had by reference to the following Detailed Description and appended claims when taken in conjunction with the accompanying Drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 2 is an enlarged detailed partial view of one of the integrally mounted storage compartments and enclosure mechanism of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring now to the drawings, and more particularly to a preferred embodiment of the present invention illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2. In these figures, the various elements depicted therein are not necessarily drawn to scale. FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate a preferred embodiment of a recreational blanket 100 constructed according to the principles of the present invention.

The recreational blanket 100 comprises a body 10 that is generally rectangular in shape and configured in a substantially planar manner. The body 10 is manufactured from suitable durable and comfortable materials such as but not limited to cotton or terry cloth. The body 10 has two opposing surfaces 12, 14. Although the body 10 is illustrated in the drawings submitted herewith as being rectangular in shape, it is further contemplated within the scope of the present invention that the body 10 could be manufactured in numerous different shapes and sizes. More specifically, but not by way of limitation, the body 10 could be circular or oval in shape.

Superposed on one surface 12 of the body 10 and proximate the peripheral edge 30 are a plurality of compartments 20. The compartments 20 are integrally formed with the body 10 by suitable mechanical or chemical methods or a combination thereof. As shown in particular in FIG. 2, the compartments 20 are configured utilizing a first layer 22 and a second layer 26 forming a cavity 28 therebetween.

The compartments 20 are integrally formed with the body 10 and located proximate each corner 45 of the body 10. The compartments 20 function to receive suitable material therein such as but not limited to rocks or sand. Those skilled in the art will recognize that numerous materials could be utilized to add weight to the compartments 20 in order to achieve the functionality as described herein. Subsequent to placing materials in the compartments 20 the compartments 20 having materials now disposed therein function to provide positional stability for the recreational blanket 100. The weighted compartments 20 function to maintain the positional stability of the recreational blanket 100 on a suitable support structure such as the ground or a beach chair. Those skilled in the art will recognize that the recreational blanket 100 could be manufactured to be many different types of suitable barriers that has perimeter weights integrally formed therewith. More specifically but not by way of limitation, a picnic blanket, a children's play blanket, or a tablecloth could be manufactured according to the principles of the present invention in order to provide positional stability subsequent to being placed on a desired location.

Additional side compartments 18 are located intermediate the corners 45 along the lateral edges 55. The side compartments 18 are manufactured and function similar to the compartments 20 being configured to receive materials therein adding weight to the side compartments 18 in order to increase the positional stability of the recreational blanket 100 when it is placed in its desired position on a suitable support structure. Those skilled in the art will recognize that numerous different shapes, sizes and amounts of the side compartment 18 could be utilized in order to achieve the functionality as described herein.

As shown in particular in FIG. 2, an attachment mechanism 24 is disposed along the edges 32 of the first layer 22 and second layer 24 of the compartments 20. The attachment mechanism 24 functions to releasably secure the first layer 22 to the second layer 26 thereby substantially capturing any material placed in the cavity 28. While the attachment mechanism 24 illustrated in the drawings submitted herewith is a zipper, those skilled in the art should recognize that numerous different types of attachment mechanisms could be utilized to releasably secure the layers 22, 24 of the compartment 20. More specifically but not by way of limitation, the attachment mechanism 24 could be manufactured with a hook and loop fastener device.

Although the recreational blanket 100 is illustrated in the drawings submitted herewith as having compartments 20 proximate each corner 45 and two side compartments 18 integrally secured along the lateral edges 55 it is further contemplated within the scope of the present invention that the body 10 could have integrated thereon numerous different amounts of compartments 20 configured to receive material therein in order to achieve the desired positional stability of the recreational blanket 100 subsequent to its placement on a suitable support structure in instances such as but not limited to increased wind velocity.

Intermediate two corners along one end 60 secured between the compartments 20 is a storage container 40. The storage container 40 is integrally formed with the body 10 by suitable mechanical or chemical methods. The storage container 40 is constructed similar to the compartments 20 as described herein having a cavity 28 intermediate two layers 42, 44 sufficient to receive therein a variety of objects. The two layers 42, 44 of the storage container 40 are releasably secured with an attachment mechanism 24 such as but not limited to a zipper. It is further contemplated within the scope of the present invention that the storage container 40 has substantially disposed therein a waterproof liner in order to inhibit liquids from propagating into the cavity 28. Those skilled in the art will recognize that numerous different types of materials could be utilized to provide water resistance such as but not limited to plastic or rubber. The recreational blanket 100 further functions as a protective barrier whereby one surface 14 is superposed on a support structure such as the ground and the opposing surface 12 provides a more desirable surface 12 for the user to engage.

Referring in particular to FIG. 1, a description of the operation of the recreational blanket 100 is as follows. In use, a user will transport the recreational blanket 100 to a desired location such as a beach. The user will position the recreational blanket 100 in a desired position on a suitable support structure such as beach. The user then utilizes the attachment mechanism 24 to open the compartments 20 in order to access the cavity 28 and deposit the desired amount of sand or rocks therein. This is performed for all of the compartments 20 and side compartments 18 disposed along the peripheral edge 30 of the surface 12 that is opposite the suitable support structure.

Once the cavity 28 of each compartment 20 and side compartment 18 has had materials deposited therein, the user closes the compartments 20 and side compartments 18 in order to retain the material within the cavity 28. The material disposed within the compartments 20 add sufficient weight whereby to substantially inhibit the recreational blanket 100 from moving on its support structure. Upon completion of use of the recreational blanket 100 the user removes the material disposed within the compartments 20 and stores in a desired location for subsequent use thereof.

In the preceding detailed description, reference has been made to the accompanying drawings that form a part hereof, and in which are shown by way of illustration specific embodiments in which the invention may be practiced. These embodiments, and certain variants thereof, have been described in sufficient detail to enable those skilled in the art to practice the invention. It is to be understood that other suitable embodiments may be utilized and that logical changes may be made without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention. The description may omit certain information known to those skilled in the art. The preceding detailed description is, therefore, not intended to be limited to the specific forms set forth herein, but on the contrary, it is intended to cover such alternatives, modifications, and equivalents, as can be reasonably included within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.