Title:
Garment display and storage case
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A display and storage case for T-shirts includes a base element conforming in general shape to a flat T-shirt. A cover element is selectively secured to the base element, and is fabricated from a transparent material. A hook element is connected to one of the base element and the cover element, and facilitates hanging of the case on a standard clothes hanging device. ATt-shirt can be secured between the base element and the cover element with the color and graphic features of the T-shirt being visible.



Inventors:
Plett, Ryan (Chicago, IL, US)
Application Number:
12/284054
Publication Date:
03/18/2010
Filing Date:
09/18/2008
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
206/288
International Classes:
B65D85/18
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
COLLADO, CYNTHIA FRANCISCA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
RYAN PLETT (CHICAGO, IL, US)
Claims:
I claim as my invention:

1. A display and storage case for T-shirts, the case comprising the following: a base element conforming in general shape to a flat T-shirt; a cover element adapted and constructed to be secured to the base element, the cover element being fabricated from a transparent material; and a hook element connected to one of the base element and the cover element, the hook element being adapted and constructed to facilitate hanging of the case on a standard clothes hanging device; whereby a T-shirt can be secured between the base element and the cover element with the color and graphic features of the T-shirt being visible.

2. A case in accordance with claim 1, wherein the cover element and base element are fabricated from a plastic material.

3. A case in accordance with claim 2, wherein the cover element and base element are fabricated from a polycarbonate material.

4. A case in accordance with claim 2, wherein the cover element and base element are fabricated from an acrylic material.

5. A case in accordance with claim 2, wherein the cover element and base element are fabricated from a thermoplastic material.

6. A case in accordance with claim 1, wherein the base element, cover element, and hook element are fabricated from the same material.

7. A case in accordance with claim 1, further comprising indicia provided on one of the base element, the cover element, and the hook element.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

None.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

It is conjectured that the earliest garments, probably animal skins, leaves, and other found materials, were donned by our ancestors more than 100,000 years ago. Evidence of crude needles fabricated from animal bone date the first sewn garments to as much as 30,000 years ago. The use of implements to hang garments predates recorded history, and it is likely that the first “coat hook” was a branch or bit of rock jutting from the inside wall of a cave.

The invention of the wooden hanger is widely credited to Thomas Jefferson, and wooden hangers resembling coat hooks were known in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. A coat hook resembling the modern clothes hanger was patented by North in 1869. The modern wire hanger was patented by Albert J. Parkhouse, an employee of Timberlake Wire and Novelty Company in Jackson, Mich., in 1903, in response to co-workers' complaints of too few coat hooks. He bent a piece of wire into two ovals with the ends twisted together to form a hook. Schuyler C. Hulett received a patent in 1932 for an improvement which involved cardboard tubes screwed onto the upper and lower portions to prevent wrinkles in freshly laundered clothes.

Through decades of development, many specialty hangers have been devised to facilitate the hanging and protection of various garments. For example, U.S. Pat. No. 6,241,084 to Gyr is directed to a package in which Fabric articles such as clothing are compressed into compact rectangular prisms that approximate the size and shape of selected products, such as books and video tapes. A package is formed when each of the compacted prisms is enclosed in a decorative and protective overlay that has printing on its visible surfaces that simulates visible surfaces of the selected product. A number of the packages are supported in side by side contact with each other on a horizontal surface in the same manner in which the simulated product is commonly displayed for sale.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,718,331 to Smith shows a t-shirt storage and display apparatus includes a clear frame. A cardboard insert is removably received within the clear frame. A t-shirt is positioned between the cardboard insert and the clear frame whereby a logo on the t-shirt can be viewed through the clear frame.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,316,139 to Judd describes a shirt storage and package apparatus for the shipping, storage, and display of shirts is described. The apparatus, preferably made of integrally molded polyvinylchloride plastic to insure visibility, includes a top cover having a generally rectangular shape; an upright collar insert integrally molded within and perpendicular to the plane of the cover; a bottom cover substantially identical to and placed opposite in orientation to the top cover; a means for moving the top and bottom covers between an open and a closed position; and a means for releasably locking the top and bottom covers to one another. The upright collar insert is adapted to fit within a shirt collar, thereby maintaining the the shirt in a non-crushable position. Two shirts can be accommodated in a back-to-back position and opposite orientation from one another within each apparatus, thereby allowing easy user and consumer inspection.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,071,139 to Pernicano deals with a packaged T-shirt assembly. A T-shirt with a design disposed on its front portion is placed against a glass top panel of a rectangular positioning box which has a fluorescent light therein. The rays of fluorescent light shine through the top panel and through the front and back portions of the shirt to isolate the design. The shirt is then moved so that the design is centered within the outer periphery of the top panel. A flat stiffener, such as a record album assembly or piece of packaging cardboard, is then placed over the back portion of the shirt. The side sections of the shirt are then folded around the edges of the stiffener and, thereafter, the bottom and top sections of the shirt are folded over or atop the side sections. Tape strips are used to secure the side sections to the back surface of the stiffener and the top and bottom sections together. A wrapper of transparent material is then disposed around the assembly to enclose the shirt and stiffener.

U.S. Pat. No. 3,507,442 to Van Dam discloses a rackabale display box and method of assembling a box blank to facilitate the formation of a combined closure and hanging structure at one end of the box with conventional erecting, loading, and closing equipment. The box is convertible from a storage and shipping form to a form enabling suspension on a display rack.

U.S. Pat. No. 2,764,280 to Carper sets forth a protective device for shirts, especially for the protection of shirts when placed in a suitcase or “grip.”

U.S. Pat. No. D502,743 to Draper involves an ornamental design for a tee-shirt display frame.

U.S. Pat. No. D183,095 to Hesse pictures an ornamental design ofr a protective cover for a shirt.

Although the arrangements described in these patents provide certain advantages, they present certain deficiencies as well. For example, many known devices are relatively complicated and expensive, and do not facilitate the display of garments. It can thus be seen that the need exists for a simple, efficient, and easily manufactured device for storing and displaying garments.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A display and storage case for T-shirts includes a base element conforming in general shape to a flat T-shirt. A cover element is selectively secured to the base element, and is fabricated from a transparent material. A hook element is connected to one of the base element and the cover element, and facilitates hanging of the case on a standard clothes hanging device. ATt-shirt can be secured between the base element and the cover element with the color and graphic features of the T-shirt being visible.

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 and in which like reference numerals refer to similar elements and in which:

FIG. 1 illustrates a perspective view of a case in accordance with the principles of the present invention.

FIG. 2 illustrates an exploded view of the FIG. 1 embodiment.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

In the following description, specific details are set forth in order to provide a thorough understanding of the invention. However, it will be apparent that the invention may be practiced without these specific details. Without departing from the generality of the invention disclosed herein and without limiting the scope of the invention, the discussion that follows, will refer to the invention as depicted in the drawings.

An embodiment of a display and storage case for T-shirts 10 in accordance with the principles of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. The display and storage case 10 is adapted and constructed to hold at least one T-shirt 12 is such a way that the color and graphic features 14 of the T-shirt 12 are visible.

The case 10 includes a base element 16 conforming in general shape to the T-shirt 12 when the T-shirt 12 is in a flat position. The base element 16 is fabricated from a suitably rigid and durable material, such as a plastic.

A cover element 18 is provided, and is adapted and constructed to be secured to the base element 16. The cover element 18 can be secured by interfitting over the base element, as illustrated. Alternatively, the cover element can be secured by latches or another conventional fastening arrangement. The cover element 18 is fabricated from a rigid and durable transparent material. It is contemplated that suitable materials include plastics such as thermoplastics, polycarbonates, and acrylics.

A hook element 20 is connected to either the base element 16 or the cover element 18. The hook element 20 is adapted and constructed to facilitate hanging of the case on a standard clothes hanging device, such as a closet rod or a display hook. The base element 16, the cover element 18, and the hook element 20 can be fabricated from the same material. Alternatively, the hook element 20 can be fabricated from, for example, metal, with the nase element 16 and cover element 18 being fabricated from plastic.

As can be seen in the Figures, the T-shirt 12 can be secured between the base element 16 and the cover element 18 with the color and graphic features of the T-shirt being visible. This is particularly desirable for vintage and collector T-shirts and other expensive and potentially fragile garments, as the case 10 permits the display and enjoyment of the T-shirt 12 without sacrificing protection and preservation.

Indicia 22 can be provided on the case 10 to identify the garment contained therein, or to provide the background, history or other information regarding the garment. The indicia 22 can be placed as shown so as to be visible when multiple cases 10 are hung front-to-bask in a closet or on a horizontal rack.

While this invention has been described in connection with the best mode presently contemplated by the inventor for carrying out his invention, the preferred embodiments described and shown are for purposes of illustration only, and are not to be construed as constituting any limitations of the invention. Modifications will be obvious to those skilled in the art, and all modifications that do not depart from the spirit of the invention are intended to be included within the scope of the appended claims. Those skilled in the art will appreciate that the conception upon which this disclosure is based, may readily be utilized as a basis for the designing of other structures, methods and systems for carrying out the several purposes of the present invention. It is important, therefore, that the claims be regarded as including such equivalent constructions insofar as they do not depart from the spirit and scope of the present invention.

The invention resides not in any one of these features per se, but rather in the particular combinations of some or all of them herein disclosed and claimed and it is distinguished from the prior art in these particular combinations of some or all of its structures for the functions specified.

With respect to the above description then, it is to be realized that the optimum dimensional relationships for the parts of the invention, including variations in size, materials, shape, form, function and manner of operation, assembly and use, and all equivalent relationships to those illustrated in the drawings and described in the specification, that would be deemed readily apparent and obvious to one skilled in the art, are intended to be encompassed by the present invention.

Therefore, the foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly, all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention.