Title:
Methods and apparatus for securing a valuable item in a pocket
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Methods and apparatus for retaining a valuable item within a pocket accessible to at least one hand of a user according to various aspects of the present invention may comprise a pocket fastener capable of attaching to the interior of the pocket and a valuable fastener connected to the pocket fastener and adapted to attach to the valuable item. The system may further operate in conjunction with a tether connected to the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener.



Inventors:
Noblitt, Daniel J. (Scottsdale, AZ, US)
Application Number:
14/613645
Publication Date:
08/06/2015
Filing Date:
02/04/2015
Assignee:
NOBLITT DANIEL J.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A41D27/20; A44C9/00
View Patent Images:
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Other References:
Meisner ' 889
Primary Examiner:
MORAN, KATHERINE M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
NOBLITT & NEWSON, PLLC (SCOTTSDALE, AZ, US)
Claims:
1. A retainer apparatus for retaining a valuable item within a pocket accessible to at least one hand of a user, comprising: a pocket fastener capable of attaching to the interior of the pocket; and a valuable fastener connected to the pocket fastener and adapted to attach to the valuable item.

2. A retainer apparatus according to claim 1, further comprising a tether, wherein the tether connects the valuable fastener to the pocket fastener.

3. A retainer apparatus according to claim 2, wherein the tether is less than about eight inches long between the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener.

4. A retainer apparatus according to claim 2, wherein a length of the tether is adjustable.

5. A retainer apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener are integrated into a single unit.

6. A retainer apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the valuable fastener comprises a soft pouch.

7. A retainer apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the valuable fastener comprises a clip.

8. A retainer apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the pocket fastener comprises a pin.

9. A retainer apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the valuable fastener is structured to release the valuable item using only the one hand of the user.

10. A retainer apparatus for retaining a jewelry ring within a pocket having a fabric interior and accessible to at least one hand of a user, comprising: a pocket fastener adapted to be secured to the fabric interior of the pocket; a valuable fastener adapted to be secured to the jewelry ring; and a flexible tether connected to the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener.

11. A retainer apparatus according to claim 10, wherein the tether is less than about eight inches long between the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener.

12. A retainer apparatus according to claim 10, wherein a length of the tether is adjustable.

13. A retainer apparatus according to claim 10, wherein the valuable fastener comprises a soft pouch.

14. A retainer apparatus according to claim 10, wherein the valuable fastener comprises a clip.

15. A retainer apparatus according to claim 10, wherein the pocket fastener comprises a pin.

16. A retainer apparatus according to claim 10, wherein the valuable fastener is structured to release the valuable item using only the one hand of the user.

17. A retainer apparatus for retaining a jewelry ring within a pocket having a fabric interior and accessible to at least one hand of the user, comprising: a pocket fastener adapted to be pinned to the fabric interior of the pocket; a valuable fastener adapted to be secured to the jewelry ring; and release the jewelry ring using only the one hand of the user; and a flexible tether connected to the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener, wherein the tether is less than about eight inches long when extended between the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener.

18. A retainer apparatus according to claim 17, wherein a length of the tether is adjustable.

19. A retainer apparatus according to claim 17, wherein the valuable fastener comprises a soft pouch.

20. A retainer apparatus according to claim 17, wherein the valuable fastener comprises a clip.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCES TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/935,720, filed Feb. 4, 2014, and incorporates the disclosure of such application by reference.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

When a man plans to propose marriage, he puts a small ring worth thousands of dollars into his pocket for the better part of a day or evening, awaiting presentation to his beloved at just the right moment. In many cases, the ring represents the single most expensive item (at least without a roof) that he has ever purchased. The man is understandably nervous for a variety of reasons, not least among them the prospect of losing the ring as it falls out of his pocket or slips through a previously unknown hole.

One possibility that the man may consider is to keep the ring in a small ring box. But the ring box tends to be bulky and uncomfortable. The sizable bulge in the man's pocket may also ruin the intended surprise or otherwise draw unwanted attention. The net effect is to cause undue anxiety at a time when additional pressure is most unwelcome.

Similar circumstances may arise in a variety of situations, especially those involving a small but expensive gift that is kept in a person's pocket until it is time to be presented to the recipient.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Methods and apparatus for retaining a valuable item within a pocket accessible to at least one hand of a user according to various aspects of the present invention may comprise a pocket fastener capable of attaching to the interior of the pocket and a valuable fastener connected to the pocket fastener and adapted to attach to the valuable item. The system may further operate in conjunction with a tether connected to the pocket fastener and the valuable fastener.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIGURES

A more complete understanding of the present invention may be derived by referring to the detailed description and claims when considered in connection with the following illustrative figures. In the following figures, like reference numbers refer to similar elements and steps throughout the figures.

FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a retainer apparatus according to various aspects of the present invention including a tether;

FIG. 2 is a block diagram of a retainer apparatus according to various aspects of the present invention configured as an integrated unit;

FIG. 3 representatively illustrates an embodiment of a retainer apparatus according to various aspects of the present invention.

FIG. 4 representatively illustrates another embodiment of a retainer apparatus according to various aspects of the present invention.

Elements and steps in the figures are illustrated for simplicity and clarity and have not necessarily been rendered according to any particular sequence. For example, steps that may be performed concurrently or in different order are illustrated in the figures to help to improve understanding of embodiments of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EXEMPLARY EMBODIMENTS

A retainer apparatus according to various aspects of the present technology secures an object to the interior of pocket. Referring to FIG. 1, the apparatus 100 may comprise a pocket fastener 110 that connects to the inside of the pocket and a valuable fastener 112 that attaches to the item of value. A tether 114 may connect the two fasteners, or the two fasteners may be integrated, joined directly, or connected via another connector. The retainer apparatus 100 may comprise a small and/or low-profile device to facilitate discreet transport of the valuable item.

The item of value may comprise any appropriate item to be carried in a pocket, such as jewelry or other valuable to be presented as a gift. For example, the item of value may be an engagement ring. The object may also be any other suitable object or objects the user desires to secure to the interior of a pocket such as one or more rings, earrings, necklaces, bracelets, or any other pieces of jewelry, trinkets, or other possibly sentimental or otherwise valuable items.

The interior of a pocket may comprise the interior or inside of a pocket located in a garment, such as pants, shorts, a shirt, a jacket, a coat, a skirt, a dress, or any other suitable garment possessing a pocket. The interior or inside may refer to the inner lining, mesh lining, or any fabric making up the interior of the pocket or otherwise present in the interior of the pocket. In one embodiment, the interior of a pocket may comprise the inner lining of a pants pocket.

The pocket fastener 110 secures the retainer apparatus to the interior of the pocket. The pocket fastener 110 may securely connect to the interior of the pocket in any appropriate manner, such as via a safety pin 310 (FIG. 3), strap, clasp, clamp, magnet, pin, clip, Velcro 410 (FIG. 4), adhesive, or other suitable materials for attaching the apparatus to the interior of the pocket. The pocket fastener 110 may further comprise a safety guard to prevent harm to a user, such as a cover over sharp points or edges.

The valuable fastener 112 attaches to the item of value. The valuable fastener 112 may attach to the item of value in any suitable manner, such as by containing or connecting to the item of value, and may be adapted to the particular item of value. For example, the valuable fastener 112 may comprise a spring-biased clip 312 (FIG. 3) having jaws wide enough to close and remain closed around an ordinary engagement ring. The valuable fastener 112, such as a spring-biased clip or pouch 412 (FIG. 4), may be easily operated with a single hand to disengage the ring or other valuable from the retainer apparatus at the desired moment.

In alternative embodiments, the valuable fastener 112 may comprise other mechanisms or combinations of mechanisms to attach the valuable item to the apparatus, such as a loop, clip, snap, tie, pin, or Velcro. In one embodiment, the valuable fastener 112 may comprise a pocket or enclosure to contain the valuable object. The pocket or enclosure may be partially or completely open on one or more sides to receive the object and one or more sides may be partially or completely closable though a fastener or a combination of fasteners, such as a strap, clasp, snap, Velcro, zipper, hook and eye, button, pin, drawstring, zip lock, magnet, turn-lock, or other suitable fastener. The valuable fastener 112 may comprise a soft or otherwise non-scratching or non-damaging material to avoid damaging the valuable item, such as a velvet or silk lining or pouch.

The pocket fastener 110 and the valuable fastener 112 may comprise a single unit (FIG. 2) or be joined, such as by the tether 114. The tether 114 may connect the pocket fastener 110 to the valuable fastener 112, and may comprise a substantially rigid or flexible element that is short enough to keep the item of value in the pocket, such as less than about 8″, about 0″ to 6″, or about 1″ to 5″, or approximately 3″ to 4″. The tether 114 may thus be any appropriate length such that when coupled to the pocket fastener 110 and the valuable fastener 112, the combined length of the retainer apparatus does not exceed the depth of the anticipated clothing pocket. The tether 114 may comprise a strong, flexible material, such as string 314 (FIG. 3), twine, leather, wire, ribbon, mesh, cord, thread, rope, plastic, chain, or the like. The length of the tether 114 may also be adjustable, for example according to the depth of the user's pocket. The length may be adjusted in any suitable manner, such as by cutting off a length of the tether 114 or by doubling over the tether 114 on itself, for example in conjunction with a position retainer like a buckle.

In one embodiment, one end of the tether 114 is attached to the pocket fastener 110 while the other end is attached to the valuable fastener 112. In one embodiment, the tether 114 operates as the valuable fastener 112, such as a string looped through the ring on one end and coupled to the pocket fastener 110.

The process for securing the valuable item in the pocket may include attaching the valuable item to the valuable fastener 112 and attaching the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of the pocket. The method may be performed in any appropriate order.

Securing the valuable item may comprise securing a ring to a loop closed by a snap by inserting the tether 114 through the ring and snapping the mechanism, such as to a snap on the tether 114 or on the pocket fastener 110. In another embodiment, securing the ring may comprise placing the ring inside an enclosure and closing the enclosure by zipping it shut. The method of securing the valuable item to an element having an attachment mechanism may be performed by any method suitable for securing an object to an element having an attachment mechanism such as but not limited to, snapping, clamping, gripping, looping, tying, enclosing, Velcro-ing, taping, or otherwise releasably connecting an object to an element having an attachment mechanism.

Attaching the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of a pocket may comprise connecting or coupling the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of a pocket permanently or temporarily. In one embodiment, attaching the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of a pocket may comprise of pinning the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of the pocket or sewing the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of the pocket. Securing the pocket fastener 110 the pocket interior may include pinning, clipping, sewing, Velcro-ing, taping, tying, clamping, snapping, gluing, or otherwise temporarily or permanently connecting the pocket fastener 110 to the interior of the pocket.

In the foregoing specification, the invention has been described with reference to specific exemplary embodiments. Various modifications and changes may be made, however, without departing from the scope of the present invention as set forth in the claims. The specification and figures are illustrative, not restrictive, and modifications are intended to be included within the scope of the present invention. Accordingly, the scope of the invention should be determined by the claims and their legal equivalents rather than by merely the examples described.

For example, the steps recited in any method or process claims may be executed in any order and are not limited to the specific order presented in the claims. Additionally, the components and/or elements recited in any apparatus claims may be assembled or otherwise operationally configured in a variety of permutations and are accordingly not limited to the specific configuration recited in the claims.

Benefits, other advantages, and solutions to problems have been described above with regard to particular embodiments. Any benefit, advantage, solution to problem, or any element that may cause any particular benefit, advantage, or solution to occur or to become more pronounced are not to be construed as critical, required, or essential features or components of any or all the claims.

The terms “comprise”, “comprises”, “comprising”, “having”, “including”, “includes” or any variations of such terms, are intended to reference a non-exclusive inclusion, such that a process, method, article, composition or apparatus that comprises a list of elements does not include only those elements recited, but may also include other elements not expressly listed or inherent to such process, method, article, composition or apparatus. Other combinations and/or modifications of the above-described structures, arrangements, applications, proportions, elements, materials, or components used in the practice of the present invention, in addition to those not specifically recited, may be varied or otherwise particularly adapted to specific environments, manufacturing specifications, design parameters, or other operating requirements without departing from the general principles of the same.