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Title:
HAT AND CAP RETAINER APPARATUS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/133943
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A retainer capable of securing headwear to a user's head includes one or more keepers, one or more flexible elongated members, and an adjustment device. The one or more keepers may be capable of being secured to the headwear. The one or more flexible elongated members may extend from the one or more keepers and be capable of being positioned around at least a portion of the user's head (e.g., his or her chin, etc.). The adjustment device may enable adjustment of an effective length of the one or more flexible elongated members and, thus, tightening or loosening of the one or more flexible elongated members relative to the portion of the user's head around which they are positioned (e.g., the user's chin, etc.).

Inventors:
LAYTON, Mark, L. (P.O. Box 970548, Orem, Utah, 84097, US)
Application Number:
US2018/068076
Publication Date:
July 04, 2019
Filing Date:
December 29, 2018
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
LAYTON, Mark, L. (P.O. Box 970548, Orem, Utah, 84097, US)
International Classes:
A42B7/00; A42B3/08; A42C5/00
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
POWER, Brick, G. (Durham Jones & Pinegar, P.c.3301 N. Thanksgiving Way, Suite 40, Lehi Utah, 84043, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

What is claimed:

1. A retainer for securing headwear to a head of a wearer, comprising: at least one keeper adapted to be secured to the headwear;

a flexible elongated member connected to the at least one keeper to enable the

headwear to be attached to the headwear, the flexible elongated member capable of being positioned around a portion of the head of the wearer while the headwear is positioned upon the head of the user; and

an adjustment device connected to the flexible elongated member and capable of adjusting an effective length of the flexible elongated member and of tightening and/or loosening the flexible elongated member relative to the head of the wearer. 2. The retainer of claim 1, wherein the at least one keeper comprises a pair of keepers, each keeper of the pair of keepers adapted to be secured to the headwear.

3. The retainer of claim 2, wherein the flexible elongated member comprises a strap, a cord, a lace, a string, or a lanyard connected to each keeper of the pair of keepers.

4. The retainer of claim 1, wherein the at least one keeper comprises a single keeper, with portions of the at least one keeper that receive opposite ends of the flexible elongated member adapted to be positioned at opposite sides of the headwear.

5. The retainer of any of claims 1-4, wherein the flexible elongated member comprises two flexible elongated members, each flexible elongated member connected to a corresponding keeper of the pair of keepers. 6. The retainer of any of claims 1-4, wherein the flexible elongated member comprises a single flexible elongated member, with opposite ends of the single flexible elongated member being secured to the at least one keeper.

7. The retainer of any of claims 1-6, wherein the at least one keeper is adapted to attach to a band of the headwear.

8. The retainer of claim 7, wherein the at least one keeper is adapted to removably attach to the band of the headwear.

9. The retainer of claim 8, wherein the at least one keeper is adapted to be removably disposed behind the band on opposite sides of the band.

10. The retainer of any of claims 1-9, wherein the at least one keeper is adapted to attach to a hat or a cap.

11. The retainer of any of claims 1-10, wherein the adjustment device is adapted to slide along the flexible elongated member to increase or decrease an effective length of the flexible elongated member.

12. The retainer of claim 1, wherein:

the at least one keeper comprises two keepers adapted to be secured to a band of the headwear;

the flexible elongated member comprises one or more straps capable of being

connected between the two keepers and secured around a chin of the head of the user; and

the adjustment device is connected to the one or more straps and capable of tightening or loosening the one or more straps relative to the chin of the user.

13. The retainer of claim 12, wherein at least one of the one or more straps extends from each keeper of the two keepers to the adjustment device.

14. The retainer of claim 12 or claim 13, wherein the one or more straps comprises two straps, with one strap of the two straps secured to a corresponding keeper of the two keepers.

15. The retainer of any of claims 12-14, wherein the adjustment device comprises a slider that secures different locations along the one or more straps together. 16. The retainer of claim 15, wherein the slider is adapted to tighten the one or more straps around the chin of the user by moving the slider along the one or more straps toward the headwear.

17. The retainer of any of claims 1-16, wherein the flexible elongated member includes a knot at each end thereof to secure the end to the at least one keeper.

Description:
HAT AND CAP RETAINER APPARATUS

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

A claim for the benefit of priority to the December 29, 2017 filing date of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/612,300, titled HAT AND CAP RETAINER APPARATUS (“the’300 Provisional Application”), is hereby made. The entire disclosure of the’ 300 Provisional Application is hereby incorporated herein.

TECHNICAL FIELD

This disclosure relates generally to apparatuses capable of retaining hats and caps on a user’s (e.g., an individual, etc.), or a wearer’s head. Such a hat and cap retainer may be capable of attaching to a band of a hat or a cap or to a user’s hair to secure a hat or a cap in place on the user’ s head.

BACKGROUND OF RELATED ART

A wide variety of hat retainers exist for securing a hat to the head of a user. An example of such a retainer is disclosed in U.S. Patent 4,993,079, in which a band of a hat is removably attached to a headband worn by a user by means of matching hook and loop materials. Another example of a retainer is disclosed by U.S. Patent

Application Publication US 2006/0272074 Al, in which a chin strap is secured to opposite sides of a hat by securing and locking members. Another similar device is disclosed by U.S. Patent 7,020,900, in which an elasticized band is attached to the periphery of a crown of a hat to retain the hat on a user’s head. Other devices employ a leash, tether, or lanyard to secure a hat that may have fallen off a user’ s head, such as those disclosed by U.S. Patent 6,446,265, U.S. Patent Application Publication US 2017/0035140 Al, and U.S. Patent Application Publication US 2014/0301888 Al.

Unfortunately, many of these devices are complicated or difficult to use or remove, or only secure a hat to a user after the hat has fallen off the user’s head.

SUMMARY

A retainer according to this disclosure may removably or permanently attach to headwear (e.g., a hat, a cap, a bonnet, a boater hat, a fedora, a panama hat, a sunhat, etc.) or to head gear (e.g., a helmet, etc.) to enable the headwear or headgear to be readily secured in place on a user’ s head. As used herein, the term“headwear” refers to various types of hats, caps, and other headwear, as well as to various types of helmets. While the terms“hat” and“cap” may be used herein to refer to specific types of headwear, for the sake of simplicity, these terms, as used herein, may generally to any of a variety of different types of headwear.

A retainer according to this disclosure may include at least one flexible elongated member, which is referred to herein as a“strap,” (e.g., a cord, a lace, a string, a lanyard, a strap, etc.) that may be attached to a band (e.g., a hatband, a sweatband, etc.) of headwear or elsewhere on the headwear in order to secure the headwear to the user’ s head.

Opposite ends of the strap may be secured in place relative to opposite sides of the headwear or relative to opposite sides of the user’ s head. The one or more keepers may be capable of insertion behind a band of the headwear, between the band and an inner surface of an exterior portion of the headwear. In a specific embodiment, opposite ends of the strap may be secured to one or more keepers. Each keeper may be flat and curved or flexible to enable the keeper to conform to a shape of a band of headwear with which the keeper is to be used and/or to enable the keeper to conform to a shape of the user’s head.

A remainder of the strap may partially define a loop, which may be worn in a variety of positions, such as under the user’s chin, behind the user’s head, or otherwise in relation to the head of the user. An effective size of the loop may be adjustable; for example, it may be tightened or loosened. An adjustment device, which is referred to herein as a“slider” and as a“fastener,” may hold a pair of locations of the strap adjacent to one another. The slider may be held in place mechanically (e.g., by features of the slider that engage, or grip, the strap, etc.), by friction, etc., but may also be capable of sliding along lengths of portions of the strap to enable adjustment of a size of the loop and, thus, tightening of the loop around the user’s head or loosening of the loop from the user’s head.

A method for using a retainer according to this disclosure may include securing each end of a strap of the retainer to a keeper. The end of the strap may be introduced through at least one hole through the keeper and then anchored in place (e.g. the strap may be knotted, a clamp or anchor may be secured to the strap adjacent to its end, etc.). Each keeper may be introduced between a band on an inside of an item of headwear and the exterior portion of the headwear to position the ends of the strap on opposite sides of the headwear. The keeper(s) may optionally be secured to the band. As With the retainer in place, the headwear may be placed on a user’s, or wearer’s head. Optionally, the keeper(s) may be secured to the user’s head (e.g., to his or her hair, etc.). While placing the headwear on the user’s head, the strap of the retainer also be positioned at a desired location (e.g., under the user’s chin, at the back of the user’s head, etc.), and a slider on the strap of the retainer may be adjusted to tighten a loop defined partially by the strap to thereby secure the headwear to the user’ s head.

Other aspects of the disclosed subject matter, as well as features and advantages of various aspects of the disclosed subject matter, should be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art through consideration of the ensuing description, the accompanying drawings, and the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a view of a retainer according to an embodiment of the present disclosure;

FIG. 2 is a view of a retainer according to another embodiment of the present disclosure;

FIGs. 3 A, 3B, and 4 illustrate an embodiment of a manner in which a retainer may be attached to the band of a hat or other headwear;

FIG. 5 shows a hat and retainer with the straps in a crossed arrangement; FIG. 6 depicts the retainer attached to the band of a cap;

FIG. 7 illustrates an embodiment of use of the embodiment of retainer of FIG. 2 to secure a hat to a user’s head;

FIG. 8 illustrates an embodiment of use of the retainer of FIG. 1 to secure a cap to a user’s head;

FIG. 9A is a plan view of an embodiment of a keeper of a retainer according to the present disclosure;

FIG. 9B is a plan view of another embodiment of a keeper of a retainer according to the present disclosure;

FIGs. 10A and 10B are front and back views, respectively, of the embodiment of keeper shown in FIG. 9B, with an embodiment of strap associated therewith;

FIGs. 11 A, 11B, and 11C are front (FIGs. 11A and 11B) and back (FIG. 11C) views of the embodiment of keeper shown in FIGs. 10A and 10B, and depict a procedure for connecting a strap according to an embodiment of the present disclosure to the keeper;

FIGs. 12A and 12B are front and back views, respectively, of the embodiment of keeper shown in FIG. 9B assembled with the embodiment of strap shown in FIG. 2;

FIGs. 13A, 13B, and 13C are views of the keeper and strap of FIGs. 12A and 12B assembled with a hat, according to an embodiment of the present disclosure; and

FIGs. 14 and 15 show separate embodiments of keepers and techniques for assembling a strap with a keeper to enable attachment of the strap to a band of an item of headwear or to the head (e.g., the hair, etc.) of a user.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

A retainer according to this disclosure is capable of attaching to an item of headwear, such as a hat or a cap and of securing the headwear to a user’s, or wearer’s, head. The retainer may include a strap, one or more keepers, and a slider. The one or more keepers are capable of securing the retainer to the headwear, and optionally to the user’s head. The strap defines a portion of a loop that enables the headwear to be secured in place on the user’ s head. The slider enables tightening and loosening of the strap; thus, the slider enables the retainer to secure the headwear to the user’s head, as well as removal of the retainer and the headwear from the user’ s head.

In one embodiment, the keepers are connected to opposite ends of one or more straps that are extend to a common slider, or fastener. The slider may be arranged relative to the strap in a manner that enables a loop defined partially by the strap to be secured to the chin or another part the head of a user (e.g., an individual) wearing the headwear (/. <? ., a wearer of the headwear). By cinching up the slider along the strap to reduce the size of the loop defined partially by the strap and to apply tension to the strap, the headwear may be secured to the head of the user.

Looking first at FIG. 1, one embodiment of retainer 10 includes matching keepers 12 and 14. Each of the keepers 12 and 14 includes a hole 16, 18, respectively. An end 20 of a strap 24 is attached to keeper 12 through hole 16. A separate end 22 of a strap 25 (which may be separate from strap 24) is attached to keeper 14 through hole 18. Ends 20 and 22 of straps 24 and 25, respectively, may be secured by knots (not shown), clamps, anchors, or other devices secured to the ends 20 and 22, any of which may be larger in diameter than the diameters of the holes 16 and 18.

Alternatively, the ends 20 and 22 may be secured in place by another technique, such as by glue, other chemical bonding or fusion, by heat welding to itself or to its respective keeper 12, 14, or by other types of mechanical or physical attachment. Opposite ends 20 and 22 of the straps 24 and 25, respectively, may be strung through a common slider 26 (e.g., a bolo, etc.), that may be slid up and down the lengths of the straps 24 and 25 to adjust a size of a loop defined partially by the straps 24 and 25 to the head of an individual.

Looking next at FIG. 2, another embodiment of retainer 30 is shown. In that embodiment, the retainer 30 includes only one strap 44. The retainer 30 includes matching keepers 32 and 34. Holes 36 and 38 in the keepers 32 and 34, respectively, may receive ends 40 and 42, respectively, of the strap 44. The ends 40 and 42 may be secured in place by knots (not shown), clamps, anchors, or other devices secured in place adjacent to the ends 40 and 42 of the strap 44. The knots, clamps, anchors, etc., may be larger in diameter than, or have widths that exceed, the diameters of the holes 36 and 38. The approximate center 45 of the strap 44 may be strung through a slider 46 that may be slid up and down along a length of the strap 44 to adjust a size of a loop defined partially by the strap 44 and, thus, to tighten or loosen the strap 44 relative to the head of a user. The primary difference between the embodiment of retainer 10 shown in FIG. 1 and the embodiment of retainer 30 shown in FIG. 2 is that the retainer 10 includes two straps 24 and 25 strung through a common slider 26, whereas the slider 46 of the retainer 30 secures two locations of the same strap 44 of the retainer 30 in positions that are adjacent to one another.

Turning next to FIGs. 3A and 3B, keeper 12 of retainer 10 may be inserted behind a band 52 of a hat 50 on one side 54 of the hat 50. In FIG. 4, the keeper 12 may be positioned behind the band 52 with the strap 24 extending from the keeper 12. In like manner, strap 25 extends from keeper 14 (FIG. 1), where it has been inserted behind band 52 on another side (not shown) of the hat 50, approximately opposite from side 54 of the hat 50. The straps 24 and 25 extend to a slider 26 (FIG. 1).

FIG. 5 shows an alternative way to affix a retainer 0 to the band 52 of a hat 50. In the arrangement depicted by FIG. 5, intermediate locations of the straps 24 and 25 (/. <? ., locations of the strap 24 and 25 between their respective ends 20 and 22 and the slider 26 (FIG. 1)) are crossed. This arrangement may more easily accommodate a smaller wearer of an item of headwear, such as the hat 50 or a cap, such as a child. In a similar manner, the retainer 30 (FIG. 2) may be adapted by crossing over the opposite sides of the strap 44 thereof (FIG. 2).

FIG. 6 shows a cap 70 with the retainer 10 secured thereto. The keepers 12 and 14 of the retainer 10 are shown partially inserted behind a band 72 of the cap 70. The straps 24 and 25 of the retainer 10 extend from the keepers 12 and 14, respectively, which are connected to the common slider 26 shown in FIG. 1.

Although the preceding disclosure refers to the embodiment of retainer 10 shown in FIG. 1, another embodiment of retainer according to this disclosure, such as the embodiment of retainer 30 shown in FIG. 2, may be secured to an item of headwear, such as a hat 50 (FIGs. 3A-5), a cap 70 (FIG. 6), or any other type of headwear.

Referring now to FIG. 7, the hat 50 is shown being secured to the head of a wearer by the retainer 30. FIG. 8 shows the cap 70 being secured to the head of a wearer by the retainer 10. In FIG. 7, the slider 46 has been cinched up on the strap 44 so that the hat 50 is secured and worn comfortably. In FIG. 8, the common slider 26 has been cinched up on the straps 24 and 25 to likewise comfortably secure the cap 70 on the head of the wearer. In both cases, the keepers 12 and 14, 32 and 34 of the retainers 10 and 30, respectively, are secured behind the bands 52 and 72 (FIGs. 5 and 6, respectively) of the respective hat 50 and cap 70 so that the wearer can be at ease with the security that the hat 50 and the cap 70 will stay in place on his or her head, in spite of wind, rain, or other external forces.

FIG. 9A shows a keeper 12 having only one attachment hole 16 for use in connection with the embodiments of straps 24 and 25 shown in FIG. 1 and/or the embodiment of strap 44 shown in FIG. 2.

FIG. 9B shows an embodiment of a keeper 90 having three main holes 91, 92, and 93 along one side of the keeper 90 for connecting a strap 24, 25 (FIG. 1), 44 (FIG. 2) thereto. Smaller holes 94, 95, 96, and 97 are provided on opposite sides of the keeper 90 for purposes described hereafter.

Although dimensions of the keeper 90 are not requirements of the described embodiments, in one embodiment, the keeper 90 may be about two inches high by about five inches wide. The main holes 91, 92, and 93 may be about 11/64 inch in diameter, and the smaller holes 94, 95, 96, and 97 may be about 3/32 inch in diameter. The main hole 91 may be positioned about 3/8 inch below the top of the keeper 90, and the main holes 92 and 93 may be positioned about ¼ inch below the top of the keeper 90.

The main hole 91 may be similar to the holes 16 and 18 of the embodiment of keeper 12, 14 shown in FIG. 1 and the holes 36 and 38 of the embodiment of keeper 32, 34 shown in FIG. 2. The main hole 91 is useful for attaching a strap 24, 25 (FIG. 1), 44 (FIG. 2) to keeper 90, as discussed above. The main holes 92 and 93 are shown on either side of the main hole 91, and may provide alternative means for connecting a strap 24, 25, 44 to the keeper 90, as will be discussed hereinafter. The smaller holes 94 and 95 on a short side 98 of the keeper 90 and the smaller holes 96 and 97 on another short side 99 of the keeper 90 may also provide alternative means of connecting the keeper 90 to the band 52 (FIG. 5), 72 (FIG. 6) of a hat 50 (FIG. 5) or a cap 70 (FIG. 6) with fasteners (e.g., pins, such as hairpins; clips; etc.), as will be discussed hereinafter. Alternatively, any of the holes 91-97 may be used to stitch, fasten, connect, or otherwise more permanently attach the keeper 90 to a band 52, 72 of a hat 50 or a cap 70.

In FIGs. 10A and 10B, another embodiment of keeper 100 capable of attaching a retainer (e.g., a retainer 10 (FIG. 1), a retainer 30 (FIG. 2), etc.) to an item of headwear, such as a hat 50 (FIG. 5) or a cap 70 (FIG. 6). FIG. 10A is a front view of the keeper 100, with an end of a strap 110 tied in a knot 102 to secure the strap 110 to the keeper 100. FIG. 10B is a back view of the same keeper 100. The keeper 100 has three holes 103, 104, and 105 along one edge thereof, through which the strap 110 is inserted to thereby form the knot 102. The holes 103, 104, and 105 are similar to the holes 91, 92, and 93 of the embodiment of keeper 90 shown in FIG. 11.

As shown in more detail in FIGs. 11 A, 11B, and 11C, the strap 110 is first inserted through hole 104, inserted next through hole 103, and then inserted through hole 105. This procedure is the basis for forming the knot 102 at the end of the strap 110.

Looking back at FIGs. 10A and 10B, a fastener 112 (e.g., a hairpin, such as a so-called“bobby pin;” a clip; etc.) may be inserted through holes 114 and 115 adjacent to, or at, one side 118 of the keeper 100. Likewise, a fastener 113 may be inserted through holes 116 and 117 adjacent to, or at, another side 119 of the keeper 100. In addition to securing the keeper 100 to an item of headwear, the fasteners 112 and 113 may secure the keeper 100 and the item of headwear to which the keeper 100 is secured directly to the head of the wearer (e.g., the wearer’s hair, etc.)·

FIG. 12A shows a front view, or an outwardly facing view (relative to a wearer’s head), of an embodiment of a retainer 120 with keepers 122 and 124 similar to the embodiments of keepers 90, 100 shown in FIGs. 9B, 10A, 10B, 11 A, 11B, and 11C. A strap 126 is connected between the keepers 122 and 124, the approximate center of the strap 126 being strung through a slider 128. FIG. 12B provides a back view, or inwardly facing view, of the retainer 120, including the back sides of the keepers 122 and 124.

FIGs. 13A and 13B are partial views of the keepers 122 and 124 secured in a band 132 of a hat 130. FIG. 13C shows the hat 130 with the keepers 122 and 124 of the retainer 120 inside locations of the band 132 at opposite sides of the hat 130.

FIG. 14 shows an embodiment of a retainer with a single, flexible keeper 140. Opposite ends of a strap 142 are connected near opposite ends 146 and 147 of the keeper 140. The keeper 140 may be tucked under a band of an item of headwear with the ends 146 and 147 positioned at opposite sides of the headwear.

FIG. 15 shows another embodiment of a retainer 150 in which the keepers 152 and 154 are releasably secured to a strap 156 by conventional clips or clamps 157 and 158. One or both of the clips or clamps 157 and 158 may also be releasably connected directly to a band of an item of headwear. The clips or clamps 157 and 158 may take the form of any of a large variety of connecting devices that can be removably connected to any form of a strap.

It should be understood that all of the elements of the various embodiments of retainers described herein can removably or permanently connect a keeper of a retainer to a band of an item of headwear, such as a hat or a cap or to other portions of a hat or cap that can accommodate the keeper(s).

Although the foregoing description provides many specifics, these specifics should not be construed as limiting the scopes of any of the appended claims, but merely as providing information pertinent to some specific embodiments that may fall within the scopes of the appended claims. Features from different embodiments may be employed in combination. Other embodiments may also lie within the scopes of the appended claims. All additions to, deletions from, and modifications of the disclosed subject matter that fall within the scopes of the claims may be embraced by the claims.