WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:
1. A scarf or shawl comprising: a garment having a first surface and a second surface; a plurality of pockets on one surface; closures for securing at least some of said plurality of pockets; a pair of fastening devices affixed to said garment, for attaching the scarf or shawl to a wearer's other apparel.
2. The scarf or shawl according to claim 1, wherein the garment is substantially rectangular-shaped. 3. The scarf or shawl according to claim 1, wherein said garment is made from a single panel of fabric folded on itself.
4. The scarf or shawl according to claim 1 , wherein said garment is made from two panels of fabric fastened together.
5. The scarf or shawl according to claim 3, wherein a liner is captured between the folded fabric.
6. The scarf or shawl according to claim 4, wherein a liner is captured between the two panels.
7. The scarf or shawl according to claim 1 , wherein the pockets are sized for carrying the wearer's personal items. 8. The scarf or shawl according to claim 1 , wherein the plurality of closures includes one or more selected from a group consisting of flaps, snaps, zippers, hook and loop fasteners, and buttons.
9. The scarf or shawl according to claim 1, wherein the fastening devices for holding said garment in place are comprised of straps attached at their proximal ends to said garment, said straps having appropriate length to attach to a wearer's other apparel at or near the wearer's waist.
10. The scarf or shawl according to claim 9, wherein said straps are adjustable in length.
11. The scarf or shawl according to claim 9, wherein said fastening devices are attached to said garment by stitching.
12. The scarf or shawl according to claim 9, wherein said fastening devices are attached to said garment by clips or grips.
13. The scarf or shawl according to claim 9, wherein said straps have gripping devices attached to their distal ends for securing said strap to said wearer's apparel.
14. The scarf or shawl according to claim 9, wherein the garment has openings for threading said straps therethrough, thereby allowing the wearer to wear the garment reversed.
15. A scarf or shawl comprising a substantially rectangular-shaped garment having a pair of fastening devices for holding said garment to the wearer's other apparel.
16. The scarf or shawl according to claim 15, wherein the fastening devices comprise straps.
17. The scarf or shawl according to claim 16, wherein said fastening devices are attached to said garment at their distal ends by stitching. 18. The scarf or shawl according to claim 16, wherein said fastening devices are attached by clips or grips.
19. The scarf or shawl according to claim 16, wherein said straps have gripping devices at their distal ends.
20. The scarf or shawl according to claim 16, wherein said straps are adjustable in length.
WEARING APPAREL WITH POCKET
This invention relates generally to wearing apparel, and more particularly to wearing apparel in the form of a scarf or shawl having one or more pockets for storing personal objects such as money.
The prior art includes various types of money belts. Generally, such prior art money belts include pockets integrally formed in the belt which are accessible through the surface of the belt, adjacent a user's waist. While conventional money belts have enjoyed limit success, they are severely limited in the number and size of objects they can carry. Also, conventional money belts are relatively expensive to manufacture as compared to ordinary belts without money pockets.
The prior art also has proposed neck ties featuring a pocket for carrying an object on the body. For example, U.S. Patent No. 5,435,011 teaches a neck tie having a pocket designed for carrying a small personal object such as a condom. U.S. Patent No. 5,073,987 teaches a pocket formed in a neck tie having a clear plastic on one wall of the formed pocket on the display side of the tie. However, the intent of the '987 Patent is to display the contents of the pocket to viewing parties. Consequently, it would not be of use for storage of valuables such as money or credit cards. U.S. Patent No. 4,835,821 teaches a hidden pocket on the back of a fabric mount which is intended to be buttoned to a shirt for securing a neck tie upon the wearer's shirt. However, the '821 Patent also is limited in size due to its mounting on the narrow shirt button strip and its need to be mounted on shirt buttons and could not be used with an ascot, scarf or kerchief type neckwear since such an attachment is not available. The small size taught by the '821 Patent would not allow for a number of credit cards, cash and identification, even when used with a neck tie. Additionally, the user's tie would have to be dismounted from the mount containing the pocket each time the owner wishes to use the contents of the pocket.
U.S. Patent No. 5,435,011 teaches a neck tie having a pocket permanently mounted within the body of the tie between the decorative wall and the rear wall. The 'Oi l Patent however is permanently sewed in place inside the tie and entry into, and removal of goods from the pocket, is inhibited by the need to fold back the rear wall of the tie. Since it is permanently attached to the interior of the tie, each time the user
wishes to wear different neckwear, if the user needs the contents of the pocket, it must be removed piece by piece and replaced in a wallet or another tie.
U.S. Patent No. 5,802,613 teaches a device for the storage of valuables in decorative fabric neckwear consisting of a hidden or stealth storage pocket removably attached to decorative neckwear such as a tie, scarf, ascot or kerchief. According to the '613 Patent, the dismountable storage pocket may be removed and reattached to one or multiple pieces of neckwear having fasteners such as buttons, snaps, hook and loop, or other conventional fasteners mounted in positions corresponding to mating fasteners mounted upon the storage pocket. The dismountable storage pocket may be removed and remounted to many different pieces of decorative neckwear as a unit, without disturbing the contents of the storage pocket allowing the storage pocket to function as a wallet or purse for valuables while concurrently offering a non-obvious hiding place for valuables or other contents.
Additionally, pocket shawls, i.e. for home use for carrying tissues and the like, are available commercially. However, such commercially available pocket shawls lack basic security and thus not intended for use outside of the home.
There exists a need for a clothing accessory with pockets for securely and discreetly accommodating personal items of various size and shapes. In accordance with the present invention, a scarf or shawl is provided with one or more pockets on the inside, i.e., the side that faces the wearer's body, together with one or more straps or ties for attaching the scarf or shawl to the belt or other article of clothing worn by the wearer to prevent the free ends of the scarf or shawl from flopping forward or blowing in the wind.
Further features and advantages of the invention will be seen from the following detailed description, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
Fig. 1 is a plan view of a scarf or shawl made in accordance with the present invention twice folded at 45° on itself;
Fig. 2 is a view similar to Fig. 1, once folded on itself; and
Figs. 3-4 illustrate use of a scarf or shawl in accordance with the present invention.
Referring to Figs. 1-2, a scarf or shawl in accordance with the present invention comprises a rectangularly shaped textile product 10. The textile product has an outside panel or face 12 and an inside panel or face 14, and may be formed from a variety of natural materials such as cotton, linen, wool, silk, suede, etc., synthetic textiles such as
nylon, Dacron, Ultrasuede, polypropylene, etc., or a blend of one or more textile materials. The scarf or shawl may be a single panel, or laminated inside and outside panels, and may include a lining (not shown). A solid color or a design may be printed or woven into the textile product. If desired, the outside surface may carry one pattern or color, while the inside surface carry a different pattern or color.
One or a plurality of pockets 16a, 16b... are provided on one face or panel 14 of the scarf or shawl. Pockets 16a, 16b... are sized to accommodate personal items as may be carried such as credit cards, a driver's license, cash, reading glasses, pens, passports and cosmetics such as lipstick, a compact, mirror or comb. At least some of the pockets should have a fastening device such as snaps, zippers or hook and loop fasteners and may also include a flap for securing the pockets closed. For example, two pockets 16a, 16b could be sized to hold credit cards and folded currency, while two other pockets 16c, 16d could be sized to hold, e.g., airline boarding passes. For security, the pockets preferably have closures. For example, the upper pockets 16a, 16b may be secured with flaps 30 and snaps 32 while the lower pockets 16c, 16d may be secured with zippers 34 or hook and loop fasteners (shown in phantom at 36). Also, if desired, the upper and/or lower pockets may include one or more nested pockets (not shown). And, if desired, the upper and/or lower pockets may include expansion pleats 38.
A feature and advantage of the present invention is the provision of fastening elements such as straps or ties for attaching the scarf or shawl to the wearer's belt, belt loop or the like for preventing the scarf or shawl from flopping forward when the wearer is seated or bends forward, and from blowing in the wind. For example, the fastening elements may comprise elongate straps 20 fastened at one end to the inside panel, e.g., by stitching. Alternatively, a grip such as an alligator clip or suspender-type grip 22 may be attached to the end of the string 20 for permitting the wearer to clip the scarf or shawl to his or her clothing. The fastening elements also may be attached to the panel via a button and button hole, or tied around a loop. Other forms of fastening devices, e.g., hook and loop, snap fasteners, also may be used.
In a particularly preferred embodiment of the invention, the straps 20 are releasably or permanently fastened at their proximal ends to the inside panel 14, adjacent a through hole 24 which permits the user to thread the straps 20 to the outside panel 12. This gives the user the choice of wearing the pockets in or out, making the scarf or shawl fully reversible. An alligator clip or suspender-type grip or fastener 22 is permanently
attached to the distal ends of the straps 20. Also, if desired, the straps 20 maybe adjustable in length via a slip buckle 28.
Referring also to Figs. 3-4, the fastening elements are fixed about a quarter of the way from the distal ends to the scarf or shawl, which places the fastening devices approximately in the middle of the wearer's sternum. If desired, the fastening elements may be attached to the inside of the scarf or shawl at different locations to accommodate wearers of different heights and/or styles of wear. The scarf or shawl of the present may be worn around the neck, crossed at the waist or tied around the waist.
The scarf or shawl of the present invention may be used in lieu of or in addition to a jacket, purse or wallet. Thus, wearer will be freed from the burden of wearing a jacket, or carrying a wallet or purse. The scarf or shawl of the present invention may be particularly attractive to persons living in warm climates since the use may eliminate the need for a jacket. The invention also advantageously may be worn by persons in cold climates since the scarf or shawl may add additional protection and warmth. Various changes may be made in the above invention without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. For example, the invention has been described with the fastening elements permanently attached to the scarf or shawl, e.g., by stitching. However, the fastening string may be attached to the scarf or shawl by a clip, snap, TDUtton, hook and loop, or threaded through a loop on the scarf or shawl, and knotted. Also, the straps take other forms including chains, and may be decorated with precious or semi-precious stones or the like. Various other changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.