US 3115878 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Filed Dec. 20, 1962 FIG.
Grace Hole Markham United States Patent 3,115,878 BRASSIERE SHOULDER STRAP Grace if. Markham, 2801 4th Ave., Richmond, Va. Filed Dec. 20, 1962, Ser. No. 246,266 4 Claims. (Cl. 128-510) This invention relates to brassieres. More particularly, it relates to an improved shoulder strap for providing better support in a brassiere.
The strap most commonly used for support in present brassieres is a narrow ribbon-like straight strip of material connecting the top of the rear portion of the brassiere with the apex of the cup in the front portion of the brassiere, since this is supposed to provide a maximum amount of uplift to the bust supported within the bust cup when the strap is draped over the shoulder of the wearer. After the brassiere has been worn a short period of time the weight of the bust pulling on the shoulder strap often results in the strap painfully cutting into the flesh of the wearer, resulting in great soreness and discomfort. Various expedients have been suggested to relieve this pressure, including the use of shoulder pads of cotton or foam rubber, interposed between the straps and the shoulder of the wearer, the use of two or more straps attached to each bust cup and even the use of shoulder pads in combination with a plurality of individual straps attached to both sides of each bust cup have been suggested. Still another expedient tried has been the insertion of wires or other mechanical devices to support the bust from below, but this expedient merely transfers the discomfort and soreness to another area and does not eliminate it.
The primary object of the present invention is the provision of a relatively wide shoulder strap with a seam cut on the bias on the shoulder as explained below, and which is of a sufiicient width to support three separate and individually adjustable narrower straps, arranged so that the center one of the three straps is attached to the apex of the bust cup. As a result of the arrangement described, the bust is given a natural graceful uplift and the weight of the bust is supported in an easy and comfortable manner directly by the three narrow straps and this weight is transmitted by them to the suitably constructed wide strap which passes over the shoulder of the person wearing the brassiere and which is attached to the rear of the garment.
A further object of the invention is the provision of a shoulder strap the front and back ends of which are cut on the straight of the material and having a transversely extending seam cut on the bias, said seam being in that portion of the broad strap which passes over the shoulder and which is approximately equidistant from the ends of the broad strap. It has been found that a shoulder strap constructed in the manner described is more corfortable to wear than presently available narrower brassiere straps and that in addition to the enhanced comfort it holds its shape after numerous launderings. Without the seam the strap would have a tendency to fan out toward the convex side. With the seam on the bias, there is provided a slightly greater amount of give or elasticity at the shoulder line, than along the remainder of the strap permitting the strap to fit more comfortably to the contours of shoulder.
The invention will be better understood from a consideration of the following description and drawings in which:
FIGURE 1 is a view in perspective showing the upper portion of a brassiere having shoulder straps according to this invention;
FIGURE 2 is a plan view of the improved strap showing the strap as it appears when laid on a flat surface;
FIGURE 3 is a fragmentary view showing the front end of one strap attached to a bust cup; and
3,115,878 Patented Dec. 31, 1963 FIGURE 4 is a detail of a portion of the adjusting means.
As may be seen in FIGURE 1, the brassiere is more or less conventional and except for the shoulder straps the particular elements of the brassiere form no part of this invention. The brassiere comprises a body encircling band 12 of any desired length, i.e. short, three quarter length or full length, at the top of which there are bust cups 14 and shoulder straps 16. Band 12 may have an elastic section in the rear, and may be fastened by snaps or hooks at any suitable location, as is conventional in such garments.
The shoulder strap 16 of this invention, shown in greater detail in FIGURES 2 and 3 comprises a relatively wide portion 20: extending from a rear edge 22 cut on the straight and which is sewed or otherwise suitably attached to the upper rear portions of the body encircling band and another relatively wide strapportion 24 joined to portion '20 along a seam 26. Strap portion 24 terminates in a front edge 28, also cut on the straight. Edge 28 hangs down toward the bust cups 14 in the front of the garment, but does not extend to the upper margin of the bust cup.
The distance between the front edge 28 of the relatively wide strap 16 and the upper margin of the bust cup 14 is spanned by three narrower straps 30, 32 and 34 each of which is sewed or otherwise attached to the front edge 28 and each of which carries a means 50 for adjusting the length of the narrow straps individually. By suitably adjusting the length of each of the three narrower straps supporting the bust cup, the cup is made to conform to the dimensions of the individual Wearing the brassiere in a manner which is comfortable and free from the disadvantages described above. Strap 32 it will be noted is pointed toward the apex of the bust cup 14 and straps 30 and 34 are attached to edge 28 closely adjacent to strap 30 in a manner such that they diverge slightly as is shown in exaggerated form in FIGURE 3. Opposite each of the narrower straps 30, 32 and 34 which constitute a first group of narrower straps there is a second group of narrower straps in the form of closed loops 60, 62 and 64 which are formed by sewing the free ends of relatively short straps to portions of the bust cup adjacent to the upper edge of the cup.
Any suitable means may be provided for the individual adjustment of the narrower straps, 30, 32 and 34. Preferably this is a plastic buckle 50 such as that shown in FIGURE 4 having a generally rectangular shape and including a lower edge 52 over which the relatively short, narrow loops 60, 62 and 64 pass.
The upper portion of buckle 50 includes cross bars 56 and 58 and guiding fingers 59 and 57. When viewed from the aspect of FIGURE 3, the free end of each of straps 30, 32 and 34 passes downwardly behind and under the topmost set of fingers 57 and thence passes in front of and over transverse bars 56 and 58 and thence upwardly and behind 58 and thence upwardly in front of bar 56 between bar 56 and the downwardly extending portion of the same strap. The length of each strap is adjusted by varying the amount of free end slipped through the buckle 50, in a manner well known in the art.
In one specific embodiment of the present invention wide portions of the shoulder strap were two inches wide at edges 22 and 28, the narrow portions of the shoulder strap were each about one-half inch wide, section 20 was about 7.75 inches long and section 24 was about 5.37 inches long, each length being measured midway between the side margins.
It will be apparent that some changes may be made without departing from the spirit of this invention. For example the closed loops could be attached to wide strap instead of the bust cup, and the buckle and adjustable a strap would then be attached to the bust cup. Other devices could be used to adjust the lengths of the individual straps.
Having now described a preferred embodiment of the invention it is not intended that it be limited except as may be required by the appended claims.
1. In a brassiere including a body encircling portion, bust cups attached to the front of said body encircling portion and shoulder straps attached to said bust cups, the improved shoulder straps each comprising:
a relatively wide strap extending from a point of attachment adjacent the upper rear edge of the body encircling portion and terminating in a free end spaced from the upper edge of one of said bust cups;
a first group of three relatively narrower straps, one end of each of said relatively narrower straps being securely attached to the free end of said relatively wide strap;
a second group of three straps having substantially the same width as the straps in said first group, each strap in said second group having both ends sewed to the upper portion of the bust cup, so as to form a loop;
and adjustable means connecting each one of said loops with the corresponding strap in the first of said groups, whereby the distance between the free end of said wide strap and the upper edge of said bust cup may be varied in at least three places.
2. The brassiere of claim 1 in which the middle strap in said groups of straps is attached to the apex of the bust cup and the other two of said relatively narrower straps are attached to the bust cup one on each side of the apex of the bust cup.
3. The brassiere of claim 1 in which the second group of straps is attached to the relatively wider strap and the first group of straps is attached to the bust cup.
4. The brassiere of claim 1 in which the relatively wide strap is cut on the straight at each end and is cut on the bias along a seam joining the two straight portions of said strap.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 911,204 Busby Feb. 2, 1909 2,501,860 Becker Mar. 28, 1950 2,867,216 Champagne et a1 Jan. 6, 1959 3,025,859 Rosenberg Mar. 20, 1962