USRE38853E1 - Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same - Google Patents

Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same Download PDF

Info

Publication number
USRE38853E1
USRE38853E1 US10235048 US23504802A USRE38853E US RE38853 E1 USRE38853 E1 US RE38853E1 US 10235048 US10235048 US 10235048 US 23504802 A US23504802 A US 23504802A US RE38853 E USRE38853 E US RE38853E
Authority
US
Grant status
Grant
Patent type
Prior art keywords
fabric
brassiere
breast
ply
portion
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Expired - Fee Related
Application number
US10235048
Inventor
Sigi Rabinowicz
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
Alba Waldensian Inc
Original Assignee
Alba Waldensian Inc
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Grant date

Links

Images

Classifications

    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41CCORSETS; BRASSIERES
    • A41C5/00Machines, appliances, or methods for manufacturing corsets or brassieres
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41CCORSETS; BRASSIERES
    • A41C3/00Brassieres
    • A41C3/0007Brassieres with stay means
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41CCORSETS; BRASSIERES
    • A41C3/00Brassieres
    • A41C3/0014Brassieres made from one piece with one or several layers
    • DTEXTILES; PAPER
    • D04BRAIDING; LACE-MAKING; KNITTING; TRIMMINGS; NON-WOVEN FABRICS
    • D04BKNITTING
    • D04B1/00Weft knitting processes for the production of fabrics or articles not dependent on the use of particular machines; Fabrics or articles defined by such processes
    • D04B1/10Patterned fabrics or articles
    • D04B1/102Patterned fabrics or articles with stitch pattern
    • DTEXTILES; PAPER
    • D04BRAIDING; LACE-MAKING; KNITTING; TRIMMINGS; NON-WOVEN FABRICS
    • D04BKNITTING
    • D04B1/00Weft knitting processes for the production of fabrics or articles not dependent on the use of particular machines; Fabrics or articles defined by such processes
    • D04B1/22Weft knitting processes for the production of fabrics or articles not dependent on the use of particular machines; Fabrics or articles defined by such processes specially adapted for knitting goods of particular configuration
    • D04B1/24Weft knitting processes for the production of fabrics or articles not dependent on the use of particular machines; Fabrics or articles defined by such processes specially adapted for knitting goods of particular configuration wearing apparel
    • D04B1/246Upper torso garments, e.g. sweaters, shirts, leotards
    • DTEXTILES; PAPER
    • D10INDEXING SCHEME ASSOCIATED WITH SUBLASSES OF SECTION D, RELATING TO TEXTILES
    • D10BINDEXING SCHEME ASSOCIATED WITH SUBLASSES OF SECTION D, RELATING TO TEXTILES
    • D10B2403/00Details of fabric structure established in the fabric forming process
    • D10B2403/02Cross-sectional features
    • D10B2403/023Fabric with at least two, predominantly unlinked, knitted or woven plies interlaced with each other at spaced locations or linked to a common internal co-extensive yarn system

Abstract

A brassiere fashioned from a circularly knit fabric blank has a central panel between the breast cups that has a greater resistance to stretching than the remainder of the body of the brassiere. The brassiere preferably is formed from a blank that is knit to have two pairs of breast cups that are arranged in mirror image about a fold region at which the blank is folded to place one set of breast cups in overlying relationship with the other set of breast cups such that the resulting brassiere is a two-ply structure. The brassiere can be formed in either non-underwire or underwire form. When included, the underwires are attached either to an exterior side of one of the plies, or alternatively between the plies. The blank can be circularly knit as a two-ply tubular structure similar to a long turned welt.

Description

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to brassieres. The invention relates more particularly to substantially seamless brassieres including non-underwire and underwire brassieres, and blanks and methods for making such brassieres.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Brassieres are generally designed to provide support, lift, and separation of the wearer's breasts. Conventionally, brassieres for larger-breasted women often include underwires extending along the lower margins of the breast cups. Underwires provide a level of stability that fabric alone generally cannot provide, in part because fabric cannot support compressive forces the way underwires can. Typically, brassieres are fashioned in a cut-and-sew manner, as exemplified for instance in U.S. Pat. No. 4,372,322 issued to Stern et al. A brassiere made in this manner may consist of more than a dozen separate fabric pieces sewn together. One advantage of the cut-and-sew method is that different areas of the brassiere can be given different properties, since the various fabric pieces can be of different knits, different yarns, etc. It may be advantageous, for example, to make some portions of the brassiere resiliently stretchable to hug the wearer's body, while other portions are relatively unstretchable for greater stability.

The cut-and-sew method, however, is disadvantageous in that it entails a great number of cutting and sewing operations. Accordingly, methods of fashioning brassieres from circularly knit fabrics have been developed in an effort to improve the speed and efficiency of production. For example, commonly assigned U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,479,791 and 5,592,836 disclose methods for making non-underwire brassieres from circularly knit tubular blanks. The brassieres are made from single-ply tubular blanks that have a turned welt at one end to form a torso-encircling portion of the brassiere. A series of courses for defining breast cups and front and rear shoulder straps are integrally knit to the turned welt. The brassiere requires sewing only for joining the front and rear shoulder straps to each other. The '836 patent discloses modifying the knit structure along outer edges of the breast cups nearest the wearer's arms to form panels having a greater resistance to coursewise stretching than the remainder of the fabric blank. The relatively unstretchable panels provide increased lift and support.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a substantially seamless brassiere and a blank and method for making the same. In preferred embodiments, the brassiere has a gusset or central panel between the breast cups that has a greater resistance to stretching than the remainder of the body of the brassiere. The central panel provides stability by preventing the cups from undergoing excessive movement relative to each other, while the rest of the brassiere is resiliently stretchable for comfort and for closely hugging the body.

In other preferred embodiments, the brassiere is formed from a blank that is knit to have two pairs of breast cups that are arranged in mirror image about a fold region at which the blank is folded to place one set of breast cups in overlying relationship with the other set of breast cups. Thus, the resulting brassiere is a two-ply structure. The brassiere can be formed in either non-underwire or underwire form. When included, the underwires are attached either to an exterior side of one of the plies, or alternatively between the plies.

Preferably, the blank has a relatively thin region that defines the line about which the blank is folded. For example, the blank can be knit from a plurality of yarns of different deniers, and the heavier yarns can be dropped for a plurality of courses such that only the lighter yarns are knit for those courses. The thin region facilitates a sharp fold. The blank preferably also has a turned welt at each end to prevent raveling of the ends of the tube and to facilitate handling of the blank.

The two-ply construction of the brassiere can also be accomplished by circularly knitting both plies in overlying relation, essentially forming a fabric tube as one long turned welt. This construction enables the two turned welts at the ends of the tube to be eliminated, and the blank is already in a two-ply configuration when it comes off the knitting machine, resulting in a more-efficient manufacturing process.

The blank, whether knit as one ply and then folded or knit as a two-ply structure, preferably defines a relatively unstretchable gusset or central panel between the breast cup panels of each ply. A separate, relatively unstretchable piece of fabric can be affixed between the plies in the region of the central panels to increase the resistance to stretching of the panel, if desired. Furthermore, an adhesive can be disposed between the plies in the gusset region to provide additional stability to the fabric.

The greater resistance to stretching in the central panel can be achieved in various ways, as noted above. In a preferred embodiment, a float stitch construction is used and an additional yarn is spliced in throughout the region of the central panel.

The brassiere can be formed with integrally knit shoulder straps, or alternatively can have separate shoulder straps that are sewn to the brassiere. The torso-encircling portion of the brassiere can be formed as a single continuous panel that extends from one breast cup around the wearer's back to the other breast cup, or alternatively can be formed in two halves that have fastener members such as hooks and eyes for releasably securing the ends of the two halves together. The brassiere can also be formed as a single-ply construction if desired.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The above and other objects, features, and advantages of the invention will become more apparent from the following description of certain preferred embodiments thereof, when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing a person wearing a substantially seamless underwire brassiere in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a circularly knit fabric tube for making a brassiere, in accordance with one preferred embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2, showing the blank being slit along a longitudinal line for flattening the blank;

FIG. 4 is a plan view of the fabric tube of FIG. 3 after the tube has been slit and opened up into a flat configuration;

FIG. 5 is a plan view of the flattened blank of FIG. 4 after the blank has been folded about the line of symmetry;

FIG. 6 is a plan view of a finished brassiere produced from the folded blank of FIG. 5; and

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken on line 77 of FIG. 6 through one breast cup and the central panel, illustrating an alternative embodiment of the invention having an additional substantially nonstretchable fabric piece secured between the plies of the central panel.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The present invention now will be described more fully hereinafter with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which preferred embodiments of the invention are shown. This invention may, however, be embodied in many different forms and should not be construed as limited to the embodiments set forth herein; rather, these embodiments are provided so that this disclosure will be thorough and complete, and will fully convey the scope of the invention to those skilled in the art. Like numbers refer to like elements throughout.

With reference to FIGS. 1 and 6, a substantially seamless underwire brassiere in accordance with a first preferred embodiment of the invention is broadly designated by reference numeral 20. The brassiere 20 includes a body-covering portion 22 comprising a pair of breast cups 24, a torso-encircling portion 26, and a gusset or central panel 28. The brassiere also includes a pair of shoulder straps 30 attached to the body-covering portion 22.

The breast cups 24 and torso-encircling portion 26 have a knit structure that makes them resiliently stretchable vertically and horizontally. The breast cups 24 and torso-encircling portion 26 can be knit, for example, from various types of face yarns depending on the desired properties of the fabric, and the face yarns can be of various deniers, the selection of the face yarns and the knit depending primarily on the desired characteristics of the fabric such as the hand, appearance, texture, etc. The breast cups 24 and torso-encircling portion 26 preferably also incorporate elastomeric yarns such as spandex (bare and/or covered) or the like so as to impart resiliency to the fabric.

The gusset or central panel 28 extends between the breast cups 24 and has laterally outer edges 32 that preferably are located generally beneath the breast cups 24. The central panel 28 preferably has a different knit structure from that of the breast cups and torso-encircling portion of the brassiere so as to give the central panel a greater resistance to stretching than the breast cups and torso-encircling portion. To achieve the greater resistance to stretching, the central panel 28 can be knit from different yarns and/or can have a different configuration of stitch loops from that of the breast cups and torso-encircling portion. For example, the central panel can be knit with a float stitch construction having an additional spliced-in yarn for those courses corresponding to the location of the central panel. The central panel 28 preferably has a greater resistance to stretching both vertically and horizontally compared to the stretchability of the breast cups and torso-encircling portion of the brassiere. Accordingly, the central panel provides stability by preventing excessive movement of the breast cups relative to each other.

The brassiere 20 also includes an underwire 34 (best seen in FIG. 7) sewn to each breast cup for providing further lift, support, and separation. Each underwire 34 is encased in a fabric casing 36 and the casing is sewn to the respective breast cup, as further described below.

The brassiere 20 has the torso-encircling portion 26 formed in two halves comprising one lateral panel having one end attached to one of the breast cups 24 and to one edge of the central panel 28, and another lateral panel having one end attached to the other breast cup and to the other edge of the central panel. The free end of one of the halves of the torso-encircling portion has fastener members 38, such as hooks, attached to it, and the free end of the other half of the torso-encircling portion has cooperative fastener members 40, such as eyes, attached to it for engagement with the opposite fastener members 38 so that the brassiere can be engaged about the torso of a wearer.

The brassiere 20 in accordance with the first preferred embodiment of the invention has a two-ply construction as best seen in the cross-sectional view of FIG. 7. More particularly, the breast cups 24, torso-encircling portion 26, and central panel 28 are all formed from a single continuous piece of fabric that is folded upon itself to define an inner ply 42 that faces the wearer's body and an outer ply 44 that faces outward. The two plies are affixed to each other along the peripheral edges of the breast cups and torso-encircling portion, preferably by sewing elastic banding 46 along these edges.

The brassiere 20 is fabricated from a circularly knit fabric tube 50 depicted in FIG. 2. The tube 50 preferably has a turned welt 52 formed at one end and another turned welt 54 at the other end to prevent the tube from raveling and to facilitate handling of the fabric in subsequent fabrication processes as described below. Knitting of the tube 50 begins by knitting the turned welt 52. A first series of courses is then knit to the turned welt 52 so as to form a first tubular structure 50a defining panels 24 for forming breast cups, a tubular torso-encircling portion 26, and a central panel 28 between the breast cup panels 24. The first series of courses terminates at a fold region 56 that will define the lowermost edge of the finished brassiere. Preferably, the fold region 56 is knit to be thinner than the rest of the fabric tube, which can be accomplished, for example, by dropping the heavier yarns for a few courses (e.g., for about 8 courses) such that only the lighter yarns are knit for those courses. Next, a second series of courses is knit to the end of the first series of courses so as to form a second tubular structure 50b forming an extension of the first tubular structure 50a. The second tubular structure 50b defines breast cup panels 24, a torso-encircling portion 26, and a central panel 28 arranged in mirror image to the corresponding features of the first tubular structure about the fold region 56. At the end of the second series of courses, the turned welt 54 is knit, and the fabric tube 50 is then taken off the circular knitting machine.

By folding the fabric tube 50 about the fold region 56, the second tubular structure 50b can be positioned in overlying relation to the first tubular structure 50a so that the breast cup panels, torso-encircling portions, and central panels of the two tubular structures are overlying and in registration with each other. If it is desired to fabricate a brassiere having a single continuous torso-encircling portion 26 (i.e., such that the wearer dons the brassiere by slipping it over the head and onto the torso), the folded fabric tube 50 can then be cut along sew lines defining the outlines of the breast cup panels 24 and the torso-encircling portion 26; preferably, the cutting is performed in a sewing machine that also simultaneously sews decorative and/or elastic banding along the cut edges of the inner and outer plies of the folded fabric tube so as to stitch the edges of the two plies together and create a finished edge of the brassiere.

Alternatively, the fabric tube 50 can be slit along a longitudinal line 58 located generally diametrically opposite from the central panels 28 as shown in FIG. 3, and the slit tube can be opened up into a flat configuration as depicted in FIG. 4. The resulting flat blank can then be folded about the fold region 56 to create the two-ply structure shown in FIG. 5, and then the cutting and application of banding can be performed. In this case, the torso-encircling portion 26 is formed in two halves and fastener members 38, 40 are attached to the ends of the two halves as with the brassiere 20 of FIG. 1. This fabrication method enables the girth of the torso-encircling portion to be reduced from the full girth of the fabric tube 50, if desired.

The flat fabric blank of FIG. 4 can be boarded, if desired, to make it lay flat and to take out wrinkles. The turned welts 52, 54 can facilitate handling the blank during the boarding and other processes, and also prevent the edges of the blank from curling and raveling.

Preferably, the breast cups 24 are molded after the fabric tube 50 is slit and flattened and folded about the fold region 56, so that the breast cups are shaped with a desired contour. To this end, the fabric at least in the breast cup regions includes a heat-settable yarn. Molding can be performed on a conventional molding device, which generally includes a heated convex form and a frame that stretches the fabric over the form so that the heat-settable yarn is softened while in the stretched condition, after which the fabric is removed from the form and the heat-settable yarn cools so as to permanently retain the contoured shape of the breast cup. Preferably, the fabric blank is folded about the fold region 56 prior to molding so that both plies of each breast cup are molded simultaneously. If desired, the blank can be folded a second time to place one two-ply breast cup over the other two-ply breast cup prior to molding so that both cups are molded simultaneously.

Where the brassiere to be fabricated is to be an underwire brassiere, the underwires 34 can be sewn to the side of the inner ply 42 that faces the wearer's body, as shown in FIG. 7. Alternatively, the underwires 34 can be disposed between the inner ply 42 and the outer ply 44 and can be sewn to either or both of the plies. When the underwires are disposed between the plies, preferably the underwires are sewn to the inner ply 42 after molding of the cups, and then the blank is folded and the cutting and application of banding is performed.

It will be recognized, however, that the present invention is not limited to underwire brassieres. Non-underwire brassieres can be made using the blanks and methods of the invention, and the process is generally the same except that the step of sewing the underwires to the cups is omitted.

Furthermore, it will be recognized that while the brassiere 20 illustrated in FIG. 1 has separate shoulder straps 30 that are sewn to the body-covering portion 22 of the brassiere, it is also possible to integrally knit the shoulder straps to the body-covering portion during the circular knitting process. The construction of a brassiere with such integrally knit shoulder straps is described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,592,836, the disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference. In this embodiment (not shown), the fabric tube has sufficient length on either end to allow front and rear shoulder straps to be cut out. After the blank is folded about the fold region 56 and the cutting and application of banding is performed along the peripheral edges of the brassiere including the edges of the shoulder straps, the front shoulder straps are sewn to the rear shoulder straps. Various configurations of shoulder straps can be formed. Where both ends of the fabric tube define shoulder strap panels, the resulting shoulder straps will have two plies just as the remainder of the brassiere. If desired, single-ply shoulder straps can be formed by knitting only one end of the tube (preferably the end that defines the outer ply of the brassiere) to have shoulder strap panels.

Another embodiment of the invention is shown in FIG. 7. While a greater resistance to stretching of the central panel 28 can be achieved by altering the knit structure of the panel, if still greater resistance to stretching is desired, it is possible to affix a substantially unstretchable piece of fabric 66 to one or both of the plies of the central panel 28, such as by sewing or by adhesively joining the fabric piece to the ply or plies. For instance, a tricot fabric or the like can be used for the purpose.

The present invention can also be applied to the construction of single-ply brassieres. Unlike the previously described embodiments, to make a single-ply brassiere, a fabric tube (not shown) is constructed having a turned welt at the top end and a turned welt at the bottom end, but between the two turned welts the tube defines only one set of breast cup panels 24, one torso-encircling portion 26, and one central panel 28. The central panel 28, as previously described, preferably has a greater resistance to stretching than the rest of the fabric tube. The bottom welt is advantageous in that it provides a finished bottom edge for the resulting brassiere fabricated from the fabric tube. However, the bottom welt can be omitted, if desired, and the bottom edge of the brassiere can be finished by applying banding thereto just as along the other edges of the brassiere. Furthermore, the top welt can be omitted. The fabric tube can be slit along a longitudinal line prior to the step of cutting and applying banding, or alternatively the cutting and application of banding can be performed without slitting the tube where it is desired to produce a continuous tubular brassiere.

It is also possible to fabricate a two-ply brassiere by circularly knitting a two-ply fabric tube. The tube is essentially knit as one long turned welt by knitting a first series of courses that will become the outer ply of the brassiere, and knitting a second series of courses that will become the inner ply of the brassiere. For example, the tube can be knit on a circular knitting machine having cylinder needles and dial needles, the cylinder needles being used to knit the first series of courses and the dial needles being used to knit the second series of courses. The knitting of two-ply tubes is a process known to those of skill in the art, and hence is not further described herein. By knitting the tube as a two-ply structure, the tube does not require turned welts at the ends such as included with the previously described one-ply tube, and the blank comes off the knitting machine as a two-ply structure so that the step of folding the blank is eliminated.

Many modifications and other embodiments of the invention will come to mind to one skilled in the art to which this invention pertains having the benefit of the teachings presented in the foregoing descriptions and the associated drawings. For example, while the illustrated and described two-ply brassieres and blanks have defined breast cup panels and central panels in both plies, it is within the scope of the invention to provide only one of the plies with defined breast cup panels and/or central panel. Thus, for instance, the central panel defined in one ply may have sufficient resistance to stretching such that the other ply does not require a similarly unstretchable central panel. Therefore, it is to be understood that the invention is not to be limited to the specific embodiments disclosed and that modifications and other embodiments are intended to be included within the scope of the appended claims. Although specific terms are employed herein, they are used in a generic and descriptive sense only and not for purposes of limitation.

Claims (38)

1. A substantially seamless brassiere, comprising:
a body-covering portion constructed from a circularly knit fabric tube having circumferentially extending courses running in a coursewise direction of the fabric tube, wherein the fabric is manipulated into a two-ply structure and operated upon to form said body-covering portion having an inner ply and an outer ply integrally knit to each other at a bottom edge of the body-covering portion, said body-covering portion defining a pair of breast cups spaced apart in said coursewise direction, a central panel integrally knit to and extending between the breast cups, and a torso-encircling portion integrally knit to outer edges of the central panel and to the breast cups; and
a pair of shoulder straps attached to the body-covering portion;
wherein the breast cups and the torso-encircling portion are resiliently stretchable, and the central panel has a greater resistance to stretching than the breast cups and torso-encircling portion.
2. The brassiere of claim 1, wherein the inner and outer plies of the body-covering portion is formed of a circularly knit fabric blank folded upon itself are connected to each other along a fold line defining a said bottom edge of the body-covering portion, whereby the body-covering portion has an inner ply that faces a wearer's body and an outer ply that faces outward .
3. The brassiere of claim 2, further comprising underwires sewn to the breast cups.
4. The brassiere of claim 3, wherein the underwires are disposed against an exterior side of one of the inner and outer plies of the body-covering portion.
5. The brassiere of claim 3, wherein the underwires are disposed between the inner and outer plies of the body-covering portion.
6. The brassiere of claim 2 1, wherein the torso-encircling portion comprises a pair of lateral panels each having one end integrally knit to one of the breast cups and to the respective outer edge of the central panel and having an opposite free end, the free ends of the lateral panels having cooperative fastener members attached thereto for releasably securing the free ends to each other.
7. The brassiere of claim 2 1, wherein the body-covering portion comprises a continuous tubular structure such that the torso-encircling portion comprises a single continuous panel.
8. The brassiere of claim 2 1, further comprising a substantially unstretchable fabric layer disposed between the inner and outer plies in the vicinity of the central panel and affixed to at least one of the plies for increasing the resistance to stretching of the central panel.
9. The brassiere of claim 2 1, wherein the central panel achieves the greater resistance to stretching than the breast cups and torso-encircling portion by a different knit construction of the central panel relative to that of the breast cups and torso-encircling portion.
10. The brassiere of claim 2, wherein the circularly knit fabric blank body-covering portion has a fold region defining the fold line along which the blank is folded to define the bottom edge of the body-covering portion , the fold region being thinner than the rest of the blank body-covering portion to facilitate folding.
11. A blank for making a substantially seamless brassiere, comprising a fabric structure having:
a first series of courses defining a first pair of breast cup panels and a first central panel integrally knit to and extending between the breast cup panels, and defining a first torso-encircling portion integrally knit to the first breast cups and to the first central panel, the first series of courses beginning at a first end of the fabric structure and progressing toward an opposite second end of the fabric structure, an end of the first series of courses defining a bottom edge of the first torso-encircling portion; and
a second series of courses knit to the end of the first series of courses and progressing to the second end of the fabric structure, the second series of courses defining a second pair of breast cups and a second central panel and a second torso-encircling portion arranged in mirror image to the corresponding portions of the first series of courses, whereby the fabric structure can be folded about a fold line located at the juncture between the first and second series of courses to create a two-ply structure having the first breast cups, first central panel, and first torso-encircling portion overlying the second breast cups, second central panel, and second torso-encircling portion, respectively.
12. The blank of claim 11, wherein the fabric structure comprises a circularly knit fabric tube.
13. The blank of claim 12, wherein the fabric tube further comprises a turned welt knit at each end of the tube.
14. The blank of claim 11, wherein the fabric structure comprises a flat piece of fabric.
15. The blank of claim 11, wherein the breast cup panels and the torso-encircling portions are resiliently stretchable, and the central panels are more resistant to stretching than the breast cup panels and torso-encircling portions.
16. The blank of claim 15, wherein the greater resistance to stretching of the central panels is achieved by a different knit construction of the central panels relative to that of the breast cup panels and torso-encircling portions.
17. A method for making a body-covering portion of a substantially seamless brassiere, comprising:
knitting a tubular blank by:
circularly knitting a first series of courses to form a first tubular structure, wherein a portion of the first tubular structure is knit to be less stretchable than the remainder of the first tubular structure and is shaped as a central panel having opposite side edges knit to two circumferentially spaced portions of the first tubular structure that will form breast cups; and
circularly knitting a second series of courses to an end of the first series of courses to form a second tubular structure as an extension of the first tubular structure, wherein the second tubular structure also includes a central panel knit to be less stretchable than the remainder of the second tubular structure and shaped similarly to and positioned in mirror image to the central panel of the first tubular structure about a juncture between the first and second series of courses;
folding the blank about the juncture between the first and second series of courses such that the first tubular structure overlies the second tubular structure and the central panels are in registration with each other, so as to form a two-ply blank;
cutting the two-ply blank along cut lines to define breast cups and a torso-encircling portion; and
stitching peripheral edges of the two plies of the breast cups and torso-encircling portion together.
18. The method of claim 17, wherein the central panels are knit with a different knit structure relative to that of the breast cup panels and torso-encircling portion such that the central panels have a greater resistance to stretching than the breast cup panels and torso-encircling portion.
19. The method of claim 17, further comprising sewing underwires to an exterior side of one of the plies.
20. The method of claim 17, further comprising sewing underwires between the plies.
21. The method of claim 17, wherein a plurality of courses are knit at the juncture between the first and second series of courses so as to form a region that is relatively thin compared to the remainder of the blank to facilitate folding the blank at the juncture.
22. The method of claim 17, further comprising slitting the tubular blank along a longitudinal line located generally diametrically opposite from the central panels and opening up the tubular blank into a flat configuration, whereby the torso-encircling portion of the brassiere is formed in two halves each having one end joined to one of the breast cups and an opposite free end, and further comprising attaching cooperative fastener members to the free ends of the two halves of the torso-encircling portion.
23. The method of claim 17, wherein the brassiere is knit with a heat-settable yarn, and further comprising heating and molding the breast cups.
24. The method of claim 17, further comprising affixing a substantially unstretchable fabric piece to at least one of the central panels.
25. A blank for making a substantially seamless brassiere, comprising:
a tubular two-ply fabric structure having a first series of courses defining a first tubular fabric ply and a second series of courses knit to one end of the first series of courses so as to define a second tubular fabric ply in overlying relationship with the first tubular fabric ply, at least one of the plies having a pair of defined breast cup panels, a central panel extending between the breast cup panels, and a torso-encircling portion, and wherein the central panel is knit to have a greater resistance to stretching than the breast cup panels and torso-encircling portion.
26. The blank of claim 25, wherein the two-ply fabric structure comprises a long turned welt produced on a circular knitting machine.
27. The blank of claim 25, wherein the two-ply fabric structure comprises a single-ply fabric tube produced on a circular knitting machine and subsequently folded to form the two-ply structure.
28. A substantially seamless brassiere, comprising:
a body-covering portion constructed from a circularly knit fabric tube having circumferentially extending courses running in a coursewise direction of the fabric tube, wherein the fabric is manipulated into a two-ply structure and operated upon to form said body-covering portion having an inner ply and an outer ply integrally knit to each other at a bottom edge of the body-covering portion, said body-covering portion defining a pair of cups spaced apart in said coursewise direction and a torso-encircling portion integrally knit to the cups; and
a pair of shoulder straps attached to the body-covering portion.
29. The substantially seamless brassiere of claim 28, further comprising a central panel between the cups integrally knit thereto, the central panel having a greater resistance to stretching than the cups and torso-encircling portion.
30. The substantially seamless brassiere of claim 29, wherein the central panel includes an additional piece of fabric disposed between the inner and outer plies and affixed to at least one of the plies, the additional piece of fabric being substantially unstretchable so as to impart said greater resistance to stretching of the central panel.
31. The substantially seamless brassiere of claim 28, further comprising underwires affixed to the cups.
32. The substantially seamless brassiere of claim 31, wherein the underwires are disposed between the inner and outer plies.
33. A method for making a substantially seamless brassiere, comprising the steps of:
circularly knitting a fabric tube inner ply having a series of courses extending circumferentially in a coursewise direction of the fabric tube, the inner ply defining a pair of cups spaced apart in the coursewise direction;
circularly knitting a fabric tube outer ply having a series of courses extending circumferentially in a coursewise direction of the fabric tube, the outer ply defining a pair of cups spaced apart in the coursewise direction, and the outer ply being integrally knit to one end of the inner ply;
manipulating the inner and outer plies to position the plies in overlying relation with the cups of the inner ply aligned with the cups of the outer ply so as to provide a two-ply fabric structure; and
fashioning said substantially seamless brassiere from said two-ply fabric structure such that the brassiere has two plies internally knit together at a lower edge of the brassiere.
34. The method of claim 33, wherein the fabric tube inner and outer plies are knit on a circular knitting machine as a continuous single-ply fabric tube, and the manipulating step is performed after removing the single-ply fabric tube from the knitting machine.
35. The method of claim 33, wherein the fabric tube inner and outer plies are knit on a circular knitting machine and the manipulating step is performed by the knitting machine so as to produce a two-ply fabric tube from which said two-ply fabric structure is made.
36. The method of claim 33, wherein the fashioning step includes cutting the two-ply fabric structure along cut lines and attaching trim to the two-ply fabric structure along the cut lines.
37. The method of claim 33, wherein the fashioning step includes affixing a piece of substantially unstretchable fabric between the two plies of the brassiere in a central region between the cups so as to render said central region substantially less stretchable than the rest of the brassiere.
38. The method of claim 33, wherein at least one of the inner and outer plies is knit to have a greater resistance to stretching in a central region between the cups than in the rest of the brassiere.
US10235048 2000-06-14 2002-09-04 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same Expired - Fee Related USRE38853E1 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US09593889 US6287168B1 (en) 2000-06-14 2000-06-14 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same
US10235048 USRE38853E1 (en) 2000-06-14 2002-09-04 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same

Applications Claiming Priority (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US10235048 USRE38853E1 (en) 2000-06-14 2002-09-04 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same

Related Parent Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US09593889 Reissue US6287168B1 (en) 2000-06-14 2000-06-14 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
USRE38853E1 true USRE38853E1 (en) 2005-10-25

Family

ID=24376623

Family Applications (2)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US09593889 Active US6287168B1 (en) 2000-06-14 2000-06-14 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same
US10235048 Expired - Fee Related USRE38853E1 (en) 2000-06-14 2002-09-04 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same

Family Applications Before (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US09593889 Active US6287168B1 (en) 2000-06-14 2000-06-14 Substantially seamless brassiere, and blank and method for making same

Country Status (5)

Country Link
US (2) US6287168B1 (en)
EP (1) EP1289386B1 (en)
CA (1) CA2411121C (en)
DE (2) DE60108119D1 (en)
WO (1) WO2001095750A3 (en)

Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20060240743A1 (en) * 2005-04-08 2006-10-26 Sara Lee Corporation Back supporting brassiere and undergarments with reinforced zones and method of making the same
US20110219521A1 (en) * 2010-03-11 2011-09-15 Yong Wang Weft knitting elastic fabric
USD668430S1 (en) 2011-10-10 2012-10-09 Actervis Gmbh Brassiere

Families Citing this family (55)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
FR2809932B1 (en) * 2000-06-09 2002-09-27 Playtex Apparel Inc Lingerie article made from a cylindrical knitting comprising holding features
EP1309254B1 (en) 2000-07-20 2007-01-24 Branded Apparel Italia S.r.l. Stiffened brassiere
US6837771B2 (en) 2001-02-06 2005-01-04 Playtex Apparel, Inc. Undergarments made from multi-layered fabric laminate material
US7690965B2 (en) * 2001-02-06 2010-04-06 Hbi Branded Apparel Enterprises, Llc Methods of making cotton blend glue brassieres
US6685534B2 (en) * 2001-10-31 2004-02-03 Sara Lee Corporation Adjustable circular knit bra with stabilizing areas and methods of making the same
US6645040B2 (en) * 2001-11-09 2003-11-11 Tefron Ltd. Two-ply support garment and method of making same
US6824444B2 (en) * 2001-11-09 2004-11-30 Regina Miracle International Limited Brassieres
US6685535B2 (en) 2002-03-07 2004-02-03 Sara Lee Corporation Graduated cup and method of making same
US6899591B2 (en) * 2002-03-07 2005-05-31 Sara Lee Corporation Seamless circular knit garment with differential tightness areas and method of making same
GB2386382B (en) * 2002-03-13 2005-09-07 Dim Sa Seamless bra
US6824445B2 (en) 2002-03-28 2004-11-30 Sara Lee Corporation Hybrid brassiere
DK200200483A (en) * 2002-04-02 2003-10-03 Tytex As Brassiere, especially useful for breastfeeding
CA2381601C (en) * 2002-04-12 2010-02-23 Sara Lee Corporation Seamless torso controlling garment with a control area and method of making same
CN1665409A (en) * 2002-05-22 2005-09-07 萨拉利公司 Brassiere and a method of manufacturing two seamless circular knit double layer brassieres from a single blank
JP2005532483A (en) * 2002-07-01 2005-10-27 サラ リー コーポレーション How to Make a cotton blend adhesive bra
US20040009731A1 (en) * 2002-07-11 2004-01-15 Tefron Garment with discrete integrally-formed, electrically-conductive region and associated blank and method
US7051557B2 (en) * 2002-07-18 2006-05-30 Sara Lee Corporation Hidden band brassiere, blank and methods of making same
US7611999B2 (en) * 2002-11-16 2009-11-03 Mcmurray Brian Decorative faced multi-layer weft knit spacer fabric, method, and articles made therefrom
US6817214B2 (en) 2003-01-17 2004-11-16 Tefron Ltd. Selectively folded two-ply brassiere and blank for making the same
US7191720B2 (en) * 2003-02-03 2007-03-20 Hbi Branded Apparel Enterprises, Llc Method of manufacture for stitchless garment
WO2004073431A3 (en) * 2003-02-19 2005-05-12 Lee Sara Corp Fusion undergarment
US6886367B2 (en) * 2003-04-01 2005-05-03 Sara Lee Corporation Circular knitted garments having seamless shaped bands
US6863589B2 (en) * 2003-04-03 2005-03-08 Sara Lee Corporation Tube brassiere and method of making
WO2005001182A3 (en) * 2003-06-27 2005-06-02 Gary Cagel Garment blanks, brassieres formed therefrom and methods of forming the same
US6918812B2 (en) * 2003-10-09 2005-07-19 Sharon Giese Brassiere for improved breast support and enhancement
US7028509B2 (en) 2004-07-30 2006-04-18 Sara Lee Corporation Two-ply blank and a method of manufacturing a circularly knitted two-ply blank
US7052358B2 (en) 2004-08-27 2006-05-30 Alessi Christine V Undergarment for lactating women
US7654115B2 (en) * 2004-09-08 2010-02-02 Spanx, Inc. Tubular knit bra
DK200402020A (en) * 2004-12-29 2006-06-30 Tytex As Clothes, protective device and method for reducing the risk of bone fractures
DK200500550A (en) 2005-04-15 2006-10-16 Tytex As Garment, preferably to breast-feeding, as well as process for their production
DE202005007917U1 (en) * 2005-05-20 2005-07-21 Naturana Dölker GmbH & Co. KG Bra with elastic cups, has variable size cups and non elastic band for securing around body
US20070079636A1 (en) * 2005-10-12 2007-04-12 Sara Lee Corporation Triple ply brassiere with terry construction and method of making
FR2896131B1 (en) * 2006-01-16 2008-04-18 Promiles Sa Female underwear, including bra for sports
US7441418B2 (en) * 2006-03-09 2008-10-28 Industries Cannon, S.A. De C.V. Remodeling underwear manufactured from graded knit fabric
US7406718B2 (en) * 2006-07-31 2008-08-05 Bébé au Lait LLC Nursing cover
US7409727B2 (en) * 2006-07-31 2008-08-12 Bébé au Lait LLC Nursing cover
US8091145B2 (en) * 2006-07-31 2012-01-10 Bebe Au Lait, Llc Nursing cover
US7867057B2 (en) * 2007-03-27 2011-01-11 Maidenform, Inc. Bra wings using elastic spacer fabric
US7867056B2 (en) * 2007-04-23 2011-01-11 Maidenform, Inc. Bra wings using elastic spacer fabric
DE202007006706U1 (en) * 2007-05-07 2008-09-18 Triumph Intertrade Ag Bra with information carriers
DE202007006705U1 (en) * 2007-05-07 2008-09-11 Triumph Intertrade Ag bra
DE202007006693U1 (en) * 2007-05-07 2008-09-18 Triumph Intertrade Ag bra
DE202007006694U1 (en) * 2007-05-07 2008-09-18 Triumph Intertrade Ag bra
CN101969801B (en) * 2008-01-15 2014-04-09 英威达技术有限公司 Garment with altered stress profile
US8398453B2 (en) * 2010-02-26 2013-03-19 Hbi Branded Apparel Enterprises, Llc Tubular seamless knitted brassiere and method of making same
US8257138B2 (en) 2010-03-04 2012-09-04 Cynthia A Smith Athletic bra
US8690634B2 (en) * 2010-11-12 2014-04-08 Sturdy Girl Sports, LLC Internal support structure for an athletic support bra, and associated method of fabrication
EP2750530A4 (en) 2011-09-02 2016-01-20 Lynx Entpr Llc Breast supporting garment
US9084443B2 (en) * 2012-10-08 2015-07-21 Under Armour, Inc. Article of apparel with integrated support structure
FR2997820A1 (en) * 2012-11-13 2014-05-16 Dbapparel Operations Bra realized knit has varying elasticity
CN103015020A (en) * 2012-12-31 2013-04-03 加宝利服装有限公司 Process, equipment and system for weaving fabric
CN104248048B (en) * 2013-06-28 2017-04-26 维珍妮国际(集团)有限公司 The bra pad attached to the fixing member flanking the brassiere and its components and methods
US20160215418A1 (en) * 2014-01-24 2016-07-28 Best Pacific Textile Ltd. Febric material for pressure molding without adhesive and lamination
US9788579B2 (en) * 2014-02-07 2017-10-17 Under Armour, Inc. Bra with interior stretch support
WO2015140687A1 (en) 2014-03-20 2015-09-24 Santoni S.P.A. Process for realising a knitted article, in particular a brassiere, on a circular knitting machine for weft-knitting

Citations (12)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1863697A (en) * 1931-09-21 1932-06-21 Vassar Swiss Underwear Company Brassiere
US3537279A (en) * 1967-06-28 1970-11-03 Pilot Res Corp Knit seamless brassiere and method of forming same
DE1920125A1 (en) 1969-04-21 1970-11-12 Triumph International Ag Machine made one piece brassiere
US4372322A (en) 1981-06-02 1983-02-08 International Playtex, Inc. Brassiere
US4531525A (en) * 1983-11-25 1985-07-30 Richards Mark S Methods of knitting brassiere blank, manufacturing brassiere, and products
US5081854A (en) * 1989-03-16 1992-01-21 Lonati S.P.A. Process for manufacturing a semi-finished product with circular knitting machines, in particular for producing undershirts, one-piece body garments, briefs or the like
US5479791A (en) * 1994-05-03 1996-01-02 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Brassiere blank, brassiere and methods of making same
US5592836A (en) * 1994-05-03 1997-01-14 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Circularly knit brassiere having knit-in-lift and support panels, and a blank and method for making same
US5660577A (en) 1992-05-19 1997-08-26 Lovable Italiana S.P.A. Brassiere
US5946944A (en) * 1997-05-01 1999-09-07 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Seamless circular knit brassiere and method of making same
US6000994A (en) 1997-01-13 1999-12-14 Salotto; Luciano Method for making bras and the like
US6125664A (en) * 1999-04-28 2000-10-03 Browder, Jr.; George Alexander Graham Brassiere, brassiere blank and methods of making same

Family Cites Families (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2966785A (en) * 1958-10-07 1961-01-03 David D Goff Full-fashioned knitted brassiere
US3772899A (en) * 1970-03-04 1973-11-20 G Novi Seamless brassieres and brassiere blanks
FR2220150A5 (en) * 1973-03-02 1974-09-27 Textil Financ Auxiliaire Knitting brassiere on circular knitting machine - by feeding extra yarns to a group of needles to form the cups

Patent Citations (13)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1863697A (en) * 1931-09-21 1932-06-21 Vassar Swiss Underwear Company Brassiere
US3537279A (en) * 1967-06-28 1970-11-03 Pilot Res Corp Knit seamless brassiere and method of forming same
DE1920125A1 (en) 1969-04-21 1970-11-12 Triumph International Ag Machine made one piece brassiere
US4372322A (en) 1981-06-02 1983-02-08 International Playtex, Inc. Brassiere
US4531525A (en) * 1983-11-25 1985-07-30 Richards Mark S Methods of knitting brassiere blank, manufacturing brassiere, and products
US5081854A (en) * 1989-03-16 1992-01-21 Lonati S.P.A. Process for manufacturing a semi-finished product with circular knitting machines, in particular for producing undershirts, one-piece body garments, briefs or the like
US5660577A (en) 1992-05-19 1997-08-26 Lovable Italiana S.P.A. Brassiere
US5479791A (en) * 1994-05-03 1996-01-02 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Brassiere blank, brassiere and methods of making same
US5592836A (en) * 1994-05-03 1997-01-14 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Circularly knit brassiere having knit-in-lift and support panels, and a blank and method for making same
US5553468A (en) * 1994-05-03 1996-09-10 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Brassiere and method of making same
US6000994A (en) 1997-01-13 1999-12-14 Salotto; Luciano Method for making bras and the like
US5946944A (en) * 1997-05-01 1999-09-07 Alba-Waldensian, Inc. Seamless circular knit brassiere and method of making same
US6125664A (en) * 1999-04-28 2000-10-03 Browder, Jr.; George Alexander Graham Brassiere, brassiere blank and methods of making same

Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20060240743A1 (en) * 2005-04-08 2006-10-26 Sara Lee Corporation Back supporting brassiere and undergarments with reinforced zones and method of making the same
US7614256B2 (en) * 2005-04-08 2009-11-10 Hbi Branded Apparel Enterprises, Llc Back supporting brassiere and undergarments with reinforced zones and method of making the same
US20110219521A1 (en) * 2010-03-11 2011-09-15 Yong Wang Weft knitting elastic fabric
USD668430S1 (en) 2011-10-10 2012-10-09 Actervis Gmbh Brassiere

Also Published As

Publication number Publication date Type
US6287168B1 (en) 2001-09-11 grant
EP1289386B1 (en) 2004-12-29 grant
DE60108119T2 (en) 2005-12-08 grant
WO2001095750A2 (en) 2001-12-20 application
DE60108119D1 (en) 2005-02-03 grant
CA2411121C (en) 2007-05-01 grant
WO2001095750A3 (en) 2002-06-20 application
CA2411121A1 (en) 2001-12-20 application
EP1289386A2 (en) 2003-03-12 application

Similar Documents

Publication Publication Date Title
US3421513A (en) Knitted garment
US6401497B1 (en) Garment with figure control or muscle support function
US3537279A (en) Knit seamless brassiere and method of forming same
US3487662A (en) Three piece panty hose garment
US3678514A (en) Combination garments and method of making same
US7024892B2 (en) Two-ply body-smoothing undergarment
US4531525A (en) Methods of knitting brassiere blank, manufacturing brassiere, and products
US4729131A (en) Panty brief and a method of making same
US5850745A (en) Knitted brassiere blank having integral seamless elasticated contours defining bra cup borders
US6863589B2 (en) Tube brassiere and method of making
US2867889A (en) Molded fabric and brassiere construction and method of making the same
US6213842B1 (en) Brassiere for providing breast enhancement
US7395557B1 (en) Seamless upper body garment
US20040168479A1 (en) Highly resilient multifilament yarn and products made therefrom
US5553468A (en) Brassiere and method of making same
US2707284A (en) Method of making garments
US6276175B1 (en) Seamless torso controlling garment and method of making same
US5605060A (en) Circularly knit bodysuit and a blank and method for making same
US4444192A (en) Brassiere
US3946579A (en) One-piece panty and method of manufacture
US5946944A (en) Seamless circular knit brassiere and method of making same
US5590548A (en) Circularly knit legged panty having knit-in shaping panels, and a blank and method for making same
US5855124A (en) Moldable warp knitted fabric and method of forming a seamless molded fabric portion therefrom
US5996120A (en) Swim and body suit support system
US3772899A (en) Seamless brassieres and brassiere blanks

Legal Events

Date Code Title Description
FPAY Fee payment

Year of fee payment: 8

REMI Maintenance fee reminder mailed
LAPS Lapse for failure to pay maintenance fees