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United States Patent Application 20190116950
Kind Code A1
Gray; Jade Baron Nester April 25, 2019

Handbag with Storage Container and Extendable Lining

Abstract

A handbag has a bag body with a bag base, the bag body including a first volume-adjustable storage compartment and a second volume-adjustable storage compartment. A storage container, such as a rigid or semi-rigid drawer, which may be attached to the second storage compartment via a non-rigid connecting element, is receivable in the second storage compartment and may be removeable therefrom, and an extendable lining 20, which may be made from a four way stretch fabric, especially a polyurethane based stretch fabric, is in the bag body, the extendable lining having an internal base which partitions the first and second storage compartments.


Inventors: Gray; Jade Baron Nester; (London, GB)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Gray; Jade Baron Nester

London

GB
Family ID: 1000003667487
Appl. No.: 16/165120
Filed: October 19, 2018


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: A45C 3/06 20130101; A45C 7/0063 20130101; A45C 13/02 20130101; A45C 3/001 20130101; A45C 2013/026 20130101
International Class: A45C 3/06 20060101 A45C003/06; A45C 7/00 20060101 A45C007/00; A45C 13/02 20060101 A45C013/02; A45C 3/00 20060101 A45C003/00

Foreign Application Data

DateCodeApplication Number
Oct 20, 2017GBGB1717230.5

Claims



1. A handbag comprising: a bag body having a bag base, a volume-adjustable first storage compartment, and a volume-adjustable second storage compartment interposed between the first storage compartment and the bag base; a storage container receivable in the second storage compartment; and an extendable lining in the bag body, the extendable lining having a movable internal base associated therewith which partitions the first and second storage compartments, wherein in a first partitioned condition of the handbag, the movable internal base is spaced from the bag base to enable use of the storage container within the second storage compartment, and in a second partitioned condition of the handbag, the internal base is repositioned towards the bag base such that the respective volumes of the first and second storage compartments are adjusted, the extendable lining moving to accommodate the repositioning of the internal base.

2. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the storage container is removable from the second storage compartment.

3. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the storage container is a rigid or semi-rigid drawer.

4. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the storage container has a base and a plurality of walls projecting approximately perpendicularly therefrom.

5. The handbag as claimed in claim 4, wherein the walls of the storage container are foldable towards the base of the storage container.

6. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the storage container is attachable to the second storage compartment via a non-rigid connecting element.

7. The handbag as claimed in claim 6, wherein the non-rigid connecting element is a fabric strip removably attachable to the second storage compartment and/or the storage insert.

8. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the extendable lining is ruched to provide a plurality of releasable gussets to allow adjustment and/or extension thereof.

9. The handbag as claimed in claim 8, further comprising a user-operable zip in the first storage compartment for releasing the gussets.

10. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein an interior surface of the extendable lining and/or storage container is at least in part formed from a thermally insulating material.

11. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the extendable lining is removable from the handbag.

12. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the extendable lining has a removable protective cover.

13. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the extendable lining is formed from a stretchable fabric such as a four way stretch fabric or elastic polyurethane fibre.

14. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, further comprising an aperture on an exterior surface of the second storage compartment, whereby the storage container is receivable and removable from the second storage compartment.

15. The handbag as claimed in claim 14, wherein the aperture is closable by a flap, the flap being removably fastened to the second storage compartment via a magnetic clasp across the flap and the second storage compartment.

16. The handbag as claimed in claim 1, wherein the second storage compartment is collapsible or foldable.

17. The handbag as claimed in claim 16, further comprising at least one hinge in the second storage compartment.

18. The handbag as claimed in claim 16, further comprising a clasp mechanism on the exterior of the handbag to retain the collapsed or folded second storage compartment in a collapsed or folded condition.

19. A modifiable handbag system, comprising the handbag as claimed in claim 11, and a plurality of interchangeable extendable linings with different functional properties.

20. A handbag comprising: a bag body having a bag base, a volume-adjustable first storage compartment, and a volume-adjustable second storage compartment interposed between the first storage compartment and the bag base; an extendable lining in the bag body, the extendable lining having a movable internal base associated therewith which partitions the first and second storage compartments, wherein in a first partitioned condition of the handbag, the movable internal base is spaced from the bag base to enable use of the second storage compartment, and in a second partitioned condition of the handbag, the internal base is repositioned towards the bag base such that the respective volumes of the first and second storage compartments are adjusted, the extendable lining moving to accommodate the repositioning of the internal base.
Description



CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application claims the benefit of British Patent Application No. 1717230.5 filed Oct. 20, 2017, the entire content of which is hereby incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF THE TECHNOLOGY

[0002] The present invention relates to handbags, and in particular, handbags with separate compartments for the storage of footwear, food and other useful objects.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0003] High-heeled shoes which are primarily designed for their aesthetic characteristics, rather than user comfort, are commonly worn, especially by women, but can be impractical in everyday life. In particular, it may be difficult to perform certain activities with such shoes, and regular prolonged or excessive use may result in long-term podiatric problems for the wearer. It is therefore advantageous for habitual wearers of such footwear to be able to conveniently change into more comfortable or orthopaedic shoes when the opportunity arises. Additionally, it may also be desirable to change one's shoes simply to be appropriately dressed for an event or function in accordance with the formality thereof.

[0004] Furthermore, specialised footwear is also often needed for sports and other recreational activities. For example, specialised shoes or slippers are typically used for playing sports and participating in other athletic activities, including but not limited to athletics, badminton, baseball, basketball, association football, rugby football, hockey, lacrosse, netball, martial arts, squash, trail running and tennis. Specialised footwear is also commonly used by dancers, especially tap and ballet dancers, and organists.

[0005] Such shoes can also be impractical in everyday life. For example, trail running shoes typically have protruding ridges on their soles which cause discomfort to the user if they are worn while walking on hard surfaces, such as a road or pavement.

[0006] It is known to provide a large handbag with multiple compartments, such that a shoebox can be removably placed in such a compartment for the storage of footwear. However, this does not facilitate quick changing of shoes, as the shoebox must be removed from the handbag, which may be difficult in a confined space such as a lift or queue. Furthermore, when shoes are not being carried in such a compartment, the space of the compartment may go unused, especially if it soiled by dirt from footwear stored therein, rendering it inappropriate for storage of foodstuffs or other useful objects.

[0007] The storage of foodstuffs, sun-cream, and loose cosmetics in the main compartment of a handbag may also be disadvantageous, due to the risk of damage to the lining of the handbag or other items stored therein, such as a scarf or handkerchief.

[0008] The lining of such known handbags is also not removable from the bag, and therefore typically only spot-cleaning of the lining is possible.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] The present invention seeks to provide a solution to all of the abovementioned problems with the prior art.

[0010] According to a first aspect of the invention, there is provided a handbag comprising a bag body having a bag base, a volume-adjustable first storage compartment, and a volume-adjustable second storage compartment interposed between the first storage compartment and the bag base; a storage container receivable in the second storage compartment; and an extendable lining in the bag body, the extendable lining having a movable internal base associated therewith which partitions the first and second storage compartments, wherein in a first partitioned condition of the handbag, the movable internal base is spaced from the bag base to enable use of the storage container within the second storage compartment, and in a second partitioned condition of the handbag, the internal base is repositioned towards the bag base such that the respective volumes of the first and second storage compartments are adjusted, the extendable lining moving to accommodate the repositioning of the internal base.

[0011] This design of handbag is particularly advantageous as it allows the storage of shoes, foodstuffs or other articles in the second storage compartment, in the first partitioned condition, such that said articles are separated from articles stored in the first storage compartment. When partitioned storage is not desired, the handbag can be converted to the second partitioned condition by a user, such that the first storage compartment extends to or substantially to the base of the handbag.

[0012] Preferably, the storage container is removable from the second storage compartment. This is advantageous as it allows the internal base to be repositioned on the bag base in the second partitioned condition.

[0013] The storage container may be a rigid or semi-rigid drawer, to retain footwear stored therein in place in the second storage compartment. Most preferably, the storage container has a base and a plurality of walls projecting approximately perpendicularly therefrom.

[0014] The walls of the storage container may additionally or alternatively be foldable towards the base of the storage container, so that the storage container can be folded to reduce the space thereby occupied in the second storage compartment, in the second partitioned condition.

[0015] The storage container may be attachable to the second storage compartment via a non-rigid connecting element. Such a non-rigid connecting element may allow the storage container to be in part removed from the second storage compartment while retaining the storage container in part within the second storage compartment.

[0016] Advantageously, the non-rigid connecting element may be a fabric strip removably attachable to the second storage compartment and/or the storage insert. Removable attachment of the non-rigid connecting element to the second storage compartment may allow the storage container to be entirely removed, by removing the non-rigid connecting element from the second storage compartment.

[0017] The extendable lining may be ruched to provide a plurality of releasable gussets to allow adjustment and/or extension thereof. This feature beneficially may allow manufacture of the handbag from a variety of materials to the same design, while ensuring extendability.

[0018] In this case, the handbag preferably further comprises a user-operable zip in the first storage compartment for releasing the gussets. Advantageously, this allows efficient conversion of the handbag from the first partitioned condition and the second partitioned condition by a user.

[0019] An interior surface of the extendable lining and/or storage container may be at least in part formed from a thermally insulating material. Such an extendable lining may reduce the risk of heat damage to articles stored in the first storage compartment, especially foodstuffs or cosmetics.

[0020] The extendable lining may also be removable from the handbag, to allow machine-washing of the extendable lining. Conventional handbags typically require dry cleaning which is expensive, and may involve use of carcinogenic compounds such as tetrachloroethylene which may pose risks to human health or cause environmental damage.

[0021] The extendable lining may have a removable protective cover. This allows the user to store footwear or other soiled articles in the first storage compartment, if required, without damaging or soiling the extendable lining thereof.

[0022] The extendable lining may be formed from a stretchable fabric, and preferably a four way stretch fabric, and most preferably a fabric comprising elastic polyurethane fibre. If the extendable lining is formed from a stretchable fabric, the handbag may advantageously be converted from the first partitioned condition to the second partitioned condition simply by removing the storage container and/or storage of articles in the first storage compartment until the extendable lining is stretched by the weight thereof.

[0023] There may preferably be an aperture on an exterior surface of the second storage compartment, whereby the storage container is receivable and removable from the second storage compartment. Such an aperture optionally may be closable by a flap, which may be removably fastened to the second storage compartment via a magnetic clasp across the flap and the second storage compartment.

[0024] The second storage compartment may preferably be collapsible or foldable, to allow temporary reduction of the volume of the handbag when use of the second storage compartment is not required.

[0025] This may be achieved by providing at least one hinge in the second storage compartment, and alternatively or additionally, a clasp mechanism on the exterior of the handbag to retain the collapsed or folded second storage compartment in a collapsed or folded condition.

[0026] According to a second aspect of the invention, there is provided a modifiable handbag system, comprising a handbag in accordance with the first aspect of the invention, the extendable lining of the said handbag being removable, and a plurality of interchangeable extendable linings with different functional properties.

[0027] Such a modifiable handbag system allows a user to choose an extendable lining with functional properties in accordance with a desired use, advantageously broadening the range of possible uses for the handbag.

[0028] According to a third aspect of the invention, there is provided a handbag comprising a bag body having a bag base, a volume-adjustable first storage compartment, and a volume-adjustable second storage compartment interposed between the first storage compartment and the bag base; an extendable lining in the bag body, the extendable lining having a movable internal base associated therewith which partitions the first and second storage compartments, wherein in a first partitioned condition of the handbag, the movable internal base is spaced from the bag base to enable use of the second storage compartment, and in a second partitioned condition of the handbag, the internal base is repositioned towards the bag base such that the respective volumes of the first and second storage compartments are adjusted, the extendable lining moving to accommodate the repositioning of the internal base.

[0029] Such a handbag is advantageous for reasons hereinbefore described with respect to the first aspect of the present invention, and the person skilled in the art will appreciate that such optional modifications hereinbefore described in the context of a handbag in accordance with respect to the first aspect of the invention may be equally applicable to a handbag in accordance with the third aspect of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0030] The invention will now be more particularly described, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

[0031] FIG. 1 shows a perspective representation of one embodiment of a handbag in accordance with the first and second aspects of the invention, showing the interior in phantom dotted line;

[0032] FIG. 2a shows a schematic cross-sectional view of the handbag of FIG. 1, with a first possible extendable lining, in the first partitioned condition, with the storage container received within the second storage compartment;

[0033] FIG. 2b shows a schematic cross-sectional view of the handbag of FIG. 1, with the extendable lining of FIG. 2a, in the second partitioned condition, with the storage container removed from the second storage compartment;

[0034] FIG. 2c shows a detail of the extendable lining of FIG. 2a;

[0035] FIG. 3a shows a schematic cross-sectional view of the handbag of FIG. 1, with a second possible extendable lining, in the first partitioned condition;

[0036] FIG. 3b shows a schematic cross-sectional view of the handbag of FIG. 1, with the extendable lining of FIG. 3a, in the second partitioned condition;

[0037] FIG. 3c shows a detail of the extendable lining of FIG. 3a;

[0038] FIG. 4a shows a schematic cross-section of a third embodiment of a handbag in accordance with the first aspect of the invention; and

[0039] FIG. 4b shows the handbag of FIG. 4a with its extendable lining removed.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0040] Referring to FIG. 1 to of the drawings, there is shown a handbag 10 having a bag body 12 with a bag base 14, a first storage compartment 16 and a second storage compartment 18, an extendable lining 20 in the first storage compartment 16 and a storage container 22 receivable within the second storage compartment 18.

[0041] The bag body 12 may preferably be provided in a shape typical to a frame evening bag, as shown in FIG. 1, having a plurality of angled sides 24, two handles 26 and an approximately flat base 14, with a top opening 28 defined by the juncture of two sides which define approximately parallel planes at the base 14. However, the bag body may have the shape of any conventional handbag of intermediate or large size. For example, the bag body may be provided as a bucket bag, tote, duffel bag, messenger bag, a satchel, a frame bag, a shoulder bag, a camera bag, a flight bag, an attache case or briefcase. The bag body may preferably also be provided as a satchel, and a doctor's bag, bowler bag or trapezoid layout may be particularly appropriate.

[0042] The top opening 28 of the bag body 12 may be closable via a clasp, a zip, a kissing lock, one or more straps and buckles, a snap-fit fastener, a press-stud fastener, one or more toggles, or any other appropriate closure elements or combinations thereof.

[0043] Various materials may be contemplated for the bag body 12, including leather, reptile skin, or leather substitutes, which include poromeric imitation leathers, leatherette, composition leather, and cellulose-based leather substitutes. The bag body 12 may also be produced from any suitably durable fabric, especially a cotton or linen canvas coated with a synthetic plastics material such as polyvinylchloride or polyurethane. In any case, the bag body may optionally include an internal support, such as a cardboard insert or wire frame, to retain the bag body in a predetermined shape in use.

[0044] In the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, the first storage compartment 16 may be accessed via the top opening 28 of the bag body 12. The first storage compartment 16 includes the extendable lining 20, which preferably at least in part defines the capacity of the first storage compartment 16. The extendable lining 20 may be the only lining of the first storage compartment 16; alternatively, the extendable lining may overlay a secondary lining. A secondary lining may be advantageous, as the extendable lining may thereby be removable from the bag for cleaning, or to maximize the volume of the first storage compartment for storage and/or transportation of bulky articles. Removability may be achieved, for instance, via at least one and preferably a plurality of fasteners on the top of the extendable lining attachable to fastenings of the first storage compartment proximal to the top opening of the bag body.

[0045] Preferably, a plurality of removable extendable linings associated with the handbag, having different technical characteristics may optionally be provided. For example, extendable linings may be specifically adapted for storage of foodstuffs, being liquid impermeable and insulating, or alternatively may have compartments or pockets for the storage of specific articles, such as headphones, smartphones, a laptop or cameras. Alternative pockets could also, for example, include a dedicated container for a diaper or nappy and/or accessories, which would be useful for parents of infants. A liquid impermeable, high-strength extendable lining may be particularly appropriate for the temporary storage of a small dog or other animal in the handbag. Additionally or alternatively, an extendable lining may be selected from a plurality of extendable linings for primarily aesthetic effect; for example, different colours, patterns, textures or materials of extendable linings may be provided.

[0046] In an alternative embodiment, if the extendable lining is non-removable, a protective cover for the extendable lining, preferably formed from an impermeable fabric or plastics material, may be provided, such that the protective cover is removable from the extendable lining and machine-washable or disposable.

[0047] The extendable lining 20 may be formed from any suitably strong and durable fabric. In particular, the extendable lining 20 may be formed in part from a non-extendable material such as a cotton or linen canvas, and especially a cotton or linen canvas with a thin plastics overcoat for improved durability; in this case the extendable lining 20 would have an extendable portion, which may be formed from an extendable material.

[0048] The extendable lining may also be formed from a synthetic plastics material, and in particular an extendable material, and a four way stretch fabric may be especially preferred; a four way stretch fabric is extendable crosswise and lengthwise. Four way stretch fabrics may include elastic polyether-polyurea copolymer fibre, commonly known as elastane, or elastic polyurethane fibre. In a luxury embodiment of the handbag, the extendable lining may be formed from natural, especially bombyx mori silkworm derived, silk. To allow insulation of foodstuffs and other articles which may be easily damaged by excess heat, the extendable lining may comprise a heat-insulating material, such as a thermal wadding or batting. Additionally or alternatively, the storage container may be made from a heat-insulating, waterproof, or similarly formed or coated with a material having a desirable characteristic.

[0049] The extendable lining 20 has a movable internal base 30 associated therewith which partitions the first and second storage compartments 16, 18. The said moveable internal base 30 may simply be understood as a portion 32 of the extendable lining 20 which acts to separate the first and second storage compartments 16, 18. Alternatively, the extendable lining could also be advantageously attached to a movable internal base provided as a separate component. For example, such an internal base may be provided as a card insert sewn to the extendable lining, either therein enclosed, to provide rigidity to the aforementioned portion of the extendable lining, or partitioning the first and second storage compartments independently thereof, being disposed below the extendable lining. In such a scenario, a rigid base could be formed in or as part of a non-removable liner which separates the first and second storage compartments 16, 18, or could be provided as a separate element within the handbag 10.

[0050] The second storage compartment 18 is interposed between the first storage compartment 16 and the bag base 14, and may preferably be adapted to receive the storage container 22. However, the bag could advantageously be used without a storage container; in this case the second storage compartment may receive footwear or other articles to be stored directly.

[0051] The storage container 22 may be specifically adapted for the storage of any one of footwear 34, foodstuffs, cosmetics, sun-cream, and other articles. In particular, it may preferably be used to store footwear and other such articles which may be commonly soiled in use, to avoid soiling the lining of the handbag.

[0052] Various embodiments of the storage container may be contemplated. Most preferably, the storage container 22 may be provided as a rigid or semi-rigid drawer, manufactured from card or plastics for lightweight construction. The storage container may also be formed as a fabric or leather pouch, such as a shoe-bag, or a wire or card frame with a fabric overlay.

[0053] When the storage container 22 is provided as a drawer, it preferably has a base 36 and a plurality of walls 38 projecting approximately perpendicularly therefrom. If the base 36 has a rectangular or other polygonal cross-section, each wall 38 may correspond to a side of the base 36. In the case of a rectangular base 36, as shown in FIG. 1, the storage container 22 may have less than four walls 38, to allow easy removal of articles stored therein. The walls 38 may taper distally to the base 36, resulting in a trapezoid profile for each wall 38; alternatively, the walls may not taper to the base. Otherwise, a rectangular storage container may have four walls. In any case, the storage container may also have a lid, allowing closure of the storage container, so that it may be used as a stand-alone storage container when removed from the second storage compartment of the handbag.

[0054] The storage container 22 may be at least in part removable from the second storage compartment 18. In particular, the storage container 22 may be partially removable or retractable from the second storage compartment 18 via a, preferably non-rigid, connecting element 40, which may be a flexible fabric strip, preferably connected to both the storage container 22 and the second storage compartment 18. The non-rigid connecting element may optionally be removable from the storage container and/or the second storage compartment to allow full removal of the storage container from the second storage compartment. Alternatively, one or more runner tracks may be located in the base of the second storage compartment, and the base of the storage container may have one or more corresponding runners engageable with the runner tracks.

[0055] The storage container 22 may be provided as an elongate drawer with a base 36 with rectangular cross-section; in this case particularly, walls 38 may only be provided on the non-elongate sides of the drawer, so that articles stored in the storage container 22 are retained therein on partial retraction of the storage container 22 from the second storage compartment 18.

[0056] The walls 38 may be foldable or collapsible onto the base 36, to minimize the volume taken up by the storage container 22 when not in use, especially if the storage container 22 is formed from card. The base 36 of the drawer may be textured or felted, to prevent frictional damage to articles stored therein.

[0057] To allow access to the storage container 22, as well as optionally partial or total removal of the storage container 22, the second storage compartment 18 may include an aperture 42, located on a side 24a of the bag body, preferably approximately perpendicular to the bag base 14. The aperture may be closable by a flap 44 when not in use, and such a flap 44 may be magnetically closed by a magnetic clasp (not shown) located across the second storage compartment 18 and the flap 44. Alternative fasteners could of course be considered, such as press-studs or buttons, by way of example only. Whilst flap 44 is illustrated in FIG. 1 as being a flap which is opened by pulling downwards to expose the storage container 22, it will be appreciated that the flap 44 could be lifted or opened to one or other side.

[0058] Referring to FIGS. 2a to 2c, the first and second storage compartments 16, 18 of the handbag are advantageously volume-adjustable in use. This allows the handbag 10 to be in either a first partitioned condition, or a second partitioned condition. In the first partitioned condition, the internal base 30 of the extendable lining 20 is separated or spaced apart from the base 14 of the bag body 12, so that articles may be stored in the second storage compartment 18, and particularly within a storage container 22 therein. In the second partitioned condition, the extendable lining 20 is extended, repositioning the internal base 30 towards the base 14 of the bag body 12, increasing the storage volume available in the first storage compartment 16 while reducing the storage volume available in the second storage compartment 18, potentially to nil or negligible volume.

[0059] Particularly when the extendable lining 20 is formed from a non-extendable material, the lining 20 may be extendable by user-operation of a gusset and fastener mechanism 46. In one gusset and fastener mechanism 46 as envisioned by the present invention, shown in FIGS. 2a to 2c, in the extendable lining 20 a plurality of ruched folds 48 in series are retained by the fastening of the terminal folds 50 together by a fastener 52. The ruched folds 48 may then be released by the user unfastening the terminal folds 50 via operation of the fastener 52. This results in the extension of the extendable lining 20, on the subsequent unfolding of the ruched folds 48.

[0060] The fastener 52 may preferably be provided, as shown, as a zip, so that beneficially the extendable lining 20 may be partially extended by the user, only with respect to a particular angular extent thereof. However, various other user-operated fasteners could be considered, including clasps, fish-hooks, hook-and-eyes, or press studs. To allow the extendable lining to be extended to several different extensions by the user, a plurality of gusset and fastener mechanisms may be provided.

[0061] The ruched folds 48 may be formed from a different material to the extendable lining 20. In particular, when the extendable lining 20 is formed from a non-extendable material, it may be preferable for the ruched folds 48 to be made from an extendable material, for greater extension of the extendable lining.

[0062] As shown in FIGS. 2a to 2c, a first possible gusset and fastener mechanism 46, having a gusset 45 and a fastener 52, is provided. In this case, the gusset and fastener mechanism 46 is located around the extendable lining 20 proximal to the top opening 28 of the bag body 12. This arrangement is particularly advantageous as it allows the volume of the first storage compartment 16 to be increased without disturbing articles stored therein. As shown in FIG. 2c, the extendable lining 20 may be attached to the first storage compartment 16 at the gusset 45.

[0063] In the first partitioned condition, shown in FIG. 2a, the storage container 22 preferably resides in the second storage compartment 18, and the internal base 30 sits thereupon or thereabove, demarcating the first and second storage compartments 16, 18. The extendable liner 20 is non-extended, and the fastener 52 is fastened.

[0064] In the second partitioned condition, shown in FIG. 2b, the storage container 22 has been slidably removed from the second storage compartment 18. The fastener 52 has been unfastened, extending the extendable liner 20 so that the internal base 30 is in contact with the bag base 14, and thus allowing the first storage compartment 16 to occupy all or a majority of the volume of the handbag 10.

[0065] FIGS. 3a to 3c shows a second possible gusset and fastener mechanism 146. For features similar to those of the first possible gusset and fastener mechanism 46 described hereinbefore, further detailed description has been omitted for the sake of conciseness and all elements previously described are indicated by their reference numeral in FIGS. 1, 2a to 2c plus one hundred for ease of reference.

[0066] In the gusset and fastener mechanism 146 shown in FIG. 3c, excess material is provided as a single drooped fold 154 of the extendable liner 120, peripherally around the internal base 130, with the fold 154 retained by a gusset 145 in the plane of the internal base 130, and forming part thereof, attaching the internal base 130, adjacent to the fold 154, to the first storage compartment 116. The fastener 152 may be provided as a zip running around a circumference of the internal base 130 approximately parallel thereto, although other fasteners 152 hereinbefore described may also be considered by the person skilled in the art.

[0067] In the first partitioned condition, shown in FIG. 3a, the fold 154 free-fallingly extends from the first storage compartment 116 into the second storage compartment 118. The internal base is retained by the fastened gusset 145.

[0068] In the second partitioned condition, shown in FIG. 3b, the fastener 152 has been unfastened, allowing the internal base 130 to fall so that it is in contact with the bag base 114, and thus allowing the first storage compartment 116 to occupy the majority of the volume of the handbag 110.

[0069] FIG. 4a shows a third embodiment of a handbag, indicated globally at 210, showing how the extendable liner 220 may be removed. Identical or similar features of this embodiment to those described above will be referred to using identical or similar reference numerals, and further detailed description is omitted for brevity.

[0070] At or adjacent to a gusset and fastener mechanism 246, or similar extendable arrangement of the extendable liner 220, may be provided a secondary fastener 256, via which the extendable liner 220 is connected to the bag body 212. This is here illustrated as a further zip fastener, though it will be appreciated that a variety of different types of fastener could be utilised, including at least those previously discussed.

[0071] Removal of the extendable liner 220 may assist with cleaning of the liner, or may be used as part of a set of interchangeable liners to alter the appearance of the handbag 210.

[0072] Various other embodiments of the extendable liner may be considered by the person skilled in the art. In particular, the extendable liner may not include a gusset and fastener mechanism, and may be extendable by virtue solely of the use of an elastic material therefor. Furthermore, the single drooped fold may be pleated and/or ruched to prevent or limit impingement on the storage container or drawer.

[0073] The extendable liner may, additionally or alternatively, also be ruched across a greater proportion of its surface area, and retained by the positioning of an independent and removable or adjustable internal base.

[0074] The extendable liner may be optional. In any event, the second storage compartment may optionally be collapsible or foldable, so that in a third condition of the handbag, the extendable liner is retained as in the first partitioned condition, but no storage container is received within the second storage compartment, and the second storage compartment is collapsed or folded to reduce the size of the handbag.

[0075] A collapsible second storage compartment may be achieved by including a plurality of preferably elongate jointed elements held peripherally therein, each elongate jointed element having a joint which can be hinged by application of a force above a threshold force thereto, to transition the jointed element from the hinged condition to the unhinged condition and vice versa. Alternatively, the material of the second storage compartment may simply be pre-creased to enable folding. Other options may also be evident to the person skilled in the art.

[0076] It is therefore possible to provide a handbag with an extendable lining and first and second storage compartments, such that the volumes of the first and second storage compartments are adjustable via the extension or contraction of the extendable lining. Such a handbag may advantageously be used to store footwear, foodstuffs, childcare accessories, and other articles, separate from other contents of the handbag to avoid soiling thereof.

[0077] The term "handbag", when used herein and throughout, preferably refers to any small or medium sized personal daily accessory bag, and in particular is not limited only to such bags conventionally described as lady's handbags, which typically have a plurality of handles, but may also preferably be understood to encompass bucket bags, messenger bags, satchels, totes, men's handbags, and any other bags hereinbefore referenced or otherwise.

[0078] The words `comprises/comprising` and the words `having/including` when used herein with reference to the present invention are used to specify the presence of stated features, integers, steps or components, but do not preclude the presence or addition of one or more other features, integers, steps, components or groups thereof.

[0079] It is appreciated that certain features of the invention, which are, for clarity, described in the context of separate embodiments, may also be provided in combination in a single embodiment. Conversely, various features of the invention which are, for brevity, described in the context of a single embodiment, may also be provided separately or in any suitable sub-combination.

[0080] The embodiments described above are provided by way of examples only, and various other modifications will be apparent to persons skilled in the field without departing from the scope of the invention as defined herein.

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