v Dec. 24, 1946. - M. 9. RICE 2,413,071 SHOE PRESERVER Filed Aug. 6, 1945 INVENTOR. 1771/:[1‘ 5' cf :H . Pic 5' BWM/h with‘ - Patented Dec. 24, 1946 2,413,071 UNITED STATES I‘ PATENT ‘OFFICE ‘ ‘12.41am , l ' ' ‘SHOE'PBESEBVER 'Mildned‘H. Rice, mammalian. ‘ ‘‘ ~ , i > if > " ‘_ v * J" ApplicationAugust .6, 1945, 'SerialjNo. 609,137 ' ' . ' 1 Claim. 1 2 This is .a continuation in part of my applica tion 'Seria-‘l'No. 563,667, ?led November 16, 1944, . sition ‘in a ‘backless shoe, ‘no appreciableforce could be ‘exerted tending to keep the shoe in for Shoe preserver, now abandoned. My invention relates to shoe preservers or shoe proper-shape. , ‘ An objectof the invention‘is to provide-a'shoe tree which can be vvused to preserve the shape trees and is particularly designed so that it may ‘he used either'with shoes of usual construction of those which are ‘made with open toe caps or with of the normal form "of shoe, that is, one ‘hav ing aback-and closed toe, or which can be'used out any back except a'strapelement. with any of ‘the varied styles of shoe now popu ' lar and which may have no back and an ‘open The invention will hereinafter be described with I particular ‘reference to such backless shoes, al 10 toe cap. A further object of the invention is to provide though as previously indicated, it is not neces sarily restricted to use with this type of shoe. a shoe tree which may be used for backless shoes provided with a strap passing over the "instep of Backless shoes are usually made with an open the wearer as well as with a heel strap, the con toe cap, and, in lieu of aheel-enclosing portion, are provided with a strap extending from ap 15 struction “being such as to securely support the back ‘strap in its ‘proper position by engagement proximately the instep around the heel of the of the back -of the shoe tree both with the back wearer. Sometimes an additional strap is pro vided to pass over the instep. As illustrative of knownconstructions a ‘brief stra-pand with the ‘heel of the shoe. 7 _ I A still further object of the invention is to pro outline of representative shoe trees designed for 20 vide a ‘shoe tree ‘or shoe ‘preserv'er which is in expensive to make and (yet is long wearing and shoes of the type having a back and closed toe will be given. Such trees are characterized by features which render them effective for their purpose but which‘have drawbacks if considered for use with the type of shoe for which the shoe treeof my invention ,is particularly designed. vsat-isfactoryinuse. A still further object of the invention is to provide a shoe tree which may be used with a wide-‘variety of forms ofshoe and yet comprises ‘no ‘separate parts or adjustments, the adjust ment of the tree to various types of shoe being In one known construction a ?exible front por due to the form of the shoe tree. tion is provided shaped to engage in the front Still further features and objects of the inven portion of a shoe, this front portion being re siliently or rigidly connected to a rearwardly ex 30 tion will hereinafter appear in the following de scription taken in conjunction with the accom tending part ending in a short downwardly turned panying drawing. or curved part intended to engage against the While the invention is herein described and back of the shoe. In order to securely engage illustrated in a preferred form, it is to be under with the back strap of a heelless shoe a construc tion must be provided in which the rear end of fLe Cl stood that the scope of the invention is not in any way limited by this illustrative showing but the shoe tree is supported against the heel end only as indicated by the scope of the appended of the sole and will engage the heel strap with adequate force and without any tendency of the heel strap to slip off the shoe tree; this neces sary requirement could not be met by the known construction. In another known construction the shoe tree is formed from a continuous resilient strip up wardly bowed intermediate its length and pro jecting forwardly to enter and engage against the underside of the top of the toe cap and at its rear end bowed to engage against the entire height of the back of a shoe. The ends of the ?exible strip end in relatively small rounded tips. If used in a backless shoe the lower portion of the rear end of the known construction would spring outwardly of the heel of the shoe while the forward end would pass through the open toe usually provided in such shoes with the result that even if the tree could be maintained in po claim. ’ In the accompanying drawing: 40 Fig. 1 is a plan view of the blank from which the tree is formed; Fig. 2 is a front elevation of the shoe tree formed from the blank shown in Fig. l; and Fig. 3 is a side elevation of the shoe tree show ' ing the form assumed when the tree is inserted in a backless shoe, indicated in dot-dash lines. Referring now to Fig. 1, the numeral Ill indi cates an elongated strip of resilient material from which the blank may be formed or stamped. I prefer to use a plastic material of appreciable thickness as a blank from which the tree is to be formed, since such material will provide a de sirable combination of resiliency, freedom from rust, and is su?iciently strong to withstand hard usage as well as providing an attractive appear 2,413,071 3 The downwardly curved portion M of the back of the tree engaged against the inside of the heel strap I1 while the action of the body or central portion of the tree acts to push the rounded end l5 of the shoe tree inwardly of the heel of the shoe, thus urging the end of the shoe tree against ance. A satisfactory plastic for the purpose of forming the tree is the material known by the trade names of “Plexiglas,” or “Lucite.” It will be noted that the blank is provided at one end with a widened head l2 from which the toe portion of the shoe tree is formed. The blank is formed by heating it sufficiently to enable the the surface of the heel and affording a secure engagement with the back strap to hold it in proper position and spacing from the heel. If 10 the shoe tree is to be used with a backless shoe plying the proper con?guration thereto. of the type having a strap passing over the instep Referring to Fig. 2, it will be seen that the con of the wearer, it will be noted that the strap may ?guration of the shoe tree comprises the toe be buckled over the body portion [0 without in member l2, which is formed by bending the wid ened portion of the toe member upwardly‘ and . terfering with the described action of the shoe backwardly on the strap-like bodyportion. The 15 tree. ‘ It wili be further noted that the tree may be material of the toe portion is also bent trans; used with a shoe having a back, since the engage versely to its length, as indicated in Fig. 2, the ment of the shoe tree with the back would be corners of the toe portion being rounded off in a Similar to the engagement of the tree with the gradual curve l3 in order to engage against the inside of the toe piece of the shoe, whether of 20 heel strap, as above described, and that since the engagement of the toe piece of the tree is with the ordinary or open-ended type, without bulg material to yield readily and is then bent to the proper form between the members of a mold ap ing out the material of the toe caps. It is to - the underside and sides of the toe piece of the shoe, the action of the shoe tree is independent be noted that the end 12 of the shoe tree is too of whether the toe of the shoe is of the open or wide to permit it to project through a toe cap > or front portion open at the end. P3 Or closed type, While I have described a preferred form of my In the form of the shoe tree shown in the invention it will be evident that various modi? drawing, the body portion I0 is given an upwardly cations, such as changes in the con?guration of curving contour from the toe piece toward the the toe piece, may be made without departing back of the tree, the upwardly curving portion merging into an oppositely curved portion l4 and 30 from the scope of the invention as indicated by the appended claim. terminating in a curved portion I 5 of smaller What I claim is: radius. , A tree for a shoe having a toe and heel strap, The action of the tree will be evident from an comprising a one-piece strip of resilient mate inspection of Fig. 3. The ends of the tree are brought toward each other and the toe inserted 35 rial curving downwardly from its heel end to en in the toe portion l6 of the shoe, the toe piece [2 of the tree will be ?exed downwardly toward the body by the toe cap of the shoe and due to the resilience of the material from which the .shoe tree is made will exert a ?rm pressure 40 against the sides and under surface of the toe cap, serving to maintain the shape of the toe of the shoe. The engagement of the toe piece in the toe of the shoe also affords an effective an chorage of the shoe tree in the shoe and affords an abutment for the force exerted by the body of the shoe tree in tending to recover its original shape. gage the heel, thence outwardly and upwardly to engage the strap, thence downwardly and for wardly to the toe and thence backwardly and up wardly to engage the upper inner portion of the toe of the shoe, said backwardly curved portion of the strip being. arched in cross-section and relatively wider than the adjacent strip portion whereby to provide resilient lateral portions (en gageable against the inner surface of the sides .» of the toe portion of the shoe. MILDRED H. RICE.