IP protection for a beach chair
The product: Sand Wedge
The Sand Wedge is a beach chair with a difference. Compact and lightweight, it's a back pack, beach bag, beach seat and sun lounge all in one.
Katherine Drayton says: 'When I made my first Sand Wedge it was really just for me, as I have a spinal condition that made the whole beach experience pretty bad. I showed my idea to family members and they thought it was great and joked about me going on the ABC's 'The New Inventors'.
The strategy: patent and more
As Katherine developed the concept further, she began to wonder whether it was patentable.
She went on a search mission to see if anyone had invented something that was similar to her concept. She advises:
'Do as much research as you can yourself to begin with because patent attorneys and paid searches can cost a lot of money, and there is no guarantee that your invention will be accepted for registration'.
Finding there was nothing like the Sand Wedge protected in Australia or the US, Katherine decided to go ahead with getting IP protection.
She saw a patent attorney to learn more about patents and what they actually protect. Through the attorney she then filed a provisional patent application, which gave her 12 months to research the product's viability on the market.
Katherine advises: 'As much as possible, keep your idea to yourself while you are deciding what to do; it's hard but important'.
Design registration and trade mark
Within the 12 months Katherine also decided to have her design registered, as a patent protects the way something functions but a registered design protects the way it looks.Trade marking the Sand Wedge logo was the final step in gaining comprehensive IP protection.
Last Updated: 24/12/2012