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HQ 084719

June 14, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 084719 CB


TARIFF NO.: 9505.10.2500; 6307.90.9030

Ms. Karen Norling
P. O. Box 1328
Minneapolis, MN 55440

RE: Classification of Long John Stocking and Lace Teddy Stocking

Dear Ms. Norling:

This ruling letter is in response to your letter of April 25, 1989, requesting a classification ruling under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUSA), for a long john stocking and a lace teddy stocking.


The subject merchandise are stockings of the type one may hang for decorative purposes. The items are to be manufactured in China and imported from Hong Kong. The composition of the items are man-made fibers/materials. The Long John Stocking is 98 percent poly/cotton knit and 2 percent plastic buttons. The Lace Teddy Stocking is 95 percent polyester lace and trim, and 5 percent "boa" trim.


Is the subject merchandise classifiable in Chapter 9505, which provides for festive articles.


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that the starting point is the terms of the headings and subheadings of the tariff and any relevant section or chapter notes. Heading 9505 provides for festive, carnival and other entertainment articles. The Explanatory Notes to Heading 9505 state that the heading covers "[a]rticles traditionally used at Christmas festivities, e.g.,... Christmas stockings..." The Explanatory Notes constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level.

It is Customs position that strict adherence to the phrase "traditionally used" is improper in a rapidly changing market such as Christmas ornaments. The market has expanded to include non-traditional commonly-used household articles to be utilized as ornaments during the Christmas season. With regard to the subject merchandise, the stockings will have to be considered separately.

Although the submitted Long John Stocking sample is not a traditional Christmas stocking, it is properly classifiable under Chapter 9505. The sample merchandise has a red body with green trimming, colors usually associated with the Christmas season. Moreover, all openings except for the neckline have been completely closed with a line of stitching to enable the "stuffing" of the stocking. The subject merchandise serves primarily as a Christmas type adornment. The Long John Stocking is classifiable in subheading 9505.10.2500.

With regard to the Lace Teddy Stocking, it is Customs position that this item is similar to an article which could be used as a gift throughout the year. Even if one were to adhere to a loose interpretation of a "traditional Christmas stocking", the subject merchandise lacks any characteristic which would evoke the Christmas season other than the fact that the teddy's leg openings are sewn closed. It is Customs' position that the Lace Teddy Stocking is classifiable in subheading 6307.90.9030 as other made up articles.


The Long John Stocking is classifiable in subheading 9505.10.2500, HTSUSA, which provides for articles for Christmas festivities, other Christmas ornaments, and dutiable at the rate of 5 percent ad valorem.

The Lace Teddy Stocking is classifiable in subheading 6307.90.9030, HTSUSA, which provides for other made up articles, other, other, and dutiable at the rate of 7 percent ad valorem.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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