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HQ 087293

August 30, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 087293 STB


TARIFF NO.: 9505.10.5000, 9505.10.2500

Mr. Christopher L. Thayer
Hallmark Cards, Inc.
2501 McGee-Mail Drop #376
P.O. Box 419580
Kansas City, Missouri 64141-6580

RE: Christmas Wreath and Miniature Ornaments

Dear Mr. Thayer:

This is in response to your inquiry of April 27, 1990, concerning the tariff classification of the Little Frosty Friends Wreath, display stand and four figurines, all of which are made in China. A sample of each item was submitted with your inquiry.


The Little Frosty Friends Memory Wreath is imported, packaged and sold with the plastic display stand. The figurines are sold separately. The wreath, (620XPR9724), is a "miniature" wreath in that the diameter is approximately 5 inches. It is constructed primarily of green colored PVC sheeting and may be displayed on the K-Resin stand. It is decorated with imitation red holly berries and red and gold ribbon. The ribbon is tied into a bow at the top of the wreath which is held in place by a gold metal medallion imprinted with "Little Frosty Friends 1990." The wreath may also by hung from a Christmas tree by means of a loop attached to the back. Hallmark, Inc. has informed Customs that the principal use of the Christmas Wreath will be for display on the plastic stand. The wreath, composed of plastic strip measuring less than 5 mm, is regarded as textile. The plastic stand is approximately 5 inches high; the base is approximately 5 inches wide but it becomes gradually more narrow as the top of the stand is reached.

The miniature ornaments, which are made of high impact styrene, consist of Little Husky (620XPR9722), Little Frosty (620XPR9720), Little Bear (620XPR9723) and Little Seal (620XPR9721). Little Husky is the figure of a "Husky" type dog, white in color. He has a red package tied to his back with a piece of green string; the string looks like rope on the figure.

The miniature package is imprinted with "1990." The figure is approximately one inch high. Little Frosty is the figure of an Eskimo ringing two gold bells. The figure is primarily gray in color and is approximately 1-1/2 inches high. Little Bear is a figure of a white bear holding a red and green stocking. The stocking is imprinted with "1990." The figure is approximately one inch high. Little Seal is a figure of a white seal with a gold star attached; "1990" is imprinted on the star. The figure is approximately one inch high and has a red ribbon tied around the neck.

The figures are all designed to be hung on the wreath by means of a loop on the top of each ornament. Four gold metal clasps on the wreath facilitate the attaching of the ornaments to the wreath. The ornaments may also be attached directly to a Christmas tree by means of the small gold loop, capable of accepting a hook, on the top of each ornament. In addition, the figures have plastic stands which would allow them to stand on their own; they would, however, appear rather odd displayed in this manner as a result of the gold loop on the top of each figure. According to the importer, the figures are intended to either be hung on the wreath or directly from a Christmas tree.


What is the proper classification of the instant merchandise?


The classification of the wreath and stand under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is determined by General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 3(b). The Explanatory Notes for this GRI define goods put up in sets for retail sale to mean goods which:

(a) consist of at least two different articles which are prima facie classifiable in different headings,

(b) consist of products or articles put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity, and

(c) are put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repacking (e.g., in boxes or cases or on boards).

The instant merchandise meets all these requirements. The wreath and stand are different articles classifiable under different headings. The items are packaged together for the
purpose of displaying the wreath on the stand. It is important to note here that the wreath is a complete item without the stand; it is also designed for other methods of display, such as on a Christmas tree. The items are packaged together in a manner suitable for sale without the need for repacking.

The instant merchandise thus meets all the requirements of a set. Once the existence of a set is established, GRI 3(b) indicates that the goods are to be classified according to the material or component which gives them their essential character. The Explanatory Notes state that factors such as bulk, quantity, weight and value may be considered in determining the essential character.

The wreath provides the essential character of this set. The wreath is the raison d'etre of the set: the only purpose of the stand is to help display the wreath. The wreath provides the primary bulk, weight and value of the set. As mentioned, the primary purpose of this wreath will be for display on the stand rather than on a tree. Therefore, this set is properly classifiable as other festive articles under subheading 9505.10.5000, HTSUSA.

The four figurines can be classified by reference to GRI 1. GRI 1 provides that classification is determined first in accordance with the terms of the heading together with any relevant Section or Chapter notes.

It is Customs position that an article which, by its shape, design and ornamentation is appropriately used in connection with a recognized festive holiday, is an article that falls under Heading 9505, HTSUSA; thus the classification of the wreath. There is a separate subheading, however, which distinguishes "Christmas ornaments" from other festive articles. To qualify as a Christmas ornament, Customs requires that the following three criteria be met: (1) that the item is marketed and sold as a Christmas tree ornament; (2) that there is some method, generally a loop attached to the top, to secure or hang the item on a tree and (3) that the item is not too big or too heavy to be hung or attached to a tree. It is not necessary that items which conform to the above criteria demonstrate a singularly Christmas motif.

The subject merchandise satisfies all three of the criteria described above. The only variation between these items and traditional Christmas tree ornaments is that these items may be hung on the wreath (which may or may not be suspended from a tree itself), in addition to utilization as separate tree ornaments. It is our determination that this merchandise is clearly of the same class or kind as Christmas tree ornaments. The marketing of the items indicates that they may be used on trees as well as the wreath.


The wreath and stand are classifiable as a set under subheading 9505.10.5000, HTSUSA, as Festive, carnival or other entertainment articles, including magic tricks and practical joke articles, parts and accessories thereof, Articles for Christmas festivities and parts and accessories thereof, other, other. The applicable duty rate is 5.8% ad valorem. The four figurines are properly classifiable in subheading 9505.10.2500, which provides, in part, for articles for Christmas festivities and parts and accessories thereof, Christmas ornaments, other, other. The rate of duty is 5% ad valorem.


John Durant, Director

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