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HQ 952321

October 27, 1992

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 952321 HP


TARIFF NO.: 6304.93.0000

Mr. David A. Eisen
Siegel, Mandell & Davidson, P.C.
One Astor Place
1515 Broadway
43RD Floor
New York, NY 10036

RE: Wall hanging which is intended to hold barrettes is a decorative article with an incidental utilitarian function. HRL 951967 followed.

Dear Mr. Eisen:

This is in reply to your letter of July 6, 1992, to our New York office. That letter concerned the tariff classification, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), of a Peppermint Rose Barrette Holder, produced in China and/or Taiwan. Please reference your client Avon Products, Inc.


The merchandise at issue is a scented holder for hair accessories, consisting of a main body and two straps. The main body is 16 centimeters wide and 211/2 centimeters tall. The top of this section is rounded, and the bottom is flat with squared corners. The woven shell material will be 65% polyester and 35% cotton. The shell will be filled with padding. Attached to the top of the main body is a loop which will allow the item to hang on the wall.

Permanently attached straps are attached to each of the two bottom corners of the main section. The straps, upon which the hair ornaments will be connected, measure approximately 29 centimeters in length. The straps are similar in construction to the main body. The hair ornaments will be secured to the straps using their integral holding devices. Neither the straps nor the main body will have devices which fasten the ornaments to the straps.


Whether the barrette holder is considered a furnishing article under the HTSUSA?


Heading 6304, HTSUSA, provides for textile furnishing articles. The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (Harmonized System) constitute the official interpretation of the scope and content of the tariff at the international level. While not legally binding, they do represent the considered views of classification experts of the Harmonized System Committee. See Totes, Inc. v. United States, Slip Op. 92-153, 40 Cust. B. & Dec. 35 (C.I.T. Sept. 4, 1992). It has therefore been the practice of the Customs Service to follow, whenever possible, the terms of the Explanatory Notes when interpreting the HTSUSA. The EN to this heading, at page 864, states:

This heading covers furnishing articles of textile materials, other than those of the preceding headings or of heading 94.04, for use in the home, public buildings, theatres, churches, etc., and similar articles used in ships, railway carriages, aircraft, trailer caravans, motor cars, etc.

These articles include wall hangings and textile furnishings for ceremonies (e.g., weddings or funerals); mosquito nets; bedspreads (but not including bed coverings of heading 94.04); cushion covers; loose covers for furniture, antimacassars; table covers (other than those having the characteristics of floor coverings - see Note 1 to Chapter 57); mantlepiece runners; curtain loops; valances (other than those of heading 63.03).

It is a longstanding Customs position that if an article can be hung on a wall like a wall hanging and has a utilitarian function separate and distinct from its decorative value, the article cannot be classified under heading 6304, HTSUSA. See HRL 083203 of November 17, 1989 (cow message center components creating utilitarian function); HRL 086144 of February 15, 1990 (country granny paper towel holder); HRL 085014 of July 31, 1989 (gift wrap organizer). HRL 088553 of November 6, 1991, furthered this principle by holding that classes of articles ejusdem generis with the articles cited by the Explanatory Note above, although having utilitarian functions, are classified within heading 6304 (crib safety tent).

The straps do not contain any fasteners, pockets or other holding apparatus, as do the examples cited in the preceding paragraph. While the ultimate purchaser may fasten hair accessories to the straps, it is those accessories themselves which are providing the holding function. You believe, however, that the barrette holder meets each of these exclusionary prongs, and that correct classification would be as an other made up article of heading 6307, HTSUSA.

In HRL 951967 of September 3, 1992, we issued to your client a binding ruling on the classification of textile greeting card holders. Therein, we ruled that the holders were essentially "unfinished wall hangings" requiring attachment of accessories to be completed. In addition, we noted that the
straps merely provide a foundation to which the cards will be affixed. The article, taken as a whole, is purely decorative in nature although we recognize that even decorative articles will have components that may marginally be described as "functional". The mere fact that the straps provide a means for affixing the cards does not render this a utilitarian article; that reasoning would result in findings that virtually every decorative article which has a functional component (such as ... the backing itself which provides a foundation ... ) would no longer be classifiable as a decorative furnishing article.

Except for the fact that the barrettes self-clip to the straps, as opposed to greeting cards being attached to straps via existing clips, the merchandise at issue is nearly identical to that in HRL 951967. Accordingly, we consider its rationale controlling, and classify the barrette holder as a furnishing article.


As a result of the foregoing, the instant merchandise is classified under heading 6304.93.0000, HTSUSA, textile category 666, as other furnishing articles, excluding those of heading 9404, not knitted or crocheted, of synthetic fibers. The applicable rate of duty is 10.6 percent ad valorem.

The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent negotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report On Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is updated weekly and is available at your local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importing the merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


John Durant, Director

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