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April 21, 1999

CLA-2-61:RR:NC:WA:353 D89374


TARIFF NO.: 6104.43.2020

Ms. Jinky A. Spires
Disguise Inc.
9040 Activity Road
Suite D
San Diego, CA 92126

RE: The tariff classification of costume sets from Mexico.

Dear Ms. Spires:

In your letter dated March 19, 1999, you requested a classification ruling. Please note that your request for a classification ruling for two “Rugrats” costumes will be answered in a separate ruling.

The submitted samples consist of Style #’s 5309 “Mulan” Deluxe and 5245 “Megara” Deluxe costume sets. The costume sets are packaged in a clear plastic bag with a hanger and a cardboard insert with a picture and description of the costume.

Style # 5309 “Mulan” Deluxe costume set consists of a girl’s dress, sheer shawl and hair ornament. The well-styled dress is made of warp knit 100% polyester fabric. There is a sewn in double stand-up collar, a 7 1/2 inch sewn in three tiered waistband and overlapping the dress, a decorative front skirt that extends 10 inches from the waist. There is overlock stitching at the end of the sleeves to which is attached a foot long fabric embellishment.

Style # 5245 “Megara” Deluxe costume set consists of a girl’s dress, hair band and clip-on buttons. The well-styled dress is made of warp knit 100% polyester fabric. The dress is sleeveless and there is piping at the neck and armholes as well as sewn in lame accents at the bustline and waist. The bottom of the dress is not hemmed.


Whether the costumes are festive articles of chapter 95 or articles of fancy dress, of textiles, classifiable under chapter 61 or 62.


Classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI’s). The systematic detail of the harmonized system is such that virtually all goods are classified by application of GRI 1, that is, according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and relative section of the chapter notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI’s may then be applied. The Explanatory Notes (ENs) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, which represent the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level, facilitate classification under the HTSUSA by offering guidance in understanding the scope of the headings and GRIs.

Heading 9505, HTSUSA, includes articles which are for “Festive, carnival, or other entertainment.” It must be noted, however, that Note 1(e), chapter 95, HTSUSA, does not cover “fancy dress, of textiles, of chapter 61 or 62.” The EN’s to 9505, state that the heading covers:

(A) Festive, carnival or other entertainment articles, which in view of their intended use are generally made of non-durable material. They include:

(3) Articles of fancy dress, e.g., masks, false ears and noses, wigs, false beards and moustaches (not being articles of postiche- heading 67.04), and paper hats. However, the heading excludes fancy dress of textile materials, of chapter 61 or 62.

In interpreting the phrase “fancy dress, of textiles, of chapter 61 or 62,” Customs initially took the view that fancy dress included “all” costumes regardless of quality, durability, or the nature of the item. However, Customs has reexamined its view regarding the scope of the term “fancy dress” as it related to costumes. On November 15, 1994, Customs issued Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 957318, which referred to the settlement agreement of October 18, 1994, reached by the United States and Traveler Trading. In HRL 957318, Customs stated that it had agreed to classify as festive articles in subheading 9505.90.6000, costumes of a flimsy nature and construction, lacking in durability, and generally recognized as not being a normal article of apparel.

In view of the aforementioned, Customs must distinguish between costumes of chapter 95 (festive articles), and costumes of chapters 61 and 62 (articles of fancy dress). This can be accomplished by separately identifying characteristics in each article that would indicate whether or not it is of a flimsy nature and construction, lacking in durability, and generally recognized as a normal article of apparel.

The Styles #’s 5309 “Mulan” Deluxe and 5245 “Megara” Deluxe costumes are considered articles of fancy dress. The “Mulan” dress is well styled, has a finished collar, and sewn in waistband and decorative skirt. The “Megara” dress is well styled and has a finished neckline and armholes. The overall amount of finishing is such that the articles are neither flimsy in nature or construction, nor lacking in durability.

GRI 3(b) is applicable when goods are, prima facie, classifiable under two or more headings, and have been put up in sets for retail sale. GRI 3(b) states that the goods “shall be classified as if they consisted of the material component which gives them their essential character.” For the Style #’s 5309 “Mulan” Deluxe and 5245 “Megara” Deluxe costume sets, the shawl, hair ornament, hair band and clip-on buttons are governed by GRI 3(b) because the items are packaged as accessories with a single garment wherein each item in the set is classifiable under a separate heading. Pursuant to GRI 3(b), however, the accessory items in the set are classified in accordance with that article from which the set derives its essential character. Customs believes that the essential character of costumes consisting of a single garment with accessories is generally imparted by that garment, which in this case is the dress.

The applicable subheading for the Style #’s 5309 “Mulan” Deluxe and 5245 “Megara” Deluxe costume sets will be 6104.43.2020, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Women's or girls' suits, ensembles, suit?type jackets, blazers, dresses, skirts, divided skirts, trousers, bib and brace overalls, breeches and shorts (other than swimwear), knitted or crocheted: Dresses: Of synthetic fibers: Other...Girls’.” The general rate of duty will be 16.5% ad valorem.

Based upon international textile trade agreements products of Mexico are not subject to quota or the requirement of a visa.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Kenneth Reidlinger at 212-637-7084.


Robert S. Swierupski

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