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HQ 963536

June 1, 2000

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 963536 SS


TARIFF NO.: 6307.90.9989

Mr. Chuch Fiske
Barthco International, Inc.
1377 E. Irving Park Rd.
Itasca, IL 60143

RE: Modification of NYA89942; Classification of Shoe Ornaments; Shoe Accessories; Other Made Up Textile Articles; Heading 6307, HTSUSA; Not Clothing Accessories; Heading 6217, HTSUSA; Not Parts of Footwear; Heading 6406, HTSUSA

Dear Mr. Fiske:

This letter is pursuant to Headquarters’ reconsideration of New York Ruling Letter (NY) A89942, dated December 6, 1996, addressed to you, on behalf of your client Audace, Inc., which concerned the classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) of shoe ornaments.

This letter is to inform you that after review of that ruling, it has been determined that the classification of the shoe ornaments in subheading 6217.10.9030, HTSUSA, is incorrect. For the reasons that follow, this ruling modifies NY A89942.

Pursuant to section 625(c), Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1625(c)), notice of the proposed modification of NY A89942 was published on April 26, 2000, in the Customs Bulletin, Volume 34, Number 17.


The shoe ornaments which are the subject of this ruling were described in NY A89942 as follows:

The submitted samples are shoe ornaments consisting of woven man made fiber fabric with metal clips. There are four bow designs and three round flower designs.


What is the proper classification of the shoe ornaments under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA)?


Classification of goods under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (“GRIs”). GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative section or chapter notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI may then be applied. The Explanatory Notes (EN) 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 GRI.

Chapter 64, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, footwear and parts of footwear. Although heading 6404, HTSUSA, provides for parts of footwear, shoe ornaments are specifically excluded from the heading. Chapter Note 2 to Chapter 64, HTSUSA, states as follows:

2. For the purposes of heading 6406, the term “parts” does not include pegs, protectors, eyelets, hooks, buckles, ornaments, braid, laces, pompons or other trimmings (which are to be classified in their appropriate headings) or buttons or other goods of heading 9606.

Accordingly, the subject shoe ornaments are excluded from classification in Chapter 64, HTSUSA.

Heading 6217, HTSUSA, covers, among other things, other made up clothing accessories. The term “clothing accessory” is not defined in the HTSUSA. However, in Headquarters Ruling Letter (HQ) 084857, dated June 28, 1989, and HQ 081945, dated January 29, 1990, Customs clearly stated that accessories to shoes are not considered “clothing accessories” of heading 6217, HTSUSA. HQ 084857 (cited above), stated in pertinent part:

. . . [I]n order to be classifiable under Heading 6217, an article must be a clothing accessory. In our view, shoes are commonly considered to be apparel accessories and not “clothing”, and, while shoe covers may be considered to be shoe accessories, accessories of clothing accessories are not within the purview of Heading 6217.

Applying this rationale to the subject merchandise, the shoe ornaments are not clothing accessories and are thus not properly classifiable under heading 6217, HTSUSA.

Despite this line of cases, the ruling previously issued to your client, NY A89942, classified the shoe ornaments as clothing accessories under heading 6217, HTSUSA. It appears that HQ 086055, dated January 9, 1990 and HQ 952170, dated December 23, 1992, were consulted. In HQ 086055, Customs classified neoprene boot liners as other made up clothing accessories. The ruling did not explain how the liners qualified as “clothing accessories.” Additionally, in HQ 952170, Customs classified booties worn with walking shoes as other made up clothing accessories. Reliance was placed upon the prior neoprene boot liner ruling. HQ 952170 (cited above) acknowledged that it and the prior boot liner ruling were inconsistent with the reasoning set forth in HQ 081945 (cited above), and stated that Customs was considering revocation of HQ 081945. However, no such revocation has occurred. Please be advised that Customs is currently in the process of revoking HQ 086055 and modifying HQ 952170 (cited above). Upon review of the matter, we find that HQ 084857 and HQ 081945 present a more reasoned approach to the classification of shoe ornaments.

Heading 6307, HTSUSA, provides for other made up textile articles. The EN to heading 6307, HTSUSA, state that the heading covers made up articles of any textile material which are not included more specifically elsewhere in the tariff schedule. The EN also state that the heading specifically includes rosettes other than those for garments. Webster’s II New Riverside University Dictionary defines rosette as “[a]n ornament or badge made of silk or ribbon that is pleated or gathered to resemble a rose and is worn as a clothing decoration or as a part of a medal.” We find that the instant shoe ornaments are similar in nature to rosettes.

In HQ 084857 and HQ 081945 (cited above), Customs classified disposable shoe covers under heading 6307, HTSUSA. As stated above, Customs reasoned that accessories to shoes are not considered “clothing accessories” of heading 6217, HTSUSA. Furthermore, Customs has classified similar shoe ornaments under heading 6307, HTSUSA. In HQ 083538, dated February 12, 1990, Customs classified animal head “shoe tie-ons” as other made up textile articles. The shoe tie-on was described as an animal head of man-made fibers with two small loops on the back which enabled the animal head to serve as a shoe decoration by running the shoe laces through the loops. Additionally, in HQ 086328, dated April 18, 1990, Customs classified shoe decorations which were attached to sneakers by hook and loop material under heading 6307, HTSUSA. The shoes had textile uppers composed of hook and loop type material. Woven strips with various dinosaur designs had hook and loop material on the back which allowed the strips to be attached to the upper of the shoe for decoration. Applying these cases to the merchandise at issue, the shoe ornaments at issue are accessories to clothing accessories and are properly classifiable under heading 6307, HTSUSA.


NY A89942 is hereby modified to reflect that the shoe ornaments described therein are classifiable under subheading 6307.90.9989, HTSUSA, which provides for “Other made up articles, including dress patterns: Other: Other: Other; Other: Other.” The general column one duty rate is 7 percent ad valorem.

In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625(c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the Customs Bulletin.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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