once upon a time paper boat

ONCE UPON A TIME...

Petit Bateau is named after the nursery rhyme ‘Maman les p'tits bateaux qui vont sur l'eau ont-ils des jambes?’. Which has been sung for generations in France.

In 1918, Etienne Valton - the son of Petit Bateau founder Pierre Valton - was inspired by this nursery rhyme to cut the legs off long johns worn at the time. The classic cotton pants we know today were born!

once upon a time music box
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120 YEARS AGO PETIT BATEAU WAS BORN.

A young, spontaneous brand steeped in the magic of childhood. The company demonstrated its decidedly playful spirit right from the start with a cut-off pair of "long johns" which they coined the "petite culotte"!

Over the past 120 years of weaving at its factory in Troyes, France, Petit Bateau has carefully perfected its unique style featuring the highest quality clothing that is always ultra comfortable and fun to wear. It is timeless fashion that stays with you at every stage of life because everyone deserves to feel good in their clothes.

PETIT BATEAU, IT'S FOREVER.

120 years ago petit bateau was born
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PETIT BATEAU HISTORY

petit bateau history

1920: Creation of the Petit Bateau brand with its advertising campaign star Marinette.
1937: Award of the Grand Prix of the World Exhibition in Paris for the invention of pants.
1950: Invention of the American armhole, allowing the bodysuit to slip easily through head and baby’s arms.
1982: Creation of the newborn bodysuit was created, the first bodysuit with press stud buttons on the crotch.
1990: Invention of wool and cotton, a unique material which combines the softness of cotton on the skin with the warmth of wool.
2000: Opening of the flagship store on the most beautiful avenue of the world: Les Champs-Élysées in Paris.

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PETIT BATEAU ADVERTISING

Discover the fantastic day of Leo and his Breton stripe sweatshirt!

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where is my petit bateau made

WHERE IS MY PETIT BATEAU MADE?

Around the world there are more than 3,000 employees and knit-lovers to share the Petit Bateau adventure. Most of us are in France - 1,000 people design, knit and dye at the Saint Joseph de Troyes factory where it all began 123 years ago... Our heritage lives on - of which we are very proud!

One day we grew, without sacrificing on quality and whilst maintaining an excellent standard of clothing made in the traditional Petit Bateau way. More than 80% of our products are manufactured in France or in our own factories in North Africa, with each stage subject to strict quality control, maintaining the expertise and quality for which Petit Bateau is known.

As we've grown internationally, we have developed skills outside of our core knitting business: for 20% of our production, we have joined forces with selected expert partners. And not just any - in Europe, as in Africa or Asia, we demand the same high levels of excellence, because Petit Bateau quality cannot be invented!

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THE PETIT BATEAU KNOW-HOW IN FIGURES

the petit bateau know how in figures
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EXPERTISE OVER TIME

Initially, there is a cotton thread that unwinds like a cocoon. Chosen under our strict requirements, it is turned into rib knit or jersey in our knitting machines. This knitted fabric is then immersed for 6 to 12 hours in a bath of dye, so that it takes the full depth of colour.

Then the seamstresses bring to life the pieces created by our design team. The knitted fabrics and patterns are cut, screenprints are printed and embroidery embroidered! These two delicate steps require great expertise.

Finally comes the manual and precise assembly of different parts and meticulous finishing. From the yarn quality to the final product, each step is strictly controlled. Petit Bateau products are tested from every angle before leaving the factory.

expertise over time
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PETIT BATEAU QUALITY

Petit Bateau isn't only about wearing comfortable clothes, it's also about quality...

The best for you and your children is Petit Bateau's key concern:

Every baby product up to 36 months as well as all underwear and nightwear are certified by the Okeo-Tex label and guarantees complete innocusness for the skin.

Our clothes are non-carcinogenic, non-allergenic, and non-toxic as we avoid coloring and heavy metal.

Petit Bateau is a leading brand in creating safe, risk-free clothing for the most sensitive of skin.

New Arrivals Baby Kids Adult
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SAFETY AND REQUIREMENT

Every baby product up to 36 months as well as all underwear and nightwear are certified Petit Bateau is a brand which protects. We design knitted collections for newborns, underwear and sleepwear carrying the Oeko-Tex® label, which imposes rigorous safety controls on clothing. This collaboration has lasted almost 10 years. This certification guarantees our products against the risk of allergies and skin irritation - skin is looked after from an early age!

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FABRICS AND FINISHES

We create Petit Bateau clothes to a very high quality with elegant, original finishings.

velour

VELOUR

Velour pyjamas were born in 1960 in the Petit Bateau factory. Besides the unrivalled softness, it's convenient and washes well.

toweling

TOWELLING

Made with 85% cotton, towelling is used for pyjamas and children's clothing, giving them a soft touch and a lot of comfort.

picot stitch

PICOT STITCH

The picot stitch creates a little loop as a delicate finishing touch. We love this refined, elegant detail for babies and girls.

cocette stitch

COCETTE STITCH

The cocotte stitch is made of tight stitches made by a machine specially invented by Petit Bateau in the 60s.

milleraies

MILLERAIES

The cocotte stitch is made of tight stitches made by a machine specially invented by Petit Bateau in the 60s.

PARTNERSHIPS

Petit Bateau regularly collaborates with fashion designers, including Carven, Tsumori Chisato, Cedric Charlier, Monsieur Christian Lacroix and Maison Kitsuné, who have created capsule collections reinventing our iconic pieces.

Petit Bateau also supports young artists through an innovative partnership with the International Festival of Fashion and Photography of Hyères, giving carte blanche to the winner to create a capsule collection. After the Finnish designer Satu Maaranen and Japanese Kenta Matsushige, in 2016 it's the German designer Annelie Schubert's turn.

Beyond fashion, Petit Bateau cultivates its involvement in childhood through innovative partnerships with youth literature: Claude Ponti and Hervé Tullet and children's authors have in turn put their colourful characters on T-shirts, pants and bodysuits.

partnerships