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!
Petit Bateau history
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 124 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!
The Petit Bateau know-how in figures
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.
A second life for my Petit Bateau Clothes
Because our clothes are made to live great adventures with you. Because like any kid, we have all stained atleast one of our favourite tops...
Because this is not a reason not to keep it or even give it to his little brother or sister, his cousins or his friends.
Were offering you some tips through our videos "I did not do it on purpose" to repair and customise your stained, damaged, torn Petit Bateau garments.
Petit Bateau iconics
Fabrics and finishes
Petit Bateau regularly collaborates with fashion designers, including Carven, Tsumori Chisato, Cedric Charlier, Monsieur Christian Lacroix, Maison Kitsuné, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac and Ines de la Fressange, 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, Satu Maaranen, the Japanese, Kenta Matsushige, the German, Annelie Schubert and the Japanese, Wataru Tominaga, it will be the turn, in 2018, of the Swiss, Vanessa Schindler. Beyond fashion, Petit Bateau cultivates is involvement in childhood through innovative partnerships. Claude Ponti, Herve Tullet, children's author Keith Haring, Deyrolle and Marie-Agnès Gillot have in turn put their colourful characters on pants and iconic pieces from the brand.