Petit Bateau tees have been a wardrobe staple of mine for over 10 years. I’d read about the women’s line of the French company who’s known for baby and child clothing in Vogue in the pre-blog days. In more recent years, they’ve added styles for men. I have mentioned them over the years, but this is my first proper review.
- Style: The styles have changed slightly over the years but they are consistently fitted, chic, and come in neutral colors and stripes. Whenever I find a style and/or colorway that I love, it’s not uncommon for me to buy multiples. After all, the style may be seasonal or Europe-only (when I’m shopping there). I like their ribbed cotton tees the best — preferable 3/4 sleeves when they have that style, then short sleeves, as those can be worn yearround. When it comes to marinieres, I love my PB x Kitsune top, but opt for Uniqlo’s interpretation of the mariniere for the lower price point and shorter sleeves. The US PB site isn’t the best and usually doesn’t include modeling pics, so if there’s a new style and I’m not sure how it looks, I head to the French PB site.
- Comfort and Versatility: I often wear the tees for work — I have enough to not have to do laundry every week. While I wouldn’t recommend them for a business professional environment, they are perfect for a business casual work attire. Recently a female coworker commented that I could wear anything under my many blazers/cardigans, “like a t-shirt”. Yup, that’s exactly what I wear. The ribbed cotton in most of their signature line of tees is super comfy and durable. It’s also the right weight and breathable 100% cotton for year-round use whether it’s the middle of winter or summer in Asia.
- Pricing: The US PB online store has been running great sales which I’m taking advantage of. Needless to say, it’s way cheaper to buy PB in Paris but shopping in-store can be frustrating as they do not keep a big inventory of styles so you may have to spend time hitting up multiple locations which may impact your tax refund eligibility.
- Maintenance: I am pretty low maintenance and hate spending money at the dry cleaners. Everything goes into the washing machine — wash cold and dry low. I use Woolite Darks detergent on the black/navy tops. The striped ones may go in my lights or darks load. It takes a long time for a top to get thrown out and I’m more likely to get sized out of it than it is to get eliminated.
- Sizing: It is a French brand so everything is fitted and cut slim/long (unlike Uniqlo). The sizing may be confusing. It goes by ages, Y = years or sometimes A = age. Translation: 12Y (XXS), 14Y (XS), 16Y (S), 18Y (M), 20Y (L). Now, if you’re lucky enough to be a 12Y, you can also check out the kids’ department. I don’t like anything skin tight so I tend to be on the higher range of the sizes. For non-ribbed cotton items, sizing may be more forgiving.
- Designer Collaborations: You know I love my collabs. Previous ones include Tsumori Chisato (didn’t keep anything, blogged), Carven (blogged), and Kitsune (blogged).
Of the colors that are currently out, I am a fan of the two striped options: milleraies and rayé.
Women’s Milleraies Collection (as pictured above in navy/white microstripes, it’s not gray!)
This is my favorite striped collection. I think it’s been around for 5 years (based on this post). It comes in every single ribbed cotton style that PB has. Below: cardigan and short sleeve tee.
Women’s Rayé Collection
I think rayé has been around since 2015 in black/white. In 2016, they introduced blue/white and white/blue. I think they are phasing the black/white out.
Images: Petit Bateau
Where to Buy in the US
- Petit Bateau US online store (operated in LA where their sole US retail location is): I think all of their retail stores and outlet stores closed over the years except for the LA store. I used to frequent the outlet in Aurora, IL often!
- The Outnet (Net-a-Porter used to carry the line but no longer does)
- Yoox — PB can be found under women’s as well as girls (9-16 years) and Yoox tends to have more seasonal items.
Barneys used to carry PB Women’s.