Petit Bateau Sizes Its Clothes By “Years,” Stops At Age 18/20

French clothing company Petit Bateau is famous for their adorable children’s clothing and mastery of the marinière striped shirt. And although the brand is largely focused on its younger audience, there is adult merchandise that’s ever-popular with the ladies in France (and here as well). Have you ever noticed, however, that Petit Bateau’s sizing for its “adult” wares is, well, unconventional, shall we say? Click on the “women’s” section of the website and you can choose from the smallest size, 14 years old, to the largest, 20 years old. On the French version of the website, in the merchandise for “adultes,” female sizing stops at “18 ans” or “20 ans.” (“Ans” means “years” in French, as you’ve probably guessed.)
Considering the size debate that’s especially prevalent in the U.S. of late, this sizing system is incredibly exclusive, not to mention infantilizing.

So what is this supposed to mean—that French women remain the same size that they were at 18 years old? Do you fit into the same clothes you wore your freshman year of college? (We wish we did.) Check out a few more examples after the jump. [Petit Bateau]


Petit Bateau’s French website also uses the age system to classify sizes, often listing 20 years old as the largest size.


On the U.S. website, a sizing chart indicates that the bust size of an 18-year-old woman should be 35-36 inches.