The Design Process

The Design Process

As you look through our items, either in your local boutique or on our website, you will see everything is unique. The embroidery of each Petit Ami piece is stitched differently. The personalities behind each Zubel are individually special. So how the heck do we even begin to come up with these designs?! Well, our designers have this process down to a science. Behind each items creation there is an insane amount of thought and time. So what does this process actually consist of? 


From Start to Finish

The first step to designing is research. Our designers do this in a few different ways. One way they do research is shopping. I know, how fun right?! By going out to shops that our consumers go to the designers can see what's up. They look at current trends, related brands, and even stuff that our typical consumer wouldn't look at! Besides the boutiques, our designers also look online to see an even wider scope of the current baby clothing and toys market. Getting inspired and doing research is so necessary to build a solid base for beautiful products. 

Next, our designers talk to our sale representatives to see what they and their customers are looking for. It is important to listen to sale reps because they know their clients and what works best. 

Then, it's time to look at fabrics. What do they have available? What patterns do they need to order? They must focus on the season they are designing and choose appropriate colors and prints. The fabrics that are chosen will dictate the direction that the new line will go. 

fabric swatch board for Petit Ami

Swatches of fabrics for a new line

Finally, our designers brainstorm. This step requires sketching galore. The more sketches, the better the ideas. By creating a lot of sketches you can dig out creations that you didn't even know you had! This is where the best stuff comes from. For Petit Ami, designers also must make matching sets which we call 'brothers' and 'sisters'. This gives our consumers boy and girl options for each design. After sketches are made, they pick out the best ones, and those become the new line! 

sketches and mockups of Petit Ami garments

Sketches of garments and their fabrics

Now it comes down to the nitty gritty! Thirty days after sending sketches off to the factories our designers receive back samples. They must make notes on the samples to refine any little changes that need to be made. After this, its off to production! The tricky part is our designers bust always be 2 season ahead of schedule which means they are always busy!

making comments and edits on salesmen samples childrens lobster dress on manikin with tape measure

Making notes on salesman samples


What's the Difference?

So, is there a difference when it comes to Petit Ami and Zubels? Well, actually the two lines are completely different, especially when it comes to designing! When our designers approach Zubels they can do so with a lot more creativity and originality. Zubels uses much brighter colors and can follow trends a lot more easily. For instance, last year, llamas and cacti were huge and our designers made sure to use these images in our Zubels line!

little girl smiling covered in knit Zubel toys

Zubels sweet knit toys

On the other hand, Petit Ami has kept the same sweet, traditional theme for decades. With delicate embroidery, smocking, and light fabrics, Petit Ami is a beautiful line to design.

baby girl in white eyelet gown and bonnet

Petit Ami Eyelet Gown (Instagram @custistwins)


Least Fave Parts of Designing

Although our designers are literally amazing, not every part of designing is as glamorous as it sounds. Our designers shared that the most difficult part would be translating their ideas into the final product. Miscommunication or small errors by factories can totally mess up the look of a product so it's our designers job to correct them! 


Fave Parts of Designing

Our designers have so many favorite parts of designing that it's nearly impossible to choose. But, if they had to choose, sketching, seeing the products come to life, and designing for private labels like Neiman Marcus are their favorite parts! Oh the joys of designing! 

little baby boy in blue train square collar romper with silver rattle

Baby boy in blue embroidered train romper (Instagram @abodelove)






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