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Hackers 1995 Roger K Burton costumes Angelina Jolie 6
Courtesy of Roger K Burton

Angelina Jolie is launching a fashion brand with actual morals

Atelier Jolie will connect fashion fans to garment makers from underappreciated refugee groups

When Angelina Jolie broadcasted the launch of her latest venture on Instagram, it almost seemed as though she was launching a zero-waste restaurant in northeast London (the exposed brickwork and rough-hewn typeface of Atelier Jolie are quite natural wine-coded). But Jolie – the UN ambassador who has spent decades advocating for the rights of displaced refugees – has more noble ambitions for her business. “I am building a place for creative people to collaborate with a skilled and diverse family of expert tailors, pattern makers and artisans from around the world,” she explained. “A place to have fun. To create your own designs with freedom. To discover yourself.” 

In short, Atelier Jolie is a custom-led brand that will connect consumers with craftspeople from “talented under-appreciated groups” and it will exclusively source fabrics from “leftover, quality vintage material and deadstock” with the intention of “creating quality heirloom garments with personal meaning.” The idea is quite radical: allowing fashion fans to step into the role of the designer while providing refugees with apprenticeships and fair compensation. “We hope to create a community of creativity and inspiration, regardless of socio-economic background,” she added. “And as we work with global artisans and creators, we hope to help share the richness of their cultural heritage and support the development of their own businesses.”

Where most side hustles within the celebscape seem to be motivated by profit (anticipating a post-fame career for when someone’s star begins to dwindle) Atelier Jolie is committed to making a genuine social change that will benefit both makers and consumers of fashion – proving creativity need not come at the expense of ethics and morals. “We can all collect, appreciate, and be influenced by the designs of others. But the highest form of self-expression – and I believe the most fun – is to create for ourselves,” she said. “Why simply buy the design of another person, when you can create yourself?” Further details, including an official launch date, remain scant. “It’s all new, and I’m more of an artist than a businesswoman,” Jolie added. “Bear with me. I hope to grow this with you.”