TL;DR – They actually exist.
The world can’t seem to get enough Crazy Rich Asians these days and beyond the best-selling novel by Kevin Kwan which has since been adapted into a much-anticipated movie that topped the US box office in its weekend debut, lies a real world of crazy rich Asians as met by Kwan in Paris.
This video by Harper’s Bazaar features Asian style icons and Instagram starlets who are shaking up the world of couture and lead lives that rival those of the Crazy Rich Asians characters.
These ladies have been attending Paris Couture since they were children and don’t own just one but two Giambattista Valli gowns to wear on her wedding day. And did I mention they actually paint on their half-a-million bucks Hermès handbags because they accidentally stained one with grease while eating french fries at Chili’s?
Yup, so here’s presenting to you Crazy Rich Asians, the real life edition.
1) Feiping Chang 張翡玶
Back in July, I spent an unforgettable couture week with @harpersbazaarus and @kevinkwanbooks in Paris. There were lots of tulle (but of course), lots of laughs, lots of sweat, and lots of wonderful conversation with wonderful people. See it all now at @harpersbazaarus online, and in the September issue out on newsstands around the world soon 💗 Production: @kathryn___rice Creative Direction: @carrielauren Photographer: @matthieusalvaing Fashion Editor: @cassieanderson212 #harpersbazaar #giambattistavalli #couture #giambattistavallicouture
The Instagram fashionista and founder of lifestyle website xoxoFei.com was born in Taipei but grew up all over the world, including Sydney, Singapore, and New York. Now based in Hong Kong, she often photographs herself wearing haute couture gowns in exotic locations. Her destination wedding to financier Lincoln Li in 2017 spanned over three days, from the well-known restaurant Da Paolino in Capri, Italy to an all-day seaside party at Conca del Sogno in Nerano and the final main event along the Amalfi Coast where she wore two custom Giambattista Valli dresses — one down the aisle, one for the ceremony.
2) Heart Evangelista
Somebody pinch me – I still can’t believe this happened! I, along with other Asian fashion icons, were featured in @harpersbazaarUS ‘s September issue for their ‘Crazy Rich Couture’ story. Watch us attend fashion week and discuss couture with the ever-so-charming @kevinkwanbooks. You can watch the full-length video through the link in my bio ❤
Love Marie Payawal Ongpauco-Escudero, or Heart Evangelista, is a Filipino actress, TV host, and visual media artist and who we said started painting on her Birkin bags after she stained one with french fries grease. Yup. According to Wikipedia, she is the daughter of Reynaldo Evangelista Ongpauco, who belongs to a Chinese-Filipino clan that owns and manages Barrio Fiesta Group of restaurants, and Maria Cecilia del Gallego Payawal, whose family owns a sugarcane plantation in Camarines Sur and is the granddaughter of a Spanish governor in the Bicol region.
3) Michelle and Rachel Yeoh
Crazy Rich Asians meets the French Haute Bourgeoise! @michelle.yeoh A few weeks ago I was sat in a suite at the Parisian Ritz, surrounded by macaroons from Ladurée and decadent pastries from Angelina. It was the end of Haute Couture Fashion Week so by then I had seen all the collections presented by my favourite fashion houses. When this incredible @fendi dress came down the runway, my heart skipped a beat and as dramatic as it may sound, the air changed and my world stalled for a moment. I knew I wanted to get my hands on it! This picture relays so many things to me about finding and living out dreams and desire, being inspired and the iconically French. But most importantly it represents the meeting and fusing of two worlds I simultaneously live and find belonging in-the East and West- in a way that does not put one above the other. They are bonded by the transporting forces of love and creativity, love for creativity, and the many stories that are the undercurrents of all our lives. @kevinkwanbooks has chronicled the magical time we spent together for @harpersbazaarus, and I cannot be more proud reliving all the wonderful things we got up to and the inspirational people that we met. Like his novel Crazy Rich Asians, this is a piece that breaks apart token representation and sheds light on our identities, stories and culture in ways that they deserve. The world is all of our oysters and I hope that it continues to feel more so. Link to read his piece is in my bio! It’s sharp and splendid- you’ll love it! Infinitely grateful to this unbelievable dream team! Production: @kathryn___rice Creative Direction: @carrielauren Photographer: @matthieusalvaing Fashion Editor: @cassieanderson212 @alisonssscohn #ValerieSchenkman #crazyrichasians #hautecouture
Closer to home, Malaysia-born twin fashionistas Michelle and Rachel Yeoh have been attending couture shows with their mother since they were children. Heiresses to the YTL Corporation, Malaysia’s largest conglomerate, they are now based in London where Michelle studies law while Rachel studies philosophy, politics and law. They were also the first Malaysians to debut at Queen Charlotte’s Ball at Kensington Palace – a historically British royal affair and walked the runway for Dolce & Gabbana’s Fall Winter 2017 show at Milan Fashion Week.
You can read Kwan’s account of meeting these ladies here which just like his books, is quite a fascinating read about the world of crazy rich Asians.