Fashion designer Kate Spade was found dead on Tuesday morning in her New York City home. Though few details have emerged, authorities are reporting her death was an apparent suicide.
According to a New York Police Department spokesman, a housekeeper discovered Spade, who was “unconscious” and “unresponsive” in her Park Avenue apartment at around 10:20 A.M. Tuesday and was pronounced dead at the scene. She was 55 years old.
Spade—born Katherine Noel Brosnahan—began her career as an assistant fashion editor at Mademoiselle. As *The New York Times* wrote, Spade spent her time prepping clothing for photo shoots and keeping photographers happy. After five years on the job, she was promoted to accessories editor. But it was then she decided that she could, and should, design her own line of bags.
“I wanted a functional bag that was sophisticated and had some style,” Spade told the Times in 1999.
She launched her eponymously named handbag line in 1993 alongside her then-boyfriend Andy Spade, whom she met while attending Arizona State University. As TMZ reported, the two got married one year later in 1994 and watched their brand flourish over the years to include both clothing and jewellery lines. The pair also had one daughter together, Frances Spade.
Spade was often recognized for her considerable contributions to the fashion world. In both 1996 and in 1998, Spade was recognized for her achievements by the Council of Fashion Designers of America with the “merica’s New Fashion Talent in Accessories and as the Best Accessory Designer of the Year respectively, according to People.
The pair sold a majority stake of the company in 1999, CNBC reported, to the department store Neiman Marcus for an undisclosed amount of money. In 2007, the brand was then sold for $125 million to a group then known as Liz Claiborne. In 2017 the brand was sold again to Coach for $2.4 billion, however, neither Kate nor Andy saw a dime from that acquisition as they had both relinquished any remaining shares, according to Forbes.
“When we sold the company in 2007, it was really to focus on our family. It really was. It was a grind. I had just had a baby,” Spade told CNBC in 2016.
Following the sale of Kate Spade, the pair went on to launch a new line named after their daughter, Frances Valentine.
“My grandfather, father, brother, and my daughter’s name is Frances. And then Valentine was my mom’s dad’s middle name because he was born on Valentine’s Day,” Spade told WWD in November 2015 about the line’s name. She was so committed to the line that she even changed her own surname to Valentine.
Both the Kate Spade and Frances Valentine brands continue to be sold in stores and beloved by fans around the world today. On Tuesday the Kate Spade brand released a short statement on Twitter. “Kate Spade, the visionary founder of our brand, has passed. Our thoughts are with her family at this incredibly heartbreaking time. We honour all the beauty she brought into this world.”
— kate spade new york (@katespadeny) June 5, 2018
If you or someone know are in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 or reach out to the Crisis Text Line by texting ‘Home’ to 741741.
This story is developing.
Taken from GLAMOUR US. Read the original here.