WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- World-renowned fashion designer Kate Spade was found dead in her New York City apartment on Tuesday.
- A housekeeper discovered the 55-year-old’s body in her Park Avenue home, where she appears to have hanged herself from a door with a scarf.
- Spade was praised by The Council of Fashion Designers for America for her “immeasurable impact” on “the way the world viewed American accessories.”
NYPD Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea stated, “There was a suicide note left at the scene. Not going to get into the contents of that note. That appears to be the sum total of what it is at this point, but we still have detectives on the scene.”
Spade’s line of chic handbags was launched in the early 1990s and soon became a global sensation. Kate Spade New York is now a retail powerhouse with over 140 shops and outlets across the United States.
In a 1999 interview with The Boston Globe, Spade said, “I was looking for something that could be less serious, more personal. I also wanted timelessness.”
Her bags put a contemporary spin on the classic elegant style of icons such as Jackie Kennedy and Audrey Hepburn. While the designs were simple yet sophisticated, their preppy and brightly colored tones showcased cheerful luxury.
In 2004, Spade told The Associated Press, “I grew up in the Midwest, where you have to have [a fashion item] because you like it, not because you’re supposed to have it. For our customers, fashion is in the right place in their life. It’s an adornment, not an obsession.”
Spade was born Kate Brosnahan in December 1962 in Kansas City, Missouri, to a housewife and a construction company owner. In 1993, she co-founded her company with Andy Spade, her future business partner and husband. Over the years, an empire was built out of stationery, luggage, shoes, and other accessories.
After the company was bought in 2007 by then Liz Claiborne Inc. from the Neiman Marcus Group for $125 million, Spade left. Coach, which is now Tapestry Inc., acquired the brand ten years later for $2.4 billion.
A new line recently launched by Spade, Frances Valentine, was described by Vogue as “modestly priced, ultra-covetable Italian-made shoes and bags.” She even reportedly changed her last name to Valentine.
Spade is survived by her husband and a daughter who was born in 2005.
Source: NBC News