Designer Kate Spade was found dead in her home in NY yesterday morning after what police are calling a "tragic suicide". Saffo told the paper she frequently visited her sister in NY and Napa, where Spade had a vacation home.
Kate launched her namesake brand in 1993, a year before she married her husband. Her stylish handbags quickly became popular and the company's products are now sold at more than 750 locations around the world.
She walked away from the company in 2007, a year after it was acquired from the Neiman Marcus Group for $125 million by the company then known as Liz Claiborne Inc. Spade changed her last name to Valentine in 2016 when she launched a new fashion brand called Frances Valentine.
Kate and Andy Spade in 1999.
Born in Kansas City in Missouri in 1962, Spade served as the accessories editor at USA women's magazine Mademoiselle before founding the brand Kate Spade in 1993. The couple has one child, Frances Beatrix Spade, born in February 2005.
Others, like television presenter Trenni Kusnierek, focused on Spade's mental health at the time of her death.
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Surrounded by hip co-workers who wore designer labels, Pon knew she needed something to make her look less out of place.
The 55-year-old was found by housekeeping at about 10:20 a.m. Coach had announced plans in May of previous year to buy the brand for $2.4 billion.
Hours after her shocking suicide, Kate Spade's family has issued a statement.
On social media, a stream of condolences and thoughts have been coming in from designers and fashion influencers alike. Kate Spade is also the aunt of Marvelous Mrs. Maisel star Rachel Brosnahan. "National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255".
"My grandmother gave me my first Kate Spade bag when I was in college. Holding Kate's family, friends and loved ones in my heart".
"She was definitely a major force, being a woman, making her way especially from KC, making her mark on the fashion industry in the way that she did", O'Brien said.
Behrs spoke about what Spade had meant to her personally, remembering the first Kate Spade bag she had gotten in high school.