, June 6, 2018
by Hala Oran

All You Need To Know About The Late Kate Spade!!

Kate Spade 55 was found dead in her Manhattan apartment after leaving a note to her daughter! Known by her personal style of beehive hair, nerdy glasses, and bright lipstick, Kate Spade had one of the sharpest and most avant-guard minds amongst female designers of her time and she singlehandedly had an imprint in legitimising high-low fashion and accessories. Kate Spade bags and accessories were deemed as the ultimate accessory for aspiring young girls embarking on their careers as well as being the totally professional piece to be worn by women at the top of their professional ladder. No other brand was able to get away with this; being a - somewhat - easily affordable status symbol that cultivated a certain spirit and feel.

“She Was Like Human Champagne…bubbly, sparkly, cool, and extremely fun!” That’s how Kate Spade was described by a former colleague!!

Kate Spade or Kate Valentine was born Katherine Noel Brosnahan in 1962 in Missouri to parents with Irish roots. She graduated with a degree in journalism in 1985 from Arizona State University and her first job was at Mademoiselle magazine in the accessories department between 1986 and 1991. Kate married her boyfriend of a few years Andy Spade in 1994 and they have one daughter together. They launched their label “Kate Spade Handbags” in 1993 after Kate felt that the market was short on trendy and stylish yet affordable bags.

The label clearly thrived and they went on to create a line that includes everything from bags, to shoes, jewellery, eyewear, stationery, baby items, and beddings to name a few. The first Kate Spade boutique opened in 1996 in Manhattan’s Soho district.

In 1999 Neiman Marcus Group purchased 56% of the brand and the remaining 44% were purchased in 2006. Neiman Marcus sold the Kate Spade label in the same year to Liz Claiborne for $124 million. Coach finally bought the label for $2.4 billion in 2017. After selling, Kate decided to focus on raising her daughter and had nothing to do with the brand, till she decided in 2016 to launch a new luxury footwear and handbags label under the name of Frances Valentine, with the name derived from names in her own family; she even changed her surname to Valentine in 2016.

Kate was always a champion for young designers and she set up a foundation to support economic equality for women. She was always thinking out of the box and have been known to wear her khaki chino pants while she was trying to launch her label. Her vibrant social life was the talk of the town with her circle of cool girlfriends, trendy designers and creatives and the whole bang. She set her own personal style and always looked good regardless of what she was wearing, and she encouraged young girls to do the same…to embrace their own sense of style without being fashion victims. Her bags were a translation of her personal style, they had a charm about them that you couldn’t get with any other label; it was the ultimate fun yet serious bag much like herself…. a lady that was so ahead of her time… that she eventually raced herself to her own death… what a loss!!

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Jun 6, 2018