Celebrities pay tribute to the woman behind the Kate Spade brand

'I always admired that she was self-made'

It was reported on Tuesday that iconic fashion designer Kate Spade had been found dead in her New York apartment, with the cause being apparent suicide.

According to law enforcement officials, the 55-year-old was discovered inside her Park Avenue apartment by her housekeeping staff, having left behind a note, reportedly for her daughter, Frances Beatrix Spade.

‘Kate Spade, the visionary founder of our brand, has passed,’ announced Kate Spade New York on its official Instagram. ‘Our thoughts are with her family at this incredibly heartbreaking time. We honour all the beauty she brought into this world.’

Best known for her iconic accessories brand, Kate Spade New York, Kate had a profound effect on a lot of people, and her death has prompted an outpouring of love and tributes.

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‘Kate Spade had an enviable gift for understanding exactly what women the world over wanted to carry,’ announced Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue in a statement.

And from Reese Witherspoon to Lena Dunham and Chelsea Clinton, the online tributes to the designer, businesswoman and friend were not just limited to the fashion industry.

‘My heart and prayers go out to Kate Spade and her family. What a wonderful, talented woman who will be dearly missed,’ posted Reese Witherspoon.

‘My grandmother gave me my first Kate Spade bag when I was in college,’ posted Chelsea Clinton. ‘I still have it. Holding Kate’s family, friends and loved ones in my heart.’

‘Kate Spade, whose lively, colourful, and yes, joyous designs has died,’ tweeted Bette Midler. ‘My deepest sympathy to her family and friends, and her many fans around the world, who loved the wonderful illusions she created. I am stunned.’

‘Very saddened to hear about the passing of Kate Spade,’ added Lucy Hale. ‘Mental illness does not discriminate and can happen to anyone with circumstances. I hope she has found peace.’

‘Kate was more than a designer. She had a quirky visual language that captivated Bat Mitzvah girls and artists alike,’ wrote Lena Dunham in a tribute. ‘My heart breaks for her family. Thank you, Kate, from one of the millions you made feel beautiful.’

‘I decided to wear head-to-toe Kate Spade to an event tonight to honour her contributions to fashion and women in business,’ posted comedian Kathy Griffin to her Twitter page. ‘I always admired that she was self-made and was so sad to hear the news of her passing. Rest easy, Kate..and thank you for making so many women feel wonderful’

Our thoughts are with Kate’s loved ones at this tragic time.

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