David Spade's sister-in-law and fashion designer Kate Spade found dead at NYC home in apparent suicide

Kate Spade, who is said to have hanged herself in her Park Avenue home, was pronounced dead on the scene

                            David Spade's sister-in-law and fashion designer Kate Spade found dead at NYC home in apparent suicide
Andy and Kate Spade (Getty Images)

World-renowned fashion designer Kate Spade was found dead in her New York City apartment on Tuesday morning. According to TMZ, law enforcement officials have confirmed that the 55-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.  

Kate reportedly hanged herself in her Upper East Side home and her body was found by her housekeeper at 10.20 am (ET). 

While there was no immediate confirmation from officials, multiple US media reports said the 55-year-old designer, whose real name is Kate Valentine, was found dead by her housekeeper at her home on the city’s Park Avenue.

Police sources said Kate hanged herself with a scarf. A note was found inside the home, suggesting Spade committed suicide, sources added.

The iconic designer got her start working for women's magazine 'Mademoiselle' in the 80s. She moved in with her college sweetheart (later husband) Andy Spade — comedian David Spade's brother — around the same time.

Andy Spade and Kate Spade attend the Tribeca Ball 2011 at the New York Academy of Art on April 4, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for New York Academy of Art)

Together, the couple launched Kate Spade Handbags in 1993, which blossomed into a world-renowned clothing and jewellery line. 

Kate and Andy got married in 1994. Kate Spade New York has over 140 retail shops in and around the US, and more than 175 outside.  

In 2007 Kate sold her company and took time off from her successful business to raise their daughter. But she returned to the fashion world in 2016 when she launched the Frances Valentine line, which has been named after her daughter, in US stores.

Police sources said Kate hanged herself with a scarf (Getty Images) 

Many heartbroken fans and well-wishers have posted their condolences on Twitter.  

"Heartbreaking RIP Kate Spade" - Charles V Payne

"Ask any girl around my age about getting her first boxy Kate Spade bag and she’ll probably have a story to tell you. It was a magnificently simple cultural marker." - Abby Gardner 

"I'm not even into fashion, but stunned and heartbroken to hear that Kate Spade took her own life. No one, no matter how successful, is impervious to depression, loneliness, or feelings of helplessness. No one. 'Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.'" - Amanda Orson

"my heart is broken. rip Kate Spade. thank you for creating so much beauty and allowing us all to enjoy it" - curry queen

"RIP Kate Spade. You never know what’s going on in someone’s life, no matter how rich they are. Thoughts and prayers to her and her family" - Southern Blonde