Kate Spade's friends shocked by her death, Joe Zee says

Spade, the brainchild of fashion house Kate Spade New York, took her life after years of battling depression.

U.S. media reports claim Spade and husband Andy had split in the months leading up to her death, while TMZ claim he had moved out of the family home.

Spade's family confirmed her death in a statement to The New York Times.

In the interview with the Kansas City Star newspaper via email, Kate's sister Reta Saffo helped shed light on what might have been going on with Ms. Spade, who was born Katherine Brosnahan.

"I'd flown out to Napa and NYC several times in the past 3-4 years to help her to get the treatment she needed", Saffo wrote. Her husband and business partner Andy Spade was in the apartment at the time. Unfortunately, untreated, it finally took its toll on her. She was trying to convince her sister to seek treatment.

She was working as an accessories editor at Mademoiselle magazine when she launched her eponymous brand with her husband in 1993.

The 57-year-old then revealed that her sister's tragic death "was not unexpected by me". I'd spoken with them on the phone (not telling them exactly who the patient would be).

Saffo also released a statement where she wrote that Spade was a precious person and genuine in every way. That I could help her fill in any blanks she might have ...

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The body of fashion designer Kate Spade is removed from her Park Avenue apartment Tuesday, June 5, 2018 in NY.

The famed handbag designer told Page Six in January she and her daughter, Frances, 13, jumped up and down when Brosnahan won the Golden Globe for her role in The Marvelous Mrs Maisel. "They never really gave her much respect... the public loved her, but the critics didn't, and it always hurt her".

She admitted that they had different approaches to work, with Andy being "more relaxed, more of a risk taker", while she was "a little more detailed and uptight, neurotic".

Andy Spade had already moved out according to law enforcement sources.

The line began by designing its famously colourful handbags before expanding into other accessories and clothing, and eventually became a billion dollar brand.

Other reports suggest that Spade's death is similar to another high-profile suicide - that of fashion designer L'Wren Scott, the longtime girlfriend of Mick Jagger. The scarf had been affixed to the doorknob of her bedroom closet.

For those suffering from depression or contemplating suicide, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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