DESIGNER Kate Spade reportedly fell into a deep depression days before her sudden death after her husband of 24 years told her he wanted a divorce.

Andy Spade had moved out of the pair's Park Avenue apartment on New York's Upper East Side, TMZ reports.

Andy Spade (L) and wife Kate Spade. Picture: Supplied
Andy Spade (L) and wife Kate Spade. Picture: Supplied

He was, however, reportedly in the couple's former apartment when Spade died. Their 13-year-old daughter, Frances Beatrix, was at school.

Police said the death was not suspicious.

Police said Spade wrote a note, which sources claim was addressed to her daughter.

The note is said to have read: "Bea - I have always loved you. This is not your fault. Ask Daddy!

Kate and Andy Spade had been together for 24 years. In 2002, they told Vanity Fair magazine how they had met as university students in Phoenix, Arizona, while working at the same clothing store.

KATE SPADE'S FAMILY DIVIDE

The shock death of the designer has reportedly left her family at odds.

Spade's older sister, Reta Brosnahan Saffo, told US media outlets that her sister had suffered from mental illness for years but refused treatment because she was concerned it would impact her brand.

Designer Kate Spade poses with handbags and shoes from her collection in 2013. Picture: AP
Designer Kate Spade poses with handbags and shoes from her collection in 2013. Picture: AP

However, a source close to the family told People that Ms Saffo has long been estranged from her designer sister.

"The family is disgusted and saddened that at this time of great sorrow, Kate's sister who has been estranged from the entire family for more than 10 years would choose to surface with unsubstantiated comments," the source told People.

"Her statements paint a picture of someone who didn't know her at all."

In an email to The Kansas City Star, Ms Saffo said news of Ms Spade's sudden death was "not unexpected".

"I will say this was not unexpected by me. 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 (inpatient hospitalisation)," she wrote.

She said she had "gotten very close to getting her to go" to a rehab facility for treatment, but Spade "chickened out".

" … We'd get sooo close to packing her bags, but - in the end, the 'image' of her brand (happy-go-lucky Kate Spade) was more important for her to keep up," Ms Saffo said. "She was definitely worried about what people would say if they found out."

After several attempts she said she gave up. "Sometimes you simply cannot SAVE people from themselves!" she wrote.

She also claimed Spade made her promise to attend her funeral and that she was fixated with Robin Williams' death in 2014.

FAMILY AND FRIENDS IN MOURNING

Spade's niece, House of Cards star Rachel Brosnahan, broke her silence on social media, sharing a sweet memory of the beloved designer.

"Knowing Katy, this is how she would want to be remembered," The Marvellous Mrs Maisel actress wrote. "She had a light that words can't capture but touched everyone she came into contact with. She was exceedingly kind, beautifully sensitive, insanely talented, funny as heck and one of the most generous people I have ever known. She was effervescent. Hug your loved ones extra tight today."

Spade had talked of her pride in her niece's acting career. Following Brosnahan's Golden Globes win earlier this year for her brilliant performance in The Marvellous Mrs Maisel, proud aunt Spade gushed about her 27-year-old niece's acting chops.

"I am beside myself! My daughter and I jumped up and down when she won," Spade told the New York Post. "She deserves this recognition, as she's put her heart and soul into the role. We are insanely proud."

Kate Spade with her husband Andy Spade and her niece, actress Rachel Brosnahan. Picture: Supplied
Kate Spade with her husband Andy Spade and her niece, actress Rachel Brosnahan. Picture: Supplied

Spade's brother-in-law, actor David Spade, took to Twitter to share a special memory of Spade and remind people that life can be a struggle.

The SNL and Just Shoot Me star is the brother of Kate's husband Andy.

"Katy at my book signing. I love this pic of her. So pretty. I don't think everyone knew how f - king funny she was. Its (sic) a rough would out there people. Try to hang on," he wrote.

He shared another image on Instagram of them at Christmastime, saying "We had so much fun that day. She was so sharp and quick on her feet. She could make me laugh so hard. I still can't believe it."

David Spade was spotted in Los Angeles where he was being consoled by a friend following the tragic news.

The family issued a statement to the New York Daily News that read, "We are all devastated by today's tragedy. We loved Kate dearly and will miss her terribly. We would ask that our privacy be respected as we grieve during this very difficult time."

Spade's other sister Eve Brosnahan declined to give an interview to the news outlet saying, "It's very difficult. I can't right now. I just can't."

 

If you are experiencing mental health issues or suicidal feelings contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or BeyondBlue 1300 224 636. If it is an emergency please call 000.



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