Kate Spade Changed Her Last Name & Here's Why

Her name is synonymous to chic handbags and accessories, but now Kate Spade has changed her last name to Valentine in a move that shifts the focus to her new line. The co-founder of one of the leading handbag brands in the world will now reportedly go by Kate Valentine, which was taken from a family name (from both of her parents' sides). The designer explained how her new last name pays tribute to her new brand Frances Valentine, which she created with her husband Andy, Elyce Arons, and Paola Venturi last year.

“It kind of makes [me] sound kind of cool, like a rap star or something,” Valentine said. “But we’re not trying to be cheeky or coy. It really was to distinguish the name, and separate the two worlds. Obviously we’re super proud of Kate Spade and we want to be respective of both." After launching Kate Spade New York in 1993, the Spades and Arons went on to sell the company to Liz Claiborne, Inc. Their hope is to build Frances Valentine from the ground up, much like their first venture. Products from the Frances Valentine line will reportedly hit stores next month.

Incidentally, Valentine was not born with the name Kate Spade (it is her married name). She was born Katherine Noel Brosnahan. She joins a diverse group of fashion designers, past and present, who also changed their names.

Diane von Fürstenberg

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The influential designer was born Diane Simone Michelle Halfin. She took her last name after marrying Prince Egon von Fürstenberg in 1969.

Alexander McQueen

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The legendary couturier's full name is Lee Alexander McQueen.

Michael Kors

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Born Karl Anderson Jr., the designer changed his name to Michael David Kors after his mother remarried when he was five.

Coco Chanel

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The fashion icon's birth name is Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel. She reportedly acquired the nickname "Coco" during her early years as a cabaret singer.

Karl Lagerfeld

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Chanel's successor dropped the "T" from his family name Lagerfeldt allegedly because "Lagerfeld" sounds more commercial.

L'Wren Scott

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The late celebrity stylist and designer Laura "Luann" Bambrough. She changed her name to L'Wren after graduating high school and moving to Paris.

John Galliano

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The controversial designer, born to a Spanish mother and Gibraltarian father, is also known by his original name Juan Carlos Antonio Galliano-Guillén.

Ralph Lauren

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The icon of American sportswear was born Ralph Lifshitz.

Rachel Zoe

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Zoe is actually the middle name of stylist-turned-designer Rachel Rosenzweig.

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