On Tuesday, a beloved American fashion designer reportedly died by suicide in her Manhattan apartment. Shortly after the news broke, many public figures took to social media to express their condolences, including first daughter Ivanka Trump, who tweeted about Kate Spade's death early in the afternoon.
"Kate Spade’s tragic passing is a painful reminder that we never truly know another’s pain or the burden they carry," Ivanka wrote in the caption of a quote-tweet. "If you are struggling with depression and contemplating suicide, please, please seek help."
The tweet Ivanka shared was from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a free crisis-counseling service available 24 hours a day. "You are enough," the Lifeline's tweet read. "If you find yourself struggling, remember that the Lifeline is here for you, 24/7, at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)"
Twitter wasn't the only place that Ivanka expressed her grief. She also shared a quote attributed to Kate Spade on Instagram. "She leaves a little bit of sparkle wherever she goes," the image reads. The caption featured the same note as Ivanka's tweet.
Kate Brosnahan Spade, known by most simply as "Kate Spade," was reported dead around mid-day on Tuesday. She was 55 years old, and an iconic figure in the international fashion world.
Ivanka was one of many high-profile figures to express dismay and grief at the sudden loss. The Council of Fashion Designers of America released a statement credited to Diane von Furstenberg and Steven Kolb. "
"The CFDA is devastated to hear the news of our friend, colleague, and CFDA member Kate Spade’s tragic passing," the pair said. "She was a great talent who had an immeasurable impact on American fashion and the way the world viewed American accessories. We want to honor her life and her major contribution to the fashion business and express our most sincere condolences to the family."
The nonprofit hosted its annual fashion awards the night prior.
"We are all devastated by today’s tragedy," the Spade family said in a statement to The New York Times. "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 began her career working in the accessories department of Mademoiselle, eventually working her way up to senior fashion editor/head of accessories. She eventually left the magazine to start her own handbag brand, reportedly because she didn't think there were enough fun options available in the current market. According to Racked, Spade looked up to fashion icons like Katharine Hepburn, Jackie O., and Björk.
"I was looking for something that could be less serious. More personal," she told The Boston Globe in 1999. "I also wanted timelessness."
Spade majored in journalism at Arizona State University. Arizona was also where she met her future husband, Andy Spade, while the two worked together at men's clothing store. The two moved to New York several years later, and, as the Globe reported, came up with the name "Kate Spade" years before they married.
"Women and fashion editors fell for the fresh, modern sensibility, and our first shop in New York City swiftly opened in 1996," the company says on its website." There are now more than 300 Kate Spade stores around the world.
Spade's loss will undoubtedly continue to reverberate around the fashion community, among not just her colleagues, but her also her brand's patrons. As of Tuesday afternoon, the brand's website's main page mourned the company founder's death.
"Kate Spade, the visionary founder of our brand, has passed," the message reads. "Our thoughts are with her family at this incredibly heartbreaking time. We honor all the beauty she brought into this world."
If you or someone you know are experiencing suicidal thoughts, call 911, or call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255. You can also text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741. For international resources, here is a good place to begin.