The 55-year-old designer was found dead at her Manhattan home Tuesday in what police characterized as suicide. She had left a note that police officials said pointed to "a tragic suicide" (though her death is still under investigation).
During this time, Cariaga posted she'd won her war against cancer. Although he said he and his sister often spoke several times a day, it sometimes became hard to get her on the phone.
"She was always a very excitable little girl and I felt all the stress/pressure of her brand (KS) may have flipped the switch where she eventually became full-on manic depressive".
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This May 13, 2004 photo shows designer Kate Spade during an interview in NY. Andy is the brother of actor and comedian David Spade.
"I was not Kate Spade. We would talk a lot about it and end up laughing", she said.
Liz Claiborne then bought the company shortly afterward for a reported $124 million, before it was acquired by Coach $2.4 billion a year ago. An updated story provided more detail including that Cariaga "tried desperately to save Kate's life". The brand later expanded into clothing and jewelry, becoming a household name before Spade sold the company in 2007.
"We were not legally separated", he said.
Since her death, further reports emerged stating she and her husband Andy, also 55, where living separately before she passed away. She said she never had any regrets about selling Kate Spade New York and shared a humorous story about going into a Kate Spade store to purchase her daughter a gift.
If you or someone you know is struggling with depression or has had thoughts of harming themselves or taking their own life, get help.