alter egos

Kate Spade Changed Her Surname for Her New Line

The artist formerly known as Kate Spade.
The artist formerly known as Kate Spade. Photo: BFA

“It kind of makes [me] sound kind of cool, like a rap star or something,” says Kate Valentine (formerly Spade) of her new moniker. The designer reveals today in an interview with the Business of Fashion that she has changed her last name in tribute to her new fashion line, Frances Valentine.

Spade — sorry, Valentine — sold her namesake line to Liz Claiborne in 2006 and departed the company a year later, working in the philanthropic world. Now, the woman who made minimalist cloth bags the “It” item of the early ‘00s is back. Her new line, which is debuting with shoes and bags, sounds a bit more high-concept — case in point, a $755 shoe with a Buckminster Fuller–inspired heel — and perhaps smaller-scale than her original company. “We’re doing fewer [pieces],” she says. “I’m not in any hurry.”