American fashion designer Kate Spade was found dead at her home in New York on Tuesday. The police suspect that she committed suicide. Spade was 55.

The exact circumstances of her death are not yet clear, a police spokesperson told AFP. Her housekeeper found her body in the Park Avenue apartment in Manhattan. She is said to have left a note, whose contents have not yet been made public.

Best known for her accessories line, Spade also designed popular clothes, shoes and jewellery. She co-founded Kate Spade Handbags in 1993 with her husband Andy Spade. The brand has more than 140 retail shops and outlet stores across the United States and more than 175 shops elsewhere.

However, she was no more directly associated with the company’s management as she sold all her shares.

Spade is a former journalist who worked with the fashion magazine Mademoiselle.