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Kate Spade, by any other name

In 2013, Tiffany & Co. celebrated Baz Luhrmann’s new film version of “The Great Gatsby” with a day of events that concluded with a Roaring ’20s-style party at the Fifth Avenue flagship. I swanned through the night in a black column dress that was accented mainly by a Kate Spade necklace of green turquoise florets. Throughout the evening, several people stopped me – this was at Tiffany’s, remember – to say what a great necklace it was.

That was the Kate Spade effect. Whether it was with a statement necklace or a book with an inspirational saying or one of her signature vibrant handbags that marked a young woman’s coming of age and defined a generation in the good-times ’90s, Spade had a way of lifting you up. That she could not do the same for herself proved to be her tragedy. …

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A world lit by fire in a reverse fairy tale

In the end – after all the melodrama about in-laws and outlaws, race and clashing cultures – it was both a deeply personal moment and a global event brimming with cultural meaning.

A justifiably proud, almost wistful mother seeing her daughter off into a new life; a father-in-law stepping in to escort a bride who might’ve represented the daughter he never had; a self-possessed scion supporting his adored, rougher-around-the-edges kid brother on his big day; and oh, that kid brother – like a hero out of Jane Austen – waiting, craning his neck, hoping almost against hope, as it were, for “her” to appear. Then, finally, yes, it was she, of course, poised at the entrance of the church, but then, who else would it, could it, be? Looking like a goddess …

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