Andrew Spade is a fashion designer who co-founded Kate Spade and Jack Spade. Born in Birmingham, Michigan, he attended Arizona State University, where he met fellow future-fashion designer Katherine Brosnahan. Together, they launched the handbag design company Kate Spade in 1993. The couple married the next year. They created the design company Jack Spade in 1996 to fill the perceived market void for stylish and practical men's accessories, and the company officially launched in 1999. In February of 2009, Andy openend a new store on Great Jones Street, in Manhattan, called Partners & Spade. He resides in New York City.
Question: What is the measure of a good life?
Andrew Spade: The measure of a good life is to feel like you’ve been fair to everyone, been good to everyone around you. That you haven’t left any “T”s uncrossed and “I”s that haven’t been dotted. I think that you inspire people to give them back. I mean for … for myself – not for others, for myself – I give what I have to give. And that’s … it’s my ideas and my thoughts. I share with everyone I know, whether it be an idea or whether it be, you know, a home on … I have … coming to stay, and these are things that I’m fortunate enough to have. Love your family. Love the people who are close to you. Help the people who are close to you. I think it’s just giving. I think it’s giving without any expectations back. I mean I don’t think you do it to get something back. You do it because it’s right to do. And I’ve always said this to people . . . “He did that to you, so why should you do this to him?” I said, “I don’t know what he’s gonna … if he’s gonna do something for me after this. I have no idea. I don’t know if it’ll ever come back to me; but I believe if you put it out there, it comes back to you in a spiritual way. I mean in a way that makes you feel better. It makes me feel like I did something.” And it has nothing to do with whether or not these things equal out in your lifetime now. It’s not about … there’s no balance sheet for these things. You do what you think is right. I’d rather give more, put more out there that really is great and be taken advantage of like over and over again. Like people say, “Don’t you feel like an idiot?” I said, “No! I feel like they’re idiots.” I don’t feel like an idiot. I feel like they’re an idiot because they’re never gonna get it again, and it’s gonna happen in their lives. So it’s … it’s a philosophy to live by which probably wouldn’t work for some people, but it’s how I get along. It’s how I kind of interact with people in my life.
Recorded on: 7/12/07