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Thread’s Melissa Akey on Paris, Maxi Dresses and Auld Lang Syne

Meet Melissa Akey, one of the two designers behind Thread Social, a collection of very chic cocktail dresses and attire, and Thread Design, a fashion-forward bridal line. Akey is a true romantic but, thankfully, her love of pretty things does not come at the expense of a major sophistication. Here's what gets her heart racing.

My secret to looking timeless: Forgoing trends in lieu of comfortable, classic silhouettes is key, as well as knowing myself and what works for me.
Place I love to visit that's rich in history: Paris. My now-husband took me there when we'd been dating only three months; we stayed in a teeny apartment with no hot water on Ile St Louis. He told me he loved me the first night, and we spent the next three amazing days discovering the city--and got married three years later.
Best souvenir I'm glad I brought home: A vintage Hermes ashtray from the Hemingway Bar at the Ritz in Paris.
Who I follow before, during and well after Twitter: Ellen DeGeneres, Chelsea Handler.
Song that always takes me back: Auld Lang Syne.
Favorite family recipe: Toss up between my grandmother's mashed potatoes and my sister-in-law's sweet potatoes.
Unofficial home away from home: Boca Raton, Florida. We've been going every Easter for over 30 years.
Smell that makes me feel nostalgic: English Leather, reminds me of my father.
I couldn't live without: My husband and family, which includes close friends.
Best advice I've ever received: Don't sweat the small stuff. And it's all small stuff.
My guiltiest pleasure: Television.
Tastiest mom-and-pop shop that's been feeding me for years: Bonsignour on Jane Street.
Favorite vintage fashion trend: I love mostly everything from the 60s and 70s: oversized sunglasses, head scarves, platform shoes, maxi dresses.