Saturday, December 11, 2010

Favorite Books

Hot Guys Reading Books posted about her favorite books today. Here are mine, off the top of my head.

The Passion by Winterson
Anathem by Stephenson
Middlesex by Eugenides
Howard's End by Forster
Prodigal Summer by Kingsolver
100 Years of Solitude by Garcia Marquez


I'm looking forward to the winter break and a return to the decadence of reading fiction. These are on the docket:

Linger by Stiefvater
The Replacement by Yovanoff
Tongues of Serpents by Novik
Zorro by Allende

And, because what is reading without some non-fiction thrown in?

Disintegration by Robinson
The No-Cry Sleep Solution by Pantley
Convergence Culture by Jenkins

Maternity leave here I come!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Style Chains, Pioneers, and Modifications

Lately I've been seeing the term "style chain" used on some of the personal style blogs I read. Does anyone know who coined it? I would love to give credit. It seems to refer to when one blogger, (lets call her the Modder), "copies" another blogger's (the Pioneer's) outfit.

Copying isn't really the right term because from what I've seen, it's not that the Modder goes out to Target, F21, and Ebay and buys the exact items she saw on the Pioneer's blog. It is instead the case that the Modder uses clothing she owns to create a version of the Pioneer's outfit.

This is a process that seems like it would be pretty innate to people interested in style/fashion, because isn't that what we've always been doing with the stuff we see in fashion magazines? I use the pronoun "we", because the odds are very good, with income inequality statistics being what they are in the U.S., that you, like I, cannot actually afford the clothes that are editorialized in fashion magazines. Yet I still buy the magazines. My best reason for doing so is to get an idea of the current trends. That idea will be in my head the next time I get dressed and I will probably recreate the trends I like with what I have, or what I can approximate with items in stores that are in my price range. Modding, right? Maybe being in a style chain?

I got the term Pioneer from a couple of guest posts on the Freakonomics Opinion Page on the New York Times site. Here are links to the posts:

Tweakers and Pioneers in the World of Innovation
Geeks and Tweaks: What Computer Programming Contests Can Teach Us About Innovation

Scholars Raustiala and Sprigman use the terms Pioneers and Tweakers, but where I come from a tweaker is a person who abuses methamphetamine drugs. So I prefer the term Modder, which could refer to modifications. 

Just wanted to expand the conversation about copying a bit. I've seen it come up multiple times, and I think these two links make good contributions.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to me! Man, it's kind of insane to think that the last picture I took of myself, baby was only four months along. Was it four months, or maybe less? Well, we're rounding into week 30, 3rd trimester, so this is what the books and websites call the home stretch. Great time to celebrate a birthday!

These are my friends, from left to right: Natalie, pregnant me, Tessa, and Stephanie. The best way to celebrate a birthday is with friends. CK should be in the picture, but he was being chivalrous and taking it for me. What a most excellent man. You know you have true friends when they don't mind eating off of paper plates, and having take-out Chinese food for the celebratory meal. That's the way this party girl rolls.

Here's to 31 years! Hooray!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Interview Setup

I had some time between interviews to create a post. Probably not quite as much time as I need, since I wanted to include pictures, but it's possible.

So here's a staged picture of me doing an interview. I am actually too busy during a real interview to do this, but this is pretty realistic in terms of what is going on on my end of the phone line if you're being interviewed by me.

And here is my trusty equipment, including the very awesome Olympus digital voice recorder that I use:

There you see my handy phone card so that I'm not putting the interviews on my office's phone bill. Also pictured, the beloved Oral Consent form. Very important.

Lastly, here's a close-up of why I call people for interviews and how they get from the phone to the voice recorder:

See the little black box? That's what patches the recorder onto the phone line so I get a great recording. It's just one extra detail to set-up that makes a world of difference in recording quality.

So yeah. I just wanted to preserve for posterity what my evenings after work have been looking like, when I switch over to working on my thesis research. Good times!

Emily K.

Monday, August 9, 2010

My Renaissance Festival Costume

Last week was busy in two ways. Let's set baseline behavior at working for 40 hours a week. But I always do that. How can we layer on some more?

I emailed requests to many folks in the Personal Style Blogging community to be interview participants. I created a database of contact info, and a database of my interview schedule, and then I started populating both. Thank you SO MUCH to people who have agreed to sit for an interview! This is great!

If you keep a personal style blog in which you post pictures of what you wear, you're interested in being a particpant, but haven't yet received an invite, leave your email address and I'll be in contact.

The next layer was that I worked on my Renaissance Festival costume! I would have loved to use the one I wore last year, but that wasn't going to work with my pregnant belly. So all last week my girl Natalie Parker and I worked out a design, went fabric shopping, pinned, cut, and sewed, and put it all together. Natalie is an outstanding seamstress and made the completely custom mini bodice, most of the chemise and the gorgeous skirt with the complicated ruffle. The skirt has frenched seams! All that I really contributed was making the bloomers and finishing the chemise. Yesterday we took photos and here's how it turned out:

My make-up is garish and the skirt is hiked up because the character I play at Festival is a whore in Madam Red's brothel. It's going to be particularly ridiculous this year with the pregnancy, but what is fun without some ridiculousness?

This costume was so much fun to work on, I really want to make something awesome for Halloween! Any ideas?

So there you have it: work, school, fun. It was a great week!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

PSBs and a Baby

I received a sweet comment on my Personal Style Blog Research post from Lorena, offering to take part, but also assuming I was done with my data collection. Though reasonable, it couldn't be further from the truth. I have spent the intervening four months doing tons of background research and not yet interviewing a single participant.

Here's the part that will make you laugh. Right around the time I wrote that post, I was busy getting busy and conceiving my first child. Yup! I'm pregnant! The baby is due 1/11/11.

Now, I could use 1st Trimester trauma as an excuse for why I haven't started interviews yet, but there's an even more practical reason I've lagged. I didn't have my own equipment yet. Equipment! Every good researcher's most important investment! For my pilot project I borrowed equipment to do seven interviews, which translated into a total of about 20 hours of work (seven hours of interviews and two additional hours for each interview to transcribe and sort the data).

For the next phase, I want to more than quadruple the number of interviews. This meant two things. One: I should own my own equipment. Borrowing stuff for 20 hours vs. ~100 hours makes a difference. Two: if I could find a way to speed up transcription, life would be golden. With this past paycheck I invested in the following, currently speeding to my doorstep: the Olympus WS-400S DNS Digital Voice Recorder Kit.

It comes with Dragon Naturally Speaking Software. Speech recognition technology: HUZZAH! If this program saves me even 15 minutes per interview, I will consider it money extremely well spent.

So that's my news. I have a baby bump, and I will be testing new equipment in the very near future. The project is in progress, and I truly need to get my interviews done in August. Naturally, the fun part will be where I get to talk to you!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Finally Leaving Town

OK, that's not really a fair post title. I did get to go on an island vacation in March. But since then it's been all work, all the time. All work.

So tomorrow I'm taking a four day weekend! Heading with my sweetie back to the city where I was born and raised. The good ol' Fresno, California.

I don't think I've seen my parents in... well a year or so if I remember correctly. Definitely more than that. But hey, I bought a house, I finished another year of grad school, and I got a promotion in that amount of time. I even crossed another milestone that I've mentioned in comments on some of these awesome style blogs that I'm always following. Probably yours, if you're reading this.

I do love a good packing post, but I live in a city that's 97 deg F, and I'm visiting a city that's 106 deg F. Seriously I will only be wearing tank tops, shorts, skirts, and tank dresses. That's pretty much it.

Funny thing, my husband is talking to his brother on the phone right now and they just got into a conversation about NorteƱo music. Now that is very Fresno.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

World Cup and Politics

Wondering who to root for now that we're in World Cup stage 2? I posted this on Buzz this morning and here's a re-post:

The Netherlands - Because of legalized prostitution, bike culture, and beautiful ball movement.
Brazil - Because they're world beaters.
Paraguay - Because football is their national sport.
Ghana - Because they're the last African team left.
Germany and Argentina - No sentiment here, if you are a betting man, this is where you put your money.
Spain - Because David Villa is the last secretly great football player.
Uruguay - Because they are the true underdogs, and really no one will be rooting for them.

Pick a reason, and work backwards from there to find your team.

In movie reviews, my sweetie and I watched the Weather Underground last night. It was... disturbing. Good, but I had dreams about it and they were sad. It's a historical/political documentary, so if you don't go in for that sort of thing, maybe don't rent. But if you do, it's good, like I said, just sad.

For somewhat related fun, do you know where you stand on the political ideology spectrum? Political Compass gives a test that is actually pretty interesting. I'm right next to the Dalai Lama, near Gandhi: left libertarian. Posting online about your politics is like posting your weight. Kinda scary actually.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

EndNote X3

I attended a training this morning on EndNote X3 that was offered on campus, and I've spent most of the rest of my day building up my EndNote Library. Right now I have 45 references stored!

How cool is this software?! I cannot believe how excellent it is to have this citation management tool that is best friends with MS Word. X3 has tons of citation styles built directly into the program. For example, in my papers I cite with Chicago style, so I just set the controls to Chicago 15th B, and when I go to insert a citation into my paper, voila! It appears in perfect format.

Also, importing the references into EndNote has been pretty simple, since most of the academic articles that I have been using have options right on the sites, like JStor or SagePub, which allow you to just click a button and import the citation off the web directly into your software.

If you get a chance, seek it out. There are versions for Mac and PC, and if your school is like mine, you might even be able to get a copy free!

For all you grad students out there, do you use this? I LOVE it!

Monday, May 24, 2010

I finished my spring semester, somewhat victorious. One A and one B. Better than two B's! Most importantly, the A was in the class for which I completed my thesis proposal. So greenlight go on my thesis! Huzzah!

In other excellent news: it's summer! Yay yay yay summer!

Have you seen any good summer movies? I've only seen Iron Man 2, and I was not impressed. Maybe hopefully I'll see something else tonight.

Have you seen Charmalade's vacation pics? She's in Thailand. SO BEAUTIFUL!

Friday, May 14, 2010


Now you see, here's the problem:

This is the time of year that I start to seriously question how bad an incomplete could really be.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Personal Style Blog Research

Well, Tania of What Would a Nerd Wear asked to hear more about my project. So here we go.

Last semester I looked at Identity and Outfit of the Day Blogs. I interviewed seven OOTD bloggers to hear the story told through the voices of participants, and I followed approximately twenty blogs to watch how the community worked. My research question was: how is identity as an OOTD blogger shaped and influenced by the community of OOTD bloggers? I am a sociologist, so I am drawn to questions about the interplay between self and society.

This semester I am returning to the project and looking at it from a new angle. First, I have changed the terminology to personal style blogger, as that appears to be a cultural trend that has surfaced. Now I have two questions: what influences the personal style blogger's choice to, or not to monetize, and is personal style blogging a feminist enterprise?

A second big difference between last semester and this semester is that my current project is a research proposal for my thesis. My thesis will be due in April, 2011, so I have one year to read tons more books and articles, do more data collection, and do data analysis. This summer I will do a second round of interviews, and I would like to get as many as 40 interviews completed (if you're a personal style blogger and you're reading this, I would definitely like to talk with you). I will also be creating a database about PSBs, like posts per month, ads or no ads, links or no links, blogroll, number of pictures, cross posting, all that good stuff. From what I can tell, there is no centralized data collection of this kind, except probably Blogger and WordPress have use numbers. I suspect that blog companies would be unwilling to share that data, and also, since personal style blogs are not always distinct from personal blogs, mommy blogs, beauty blogs, etc., the info probably doesn't exist for just the type that I'm investigating.

So, what do you think? I have lately seen tons of reflective posts on these exact topics. Those are really cool and helpful, and I want to strike while the iron is hot, before people get tired of talking about why they do what they do. On the other hand, there is no money to do this research; I'm just working on my M.A., so it pretty much happens when I have time for it to happen. Same issues that most grad students face.

OK, so there you have it. Let's talk!
Emily K.

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Oh. So sad. And so snowy.

Monday, March 15, 2010

I have just returned from vacation!

Oh baby. This was the most insanely excellent vacation ever. EVAR!

My husband and I went on a delayed honeymoon to Turks and Caicos in the West Indies. We stayed at the drop dead gorgeous Bohio Dive Resort on Grand Turk (pop. 3,720) and we got dive certified. We also made tons of friends with our fellow vacationers. It was truly divine. Pictures:

(All pictures property of Emily Kennedy.)

Huge picture size, I know, but you just cannot imagine how lush and beautiful this island was. It was a tremendously wonderful trip, full of sun, local beer, relaxation, fishes, and chilling out.

Then we returned to find that our Kansas Jayhawks have won the Big 12 Championship and are ranked #1 in the nation for the NCAA Tournament. Rock Chalk Jayhawk! Go KU!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010



So my dear friend Charmalade tells me I don't post enough. That's because my life is boring and there's already so much great content out there. Scratch that, my life isn't boring; it's germinating. It is fertile soil with seeds planted, but not enough sunshine yet for anything to sprout. How's that for a fun metaphor?

What I do have is a youtube playlist I made. I named her rock folk rock.

I was inspired by all the recommendations from a somewhat recent LeProust Vintage post entitled Jack White Would be Proud. Isn't that the coolest post?! LeProust has great followers, and so many of them contributed with suggestions. Love it! I just sifted through them and collected tracks from the ones I hadn't really heard of (with a few exceptions - the Stupid Bowl was going on at the same time so I also threw in the NFL theme song).

That's pretty much all I've got!

Sunday, February 7, 2010


Have you been checking out the goods on It's kind of wicked cute stuff. More wicked cute (like sharp and chic) than precious cute (a la ModCloth). I ordered two dresses from there today. I await delivery with bated breath! Nope, this is not a sponsored post.

Also, the Jayhawks are #1 in the nation baby. 7-0 in conference play. I saw them play Nebraska at home yesterday and man, the future looks bright! I have little to no tolerance for that other popular sport that is having a big event today. What a brat I am.

So, a few awesome people already know this (probably the same few who read this blog), but last semester I did a graduate research project on Outfit of the Day bloggers. Now it looks like I may write my thesis for my Sociology M.A. on OOTD blogs. In the interest of full disclosure, I comment and subscribe to blog feeds both because I find them interesting and because I'm researching. In ethnographic terms I am doing participant observation. I just want you to know that, because I'm not trying to be some kind of sneakypants.

Hope you're well!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Haircut and other things

So the Spring 2010 semester started three weeks ago at KU. It's going to be a good one. I am taking two classes that are going to help me make major progress on my thesis. In honor of forward movement, I also got a haircut. With bangs! I haven't had bangs since... oh... seven years or so. But my hairstylist is brilliant. She knows how to make it do.

I'm definitely not a skilled self photographer. But I think the cut makes up for my ghetto picture-taking ability.

And meet my cat, Peaches. She was posing in front of the red craft cabinet, so I had to take her pic. She does not like cameras. Well, maybe she just doesn't like the flash. Frankly, I can empathize.

My Jayhawks are playing in about half an hour and frankly I should be doing homework. Rock Chalk Jayhawk! GO KU!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Hello 2010

Happy New Year everybody!

Have I mentioned that I play Dungeons and Dragons? My New Year's celebration consisted of a good solid five hour DnD session with my nearest and dearest. My man and I took a train from KC to St. Louis to hang out for a long DnD-filled weekend. It was most excellent, the only trip I've made for the holidays, and fuel for the DnD fire. We came away with tons of ideas for new campaigns.

On a related note, if you're planning to ride Amtrak, and you have the money, splurge on business class. It's quite pleasant, with nicer seats, easy access to the Cafe Car, and more room. Train travel reminded me that it's great to get where you're going without having to worry about road conditions, getting lost, and buying gas. One thing though: pack a snack. The train food is mostly packaged and microwaved. None too appetizing.

And the craft cabinet is RED! Bien sur! J'adore rouge! Seriously, between the craft cabinet, the drapes, and the new floor-to-ceiling bookshelves, I definitely need to take pictures! Some day soon! Lawrence is horribly cold though, hovering around 0 degrees fahrenheit. It has been for the past three weeks, and it's going to be for at least the next 10 days. The cold makes me grumpy and more than a little un-inspired.

The next bit of news: I got A's in my classes! What what?! I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the awesome people who helped out with my research project. Thank you THANK YOU! I wrote two research papers on Outfit of the Day blogs, and apparently they were both well received, since I pulled lovely final grades in the classes. Man, what a relief.

This coming semester my tentative plans are to dig deeper into researching the blogosphere. I might focus particularly on the issues bloggers face with the new legislation regarding sponsored posts. That would widen the lens to include blogs of many types, which my thesis advisor thinks is a necessary step to make the work weighty.

Also, do many of you read Fashionable Academics? I think I'm going to participate in their call for pictures of 1st day of class outfits. Seems fun!