Monday, September 18, 2006

Shopaholics Unite through!

Katherine Kennedy carries a concealed weapon. Of course, I am not referring to a firearm or blade. What I mean is that meeting this California bombshell for the first time can be misleading. Lovely to look at with a bubbly personality, it is easy to dismiss this clever lady as another privileged Georgetown princess, with an ability to make good grades and spend “daddy’s money.”

I freely admit that I had to scold myself for judging a book by its cover! (And, I should already know that when BabsieD makes the introduction, the person must be fabulous!) When I finally sat down to chat with Katherine, I was blown away by her charm, ambition and business savvy. At only 21 years old, she has learned the fine art of creating a career from something she loves to do. (Hmm… Isn’t that what school counselors encourage, after all?) With, Katherine turns her passion for purchases into a soon-to-be goldmine.

Katherine says, “My two favorite things are and shopping online.” While working on a project for an e-commerce class, she learned that 81% of products which get into a shopping cart are not bought. Reflecting on her own online shopping experiences she recalls, “I’d put 1000 items in a cart and abandon them.”

When she moved to DC (and became car-less quite an adjustment for most Californians) she would make “wish lists” on for her mom, who could them purchase the items and send them to her. This sparked a light bulb to flash in Katherine’s mind, “I had the idea to make a universal wish list.”

As The Liquid Muse, I am happy to say that Katherine’s concept, like many brilliant ones, was developed over cocktails with friends. She explains, “The idea for came up at Sea Catch, next to a wall of fruit-infused martinis. We’d go every day for happy hour / dinner for half-price martinis and oysters. I wrote my first business plan on a napkin there.” (No wonder we could relate!)

How does work? In a nutshell: prospective shoppers join for free, then use the integrated browser. Katherine explains, “We let you shop any retail site. The web is your world. You can get anything you want.” Desired items are added to the person’s Universal Wish List on, where additional information can be noted. Friends and family members can access the wish list as a convenient guide for gift-giving occasions.

What makes different than traditional online shopping? Katherine explains, “Only 3.4% of retail shopping is currently for ecommerce market. Our competitive advantage is the social aspect.” subscribers create profiles. Shopping Buddies with similar tastes can connect and even rate each others’ prospective purchases. Katherine says, “In traditional online shopping you don’t get to shop with peers.” Retail businesses also have the opportunity to add “buy now” incentives.

How did this young woman get so clever? Perhaps it’s in the jeans. I mean, genes. Katherine grew up in Palo Alto, California and her father worked in Silicon Valley. She headed down to So-Cal for a Poli-Sci degree from Loyola Marymount in LA, then arrived in DC a year ago to work on a Master’s degree in Politics and Media at Georgetown University.

From class project to budding entrepreneur, Katherine expressed her confidence that she will win online shoppers’ business, beaming, “I am the demographic.” Peruse is scheduled to launch this month. Katherine says, “It’s all coming together. It’s a bit scary but I’m ready for it.”

Her favorite places to go out? Blue Gin, Café Milano, Mate, Georgetown Waterfront
Her Favorite drinks? mojitos and beer: Yingling, Bud Light


Anonymous said...

Why not to use
1.) How many guys do you know, honestly browse the internet, making "wish lists", and then actually have the gaul to e-mail it out to their family/friends, as if they are okay with everyone knowing: (a) they are a total slappy, who does nothing at work, but browse on the internet and (b) they like to shop like a girl

2.) I don't know about everyone else, but I personally don't want everyone knowing every little thing I've purchased lately, from Old Navy - Neiman Marcus, it doesn't make a difference to me the whole point is shopping for you - Why even shop anymore if you can find steals that no one else could, or the perfect dress for an upcoming party that no one else has??

3.) Since when did America become so homogeneous and middle of the road lame that if a girl is in a clique of 8 or 10 friends they would all want to buy the same shirt??

So the website will work for highschool females, and that's - that leaves for a lot of potential - you didn't just wipe out half of your marketing base, including the entire adult population, or anything...

3.) Let's take it from the inverse - all of your girl friends (because let's face it, no straight man would ever participate in this) see what you have purchased and then opt not to purchase it, because you already have, so they go in pursuit of their own "must have outfit" -
Do vendors really want their merchandise to be available for sale on this website, when it is going to decrease spending by giving less incentive to buy their one hit product of the season, but rather give more incentive for everyone to shop around, forcing their customers to search outside their regular circle of stores to other options available because Quote: "everyone else already has a pair of those"???

4.) Even if it didn't decrease incentive, because there were enough girls out there in young, large cliques that did like to have all of the exact same clothes to counteract all of the true couture girls who want to look unique at each event and never wear the same dress twice, what this website boils down to is just another way for things to get caddy between girls -

You don't think that with all of the snobs out their to create profiles on, including the creator herself, that people won't start judging their peers REAL quick on what they have purchased lately?

Like EVERYone wouldn't notice if someone always purchases things on sale, or someone else never buys any big ticket items - yeah right.

Bottom Line: there are a million and one reasons why not to "peruse" anything today. said...

Wow. Someone sounds a little overly angry about a shopping site. "Live and let live," brotha.

There is something for everyone out there on the net, and I have come across a lot of ladies who love the concept, and men who are willing to check out their girl's list to find the right gift.

At the end of the day, no one is forcing you to do it...

Anonymous said...

Not that I am validating EVERYthing your first commenter had to say, but I think that person was just trying to give their honest opinion about a website you discussed on your blog from a third party perspective.
And not like I incredibly agree with ALL of their thoughts, but coming from someone who is a big fan of your blog, I am just not that sure if you really did your research well enough on this one.

You called her a “budding entrepreneur” for starting but she’s also been quoted as bragging that –
"In third grade, I sold my hair to all of the Filipino kids who had never seen a blonde before, and told them it was spun gold.”
Yeah, she’s quite the little entrepreneur…and socially tolerant as well, don’t you think?

You determine that because [Kennedy’s] “Lovely to look at with a bubbly personality it is easy to dismiss this clever lady”, but can you really blame people for dismissing someone (and their website) when they’ve been quoted, bragging –
“I live in Georgetown, the real DC. I admit, I exist in a bubble of wealth, beauty, and power.”
And –
“I’ve dated everyone from pop stars to pro athletes to military men to the future president.”
Yeah Liquid Muse, she appears to be pretty…deep.

You also associate “Katherine’s concept” with, “many brilliant ones…” but she’s been quoted openly saying that –
“I started an e-commerce blended social network to help you procrastinate even more.”
If her true intention was just to build one more website on the Internet for people to waste their time on – and, oh yeah, make money of off people’s “procrastination” – than I’m not seeing the major incentive to contribute to her own capital.

Although the article is very well written, I would have to possibly put the argument out there, that perhaps Liquid Muse if you would have dug a bit deeper, you would have found out why giving this student free publicity on your blog by promoting her website might not have been that wise of a move for your own blog’s reputation.

Especially when you quote her saying, “Katherine expressed her confidence that she will win online shoppers’ business, beaming, “I am the demographic.”
When Kennedy’s also been reported to have shamelessly admitted that she’s used perscription drugs socially, stating “I miss the days when adderrall wasn’t just a drug, but a way of life.”
I’m sorry to be oh so-negativo Liquid Muse, but if she’s the demographic we may all want to pause in worried anticipation of just what "the demographic" and their website might do to the future of the Internet. said...

I always appreciate readers' thoughts. As you know, The Liquid Muse is primarily a cocktail blog... with elements of fashion, entertainment and celebrity. I think that is a fun concept and has value in that it renders internet shopping more convenient.

I can't claim to know all the details of Katherine's life, and your quotes of what she may or may not have said could be true for all I know...

Frankly, I don't really care who uses which drugs, or with whom people choose to have sex. Or how they feel about Georgetown, etc.

I stand behind my post on and my experience chatting with Katherine. That is all I can really judge. The rest is hearsay.

You're welcome to voice your opinion here but I encourage you to keep everything in context. My posts are diverse, as are my readers. It is not my aim to please everyone, all of the time...

Thanks for reading The Liquid Muse.


Anonymous said...

Wow...someone is getting a bit personal. Sounds like you might know Ms. Kennedy first hand.
Whether or not her business will succeed is to be determined. To me, it's refreshing to hear about such a young person shooting for the stars. Even if this business venture fails, it seems as though she has a bright future ahead of her.

Anonymous said...

i wouldn't be too sure about that...all those quotes that were used before i've read too on another blogger's page -
although the post doesn't have much to do with her business. it seems to be a direct refelction of her personality.
now the question is: do you not peruse because of the owner's character (or lack thereof), or do you invest in it anyway because it's a good idea???
i guess we'll have to leave that choice up to the consumer....

Anonymous said...

I am sure she learned a lesson that what she meant for private consumption of her close personal friends who knew she was being sarcastic, got into the wrong hands of people who sound extremely jealous of her success. We all make mistakes, live and learn.

Anonymous said...

"In third grade, I sold my hair to all of the Filipino kids who had never seen a blonde before, and told them it was spun gold.”

-I for one went to third grade with her, and this quote from her blog is 100% false as confirmed with other classmates at the time. She never sold any of her hair to anyone. This is a racist comment to me and every other Filipino in her 3rd grade class, that makes it seem that stuck up blonde white girls are superior to all minorities, when she was the one who was crying and switched schools during elementary school because she couldn't take the criticism that was thrown her way in student council, yearbook staff, etc.

Anonymous said...

has Miss Kennedy used her lesson?

her last post over Christmas has everyone wondering...

"December 23rd rolls around... The Eve of Christmas Eve... 500 of our closest friends come, some in jeans and tshirts, others basically in black tie... No one knows what to expect... the caricture artist makes fun of me for double fisting two "Pointsetta Champagne" drinks. Mom's book club is getting tipsy, and looking at the Moon bounce lustfully, as the 100 little kids stick their hands in the 10-tier chocolate fondue well... Ah, Christmas... The piano man is hitting on the waitresses... All of the CEOs of Forbes 500 are there, smoking cigars-- looking lustfully at mom's book club whom are all now jumping in the moon bounce that was meant for the children- unpleasant thought... basketball, sand volleyball, pool, darts, and poker tournaments going on everywhere- people losing a lot of money... After the 8 hours open house, things calm down.. we go to bed... The next day, we bring the leftovers to the charity house and then we have our dinner... At Marie Calendars... Church comes and goes- mom and pick at eachother... The next morning we open all of our presents-- all gifts that came from our Black American Express Points-- and then hop on the his and hers jets and fly to jersey... Oxymornonic is the definition of Kennedy... "

Anonymous said...

It really is sad and unfortunate that she feels the need to post her daily events, in what seems to be, a sort of in your face manner. One can only conclude from these statements that she suffers from severe insecurity and a lack of maturity.

Anonymous said...

KK's continueing contribution to society