Message sent on the first day of the study:
Hi, and thanks again for signing up to this research study. As you may be aware by now, I'm asking you to keep for the next couple of weeks a diary of an object that needs repair. I hope you have decided what object you will be focusing on. Otherwise, feel free to reply to this email with ideas or to clarify anything you wish to.
Along the way, I will be contacting you with questions about the object and the process of repairing it. It is not supposed to be a questionnaire, rather reminders of different perspectives to take into account. Feel free to incorporate any of these questions in your diary, but also to ignore them completely.
First note: A personal diary
One aspect I'm exploring in my research is how acts of repair and maintenance are influenced by how people relate to objects at a personal level. The idea behind asking you to keep a repair diary is precisely to make this study as personal as possible. You can think of it as a personal diary of the object itself, a personal diary of yourself while trying to repair it, or even a diary of your relationship with the object.
In preparing for this study, I have searched the internet for images of personal diaries and scrapbooks. Feel free to do the same to inform your diary. Attached to this email is a PDF with some of the images I have found. Even if my own craft skillset falls way behind the people who created those examples, I do see them as sources of inspiration. As well as writing in a paper diary, you can add sketches, stickers or photos. If you don't have access to a printer to make hard copies of images and add them to your diary, feel free to send me the image files, explaining what they are about.
My own diary this time will be about a bicycle I have got for free here in Dundee. As I found it disassembled, I decided to play with that on the first page of my diary, as you can see in the images below.
How about you? Can you start your repair diary today and show me what is the object you'll be working on?
As mentioned already, feel free to contact me with any questions you have.
Best regards, and I hope we have a really productive and fun experience.