From Parsons Summer Intensives to Ralph Lauren: Meet Christine Evans

Christine Evans

Christine Evans finished the Summer Intensives Studies (SIS) fashion program back in 2013. Since then she has had a major photoshoot of her designs in Washington, D.C., graduated from the Parsons BFA program, and secured a position at Ralph Lauren. Christine recently shared how Parsons SIS has influenced her fashion career.

What attracted you to the SIS program? How did you find out about it?

I took the SIS back in 2013 and had a blast—I still consider it the summer that changed my life! I found out about the Parsons SIS program through an art teacher at my high school who knew I was very interested in fashion design. She suggested I take part the program as she thought it would be a great way for me to immerse myself in a subject I was passionate about, moreover to see if I could get a feel for pursuing fashion design more seriously as a future career.

Christine Evans A design from Christine's Thesis Look Book "American Spirited." Photographer: Fernando Osorio.


What were some of your most memorable assignments?

One of the most memorable assignments from my fashion design intensive was designing a full collection from sites I saw around New York City. Our professors encouraged us to explore the city and take in and photograph everything we saw. I used a digital camera and explored Chelsea and the West Village, using architectural buildings, and even a lamp in a Pinkberry Frozen Yogurt shop (around the corner from my dorm) as sources of inspiration. I created a six-look collection and even got to design and create and sew my own vest!

What skills did you learn in the SIS program that are useful to you in your current role as an Assistant Designer at Ralph Lauren?

I learned from some of the greatest professors (who I eventually took classes with again when I attended Parsons for undergrad)! I learned how to properly sketch fashion illustrations, how to sew and learn new sewing techniques and tricks for patterning, as well as how to work with Adobe Photoshop.

All of these skills were incredibly helpful in my journey to becoming a fashion designer, particularly in submitting my undergrad application to Parsons School of Design just a year later. SIS is the reason I chose to attend Parsons for undergrad. Learning each of these skills laid the foundation for what I learned in undergrad and gave me a sense of confidence going into design school—I had at least some creative vocabulary under my belt as I was about to attend Parsons. I still use all of these skills on a day-to-day basis while working at Ralph. Every day I am sketching, working with Adobe Creative Cloud, and creating mockups for my team!

Christine Evans A design from Christine's Thesis Look Book "American Spirited." Photographer: Fernando Osorio.


Why do you think SIS is a unique program?

SIS is such a unique program because it gives students the opportunity and environment to explore what they feel passionate about in the most creative city in the world. SIS was the first program in which I felt a sense of freedom and independence—I was sixteen years old navigating the New York City subway! Not only did I try some of the most delicious foods, explore several art galleries and museums, and people-watch in beautiful parks in my free time, but I truly got a proper education in a subject I care very deeply about.

The program is the perfect amount of time for a high school student, in my opinion—I didn’t want to go home! I spent just over a month living in the 13th Street dorm in the West Village and made lifelong friendships while I was there. I spoke to my SIS roommate just last night—who also still happens to be in NYC.

What are some of the memorable lessons you learned from the instructors? 

I learned to be patient with myself, trust the process, and go with my gut. Most importantly, my professors encouraged me to be curious, ask questions and continue to explore. These lessons have stuck with me as I have continued with my career. No matter how old you get, you can always learn something new!

This year's Parsons Summer Intensive Studies program is offered online and on-campus in subjects ranging from fashion to graphic design. Browse all courses!

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