Zimmer was working as a waitress in an American Italian eatery in her native city of Kitchener in Ontario, Canada in 2005 when she was approached by a friend of a Milan modeling scout. Naturally, she was taken aback with the prospect of becoming a model, having no prior plans of ever going down the catwalk. She couldn’t believe it but she eventually came to accept the idea and the next thing she knew, she was off on a stellar career.
The owner of East Side Mario’s, the restaurant where she was discovered, told in an interview with Fashion Television that Zimmer was great at her job and well-liked by the customers and co-workers. This down-to-earth attitude is perhaps one of her endearing qualities that made her entry into the crazy world of modeling a breeze.
Top Canadian magazines were already booking her for editorials just a week after signing up with Toronto fashion agencies. She was also given top slots on the runways in the Toronto fashion week.
It was not long before this blue-eyed brunette started working for the international fashion scene and her career exploded very fast. She signed up with the very exclusive Supreme Management in New York and within the first month, she’s already landed a shoot for Vogue Italia.
The striking beauty then debuted for Proenza Schouler, Dolce & Gabbana, and Chanel in their 2006 Spring Collection and was soon noticed by Women’s Wear Daily who proclaimed her as a face to watch. Both Style.com and Models.com featured Alana Zimmer in its Top Ten Models for Spring 2007. In a matter of months, she has achieved veteran status on the runways for walking for more than 50 designers, including Alexander McQueen, John Galliano, Dior, Armani, Givenchy and Valentino.
At the rate she’s going, she is really fortunate with how her career is moving on so far. Right now, she is with Supreme Management New York, Women Management Milan and Paris and Storm London. Alana Zimmer has a significant number of fashion editorials under her belt including several with Vogue, Numero, i-D, and a Neiman Marcus catalogue for 2008. She appeared in a DKNY Jeans fall ad campaign in 2008 with the venerable Iman, and renewed again for 2009. Topshop and Akris had her in their fall ad campaign this year. She’s walking almost 20 shows a week and has done all major shows for a model.
It is a tiring job but this fashion favorite finds ways to keeping the stress level down and still enjoys what she’s doing.
Downtime with Alana
Alana Zimmer relaxes by doing yoga and running and sometimes she knits – a talent she learned from the elderly women in the retirement home where she worked before. She interviewed with Dan Grant for Models.com and spoke about her love of music, books, and about how her family and friends keep her grounded.
Recently, she traveled to Ireland to take a breather from her tight schedule and de-stressed by appreciating the verdant hills and plains of the country. She’s not much of an outgoing person, a little bit on the quiet side, but she does like to sightsee. Taking advantage of the perks that go with her job, she appreciates going to different cities around the world because she realizes she won’t be in this business forever.
But at 22, Alana Zimmer still has so much more ahead of her. A lot has changed since she was spotted in her unflattering waitress uniform in her homeland. She admits having matured a lot having learned how to live, travel and manage her career by herself. She still prefers to stay with her family in Canada, but until recently, she needed to get her own place in New York to keep up with her numerous engagements. Accepting that modeling is now her life, she has developed a clearer vision of her goals and the passion to go with it.
Alana Zimmer has a lot of faith in how her career is being handled by her agencies. To her, they were really good teachers. They helped her learn the ropes of the biz when she was just new, introducing her to the who’s who so she didn’t feel like she was just thrown into this new world blindly. For this, she is thankful and the feeling is mutual.
James Scully, casting Director for Derek Lam, praised Zimmer in an interview with Fashion Week Daily, sharing that she possesses the presence many casting agents look for in a model. In the same interview with Annabela Asvik, booker for Supreme Management, Muhammad Fajar, also had only good words for Zimmer. During castings and bookings, she never needs someone to wake her up; she just does it on her own like any responsible person who cares about being professional.
Unlike other prima donnas in her world, she doesn’t let success get into her head. Her motto - be polite and appreciative of everything. It must work because she gets booked again and again. She has a healthy view of how she should face the everyday demand of modeling. Zimmer isn’t immune to rejection and she’s had her fair share but she believes that it’s not her personality they are rejecting. It’s just that your image may not be what they are looking for at the moment.
This level-headedness and discipline, and of course her incomparable exquisiteness, will surely put her in the spotlight for many more years to come.
Alana Zimmer, we’ll be looking forward to more of you.