Meet the iconic David Pirrotta of @davidpirrottabrands, a monumental part of our SIDIA story and beauty industry legend. He's a self-described maximalist who fell in love with beauty early, inspired in part by the women in his life—he still remember his mother's style and beauty rituals getting ready to go on dates with his dad.
What does ‘home’ feel like to you?
“Home for me feels like opening the door to my own nostalgic cozy time capsule!
All of my favorite art, books, vintage furniture and rugs! There is a story for everything in my home. I would say I’m a true sentimental maximalist! Sometimes I feel like my home is the inside of the ‘I Dream of Jeannie’ bottle. I always wanted to be a genie!”
Who are the important women or matriarchs in your life and how do they inspire you?
"My Abuela was my everything. From the moment I was born I was always so connected to her! She and her sisters grew up on a farm in Cuba where they made all of their own natural beauty products. Later as an adult she lived in both El Vedado and MiraMar in Havana.
My family lost everything due to communism and they fled to Madrid and then the US. Their son, my Tio, escaped 7 years before them on a boat with his college best friends! They were all reunited and although she lost everything at my age now, she never lost her style or class! Her style was classically chic and always less is more with a focus on quality over quantity. My style sensibility comes from her. When I’m having a bad day or week, I think about the struggles and difficulties they went through for freedom.
My mom’s style was the opposite of my grandmothers 'tomboy chic'. I was obsessed as to how my mother always exuded sex appeal. In the late seventies/early eighties she always wore jump suits and stilettos. Her other look was fitted denim, a crisp white shirt, blazer and pumps! Ugh…stunning! She exuded femininity and truly loved all things, fashion, beauty, and wellness (in those days full on aerobics moments in the family room made my day…I had my own Jane Fonda at home).
Lucile LeClaire was my Auntie Mame. She was so chic and just had the best stories! My passion for luxury started one Saturday morning when I was 13. She picked me up and we drove into NYC for the day for shopping and lunch in her Aston Martin. I thought how cool is it that Mrs. L names her cars!
When we arrived at Barneys it was like I had walked into the most magical place I had ever seen. I can remember the smell of all the fragrances, candles, makeup and leather goods…it was just divine. Not to mention I spotted one of my favorite actresses from my favorite daytime soap “Another World”. I finally found my own Heaven. Mrs. L walked over to the scented candles and picked up her favorite candle MUGUET (Lily of The Valley) by Diptyque. It was the first time I had been introduced to a French scented candle and it was intoxicating! She asked me to pick my favorite and I chose BAIES (Berries) I couldn’t help notice how beautiful and interesting everyone working on the cosmetic floor was. I wanted to be friends with everyone there! I had found my TRIBE!
We then went up to the penthouse floor where Mrs. L met with her personal shoppers to try on all her TODS and HOGANS…back in those days, Barneys only carried those brands.
After visiting with the personal shopper Mrs. L had to buy her refills for her planner, so we went to the stationary department where there was an area only for “Filofax”. Back in the day, only the elite carried a Filofax planner, since there were no Blackberries, Palm Pilots or iPhones. She taught me about letter pressed stationary and she then created a monster. This is why I became so American Psycho when I made my business cards. To this day I only like custom letter pressed stationery and thick stock. Our final stop was buy me my first cashmere sweater and she explained about single, double and triple ply. At that moment I was obsessed with luxury goods and I knew I had to live in NYC and work at Barneys someday!"
“My beautiful mom Iris is the reason I was always obsessed with perfume, skincare and makeup. I remember when she and my dad would go out, I could smell her Chanel fragrance with the scent of her lipstick and hairspray.”
When do you feel the most comfortable / confident / connected to yourself?
"In the mornings when I wake up alive, full of optimism and excitement for my day!"
What piece of advice would you give your younger self?
"Set and establish boundaries with everyone in your life."
What’s one thing you’re most proud of since launching your agency?
"Such a difficult question to answer. I am most proud of my strength to keep pushing through after all the ups and downs and disappointments. Never giving up -- fighting and persevering through so many highs and lows!"
Is there anything you’ve learned as an industry veteran that’s really stuck with you?
"That all the best founders and leaders are constantly involved, learning, staying relevant and know how to communicate. It’s the person who knows everything and that thinks they’re always right that you need to stay away from. At the end of the day they know nothing! Listening and learning is essential for our own personal growth and to always work as a collective and as a team. Everyone brings something different to the table so let's always embrace everyone's strengths! Stay on the right path so that our frequency attracts and it manifests success."
Did you always see yourself as an entrepreneur?
"Yes, as I come from many generations of entrepreneurs! My Abuelito (grandfather) always had his own businesses and so did my parents."
What inspires your design aesthetic the most?
"All my curiosities, adventures, travels but most importantly my Cuban and Sicilian background. I have a very European, Mediterranean and Caribbean aesthetic. I think you can see it in the brands we choose to work with as well as in my home."
Is there a room / piece that you feel like explains you the best?
"Yes, my living room and my massive vintage B&B ITALIA velvet modular sectional. I love this piece as it’s perfect for entertaining and it explains me the best: Italian vintage sensibility. So many stories and moments have been told and experienced on this piece. It’s also cozy and chic like me!"
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