Carlos Cardoza’s spent nearly twenty years hunting for mantiques at flea markets, eBay, antiques shops and garage sales to outfit his Mid-century Modern home in Dallas. His attention to detail has landed his house on HGTV and multiple newspaper and magazine spreads. The best part: He uses every single square foot of the home. The collection is not in his way and makes his life better for one reason or another.
“I love using my things,” Cardoza says. “If I can’t use it, then I don’t buy it.”
Cardoza doesn’t collect antiques. He collects great 20th century design. His custom-built 1954 home is the largest item in his collection. It is in fused with Modernism, Contemporary, Post Modern and Space Age finds great and small. Much of it is influenced by his upper middle class upbringing smack dab in the 1950s — a busy design decade eager to shrug off a depressing world war, while diving headfirst into rebellion and affluence.
He effortlessly combines all of his finds into a mid-century showcase that spans 60 years worth of design. He even kept his iMac G4 from 2002, Apple’s hemispherical flower pot-style personal computer.
“This was the first molded plywood piece designed by the Eameses during World War II. The splint was the start of that design process and from this came the famous furniture designs,” Cardoza says.
The splint hangs in a corner next to a table surrounded by a set of Cone chairs from 1959, as produced by designer Verner Panton in 1958. A collector like Cardoza looks for furniture that’s cool and collected but practical and unexpected. Remember, the table you can’t set a drink on belongs at Grandma’s.
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