This amazing home in Austin is a perfect showcase for imaginative architecture. Instead of doing the usual—letting the house fill the 50 by 150-foot single-family lot—the architects designed the residence to stretch along the length of the land. This allowed for a mix of different outdoor spaces that could be natural extensions off of individual rooms.
Black isn’t only for interiors: It’s a bold, modern choice for exteriors of every style, too. “The black exterior allows this house to blend into its dark, forested surroundings while providing a bold contrast to the colorful foliage and bright interior,” say the architects at GSA Architects. “Painting the vertical tongue and groove siding a dark color helps hide the joints between boards, giving the siding a more homogenous and minimal look. Make sure to use a satin exterior paint to avoid accumulating too much dirt on the siding.”
Jason Brownlee truly created a work of art for this lakefront property in his design of a terraced pool with water features in black onyx. It connects visually with the Mediterranean-inspired home while providing contrast in color and texture. Especially stunning is the reflective, infinity-edged upper section that is flush with the patio and features a decorative fire bowl to provide accent and drama. Travertine stone creates consistency with the rest of the home and allows the pool and landscaping to take prominence.
This Big Sky, Mont., house is separated into the main living area and the guest wing. The guest area is designed so that it can be shut off from the rest of the house when unoccupied and set back to a lower temperature when not in use. Additionally, the two wings of the house bend in order to capture the best views of the river and create a protected entry courtyard.
This spacious backyard features a small sitting area with black Adirondack chairs and end tables, and a gray area rug. A pergola painted black and gray and finished with a glamorous chandelier tops off the look of the outdoor space.
The LeJeune Residence in Montreal, Quebec, Canada is featured in the Phaidon book Black: Architecture in Monochrome, celebrating this resurgent trend for dark home exteriors. Built in 1890, this building was once used as a home for the groomsmen who cared for wealthy residents' horses.
Sure, a stained wood deck is nice, but treat it to a coat of black paint and the look becomes significantly more elegant. “Black is versatile and dramatic,” says designer Stephanie Wilson. “Here, the black decking and rail acts as a strong base for the white walls and window trim; the black French doors tie the decking and the walls together and adds a lovely element of symmetry.”
You can’t go wrong with clean, classic, black deck railing. Fiberon Horizon Railing complements both traditional and contemporary architectures and looks equally at home with wood-toned or gray decking. As an added bonus, the flat top rail makes a great resting spot for your drink!
This entirely unexpected modern cabin in Muscoda, Wisconsin is even more arresting for its striking black exterior. The vacation home is featured in Phaidon's tribute to the history and modern examples of black clad architecture, Black: Architecture in Monochrome.