Painted Ladies aside, Americans tend to play it safe with their exterior colors—and if there's one color that's decidedly unsafe, it's black. This hasn't kept a few enterprising homeowners from covering the facades of their homes in this mysterious, inky shade, though. Feast your eyes on these 14 deliciously dramatic exteriors, just in time for the most deliciously dramatic of all holidays.
Above: Speaking of Painted Ladies—this San Francisco Victorian by Todd David Architecture defies convention with an all-black facade, which serves to highlight the texture of its intricate moldings and trims.
This 160-year-old Victorian is one of my favorite examples of a black house. The trim and siding are painted in the same color, but a high gloss finish gives the trim a little extra pop. And then there's that pink front door, which just so happens to perfectly match the car. See the full tour here.
In upstate New York, a traditional cottage takes on a mysterious, almost spooky look under the auspices of architects TsAO & McKOWN.
To enhance the contrast of old meets new, the designers of this German home, spotted on Dwell, painted the original portion of the home entirely in black.
The simply styled facade of this Canadian cabin, found on Houzz, gets a boost from dark black paint. The brick and white accents set up a lovely contrast, for a look that's almost sculptural.
Victoria from SF Girl by Bay painted the facade of her San Francisco home an inky black.
Subtly glossy black is the perfect choice for an Australian cottage spotted on Habitus Living. Black is an excellent way to make even a simple facade into a big statement; it turns this humble cottage into a silhouette, outlined starkly against the sky.
Black may not be the first color that comes to mind for a beach house, but for this New Zealand home, it works beautifully. See more at Bo Bedre.
The exterior of this Los Angeles Victorian telegraphs style, and maybe the slightest hint of malice.
A Swiss bed and breakfast spotted on Vals.
Black seems to be a popular color choice for homes in colder climates, as evidenced by this home in Iceland featured on Luminous Landscapes.
A black rowhouse in Amsterdam, spotted on Skillshare.
This black ranch-style house found on Cottonwood & Co. looks like the perfect place to come home to.
Steph and Phil chose black for the exterior of their updated Victorian home in Portland.