Unique Wedding Cake Ideas by Turquoise Squirrel

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

What is it that you imagine being a different and unique wedding cake? Is it the flavour? The design? The stage that is set for the cake? A surprise element that wow’s the guest? Below are Elli from The Turquoise Squirrels‘ favourite ideas broken down into different sections of wedding cakes she considers to be unique.

The Design

Why not consider a cake that is not the traditional stacked cake? Elli loves playing with the silhouette of the cake, with dips in and out, creating visual interest, and almost gravity-defying.

One can even include a candle holder or glass/perspex elements that hold up a tier above.

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

If you don’t want the traditional stacked design, then having separate tiers might be an amazing option! Whether there are several cakes on a cake stand, or the tiers are on a single board, this is an option that is certain to create interest.

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

Tip: One can also make a mini cake for each guest, which can double up as a little gift to take home.

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

One can also consider having unusual shapes of the actual tiers… how about a super tall cake?

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

A square, rectangular or hexagonal tier? Maybe a unique colour palette? Why not have a dark and moody cake?

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

What about a completely unusual tier? Like a fountain? Or a cake that looks like books?

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

Elli went back and forth about whether to include the geode design here, but she does think it is unique. It has been around for a while overseas, but here in South Africa, most brides haven’t seen it before. If you want that bit of extra sparkle on your cake, then that is a wonderful way to go.

Unique Wedding Cake Ideas Unique Wedding Cake Ideas

Setting the stage for the cake

When thinking about unique wedding cakes, the placement of the cake, and the stage that is set for it really plays a big role. One can almost think about it as creating a backdrop for the cake. Elli has oftentimes found that she designed a cake with meticulous detail and then it gets placed against an unfavourable backdrop. That is why she came up with a Painting and cake combo, where the painting acts as a backdrop for the cake. The painting then is an amazing keepsake from the big day and a work of art to grace your home that will remind you of your special day on a daily basis.

Here are some more ideas for you:
  • Perspex cake “table” – a very modern sleek look, it can even include a vinyl monogram and/or flower arrangements inside
  • This one is technically difficult but has an amazing wow-factor: A cake on a Swing. The baker really needs to know what they are doing and work closely with the venue to make sure its a safe option.

  • One can also work with wreaths/ hoops or floral designs around the cake or maybe even a floral installation hanging above the cake. These elements can set an amazing stage and create a unique center piece design.

Surprise elements and moving parts

Here, once again, the possibilities are endless, and the sky is the limit. Fireworks or sparklers that come on while cutting the cake are an amazing Wow-factor for sure!

Elli has placed cakes on turntables before, so the cake slowly turns for the guests to be able to admire all the facets of the cake. Just the fact that the cake is moving is really something special, and frankly not that difficult to achieve.

Surprise elements can also include hidden centers, such as Sprinkles that come pouring out the center of the cake as the couple cuts into it.

One can include moving elements on a cake, such as little butterflies fluttering about, or flowers that are dangling on invisible strings. Elli has even included smoke in a cake before, where the smoke poured out of a sculpted Aladdin lamp.

Floating tiers/ gravity-defying cakes go against everything that should be possible. They look unreal, they are awe-inspiring.

Lighting on a cake can also be a very important element. You can achieve this by adding fairy lights, or a “lightbox”. She has also seen cakes before that had light shows or so-called video mapping designed for them.


With flavour there are so many options that could really be interesting. An unusual flavour combo, something like chilli chocolate, or perhaps a little addition to the cake, such as drizzling over fresh Gin. two of her favourite signature flavour combos that she has come up with are the following:

  1. A Chivas Regal Swiss meringue buttercream with a homemade salted caramel on luscious Vanilla Buttercake.

But her top unique flavour: Vanilla Buttercake with a Rosemary and Grapefruit infused Swiss Meringue Buttercream with Blackcurrant Jam. And then the kicker; guests are given a mini pipette with Bombay Sapphire Gin and get to drizzle that over their piece of cake before devouring it.

You can also choose to have a completely different base for the wedding “cake”: how about a Croquembouche (Choux pastries filled with Custard) or a Macaron Tower?

For your wedding cake why not consider a custom flavour combo? Is there a sweet treat in your family recipe repertoire that could be translated into wedding cake flavour? Or maybe your first Valentine’s box of chocolate, maybe a fruit or specific flavour that means a lot to you?

There are a lot of ideas to consider if you are looking for that unique cake that will leave your guests gob-smacked. When it comes to these cake designs Elli states it’s important that you choose your cake designer wisely.

These are out-of-the-ordinary designs, that not everyone can execute well, so do your research and make sure your baker can deliver what they promise. There is nothing worse than a well thought out design that then goes wrong. Make sure your cake designer has got your back with your vision.

Here is one last little thought: What makes a cake design unique is who you are as a couple. Let your individuality shine through! Sometimes the simplest cakes are more unique than the flashiest cake.

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