These One-Tier Wedding Cakes Are Legit Works of Art

Proof you don't need towering tiers to make a statement

cake

Photo by Koman Photography

If you're looking for a unique alternative to the traditional multi-tiered wedding cake, consider serving several smaller, one-tier cakes. Not only can you offer guests more cake and filling flavors (yum), but opting for single tiers will also very likely save you money.

If you’re worried that smaller cakes won’t make as much of an impact as a larger, multi-tiered confection, not to worry—these examples below are proof that one-tier desserts can be just as stunning and eye catching. In fact, we'd argue these cakes work as standalone pieces of art.

A few tips if you’d like to go the single-tier route: Collect cake stands in different heights to create visual interest on your dessert table. Another idea would be to display pretty cake stands in the same color to help unify the assorted cakes. Alternatively, you could ask your baker to create several near-identical cakes (with different flavors inside), then display them on identical stands for a polished, elegant look. Finish things off by decorating the tiers with fresh flowers or adding greenery garlands to the dessert table.

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Ivy + Stone Cake Design

Ivy & Stone Cake Design

Mix both mod and natural elements by combining gold and silver leaf detailing with statement flowers and lithe branches.

Ivy + Stone Cake Design

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Annie's Cakes

Jared S. Warren

Inspired by Chantel Lauren Designs' wedding dress, this gorgeous confection is a new take on ombré.

Annie's Cakes

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Ivy + Stone Cake Design

Ivy & Stone Cake Design

We love this modern moody style—the black icing makes any foliage pop, no matter how simple.

Ivy + Stone Cake Design

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Ivy + Stone Cake Design

Ivy & Stone Cake Design

Simple and elegant, this ladylike one-tier cake is perfect on its own or paired with other white confections.

Ivy + Stone Cake Design

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Maggie Austin Cakes

With a completely signature style, Maggie Austin's designs are immediately recognizable with ethereal frills, dreamy watercolors, and lifelike sugar flowers (check out her new book for more wild inspo). This one looks like it came straight out of Marie Antoinette's fantasies, no?

Maggie Austin Cakes

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Ivy + Stone Cake Design

Ivy & Stone Cake Design

Talk about a statement flower. The sugar kind, of course.

Ivy + Stone Cake Design

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Annie's Cakes

Eden Strader

We love the combo of semi-nakedness, citrus, and copper leafing for an unexpected lightness.

Annie's Cakes

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Dubbed the "Cherry Bomb Cake" by its Colombian creator, Julián Ángel, "this cake seems both romantic and rude at the same time," he says. Delicious layers of white chocolate cake meld with red berries and white chocolate buttercream.

Julián Ángel

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Annie's Cakes

Chantel Marie

Annie Pugmire created this sweet pink lady for a photoshoot inspired by La La Land. We love the minimal fresh flowers that allow the vibrant color of the cake to shine.

Annie's Cakes

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Annie's Cakes

Lovely hand-painted flowers adorn this simple one-tier confection.

Annie's Cakes

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Annie's Cakes

Photo by Connie Balluff; florals by Himila Adams

We're head over heels for this blue-edged watercolor cake—it has just the right amount of color for the minimalist bride.

Annie's Cakes

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Fleur and Flour

Fleur and Flour

An ultra modern take on the somewhat traditional lace cake, this incredible desert focuses on bas-relief which is a sculpture carving technique with classical roots.

Fleur and Flour

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Fleur and Flour

Fleur and Flour

This "pretty in pink" cake makes the sugar flowers the focus, and is a fun example of making a specific color the central element.

Fleur and Flour

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Alana Jones-Mann

For this crystal cake, baker Alana Jones-Mann first made the sugar candy and then cut, carved, and colored the candy pieces into crystals. Perfect for the boho(ish) bride.

Alana Jones-Mann

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Cakes by Cliff

Cakes by Cliff

For the bride that loves her neons, create a vibrant contrast to minimal/white décor and attire with this semi-naked red velvet column.

Cakes by Cliff

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Cakes by Cliff

Cakes by Cliff

Another way to showcase your beloved peonies are atop layers of red velvet with pink chocolate sails.

Cakes by Cliff

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Revel in the unexpected with a soft and fluffy gingerbread cake. Add in caramelized green apples and brown butter frosting for major impact, along with some fragrant dusty roses.

Julián Ángel

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Cakes by Cliff

Cakes by Cliff

Let the adventure begin with semi-nudity and draped ferns.

Cakes by Cliff

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Cakes by Cliff

Cakes by Cliff

Texture is everything with this little cake. Hazelnut praline and textured Nutella buttercream come together for a big impact.

Cakes by Cliff

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Alana Jones-Mann

Alana Jones-Mann

Hand cut and detailed feathers were made from modeling chocolate, then gently positioned around a vanilla buttercream cake.

Alana Jones-Mann

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The Butter End

The Butter End Cakery LA

We're obsessed with this ultra-modern number. The wraparound sugar suggests the cake could fly away at any moment‚ if only the industrial concrete stand weren't anchoring it down.

The Butter End

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Rocks, glitter, and chocolate—all you (hypothetically) need to create this show-stopping geode cake.

Julián Ángel

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Whipped Cake Co.

Whipped Cake Co

This trio finds a common thread in a neutral color palette accented with shining copper. Take a cue from the varying sizes, shapes, and textures featured while still being cohesive.

Whipped Cake Co.

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Maggie Austin Cakes

Maggie Austin

Bet you've never seen a wedding cake in this shade before. We love the dusty, earthy, natural tones of this sweet thing.

Maggie Austin Cakes

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The Butter End

Square One-Tiered Wedding Cakes

Photo by Andre Maier Photography

For a fresh, modern look have your baker create several single-tier square and rectangular cakes in different sizes. Decorate them with fresh flowers and display them on elevated Lucite stands for a super-chic look.

The Butter End

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Gold shards dominate this midnight stunner.

Julián Ángel

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Whipped Cake Co.

Whipped Cake Co

Perfect icing flowers are where it's at.

Whipped Cake Co.

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Buttercream Bakery

Buttercream Bakery

We love this dramatic one-tier cake—the colors are so spellbinding, no garnishes are needed.

Buttercream Bakery

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Whipped Cake Co.

Whipped Cake Co

The best use of a deep-V we've ever seen.

Whipped Cake Co.

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Maggie Austin Cakes

Romantic, dreamy, and moody all at once—can you believe all those flowers are made from sugar? Just plain beauty.

Maggie Austin Cakes

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Whipped Cake Co.

Whipped Cake Co

Unicorn or cake? Rainbow buttercream piping adorns pastel chocolate shards.

Whipped Cake Co.

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The Butter End

One Tier Wedding Cakes

Photo by Brian Leahy Photography

This edgy cake design features three tiers embellished with tulle and rhinestones. The desserts are displayed on a custom concrete and steel structure for an urban, industrial look.

The Butter End

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Whipped Cake Co.

Whipped Cake Co

Refined and understated, this cake has just the right amount of furnishings.

Whipped Cake Co.

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Pretty Sweet

Pretty Sweet

Part watercolor, part ombre—all gorg.

Pretty Sweet

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Pretty Sweet

Anna Michalska Photography

How cool is the texture of this cake alongside the prickly blooms on top?

Pretty Sweet

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Pretty Sweet

Pretty Sweet

If this isn't the perfect shade of Millennial pink, we're not sure what is. Love the simplicity of the cake combined with the thick drips.

Pretty Sweet

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Buttercream Bakery

Buttercream Bakery

Celebrate all things love with this gorgeous hand-painted cake made even sweeter with blooming buds that accent the colors in the paint.

Buttercream Bakery

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Hold up—is this a painting or a cake?

Julián Ángel

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Sugar Fixé

Kristin La Voie Photography; florals by Pen & Petals

This semi-naked cake gets modernized with elements such as the pastel drip and gold leaf—rustic with style.

Sugar Fixé

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Maggie Austin Cakes

Maggie Austin

This trio is the definition of delicate. The flowers and stamens are all gilded sugar...

Maggie Austin Cakes

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Alana Jones-Mann

Alana Jones-Mann

A play off of the iconic banana leaf ("Martinique") wallpaper at the Beverly Hills Hotel, a repetitive design of the pattern was printed on edible sugar paper, which was then wrapped around a smoothed buttercream cake.

Alana Jones-Mann

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Maggie Austin Cakes

Yes, this is a real cake.

Maggie Austin Cakes

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Earth and Sugar

Earth & Sugar

So weird and wonderful in all the right ways—we love all the layers on this petite square cake.

Earth and Sugar

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Earth and Sugar

Minty and blush with a little gold chocolate for an ethereal one-tier beaut.

Earth and Sugar

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Earth and Sugar

Earth & Sugar

Simple and classy with a pop of color center stage.

Earth and Sugar

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Buttercream Bakery

Buttercream Bakery

Love these moody maroon painted tones accented with bright gold shards with just a hint of white peeking out.

Buttercream Bakery

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Earth and Sugar

Earth & Sugar

For a whimsical confection, add on a few pastel macarons in differing sizes that compliment monochromatic flowers.

Earth and Sugar

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Soft and smooth, this coconut cake is the definition of graceful femininity.

Julián Ángel

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Raymond Tan

Raymond Tan

This modern industrial concrete cake is offset by icing succulents and just a hint of white drip and gold flakes.

Raymond Tan

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Vibrant and alive, this graphic beauty is almost too gorgeous to eat (almost...).

Julián Ángel

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Earth and Sugar

Earth & Sugar

We call this one: girly with an edge.

Earth and Sugar

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Buttercream Bakery

Buttercream Bakery

This beauty combines sweet and savory with pistachio, fig, rosewater, and toasted coconut.

Buttercream Bakery

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Earth and Sugar

Earth & Sugar

Talk about tasteful sprinkles, right?

Earth and Sugar

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Earth and Sugar

Earth & Sugar

For understated tropical, keep the cake itself simple (buttercream all the way) but decorate with palms, different green fronds, and a few lush Florida-style blooms.

Earth and Sugar

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Alana Jones-Mann

Alana Jones-Mann

This cake was inspired by a Sonia Delaunay rug and decorated with intricate piping details.

Alana Jones-Mann

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Flour & Flourish

Photo by Derek Israelsen

The perfect use of all the favorite Millennial colors—pink, mint, and a splash of gold for movement.

Flour & Flourish

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Blue + Ruby Cake Art

Blue + Ruby Cake Art

This sweet and sprightly coconut lime cake incorporates a fondant marble wrap, handmade wafer paper orchids, and lime ganache.

Blue + Ruby Cake Art

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Julián Ángel

Julián Ángel

Embrace the tropical vibes with this bright and whimsical island-inspired cake.

Julián Ángel

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Buttercream Bakery

Buttercream Bakery

This cake brings together fiery and cooling tones—just like the balance that occurs in a marriage. Like it says: Sh*t just got real.

Buttercream Bakery

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Kek & Co.

Kek & Co.

Created for an intimate Cuban-inspired wedding, sugar paste Birds of Paradise and hibiscus give the tropical theme an extra touch of drama.

Kek & Co.

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Buttercream Bakery

Buttercream Bakery

50 shades of...pink.

Buttercream Bakery

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Blue + Ruby Cake Art

Blue + Ruby Cake Art

This cake's innocent pink stenciled fondant exterior belies the sinful interior of dark chocolate mud. Add fresh seasonal flowers for an extra dose of sweetness.

Blue + Ruby Cake Art

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