I have 2 approaches to cake design...either the flavor dictates the look of the cake or I pack all the flavor inside the cake and finish it off with a specific pattern or texture. I much prefer the first approach and have some examples below of cakes that are designed by flavor ~
vanilla bean creme brulee...vanilla bean cake and frosting, with a creme brulee filling, topped with caramelized sugar chunks.
vanilla almond pistachio...vanilla cake and frosting, filled with honey pistachio mascarpone mousse, topped with ground pistachios and almond slivers.
coffee toffee...chocolate espresso cake, filled with toffee mousse, wrapped in espresso frosting, topped with coffee toffee sauce and dark chocolate covered espresso beans.
tres leches...tres leches cake, filled with vanilla bean pastry cream and vanilla frosting, topped with fresh raspberries.
chocolate fudge...chocolate cake & frosting, filled with chocolate mousse, topped with dark chocolate sauce.
peppermint bark...vanilla cake & frosting, filled white chocolate mousse, topped with peppermint bark.
rocky road...chocolate cake & frosting, filled with chocolate & marshmallow mousse, topped with marshmallows, walnuts & chocolate sauce.
strawberry champagne...champagne cake, filled with chopped strawberries & vanilla pastry cream, wrapped in vanilla frosting, topped with strawberries.
smores...chocolate cake with graham cracker crust baked in each layer, with a fudgy chocolate filling, topped in toasted marshmallow meringue (with some additional marshmallows and graham cracker crumbs sprinkled throughout).
vanilla toffee...vanilla cake & frosting, filled and topped with toffee sauce
dark chocolate caramel...chocolate cake & frosting, filled with dark chocolate caramel mousse, drenched in salted caramel