I was inspired by other cakes on this website and made the body of the caterpillar with a chocolate chip cake in a bundt pan. For the head of the The Very Hungry Caterpillar Cake, I used a smaller loaf of angel food cake and cut out the shape of the head. To get the right size of the head and body, I printed out a enlarged copy of the front of the book to use as a template.
As for icing, for the head, I just dyed whipped vanilla icing with red food coloring. As for the body, I iced the cake with the whipped vanilla icing, making thicker “stripes” of icing to produce the segmented look, and then let it sit in the fridge overnight or until set. Then, to get the watercolor look that Eric Carle uses for his illustrations, I painted the body with food coloring, first painting the segments yellow and blue, alternating between the two colors, and then painting with green food coloring over the entire body.
For the eyes and nose, I used gummy fruit disks (in the bulk candy section of the grocery store) and cut out the shapes. For the yellow part of the eyes, be sure to place a dab of yellow icing underneath so the red icing doesn’t show through.
Finding something to use for the antennae was the hardest part because I couldn’t find any candy that lavender color. I ended up cutting out the shapes of the antennae from purple sticks of chewing gum and then painting them with with a bit of blue and red food coloring to enhance the purple color.