I was asked to make The Very Hungry Caterpillar cake for someone I work with. It needed to feed quite a few people so I decided to make a sheet cake.
For the decorations I used Royal Icing (recipe on Wilton.com). The dots were made using the icing, in a piping bag with a #12 tip, wax paper, and then I flattened them a little with my finger to push down any peaks that formed. I let them dry for 24 hours before painting them with food coloring.
To get the look of they recycled paper I just applied different layers of color. For the fruit I used the Royal Icing again and traced the outline from the book on wax paper, turned it over and filled it in with Royal Icing. I applied this same technique to the Caterpillar.
The larger the items used with the Royal Icing the more time you need to let them dry. Ideally they could have dried for about a week, just to make sure all the moisture is out. But because the icing is just sugar, water, and meringue powder, there is no need to refrigerate the decorations.
I painted the Caterpillar with green, yellow and blue, making sure there was definitions from the brush strokes. It was a lot easier than I anticipated, just time consuming to let all the decorations dry. Hope this helped you! Thanks for looking.