Build a simple caterpillar with spun cotton balls

caterpilar craft ideas

One very simple and easy way to build a caterpillar is to use spun cotton balls. It’s actually so simple that it almost feels like spun cotton balls were invented for the purpose of making caterpillars.

caterpilar craft ideas
caterpilar craft ideas


  • Spun cotton balls: 5 medium size balls for the body and 10 smaller size balls for the legs. I used 30mm diameter balls for the body and 15mm diameter balls for the legs.
  • One spun cotton bell shape for the caterpillar’s head. I used a 38mm tall bell shape.
  • Paint: blue and white + a paint brush. I like acrylic paint because it dries very fast.
  • A black marker.
  • A glue gun.
  • Bamboo Wood sticks (to help during the painting and drying process).


  • Step 1: Paint all the balls and the bell with the blue paint. To make painting easier, insert a wood stick into each paper shape. Use the wood sticks as a handle. You can then rest the sticks in a container while the paint dries.
  • Step 2: Prepare a small batch of light blue paint by mixing the white paint and the blue paint together. Paint the face and the bellies.
  • Step 3: When the paint is dry, draw the mouth and the eyes using the black marker.
  • Step 4: Glue all the spun cotton shapes together with the glue gun.

A few words about spun cotton balls.

Spun cotton balls are wonderful eco-friendly alternatives to polystyrene balls. They are made of paper which gives them great qualities:

  • They don’t crumble. They are sturdy and feel strong to the touch.
  • They take paint beautifully. Paint is dry  in a matter of minutes.
  • They are food safe, they do not contain any chemicals.
  • They are glue gun compatible, they don’t melt.

This is all there is to it. I hope you enjoyed this page and found some inspiration for your next projects.  As usual, do not hesitate to send me your questions or leave a comment below. It’s always a pleasure to hear from you. Happy crafting!

By Nicolas Cocquerelle

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