Introduction: Jawa Costume From Star Wars
Step 1: Step 1: the Pattern and Cutting
I adapted a pattern for the Jawas and cut it from burlap that I purchased at Hancock Fabrics for about $6/yard. I used about 3 yards per costume. I made the tunic longer with wider sleeves and made the hood a separate piece, a bit longer than the original pattern. The front and back of the robe are both cut on the fold, with a slit cut in the back for the closure. The hood is cut on the fold, with the fold on the top.
Step 2: Step 2: the Robe
Sew the side and shoulder seams of the body first. then sew the sleeves up the seam, then sew the sleeves to the body. Put a double seam on each seam, this fabric really can ravel. My son complained that it was too itchy, so I made a facing just for the torso and the hood out of felt. Sew the facing together at the shoulder seams and side seams. With right sides together, sew the facing to the main body of the costume at the neck seam, then sew the facing to the arm seams. Sew a snap to the back to close it.
Step 3: Step 3: the Hood
I got some black mesh fabric at Hancock’s that is similar to what ice skaters and dancers use for their costumes, it is stretchy. I cut about 2.5 inches off of the felt lining to make the edge of the hood fold in and so that the black mesh would be inside the seam and inside the hood about 2 inches. I estimated the black mesh pattern to cover the face. Sew the back seam of the hood together. Sew the back seam of the lining. Sew the mesh to the lining with right sides together. Then sew the main hood to this piece with right sides together. Sew the felt lining to the hood at the bottom, but don’t catch the black mesh.
Step 4: Step 4: the Foot Coverings/Spats
I adapted the spat pattern from this pattern. I cut the foot coverings out of felt. Obviously, I made one for each foot. I used the scraps that I had from the main costume to cover the felt. I only covered the bottom part as the rest would be covered by the robe. Then I used velcro to close them at the back.
Step 5: Step 5: the Mask
The mask was what I thought would be the biggest challenge, but it was easier than I thought it would be. I did some research on the internet and then modified it to make it easier. I bought plain black masks at the Spirit Halloween store. Then I got battery operated tea lights at Michael’s. They have a little off/on switch on the bottom so you can turn them off when you aren't using them. To diffuse the light, we used the containers that small toys from gum ball machines come in. We sanded the globe part and hot-glued them to the tea light. We used black electrical tape to cover the sides of the tea lights. We started off using just a small amount of regular velcro to attach the “eyes” to the mask but that wasn’t strong enough so we went with the industrial strength velcro. We cut the chin out of the mask since it was going to be virtually invisible under the black mesh of the hood, that made it easier for the Jawas to breathe.
Step 6: Step 6: the Cowl
I wasn’t pleased with the way that the costume was so disjointed, but I also needed it to be functional for 9 year old boys. So I made a cowl to bring it all together. It also served as padding for the bandoliers. I cut a piece of the burlap about 40” long and 12” wide and sewed velcro on the edges. The Jawa could choose to wear it folded lengthwise or just bunch it up.
Step 7: Step 7: the Bandoliers
I saw many different versions of these on the internet and decided the most economical way would be to make most of it myself. I found some old belts at various thrift stores around town. I used brown vinyl that I glued together, using a spray adhesive, for the ammunition pouches. I saw various templates for these pouches on the internet and, after much trial and error, came up with one that would work for us. I got some brads at Staples to use as the closure decoration (I was planning to glue them shut, they are NOT functioning.) The brads were a little too long, so I used floral wire cutters to cut the ends off some. Any wire cutter would work. I marked the placed for the brad and used a toothpick to make a hole. I assembled them with a hot glue gun, making sure to leave a “slot” so that they would slide easily onto the belt. I made 4 ammo pouches for each Jawa and a larger pouch for the belt around the waist.
Step 8: Step 8: the Painting
Since Jawas come from the desert planet of Tatooine, I figured that they would be pretty dusty and dirty and blasted from all the sand. My brand new burlap and vinyl weren’t going to cut it. I used some brown acrylic paint that I had in my stash to touch up the edges of the ammo pouches. I covered the brads and belt buckles with tape. I got spray paint at Michael’s. This is the kind that makes whatever you are painting look like stone or textured in some way. I sprayed the bandoliers well, so that they looked well aged and dirty. I sprayed the bandoliers and belts with the lighter color. I sprayed the bottom of each costume with the lighter color and then sprayed everything with the darker color and let them dry outside overnight.
Step 9: Step 9: the Gloves
After watching the scene between the Jawas, Uncle Owen and Luke about 30 times, I realized that the Jawas have black hands with a little bit of fur on the backs. I went to the dollar store and got the gloves (2 pairs for a dollar). I had this feather boa and figured it would work well for the fur, especially since it would be dark. I sewed a 3” strip of the boa onto each glove, loosely by hand.
Step 10: Step 10: the Weapons
For the weapons I wanted to build something that was easily recognizable as the Jawa Ion Blaster but not over-top-detailed as it was going to be used by nine year olds at night.
I found a picture on the internet and created a template to match the shape of the stock. I then cut the stock out of 3/4 inch MDF, sanded down the stock with a small orbital sander and painted the stock brown.
For the barrel of the Ion Blaster I spend some time in the plumbing aisle at Lowes. Using a 1.5 inch threaded cap and a 1.5 inch adapter (slip x thread), I created the back of the barrel. I then cut a 1.5 inch diameter piece of PVC (5 inches long) and put the end piece on one end. On the other end I attached a 2 x 1.5 inch coupler so I could then attach a 2 inch diameter piece of PVC (cut 5 in).
The barrel was then painted matte black and dropped on the floor a few times to make it look beat up. Using clamps from the plumbing aisle (painted matte black) and a metal bracket (also painted matte black) I attached the barrel to the stock using wood screws and some washers. The screw in the stock was put in to keep the MDF from splitting (optional)