Category Archives: How To Guides

How to Make Jawa Eyes Tutorial

All photos of the electronics process are original and are licensed CC-BY-NC-SA-3.0.  Attribute with a link to this site.  All the screenshots and photos of full Jawas in costume are not my photography; please consider them under traditional copyright.

Last weekend, I performed in the Masquerade at Comic Con.  We were this skit AND WE KILLED (go to :20 to skip the emcees vamping):

(Masquerade friends who were involved in this, let me know if you want your names/websites linked here with credit for awesomeness.)

Considering that I cannot sew (AT ALL) but can solder (passably), my contribution was making the eyes.  I am here to share what we did with you, Internet, because there aren’t enough Jawa Eye Tutorials online yet.  The world needs another one.

Here's a screenshot from the above video.  Don't the eyes look awesome?

Here’s a screenshot from the above video. Don’t the eyes look awesome?

Credit for much of the design goes to my friend who was our (RIDICULOUSLY TALENTED) costumer.  We put our heads together over it and she suggested all the things like putting in more than one LED to make them brighter and putting something reflective behind them.  (I’ll link to her here if she lets me know that’s okay.)  And then I solder-monkeyed!

(Note: I am a rudimentary solderer.  I was a math major, not EE.  So, uh . . . for all you engineers out there, if I did something silly during some step in this process, feel free to let me know.)


We used 3 yellow LEDs for each eye, arranged in a triangle.  The wires went down to the collar with the batteries in pouches safety-pinned to the shirt beneath the costume, one battery on each side.  The LEDs were backed by gold reflective cardboard and diffused by a sanded-down souffle cup (the idea for sanding something down came from this tutorial, but we wanted something lighter in weight).  The eyes were then mounted on a felt and foam mask, with the glowing eyes lining up with where the costumed person’s cheeks would be, and we pulled a stretchy face sock over the whole ensemble.  We then cut holes in the face sock for the souffle cups to poke through.

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