Star Wars Origami
The Jawa

Soon after deciding to write an origami book, I started working on the jawa. I think it was my second attempt to create a figure from scratch. I spent many frustrating hours trying different approaches and looks. The best thing I came up with looked awful, but at least it was very difficult to fold. I put the figure away for a few days. One morning while in the shower I was thinking about a kangaroo I knew how to make, and it hit me. All I had to do was fold it inside-out, change the body, add a tuck here, a twist there, and it would be exactly what I was looking for. As soon as I stepped out of the shower, I folded it exactly as I had seen in my mind's eye and it's the same one you see here.

The man with the moustache standing next to me is Hal Wamsley. He played the jawa who shot R2-D2 in A New Hope. Hal was so impressed by my jawa, he asked if he could film me making one so he might learn the process. I hope he succeeded.


Jawas are short, timid, foul smelling humanoids native to Tatooine. They average 3 to 4 feet tall, wear long, thick, brown robes with hoods which shadow their faces leaving only their glowing yellow eyes visible. Their language consists of a high pitched chatter that only another jawa can comprehend, although they can make themselves understood if they wish to.

Most jawas roam the deserts in huge sandcrawlers searching for discarded machinery, which they patch up as best they can and sell later on. After being captured, C-3PO said, "I can't abide those jawas, disgusting creatures."