Learning to fly at the New Hamburg Library

Andrew Dewar has been making paper airplanes since he was a kid.

Today the Elmira resident and author of several books on the art of paper airplane design, is sharing what he’s learned through workshops.

If the more than two dozen children seated at the New Hamburg Library on Thursday morning were any indication of the enduring popularity of the paper airplane, Dewar should be busy meeting demand. The paper artist began the workshop by walking kids through a simple explanation of aerodynamics followed by demonstrations on how to make simple paper airplanes.

Dewar learned much of what he knows about papercraft in Japan, where the popularity and cultural importance of working with kami (Japanese for paper) captured his interest.

After spending 23 years in Japan since going over as a student, Dewar returned to Canada after last year’s devastating earthquake and tsunami.

Now he’s the lead organizer of the Toronto Paper Airplane Society and the Kami Papercraft Workshop.

Kids in New Hamburg had a chance to build and fly one of his designs, the Ladybug, at Thursday’s workshop. His paper airplane designs range from the simple to the exotic.

Dewar will be at the Wellesley branch Aug. 14.

Download this and this to make a Dewar-designed airplane, or follow the photo slides below to make your own traditional Japanese paper airplane. The simple design is made with any sheet of letter-sized paper.


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