Archive for the 'fly tying materials' Category


Fly Tying Material: Dyed Peacock Herl

photography-fly tying-peacock--dyed-herl-swittersb

A little blurry with the cropping, but you get a sense of the segmentation and fibers/barbs of the peacock herl, which in this instance was dyed. This is an excellent material for smaller abdomens, thorax and heads.


Marabou: Excellent Fly Tying Material

brushed leech SwittersB

The macro lens reveals the Marabou tail feather is not of the best quality that I used.

Here is an excellent piece re Marabou feathers by Paul Joergensen at Global Fly Fisher


UV Materials, Color Spectrum, Sub-Surface Vision

Sandy R SwittersB

Beneath the surface your fly patterns hopefully imitate reality or by virtue of colors entice, incite and provoke the take….the moment. Here is an exceptional article about the colors, vision, the spectrum in that world below the surface at Mid Current: Shining A Light on UV Materials


Fly Tying Materials: Innovative Euro Products

An excellent source for Euro Fly Tying Products is Performance Flies USA

The below Soft Hackle Pattern was tied with Synthetic Ice Quill Body materials purchased at Performance Flies USA in Cleveland, Ohio
Simple Blue Wet SBx


Momentary Chest Pains………….

hair grizzly

I guess I should explain for the non-fly tier/fisher: A few years ago the hackle industry was overwhelmed with the then fashionable style of long cock feathers blended in with the hair. Less worthy feathers were  used for earrings too. The trend passed and the feathers again became a bit more plentiful in fly shops for tiers. In looking at this above image, I believe the look is actual feathers, but rather the hair colored into a grizzly pattern. I do hope so…..


Fingernails & Hen Hackle Tips

The past few years have shown the styling craze of feather earrings, prime hackle for hair extensions and now, I am told, hen hackle tips are becoming quite the rage for fingernail appliques beneath an acrylic overlay…a form of nail art. What, if any, the impact will be on fly shops, once again, remains to be seen.

Even tonight, I was asked if I could part with any blue dun hen hackle!


Peacock’s & Fly Tying: A Remarkable Bird

A design on a box for a cologne or some such scent. Caught my eye, so I snapped it.

Here’s a nice piece at Sexy Loops by Jo Meder re the ‘Fabulous Pheasant’

This peacock design was off the back of my ex-wife’s blouse. I snapped it as we watched our g-daughter at a sporting event. Hey, I saw the possibilities.

Peacock is, indeed, a remarkable tying material that comes in its natural colors but these days is also dyed. It is a wonderful material whether in its natural state or dyed. Tails, wings, abdomens, thorax and wingcases…it is a must have material. 


Fly Tying With Carpet Samples

Of late, well the last 2+ years, I have been preoccupied with hoarding houses (Mom/Aunt…Hoarding Woes & You). Today, I found this carpet sample deal and considered portions of it for fly tying.

Here the colors are more evident. This is short fibered carpet. Each twisted fiber is approximately 1/3″. I selected several colors. Each swatch is, of course, enough for several years of tying what? Caddis patterns, we shall see and I will share.


Stillwater Chomper Pattern Redux

Earlier this week, I tied up a couple Chomper patterns and was not overly pleased with the results: too much materials and the resultant bulky fly. Today, I used the amounts suggested by Tim Rolston and I am pleased with the simpler, cleaner fly.

A single ostrich herl, 14/0 thread and a narrow, mottled shellback. Simpler, cleaner and I can’t wait to try it. The pattern is similar to many other ‘scud’ like patterns. The important part here is the material: Ostrich Herl. No head cement, no raffia, smaller thread, less bulk…nicer.


Fly Tying: The Feather Affair in Palm Springs

Oh, I do hate writing about this subject, that seemed the obligatory piece this past year or so….fly tying’s feather shortage ‘crisis’. I had noticed in the Portland area that the feather fashion craze had seemingly faded away, although you could still see the feather earrings and the rare feather insert into some young woman’s hair. While visiting the Village Fest, the Flea Mart last week in Palm Springs, and in numerous shops, I was struck by the wide availability of feathers this and that, as well as long strands of flashabou/krystal flash like products for hair insertions. 

This over priced Peacock monstrosity was one of several on display along with hundreds of feathered jewelry pieces by just one vendor amongst many I observed. Was this some marketing push in advance of the Coachella Fest?

Upon casually assessing some several thousand young women on Spring break, I don’t think I saw but a few with any feather earrings or hair insertions. There seems to be a large supply of feather adornments for sale…..but any demand? 

What was noticeable in this feather affair was the absence of high quality rooster feathers and the predominant use of lower grade feathers.

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