Brand New to Fly Tying

Stacey

Smolt
tie at least 6 flies of the same tie each time you sit down.
That's a great suggestion! There are so many flies that look like fun, it's tempting to jump ahead to a new one - but I suspect repetition is the key to proficiency. Maybe I'll sit myself down & make 5 more reverse spiders before I move on :)
 

Josh

Dead in the water
Staff member
Admin
Moderator
That's a great suggestion! There are so many flies that look like fun, it's tempting to jump ahead to a new one - but I suspect repetition is the key to proficiency. Maybe I'll sit myself down & make 5 more reverse spiders before I move on :)
Why stop at 5? You'd REALLY know you had that proficiency if you tied a dozen....or two. Maybe you should practice different colors?
 

Nick Clayton

Fishing Is Neat
Forum Supporter
Geez, I'd be ashamed to post a pic of my first fly, even if I had one. That's impressive as all get out. I remember tying my first reverse spiders, after I'd been tying for a good many years. Not a super duper technical pattern, but definitely not the easiest either. Especially that reverse hackle.

I want to say my first fly was a Wooly Worm, but it was 26 or 27 years ago so memory is a bit hazy. I used to catch a lot of fish on them on the lakes in BC I fished at the time, and it being a pretty simple pattern it was a logical first attempt.

I agree with both the Wooly Bugger and Clouser Minnow as being next focus flies. Both would serve Josh's fishes needs well, and both are great for learning common tying techniques. I definitely agree with Dime, learning to tie with bucktail is crucial IMO. So many great patterns make use of bucktail, and while it's not an overly difficult material to tie with, it does tend to take some practice to tie with it well. Especially the proportion side of things.
 

Nick Clayton

Fishing Is Neat
Forum Supporter
Also another vote for tying multiple of any pattern. I tend to tie at least 6 of any new pattern I'm learning. Inevitably fly number 6 comes out much better than my first attempts. Often it's just a matter of getting a feel for the right proportions of the various materials, at least for me.

Even more importantly though, if you only tie one of any particular pattern you can bet your life savings that the first time Josh ties it on it will quickly prove to be the ONLY fly the fish want anything to do with that day, and undoubtedly he will lose it to a log in a matter of minutes. Don't want to deal with a cranky husband when he comes home after a slow day of fishing because you only provided him with a single hot fly.
 

RCF

Life of the Party
That's a great suggestion! There are so many flies that look like fun, it's tempting to jump ahead to a new one - but I suspect repetition is the key to proficiency. Maybe I'll sit myself down & make 5 more reverse spiders before I move on :)

When you tie multiple flies in a row look at the first one tied and compare it to the last one tied. There will be a big difference. Even those of us that have been tying for years notice a difference in what we tie. That positive feedback is truly a great thing...
 

Tom Butler

Grandpa, Small Stream Fanatic
When you tie multiple flies in a row look at the first one tied and compare it to the last one tied. There will be a big difference. Even those of us that have been tying for years notice a difference in what we tie. That positive feedback is truly a great thing...
Welcome @Stacey . I can relate to the above, I can't tie the same fly twice. Many of my ugly should be rejects catch fish, don't fret if it's not perfect. But it is great when they come out nice, and your first effort is really really nice.
 

Smalma

Life of the Party
Welcome!

An excellent first fly especially of a pattern that is not easy!

I would think an excellent first attempt at a trout dry fly would be a deer hair caddis.

curt
 

Josh

Dead in the water
Staff member
Admin
Moderator
that the first time Josh ties it on it will quickly prove to be the ONLY fly the fish want anything to do with that day, and undoubtedly he will lose it to a log in a matter of minutes.
This sounds like you've got a disturbingly accurate fly fishing Magic 8 Ball giving you a look into my future.

signs_point.jpg
 

Stacey

Smolt
When you tie multiple flies in a row look at the first one tied and compare it to the last one tied. There will be a big difference. Even those of us that have been tying for years notice a difference in what we tie. That positive feedback is truly a great thing...
You're right...I just tied my 5th & it already looks better than my 1st! I do love some good positive reinforcement.
 

FinLuver

Native Oregonian…1846
Very nice first fly!!
Craft stores can be fun.
Any material is fair game…pets, fabrics, even Josh when he needs a trim around the ears. 😉
 

nwbobber

Steelhead
Forum Supporter
Also another vote for tying multiple of any pattern. I tend to tie at least 6 of any new pattern I'm learning. Inevitably fly number 6 comes out much better than my first attempts. Often it's just a matter of getting a feel for the right proportions of the various materials, at least for me.

Even more importantly though, if you only tie one of any particular pattern you can bet your life savings that the first time Josh ties it on it will quickly prove to be the ONLY fly the fish want anything to do with that day, and undoubtedly he will lose it to a log in a matter of minutes. Don't want to deal with a cranky husband when he comes home after a slow day of fishing because you only provided him with a single hot fly.
Prevent cranky husband syndrome and get out there and FISH! Josh can tie flies right? No complaints about free flies allowed.

I hope I am not banned.
 

Vandelay Industries

Steelhead
Forum Supporter
There are an endless amount of modifications and different materials that you can use for this fly. It's a great one to learn.
Thanks! The clouser minnow looks like it would be fun to tie!
 

RCF

Life of the Party
@Stacey - you are finding out very quickly that this forum is a great place to be and the sharing of information is given without expectations of anything in return. A very unique quality that is very rarely achieved anywhere especially on a a social media platform. We, the collective we, are stoked to have you here for sure!

We all learn differently. Many of us learned from books since YouTube did not exist. The SBS (step by step) tying instructions on PNWFF is awesome and a very valuable source of information too. If you are so inclined I would take advantage of @IHFISH 's offer of free books.

Some suggestions of what to tie? Woolley Bugger, Carey Special, Hare's Ear and Pheasant Tail Nymphs. Lots of different techniques and materials. And then there is deer/elk/moose/antelope hair. For a number of us, me included, it is the bane of our existence... Tie flies for what fish you are targeting.

Looking forward to your sharing of this learning experience. Also looking forward to your first fish caught on your own fly. ALL of us remember that first fish caught with our own fly - even decades later. Then we need to hear about when you kicked @Josh 's ass fishing...
 
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Stacey

Smolt
Thank you everyone for the warm welcome & words of encouragement! I see now why Josh likes it here so much 💗

Quick question, if anyone has any advice to offer: This is my most recent attempt at a reversed spider in the vice & my 1st below it for comparison. I like the look of the splayed feathers better than the cone shape, but I don't know which is better or more correct. I've found pictures of this fly pattern online with both shapes, so maybe it doesn't matter? It seems like the splayed hackle would have more movement in the water though, if I'm imagining it correctly.
Reversed_Spider_2.jpg
 

Bob N

Smolt
Forum Supporter
Thank you everyone for the warm welcome & words of encouragement! I see now why Josh likes it here so much 💗

Quick question, if anyone has any advice to offer: This is my most recent attempt at a reversed spider in the vice & my 1st below it for comparison. I like the look of the splayed feathers better than the cone shape, but I don't know which is better or more correct. I've found pictures of this fly pattern online with both shapes, so maybe it doesn't matter? It seems like the splayed hackle would have more movement in the water though, if I'm imagining it correctly.
View attachment 51569
The fish is the best judge
 

FinLuver

Native Oregonian…1846
Thank you everyone for the warm welcome & words of encouragement! I see now why Josh likes it here so much 💗

Quick question, if anyone has any advice to offer: This is my most recent attempt at a reversed spider in the vice & my 1st below it for comparison. I like the look of the splayed feathers better than the cone shape, but I don't know which is better or more correct. I've found pictures of this fly pattern online with both shapes, so maybe it doesn't matter? It seems like the splayed hackle would have more movement in the water though, if I'm imagining it correctly.
View attachment 51569
I like to create a tapered thread bump behind the hook’s eye and then strip one side of the feather…sparser more active pulsing wing.
 
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