Some of the Best Fly Tying Instruction Books (part 1)

In recent years the advent of YouTube, Vimeo and similar free online video libraries, has been hugely beneficial for the sharing of fly tying tips and demonstrations. In the past people would travel miles to sit and learn from a master fly tier. These days there is no need – it is all out there in front of them on the internet.

But for all these great video clips, there is still no substitute for a well produced, clear, step by step fly tying guide in book form that you can work to at your own speed. And there is still no real substitute to a comprehensive fly tying directory of patterns.

We are still selling as many fly tying books as ever, and the standard of these books has never been higher.  So which ones are likely to be the most helpful.  Below I have listed a few of the most popular for beginners which I personally rate highly for being the most useful.


 Peter Gathercole’s Fly Tying For Beginners

gathercole beginners-pg-bookThis is modestly described as an introduction to tools, materials and techniques with instructions for tying 50 fail safe flies, but the book is far more than this. It is a book which will be helpful to both novice and more experienced tiers alike.

This is a hard back but the pages are bound by rings which enable the pages to be opened wide and flat so that the very clearly illustrated steps for tying each fly are easy to follow, and there is no problem keeping the book open. Print is reasonably large, well spaced and easy to read.

The book opens with a short explanation of the layout of the book and general tools and materials, followed by illustrated demonstrations of core techniques.

The variety of patterns covers most flies for most types of fly and most situations of fly Fly Tying For Beginners Book  by P Gathercolefishng, including trout stream, stillwater, grayling, salmon, pike and saltwater flies. These are easily found using the Fly Selector pages

Peter Gathercole is a master fly tier, and he provides a superb range of techniques and tips throughout the book from the basics of securing the thread to the hook and applying varnish, to using a whip finisher, tying parachute hackles, collar hackles, spinner wings, hairwings, dubbing loops, spinning deer hair, paired wings

At the back of each book there is a helpful glossary and index

In my opinion, if you are only ever going to buy one book, this is definitely the book to choose.

Fly Tying For Beginners is distributed by Veniard, and can be purchased from Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK                             

Price: £16.00

The Flytier’s Manual by Mike Dawes

This is a large softback book with some good line drawing illustrations to compliment the colour photographs of the finished fly patterns. The selection of patterns includes many basic, standard wet flies, nymphs, dry flies, streamers and lures as well as a fairly big list of single salmon flies and a couple of shrimp doubles.

The introductory Chapter on equipment, materials and basic techniques is far too basic, and although tools and vice are mentioned there is no instruction on how to use them (which is essential for a novice with no instructor).

Skyhorse Publishing are bringing out a new edition in the near future in which there may well be some important updates and additions.

Veniard Beginners Guide to Fly-Tying – Chris Mann & Terry Griffiths

mann-griffiths beginners guideThis excellent book is written for the raw beginner to fly-tying and as such uses clear, straightforward instructions and coloured illustrations, making it easy to learn quickly how to tie effective flies. Some of the finer points of fly-tying wizardry are unveiled and will be of interest to the beginner and the more experienced alike.
Venaird have also produced a separate Fly Tying Materials Kit with the materials selected and sourced to compliment the book. They include enough of everything, including hooks, to tie any of the patterns provided, without having to buy any other materials.

Veniard Beginners Guide To  Fly-Tying Book and Materials can be purchased from Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

Book Price: £9.99 (Including VAT at 20%)
Materials Kit Price: £14.95


Funky Fly Tying Fritz

A great range of Fritz materials from Funky Fly Tying now available through Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

Funky Blob Fritz Bonded Core 16mm

Funky Blob Fritz Bonded CoreThis is the latest 16mm core bonded blob fritz. This means that the herl on the fritz is much harder to pull out. The core is thinner and dyed the same colour as the herl. Also, the core has a slight strech to it to make tying in easier. This is the ULTIMATE fritz for blobs and has been dyed the best and brightest colours available.
Colours: Diamond White, Powder Pink, Light Coral, Fluoro Yellow, Fluoro Orange, Blue, Peach, Onyx Black, Cat Green, Deep Sunburst, Olive, Fluoro Red, Fluoro Pink, Light Sunburst, Hot Coral, Golden Olive
Price: £2.50 inc VAT

Funky UV Straggle FritzFunky Uv Straggle Fritz

A superb straggle fritz incorporating UV material, dyed in Funky’s unique colours.
Available Colours: Flo Red, Flo White, Light Sunburst, Hot Orange, Hot Coral, Flo Pink, Chartreuse, Cat Green, Blue, Black, Sunburst
Price: £2.75 inc VAT

 Funky 5mm Crystal Hackle FritzFunky 5mm Crystal Hackle Fritz

The 5mm Crystal hackle is made for us at Funky in the UK and dyed in their exclusive range of colours. It si perfect for mini lures and boobies as well as larger nymphs. Funky’s colours are the best in the market with deep strong reliable colours throughout their range, with no variation.
Colours: Olive, Hot Orange, Deep Sunburst, Black/Pearl, Black, Sunburst, Hot Pink, Chartreuse
Price: £2.75 inc VAT

Funky 3D Micro Straggle UV and Gold FritzFunky 3D Micro Straggle UV and Gold Fritz

The Original Micro Straggle with UV and Gold filaments. People have tried to copy it but never quite got it right.
Funky Fly Tying have gone direct to the source and had it dyed up in some superb colours with loads more colours to come. 3 Metres per Card.
Colours: Black/Gold, Ice Pink/Gold, Firey Brown/Gold, Claret/Gold, Olive/Gold, Fluoro Yellow/Gold, Bibio Red/Gold, Hot Orange/Gold, Sunburst/Gold, Dragons Blood/Gold
Price: £2.49 inc VAT

 Funky 3D Micro Straggle UV Silver Fritz Funky 3D Micro Straggle UV and Silver Fritz

This is the original Micro Straggle with UV and Silver filaments. People have tried to copy it but never quite got it right. Funky Fly Tying have gone direct to the source and had it dyed up in some superb colours with loads more colours to come. 3 Metres per Card.
Colours: Bibio Red/Silver, Fluoro Green/Silver, Olive/Silver, Chartreuse/Silver, Hot Orange/Silver, Black/Silver, White/Silver, Firey Brown/SilverS, unburst/Silver, Claret/Silver, Fluoro Yellow/Silver, Ice Pink/Silver, Damsel Green/Silver
Price: £2.49 inc VAT

 Dennis The Menace Blob Fritz Dennis The Menace Blob Fritz

Perfect for Blobs. An amazingly deep black and red fritz, Dennis the Menace is an ever popular seller.
Price: £2.49


All of the Funky Fritz is available online at Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

DNA Fly Tying Materials

Three new DNA synthetic fly tying materials providing flash, movement and colour to saltwater and baitfish flies as well as highly effective materials to include when tying dry flies and nymph patters.

DNA Frosty Fish FibreDNA Frosty Fish Fibre

A superb synthetic fibre for fly tying, perfect for baitfish patterns. It can also be used for wings on dry flies and tails, shucks etc. DNA Frosty Fish Fibre is a translucent fibre that changes colour depending on how the light hits it. The material gives the fly plenty of movement and it is the key material in Oz’s livebait fly.
Available in 19 colours. £3.25 inc VAT

DNA Holo FusionDNA Holo Fusion

DNA Holo Fusion is a mixture of Holo Chromosome flash and other DNA fibres. This synthetic fibre provides just the right amount of flash to give a lifelike shimmer without too much dazzling glare. It is gives the fly great mobility, making it a perfect fibre for bait fish patterns. You can also incorporate it with other DNA fibres to create your own superb effects.
Available in 18 colours. £3.95 inc VAT

DNA Holo Chromosome Flash DNA Holo Chromosome Flash

This is perfect for when you want to tie ultra flashy flies. The flash material delivers superb effects when tied in with other DNA fibres to create a highly effective inner flash.
White Pearl. £3.75 inc VAT



You can buy the complete rage of these DNA Fly Tying Materials from Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

Fly-Tying Hooks

If you tie your own flies, picking the right hook for the right pattern is essential. Today we have a multitude of hook patterns from different suppliers, all of good quality, unlike when I started out tying my own some thirty years ago, not only were the patterns limited and fairly crude with a tendency to straighten out on a big fish, you often had to sharpen them and keep them sharp, when was the last time you had to sharpen a trout hook?

Tiemco Hooks

Tiemco 212Y Emerger HookTiemco’s advanced methods have revolutionised the design and manufacture of fly hooks. Tiemco has become the world-wide leader by introducing new hook styles that let flies look more life-like and by pioneering new manufacturing processes, such as chemical sharpening to improve hook performance.
Each year they add new hook designs, extending the range of their hooks to meet the expanding needs of innovative fly-tyers. Each Tiemco hook style is designed specifically to Tiemco 2499SPBL Barbless Hooksatisfy the most demanding customers in the world: the fly-tyers.
Tiemco fly hooks are made with fly fishing in mind, and as a sharp, strong hook may be the single most important component in your fly fishing gear.

For more details of the full range of Tiemco Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK or Fishing Fackle

Kamasan Hooks

Kamasan B175 HooksKAMASAN offer a series of Chemically Sharpened Needle Point High Carbon Hooks.
Each pattern has been specifically designed for the fly-fishing Kamasan B420 Hooksmarket. This exceptional point in combination with a small superbly proportioned barb all adds up to the next step forward in fishing technology.

For more details of the full range of Kamasan Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK or Fishing Fackle

Partridge Hooks

Partridge 5017 Kilnkhammer HookFly Fishing Tackle Co UK is delighted to add the full range of the relaunched Partridge Hooks to its online site. We try to keep in stock all of the popular hooks. These include almost all of the sizes of Salar single, double, treble and tube hooks and Flashpoint trout hooks (subject to availability). We also carry stocks of Ad Swier Pike Hooks, Waddingtons, Partridge Specialist Trout Hooks including Captain Hamilton, Partridge CS86 Predator HookSpecialist Saltwater including Aberdeen and Baitholder and Carp fishing hooks. All other varieties and sizes of Partridge hooks can be ordered but may take a little longer to be supplied.

For more details of the full range of Partridge Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

VARIVAS Fresh Water Hooks

Varivas IWI S2000The VARIVAS Fresh Water series are the latest innovation when it comes to tying fresh water flies. They are all made to the highest specification with points that make them the ultimate when it comes to sharpness. This range of hooks has recently been redesigned to focus on what makes VARIVAS the best when it comes to function and reliability. The fine dry fly series feature micro-barb and long-tapered points to give them superior setting properties while the wet and streamer ranges feature the famous VARIVAS V-CUT point to enable the fisherman to easily set the hook and play even the most aggressive fish. All hooks are down-eyed (except the Keel Streamer). Packed in 30’s (dry) and 25’s (wet / streamers), all hooks come in a unique stackable plastic box with a flip-open front panel to protect and organize them.

VARIVAS Saltwater Hooks

Varivas 2510WB Keel HookThe VARIVAS 2600 Salt Water series are the latest innovation when it comes to tying saltwater flies. They are all made to the highest specification and are the ultimate when it comes to sharpness. These modern looking hooks were designed by IGFA fly rod world record holding angler Eizo Maruhashi, using high-power carbon and stainless steel for extra strength enabling the fly fisher to hook, play and land large hard-fighting fish such as tarpon and sailfish.
The gape on these hooks is larger than that found on traditional hooks; the gape on a #4 hook is comparable to #2 on traditional style hooks. Packed in 12’s.

For more details of the full range of Varivas Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK or Fishing Fackle

Owner Hooks

Owner ST36 Treble HooksFly Fishing Tackle Co UK has a wide range of Owner hooks and fishing tackle and including Mutu Circle Hooks, saltwater treble hooks, salmon and bait hooks and some snelled hooks. We also sell Cultivar Lures and Owner fishing accessories. Many of these products we keep in stock (subject to availability). Non-stocked items of Owner fishing tackle can be ordered but will take a little longer to be delivered.

For more details of the full range of Owner Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

Fulling Mill Hooks

Fulling Mill Short Shank SpecialScorpion & Hayabusa Hooks from Fulling Mill offer an excellent range of Hayabusa Fly 379 Dry Fly Hookhooks and sizes. Available in Packs of 50 or some patterns come in bulk packs of 1000 offering a huge saving if you are tying lots of the same size fly.

For more details of the full range of Fulling Mill Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK or Fishing Tackle Dealer.Com

Turrall Hooks

Turrall 930 Barbless Wet Fly HooksThese hooks are the same hooks as used for their flies. Made from High Carbon Nickel Chrome Sheffield Steel in Redditch, the hooks feature dual-cone, centreless-ground, chemically sharpened Turrall 940 Salmon Single Hookspolished points and low-cut short micro barbs, Triple Coated for extra durability. They come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes as you would expect from a producer of high quality flies.

For more details of the full range of H Turrall Fly Tying Hooks visit Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK or Fishing Fackle

OR, Compare all the above brands of hooks at Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

New Tiemco Hooks for 2014

Tiemco have introduced seven new fly tying hooks to their range for the 2014 season including barbless hooks, jig hooks and saltwater hooks.

TMC 403BLJ Jig Hooks tiemco black nickel barbless jig hook
Nymph, 60 degrees vertical eye, Wide gape, Medium wire, Super fine Barbless point, Black nickel. New Tiemco jig hook with needle sharp barbless point- the perfect hook for all your jig flies.
Sizes #8-#16   RRP 5.75

TMC 105 tmc 105 flytying hook
Egg Fly and Glo Bug, straight eye, 7X short, 2X strong, reversed bend, bronze.
Designed for Glo Bugs and Egg flies , however this short shank 2 x strong hook is also perfect for tying stillwater patterns like blobs. Pack of 20.
Sizes: #4-#10   RRP 3.95

TMC 112 TR tmc 112tr fly hook
Dry fly, down eye, 1X fine, 2.5X short, 2X wide, bronze.
Specifically designed for very selective trout. These 112TR’s have the same shape as the 112Y but with heavier wire for extra security. Pack of 20.
Sizes: #9-#19   RRP 3.95

TMC 212 TR Tiemco 212TR hook
Dry fly, down eye, 1X fine, 4X short, 5X wide, forged, bronzed.
Specifically designed for very selective trout. These 212TR’s have the same shape as the 212Y but with heavier wire for extra security. Pack of 20.
Sizes: #9-#19   RRP 3.95

TMC 2499SPB BL Hooks – Black Barblesstmc 2499spbl black nickel
Straight eye, 2X Heavy, 3X Wide, 2X Short, Forged, SPR point, Barbless, Black.
Truly versatile design, perfect for big fish on small nymphs, strong enough for steelhead, in a black finish for stealth. Pack of 20.
Sizes #8-#18   RRP 5.75

TMC 777SP Hookstiemco tmc 777sp black nickel hook
SPS Point, 2X heavy, 3.5X long, 2.5X wide, straight eye, forged black nickel.
This SP model is made of very strong carbon steel with a corrosion resistant black nickel finish. For smaller saltwater patterns, streamers, muddlers and sculpins. Pack of 10.
Sizes #6-#10   RRP 5.75

Tiemco TMC 800Stiemco tmc800s saltwater
Saltwater Fly, straight eye, heavy wire, semi dropped point, stainless.
A stainless steel saltwater hook designed for use on everything from tarpon to bonefish. Packs of 10 hooks.
Sizes #2-#8   RRP 5.75

You can check out the whole range of Tiemco Hooks at Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK

Veevus Fly Tying Thread

Veevus supply six deniers of fly tying thread in 100m spools to cover most aspects of fly tying and in a range of colours.  They are one of the strongest tying threads available with the 16/0 only slightly weaker than a conventional 8/0.  This is fantastic for small flies as you can make as many turns as you like without over bulking the fly – and it is still strong enough to secure hairwings. 

veevus 16/0 thread

Veevus 16/0 Thread
Thread with a breaking strain of around 400g at least double most competitors.
Black, White, Grey, Olive Dun, Red, Olive, Brown, Light Cahill (Primrose)


Veevus 14/0 Thread Veevus 14/0 thread
Another superb thread from Veevus, They can be unwound easily for use as a split thread and they have a small amount of stretch which is forgiving helps hold materials down snugly. Its very tough and nicely spooled.
Colours: – Black, White, Dark Brown, Red, Orange, Claret, Light Cahill, Olive, Pink

Veevus 12/0 Thread Veevus 12/0 fly tying thread
Approximatley half the size of 6/0.
Colours: – Black, White, Red, Dark Olive




Veevus 10/0 Thread veevus 10/0 flytying thead
A lot stronger than anything else about with the exception perhaps of Giorgio Benecchi 10/0 thread.
Colours: – Black, White, Hot Orange, Sunburst Yellow, Orange, Red



Veevus 8/0 Thread veevus 8/0 fly tying thread
A good high strength all round thread.
Colours: – Black, White, Red, Olive




Veevus 6/0 Thread veevus 6/0 tying thread
Great strong thread which can be unwound easily for use as a split thread and they have a small amount of stretch which is forgiving helps hold materials down snugly. Its very tough and nicely spooled.
Colours: – Black, White, Red


You can buy these superb Veevus threads at Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK


Turrall Crinkleflash Micro

Turrall Micro Crinkle FlashThis Ultra Fine Crinkle Flash fly tying material from Turrall is perfect for adding a small amount of sparkle to flies without over egging the cake.
It’s perfect for using in wings and tails of dries, wets and lures.
You can also use it in lightly dressed salmon flies.
The red, orange and pearl work well with flies such as Compara Duns and Griffith’s Gnat, various wet flies such as Dabblers. The olive is perfect for Damsel patterns and the pink lends its self to grayling flies. It’s available in orange, pearl, pink, red, olive, fluoro yellow and fluoro chartreuse.

Check out Crinkleflash Micro and the full range of  Turrrall Fly Tying Materials at Fly Fishing Tackle Co UK.