Frödin Fly Designs

When I was 13 years old my parents gave me a fly tying set. This changed my whole life. In the beginning my tying was solely a copying of Red Tags, Peacock Nymphs and a variety of traditional trout flies, just like it should be. Dalälven and Älvkarleby being so close as well as my growing interest of salmon books, pretty fast lead to my fly tying slipping over to salmon and sea trout creations. Älvkarleby soon became my home ground and I started testing all kinds of crazy creations.

The First Flies Sold
I fished and took fish with everything from feather bound Durham Rangers on tubes to furiously fluorescent orange Montana nymphs. The imagination and the madness had no limits whatsoever. Apart from inventing new creations I also started to tie the feather winged classics. I spent lots of time working on the classics and the cost of material was running high. Tying the classics was terrific practice for me. My skill of handling tying thread as well as different materials was really put to the test. Tying more meant getting better. I already at this time started selling flies to the local shops and fisheries as well as to fishermen around. A bit of money invested into more materials.

The Obsession
My passion for the tradition within the salmon fly tying gradually ended up with the book “Classic Salmon Flies”. The difficulty of finding original descriptions over patterns as well as history and origin, soon gave birth to the idea of writing a modern reference book over the most common classic flies. The book became a success. Published in five different languages and sold in over 50.000 copies, it’s become somewhat of a standard work. The leather bound edition was a way for me to make some money off the project.

“When I was 13 years old my parents gave me a fly tying set.”

A turbulent swimming Zebra

My increasing skill as a fly tier continued and I can certify that I’m today a lot better at tying classics than I was 40 years ago. I still tie some feather wings to collectors all over the world. For me it’s a good way of keeping up the skill and touch for the classic fly tying.

The Tradition
Tying flies is a great hobby within the hobby but it’s still the fishing that gives the biggest kicks and that’s where your fly tying is really put to the test. I don’t think it’s right to compare the classic fly tying with today’s modern one. Not more right than to compare today’s modern fly lines with the silk lines of the past. The classic fly tying is a craft from our ancestors that we ought to preserve. A handy-work and craft we should preserve for the future. I have seen and read many articles on how to improve and simplify the tying of the classics. In my eyes it’s completely wrong! In my opinion the tying of the classics is something that is inherited from earlier generations, a heritage we ought to preserve like it is and not simplify, distort or “improve”. A classic fly should be tied like the old masters did, preferably using the same materials and on the antique and genuine “blind eye hooks”.

The Swimming Fly
When it comes to fishing flies, it’s an entirely different story. Here we can focus solely on the fly’s ability to catch fish. We can set all traditions, conventions and obligations aside and only focus on what makes the fishing fly more effective. Keep in mind that the fly is the only thing the salmon is supposed to see. To say that the fly lacks importance is for me not only unimaginative and boring but completely wrong. The fly, its way to move, size, form and how it’s presented is entirely crucial for your success in salmon fishing. When I tie I always focus on the fly’s way to move and appear to the fish. I usually say that a great fly should look like it will bite the leader and swim off by itself! Sure enough it’s not the easiest to ignore all “musts” but I have become braver over the years – five turns of ribbing and the same number of turns of body hackle, butts, tails and tags – they have all lost their importance.

Testing of Materials
One thing that boosted up my way of thinking when it comes to fly tying was an article written in the beginning of the 80’s in the magazine “Flugfiske i Norden” by Bengt Öste. He recommended paying a visit to the furrier in search for new exciting materials. These recommendations resulted in kangaroo zonkers, muskrat fur and last but not least fox hair.
I’m proud to be the first who started using fox hair in the beginning of the 80’s. The reason why I started using fox hair was initially not to find a material that had better swimming ability than the traditional calf-, bucktail and squirrel tails. Fox hair was an inexpensive material and every tail gave me many hundreds of flies. Utilized the right way, fox hair became a revolution. The flies became softer with more volume and had better swimming ability.

During these early years of the 80’s I started working as a guide in Norway. I met Håkan Norling who became my ally. He had the same interest for new materials and fly designs as me. Håkan is still one of the world’s leading innovators within the world of salmon flies. He’s one of my closest friends and I venture to say that the development of salmon flies would look a lot different if we had never met. Cocky statement you think, but still probably true. We still bounce ideas, new materials and patterns between each other. 

It’s better to know than to guess

To say that the fly lacks importance is for me not only unimaginative and boring but completely wrong.

Older Grey & Greens

Landing action, Bolstad, Vosso

Experimental Progress
My work as a professional fly tier, guide and salmon angler during more than 40 years have been a necessary base for my extensive experimenting. Thousands of fishing days and tens of thousands of different fly variations has made the progress possible. Sure enough the bad ideas always outnumber the good ones. Maybe I should publish them all just to give everybody a good laugh. My fly patterns are many, most of them are forgotten, some have turned out well and a small number have become known all over the world – today worthy of being called modern classics.

In the new book “My Salmon Flies” you will find the best of my salmon patterns, some tricks how to tie them but also when and why to fish them. To create new fly designs is the most exciting within the fly tying world. The central fact is that the fly is the only thing the fish see and the goal is to create flies with outstanding swimming and catching ability.

The journey is long – fox hair, the first FITS tubes, died heron hackles, golden foil, flash, angel hair, broad wings, balanced tubes, cones, taperings, SALAR hooks, fluor tubes, fish tank tests, temple dog hair, ostrich, soft hackles, turbo cones, new synthetic materials, SSS, half turbos and TTT tungsten tubes… a long winding, exciting and exhilarating road of fly tying that I hope never ends!

Our Different Series
I tied flies full time professionally many years with an obsession for the perfect fly. It’s a hard work, many flies need to be tied to make a living out of it. After some time, there were more people wanting my patterns and designs that I could possibly tie for. I needed to start training other tiers.

The central fact is that the fly is the only thing the fish see and the goal is to create flies with outstanding swimming and catching ability.

Today the little fly factory with a dozen tiers tying only for us is in Thailand. I have trained this people the way that they today after more than 15 years do what I think is by far the best commercially tied flies in the world. They make a good living with good salaries under very good conditions. I am amazed by how good they are, even when I tied most, I would have had problems tying so many flies with so extremely high standards. Of course, I have tried to influence as much as possible, the thread, the amount of turns, selecting good materials in the right colours, tapering and profile. Since we only let our materials be on our flies there are not really any other commercial flies that can compare. I must say that every time I see those flies, I am actually very proud of what we have succeeded doing.

Today I divide my fly designs into a few small families. Families with different profile and appearance. All patterns can be tied differently, can be members of different series but some belong better in one, some combinations make better fishing flies tied one way than the other.

Check out all our different series in the shop right here.

Frödin Fly Designs

When I was 13 years old my parents gave me a fly tying set. This changed my whole life. In the beginning my tying was solely a copying of Red Tags, Peacock Nymphs and a variety of traditional trout flies, just like it should be. Dalälven and Älvkarleby being so close as well as my growing interest of salmon books, pretty fast lead to my fly tying slipping over to salmon and sea trout creations. Älvkarleby soon became my home ground and I started testing all kinds of crazy creations.

The First Flies Sold
I fished and took fish with everything from feather bound Durham Rangers on tubes to furiously fluorescent orange Montana nymphs. The imagination and the madness had no limits whatsoever. Apart from inventing new creations I also started to tie the feather winged classics. I spent lots of time working on the classics and the cost of material was running high. Tying the classics was terrific practice for me. My skill of handling tying thread as well as different materials was really put to the test. Tying more meant getting better. I already at this time started selling flies to the local shops and fisheries as well as to fishermen around. A bit of money invested into more materials.

“When I was 13 years old my parents gave me a fly tying set.”

The Obsession
My passion for the tradition within the salmon fly tying gradually ended up with the book “Classic Salmon Flies”. The difficulty of finding original descriptions over patterns as well as history and origin, soon gave birth to the idea of writing a modern reference book over the most common classic flies. The book became a success. Published in five different languages and sold in over 50.000 copies, it’s become somewhat of a standard work. The leather bound edition was a way for me to make some money off the project.

My increasing skill as a fly tier continued and I can certify that I’m today a lot better at tying classics than I was 40 years ago. I still tie some feather wings to collectors all over the world. For me it’s a good way of keeping up the skill and touch for the classic fly tying.

The Tradition
Tying flies is a great hobby within the hobby but it’s still the fishing that gives the biggest kicks and that’s where your fly tying is really put to the test. I don’t think it’s right to compare the classic fly tying with today’s modern one. Not more right than to compare today’s modern fly lines with the silk lines of the past. The classic fly tying is a craft from our ancestors that we ought to preserve. A handy-work and craft we should preserve for the future. I have seen and read many articles on how to improve and simplify the tying of the classics. In my eyes it’s completely wrong! In my opinion the tying of the classics is something that is inherited from earlier generations, a heritage we ought to preserve like it is and not simplify, distort or “improve”. A classic fly should be tied like the old masters did, preferably using the same materials and on the antique and genuine “blind eye hooks”.

A turbulent swimming Zebra

The Swimming Fly
When it comes to fishing flies, it’s an entirely different story. Here we can focus solely on the fly’s ability to catch fish. We can set all traditions, conventions and obligations aside and only focus on what makes the fishing fly more effective. Keep in mind that the fly is the only thing the salmon is supposed to see. To say that the fly lacks importance is for me not only unimaginative and boring but completely wrong. The fly, its way to move, size, form and how it’s presented is entirely crucial for your success in salmon fishing. When I tie I always focus on the fly’s way to move and appear to the fish. I usually say that a great fly should look like it will bite the leader and swim off by itself! Sure enough it’s not the easiest to ignore all “musts” but I have become braver over the years – five turns of ribbing and the same number of turns of body hackle, butts, tails and tags – they have all lost their importance.

To say that the fly lacks importance is for me not only unimaginative and boring but completely wrong.

Older Grey & Greens

Testing of Materials
One thing that boosted up my way of thinking when it comes to fly tying was an article written in the beginning of the 80’s in the magazine “Flugfiske i Norden” by Bengt Öste. He recommended paying a visit to the furrier in search for new exciting materials. These recommendations resulted in kangaroo zonkers, muskrat fur and last but not least fox hair.
I’m proud to be the first who started using fox hair in the beginning of the 80’s. The reason why I started using fox hair was initially not to find a material that had better swimming ability than the traditional calf-, bucktail and squirrel tails. Fox hair was an inexpensive material and every tail gave me many hundreds of flies. Utilized the right way, fox hair became a revolution. The flies became softer with more volume and had better swimming ability.

During these early years of the 80’s I started working as a guide in Norway. I met Håkan Norling who became my ally. He had the same interest for new materials and fly designs as me. Håkan is still one of the world’s leading innovators within the world of salmon flies. He’s one of my closest friends and I venture to say that the development of salmon flies would look a lot different if we had never met. Cocky statement you think, but still probably true. We still bounce ideas, new materials and patterns between each other. 

Landing action, Bolstad, Vosso

Experimental Progress
My work as a professional fly tier, guide and salmon angler during more than 40 years have been a necessary base for my extensive experimenting. Thousands of fishing days and tens of thousands of different fly variations has made the progress possible. Sure enough the bad ideas always outnumber the good ones. Maybe I should publish them all just to give everybody a good laugh. My fly patterns are many, most of them are forgotten, some have turned out well and a small number have become known all over the world – today worthy of being called modern classics.

In the new book “My Salmon Flies” you will find the best of my salmon patterns, some tricks how to tie them but also when and why to fish them. To create new fly designs is the most exciting within the fly tying world. The central fact is that the fly is the only thing the fish see and the goal is to create flies with outstanding swimming and catching ability.

The journey is long – fox hair, the first FITS tubes, died heron hackles, golden foil, flash, angel hair, broad wings, balanced tubes, cones, taperings, SALAR hooks, fluor tubes, fish tank tests, temple dog hair, ostrich, soft hackles, turbo cones, new synthetic materials, SSS, half turbos and TTT tungsten tubes… a long winding, exciting and exhilarating road of fly tying that I hope never ends!

The central fact is that the fly is the only thing the fish see and the goal is to create flies with outstanding swimming and catching ability.

Our Different Series
I tied flies full time professionally many years with an obsession for the perfect fly. It’s a hard work, many flies need to be tied to make a living out of it. After some time, there were more people wanting my patterns and designs that I could possibly tie for. I needed to start training other tiers.

Today the little fly factory with a dozen tiers tying only for us is in Thailand. I have trained this people the way that they today after more than 15 years do what I think is by far the best commercially tied flies in the world. They make a good living with good salaries under very good conditions. I am amazed by how good they are, even when I tied most, I would have had problems tying so many flies with so extremely high standards. Of course, I have tried to influence as much as possible, the thread, the amount of turns, selecting good materials in the right colours, tapering and profile. Since we only let our materials be on our flies there are not really any other commercial flies that can compare. I must say that every time I see those flies, I am actually very proud of what we have succeeded doing.

Today I divide my fly designs into a few small families. Families with different profile and appearance. All patterns can be tied differently, can be members of different series but some belong better in one, some combinations make better fishing flies tied one way than the other.

Check out all our different series in the shop right here.

Frödin Fly Designs

When I was 13 years old my parents gave me a fly tying set. This changed my whole life. In the beginning my tying was solely a copying of Red Tags, Peacock Nymphs and a variety of traditional trout flies, just like it should be. Dalälven and Älvkarleby being so close as well as my growing interest of salmon books, pretty fast lead to my fly tying slipping over to salmon and sea trout creations. Älvkarleby soon became my home ground and I started testing all kinds of crazy creations.

The First Flies Sold
I fished and took fish with everything from feather bound Durham Rangers on tubes to furiously fluorescent orange Montana nymphs. The imagination and the madness had no limits whatsoever. Apart from inventing new creations I also started to tie the feather winged classics. I spent lots of time working on the classics and the cost of material was running high. Tying the classics was terrific practice for me. My skill of handling tying thread as well as different materials was really put to the test. Tying more meant getting better. I already at this time started selling flies to the local shops and fisheries as well as to fishermen around. A bit of money invested into more materials.

“When I was 13 years old my parents gave me a fly tying set.”

The Obsession
My passion for the tradition within the salmon fly tying gradually ended up with the book “Classic Salmon Flies”. The difficulty of finding original descriptions over patterns as well as history and origin, soon gave birth to the idea of writing a modern reference book over the most common classic flies. The book became a success. Published in five different languages and sold in over 50.000 copies, it’s become somewhat of a standard work. The leather bound edition was a way for me to make some money off the project.

My increasing skill as a fly tier continued and I can certify that I’m today a lot better at tying classics than I was 40 years ago. I still tie some feather wings to collectors all over the world. For me it’s a good way of keeping up the skill and touch for the classic fly tying.

The Tradition
Tying flies is a great hobby within the hobby but it’s still the fishing that gives the biggest kicks and that’s where your fly tying is really put to the test. I don’t think it’s right to compare the classic fly tying with today’s modern one. Not more right than to compare today’s modern fly lines with the silk lines of the past. The classic fly tying is a craft from our ancestors that we ought to preserve. A handy-work and craft we should preserve for the future. I have seen and read many articles on how to improve and simplify the tying of the classics. In my eyes it’s completely wrong! In my opinion the tying of the classics is something that is inherited from earlier generations, a heritage we ought to preserve like it is and not simplify, distort or “improve”. A classic fly should be tied like the old masters did, preferably using the same materials and on the antique and genuine “blind eye hooks”.

A turbulent swimming Zebra

The Swimming Fly
When it comes to fishing flies, it’s an entirely different story. Here we can focus solely on the fly’s ability to catch fish. We can set all traditions, conventions and obligations aside and only focus on what makes the fishing fly more effective. Keep in mind that the fly is the only thing the salmon is supposed to see. To say that the fly lacks importance is for me not only unimaginative and boring but completely wrong. The fly, its way to move, size, form and how it’s presented is entirely crucial for your success in salmon fishing. When I tie I always focus on the fly’s way to move and appear to the fish. I usually say that a great fly should look like it will bite the leader and swim off by itself! Sure enough it’s not the easiest to ignore all “musts” but I have become braver over the years – five turns of ribbing and the same number of turns of body hackle, butts, tails and tags – they have all lost their importance.

To say that the fly lacks importance is for me not only unimaginative and boring but completely wrong.

Older Grey & Greens

Testing of Materials
One thing that boosted up my way of thinking when it comes to fly tying was an article written in the beginning of the 80’s in the magazine “Flugfiske i Norden” by Bengt Öste. He recommended paying a visit to the furrier in search for new exciting materials. These recommendations resulted in kangaroo zonkers, muskrat fur and last but not least fox hair.
I’m proud to be the first who started using fox hair in the beginning of the 80’s. The reason why I started using fox hair was initially not to find a material that had better swimming ability than the traditional calf-, bucktail and squirrel tails. Fox hair was an inexpensive material and every tail gave me many hundreds of flies. Utilized the right way, fox hair became a revolution. The flies became softer with more volume and had better swimming ability.

During these early years of the 80’s I started working as a guide in Norway. I met Håkan Norling who became my ally. He had the same interest for new materials and fly designs as me. Håkan is still one of the world’s leading innovators within the world of salmon flies. He’s one of my closest friends and I venture to say that the development of salmon flies would look a lot different if we had never met. Cocky statement you think, but still probably true. We still bounce ideas, new materials and patterns between each other. 

Landing action, Bolstad, Vosso

Experimental Progress
My work as a professional fly tier, guide and salmon angler during more than 40 years have been a necessary base for my extensive experimenting. Thousands of fishing days and tens of thousands of different fly variations has made the progress possible. Sure enough the bad ideas always outnumber the good ones. Maybe I should publish them all just to give everybody a good laugh. My fly patterns are many, most of them are forgotten, some have turned out well and a small number have become known all over the world – today worthy of being called modern classics.

In the new book “My Salmon Flies” you will find the best of my salmon patterns, some tricks how to tie them but also when and why to fish them. To create new fly designs is the most exciting within the fly tying world. The central fact is that the fly is the only thing the fish see and the goal is to create flies with outstanding swimming and catching ability.

The journey is long – fox hair, the first FITS tubes, died heron hackles, golden foil, flash, angel hair, broad wings, balanced tubes, cones, taperings, SALAR hooks, fluor tubes, fish tank tests, temple dog hair, ostrich, soft hackles, turbo cones, new synthetic materials, SSS, half turbos and TTT tungsten tubes… a long winding, exciting and exhilarating road of fly tying that I hope never ends!

The central fact is that the fly is the only thing the fish see and the goal is to create flies with outstanding swimming and catching ability.

Our Different Series
I tied flies full time professionally many years with an obsession for the perfect fly. It’s a hard work, many flies need to be tied to make a living out of it. After some time, there were more people wanting my patterns and designs that I could possibly tie for. I needed to start training other tiers.

Today the little fly factory with a dozen tiers tying only for us is in Thailand. I have trained this people the way that they today after more than 15 years do what I think is by far the best commercially tied flies in the world. They make a good living with good salaries under very good conditions. I am amazed by how good they are, even when I tied most, I would have had problems tying so many flies with so extremely high standards. Of course, I have tried to influence as much as possible, the thread, the amount of turns, selecting good materials in the right colours, tapering and profile. Since we only let our materials be on our flies there are not really any other commercial flies that can compare. I must say that every time I see those flies, I am actually very proud of what we have succeeded doing.

Today I divide my fly designs into a few small families. Families with different profile and appearance. All patterns can be tied differently, can be members of different series but some belong better in one, some combinations make better fishing flies tied one way than the other.

Check out all our different series in the shop right here.