The aim of this blog is to connect fly-tyers all over the world, to share, techniques, patterns, information and knowledge.

Tying the Tom Thumb

This magical little deer hair pattern seems for the most to have been forgotten! I have looked through a whole range of my ‘go to’ pattern books and have found reference to it only in name, no images and no step by step. Although I have located some info regarding the pattern on the net I felt that it deserved a proper step by step tutorial. As far as I understand the Tom Thumb is said to have originated from England in the 1940s, but I find this a little misleading as deer hair at this time, was little, if not used at all in England! But Canada where the pattern was popularised is another matter all together, being the birthplace of many deer hair patterns and pioneer of tying with deer hair. Although you can tie the TT with a wide range of deer hair in smaller sizes the optimal sizes 8-12 need a hair of a certain length. So if you are new to the game and intend buying deer hair specifically for this pattern I can recommend Natures Spirit Humpy deer hair. The TT primarily being a Humpy without a hackle! Its also difficult to find two materials, deer hair and peacock herl, that trout and grayling are more attracted to!

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One response

  1. Great tutorial – I was introduced to the Tom Thumb is Vancouver thgrough a colleague. A book titled “The Gilly” compiled by Alfred Davy has an article about the Tom Thumb written by Ralph Shaw from Frank Amato Publications. Good information about a great fly imitation and the caddis flies it is meant to imitate. Thank you also for the info on procuring longer deer hair

    September 26, 2016 at 3:55 pm

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