Born and raised in a village near the Lake of Zurich, as a boy I used to fish for perch or roach, but music, girls, studies, family and job soon left no space for it – how do other people do it?

In my mid-thirties I re-discovered fishing, and it rapidly developed into an all-consuming passion. During a holiday in England my now close friend Warren Crawford then introduced me to fly fishing. Fortunately, conditions were perfect with compliant trout. Since that first memorable balmy evening I have never looked back. I became a “fly only” man.

In 2002 I moved to England and began tying my own flies. That explains why my “tying language” is British. I am self-taught, with the help of Fly Fishing & Fly Tying magazine. In the very first few months I took part in its Fly-Tying League, and to my surprise I achieved quite a respectable placing. After less than five years at the vice, in 2007, I came first in the Masters’ category of the same competition.

Contemplation and philosophy is part of my fly fishing and fly tying. The spirit of the old masters is always present – there’s no question but that our sport is deeply rooted in a very long tradition: Clearly there is reward in tying a fly which successsfully deceives a fish but there is also the pleasure of tying a fly for the simple joy of creating something beautiful. Of course you’ll find Parachute Adams, F-Fly and weighted nymph in my fly box but I get special enjoyment from persuading trout into taking a traditional fly.

This is the fourth time I’m taking part in the British Fly Fair International. I will tie classic wet flies like the Malloch’s Favourite or my Lady Isabella (inspired by a true Lady…) as well as my representation of the real mayfly (Ephemera danica, E. vulgata).

Patrick Del Fatti, resident in Switzerland, works as an architect. He misses the gentle meadows and chalk streams of southern England and tries to go back there as often as possible.


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