Footer Special Streamers – Streamers365.com

Sometime in 2011 I was fortunate to be invited to participate in the Streamers365.com Project, a year-long internet gallery devoted to featherwing streamer patterns. Darren MacEachern of Toronto, Canada, is the man behind the scenes with this project. I have placed Darren’s photos of my streamers here on my blog as they have appeared on Streamers365.com, but somehow I missed the Footer Special that was posted on April 19th:   http://streamers365.com/2012/04/110-footer-special/

The Footer Special on that day is presented by two tiers, Charlie Mann and myself. Here is Darren’s photo of the pattern:

Footer Specials – tied by Charlie Mann – top, and Don Bastian – bottom. Darren MacEachern photo.

The link to Streamers365.com above also presents a bit of the history on the pattern.

I need to get busy and write the story about the Friday night fly tying class I taught at L. L. Bean last March during their 3-day 100th Anniversary Spring Fishing Expo. Here is a nutshell account:

Bean’s conducts regular Friday evening fly tying classes in the Fishing Department of their Flagship Store in Freeport, Maine, during fall, winter, and spring. They normally present flies in their classes that are part of their packaged L. L. Bean Fly Tying Pattern kits. Since the same patterns were presented a couple years in a row, I suggested to Ed Maillet, Department Manager at the time of planning last November, to consider doing “something different.”

Ed agreed. His only request of me was to present a pattern that Bean’s would have the materials for tying in their stock. The Footer Special met these requirements, also it is a Maine streamer pattern, and was one of the streamers featured in my streamer DVD, Traditional Streamers and Bucktails. Little did I know that 2012 is the 50th Anniversary year of the creation of the Footer Special. The resulting Friday evening class turned out to be the best class Bean’s ever had in terms of the number of people present. Nick Sibilia, member of the Saco River Salmon Club in Biddeford, Maine, http://www.sacosalmon.com/ is a friend of David Footer and had informed David that I was tying his pattern at the class. While there were about 17 students, eight or ten members of the Footer family was present, including daughter Julie who has been David’s right-hand girl for many years in his taxidermy and art studio.

David Footer came by my display table at Bean’s on Saturday and I got to spend some time talking to him, and I also met his wife. On Sunday we had lunch together in the room provided by Bean’s for the Spring Fishing Expo guests and celebrities. It’s been a delight getting to know David; he is a very friendly, kind man. And talented. He trained under famous Maine taxidermist / artist Herbert Welch, originator of the famous Black Ghost streamer.

Including the Footer family members and additional spectators, there were about thirty-five people present at the class. Needless to say, Bean’s staff of retail and promotional employees were delighted by this unanticipated response.

Footer Special – created by David Footer, tied by Don Bastian. Photo by Darren MacEachern, Streamers365.com

David’s creation of the Footer Special mirrors the fly designs of Maine Warden Supervisor, Joe Stickney, originator of the Supervisor – also one of my other patterns presented on Streamers 365.com:  http://streamers365.com/2012/01/20-supervisor/ and other streamer patterns including the famous Warden’s Worry and Lady Doctor. Joe Stickney and David Footer share the common creativity of fly pattern design, while neither of them tied flies. They created their patterns and had them dressed by friends who were fly tiers.

Here is a link to David Footer’s website:  http://davidfooter.com/

Finally part of the project of Streamers365.com is a monthly eBay auction of the streamers presented the previous month. Here is a link to my Footer Special, in case anyone is interested: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Footers-Special-by-Don-Bastian-Streamers-365-Cased-Rare-Fishing-Memorabilia-/140749019353?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item20c54b98d9

I tied two Footer Special streamers the night of the class, and presented them to David on Sunday at the L. L. Bean Spring Fishing Expo. I intend to write more on some of the details and post photos of those flies as well. Thanks for reading!

L. L. Bean Spring Fishing Expo

These photos were taken last March, 2011, by my niece  Emily Bastian, at the Annual L. L. Bean Spring Fishing Expo; held at their Flagship Store in Freeport, Maine.

I am pleased that I have been invited to return this year, and I feel very honored to participate in this Expo, to join in the celebration of the 100th Anniversary of L. L. Bean.

http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/1000001706

Don Bastian talks with visitors as fellow fly tyer Joe Cordiero gestures and explains his Flat Wing Streamer fly designs to onlookers

View of the Featured Fly Tyers area, including my framed wet fly display of 483 patterns from books by Ray Bergman, on the mezzanine at L. L. Bean, Freeport, Maine, Spring Fishing Expo 2011. This set is now in the possession of a private collector.

The Expo this year will be held on March 16 – 18. I am presenting a fly tying demonstration on Friday, March 16th, from 1 to 5 PM, in this area of the store on the mezzanine you see in this photo; and then I am teaching Bean’s regular Friday evening Fly Tying Class; we will be tying the Footer Special. The classes are free, and held in the fly tying department on the second floor. This year I don’t have a set of wet fly frames like I did in 2011, but I will have 40 or more different Carrie Stevens streamer patterns tied by me as part of my display.

Frame Nos. 1 – 4 of my wet fly display from Ray Bergman’s 1938 book, Trout.

Don Bastian at the L L Bean Spring Fishing Expo 2011. I can see and remember; the orange wool and white tail – I am winding a wool body for a Fontinalis Fin winged wet fly with my hackle pliers. (I had to wear this blue shirt from the International Fly Tying Symposium); I wanted to wear my light green L. L. Bean 2010 Spring Fishing Expo shirt that day, but it accidentally got a steam iron-shaped hole in the right sleeve in my hotel room that morning. The previous user of the iron apparently had it cranked up to HIGH, (which I failed to notice). Luckily for me, my sister-in-law in nearby New Gloucester came to the rescue with a replacement shirt. Whew!

Getting ready to grip the orange wool with my hackle pliers for the Fontinalis Fin…both scissors and hackle pliers in hand…(this photo was taken ahead of the one above where I am already winding). The use of hackle pliers on a single strand of wool prevents your stroking finger action form pulling the wool apart. Hackle pliers also enable you to wrap more precisely than by hand.

Over-the-shoulder hands-on image – working on the Fontinalis Fin wet fly. The white tail and orange wool is clearly visible. This photo is prior to the two above images in the tying sequence, and I’m not exactly sure what tying procedure I was doing when this image was taken.

Don Bastian explains wing quill cutting to visiting members of The Penobscot Fly Fishers. Don Corey of Annika Rod and Fly is partially hidden in the back; the fellow in front took my class a week later, and I can only remember he has close relatives that live within 20 miles of Cogan Station where I live. Small world. My brother Larry shares a laugh in the left foreground. Fellow tyer and friend Joe Cordeiro is to the upper left.

Crowd visiting the Featured Fly Tyers at the L. L. Bean Spring Fishing Expo, March 2011. 

Tying the Fontinalis Fin wet fly

I look forward to seeing old friends and meeting new ones at this year’s Expo. Here is a link to a pdf. Adobe file with a complete listing of events during the Expo:

http://www.llbean.com/shop/retailStores/media/images/120227_MK21651.pdf