“While the commonly used animal and synthetic dubbing materials construct effective nymph and wet fly bodies, the variegated chenilles give the tier another option he/or she should consider. Variegation can create the illusion of depth better than most other materials because it is less opaque than solid colors; and because most aquatic life forms are also multicolored. It is my opinion that this “depth” is the primary reason these variegated chenille flies work so well. Almost any fly pattern that utilizes chenille can be improved when the tier uses these multicolored chenilles instead of solid colors….”

“The ubiquitous Woolly Worms and Woolly Buggers are prime examples. These flies can be dressed in any of the variegated colors. My favorite color combinations include: Black and brown; Brown and gray; Peacock and brown; Gold and dark olive; Olive and grey; Black and tan; Black and orange; and Black and burnt orange. By using different colored hackles, the tier can considerably broaden his Woolly Worm and Woolly Bugger assortments.” (Marv Taylor on Using Variegated Chenille in more of your patterns)

Variegated Chenille
Variegated, Sparkle Chenille

Back in the day, many fly tiers created fly bodies with animal furs, wool yarn or chenille. When variegated chenille came along as an option, it offered an appealing alternative to the solid colors. At first it was yellow and black, then olive and black. Today, there are numerous combinations of variegation. An added improvement to the variegation is metallic fibers. Another tying material that is ignored on those fly shop hooks?

Minnow Bugger (SwittersB) Variegated Sparkle Chenille