Do these flies work better than without them, or is this just to catch us? Wondering because it seems when I fish mids during a good hatch my simple ties seem to work.
Couldn't agree more, marker pens are a great way to go re giving you a huge, likely infinite, range of options. I've also seen beads lightly brushed on either side with either white or orange nail polish to mimic breathers/wingpads...I use orange flyline backing on one of mine.
I'm thinking that white backing colored with a pantone pen might be a good option as well.
Until a couple of yrs ago on my fav lake I did very well on black 14 sno comes, red mids and later chromies. The menu now is onto 18s across clear on chrome hooks to purple and chartreuse.