Wade Deep is a fly fishing apparel company whose flagship products are a series of hats equipped with their patented Secure FlyPatch Technology (SFP). This isn't just another hat, it's a legit piece of fly fishing gear. Functional, efficient, and comfortable - these hats check all the boxes. Owner Christian Svendsen originated the idea for Wade Deep, and completed this interview with us. We hope you enjoy this feature, and be sure to visit their website.
Tell us a little bit about yourselves and Wade Deep?
Many moons ago I (Christian) was a fly-fishing guide and fishing was all I could think about. I spent 200+ days a year on the water for a few years. Eventually, I had to go get a “real” job. That job led me into the merch business and building a company that focused on making super cool products; but mostly for others.
Wade Deep is our first pursuit at building our own brand. My life has been spent building, promoting, and marketing brands. Wade Deep was created around the birth of SFP Technology.
SFP Technology stands for “Secure FlyPatch Technology.” SFP Technology is unobtrusive and ultra useful. Our proprietary hybrid-silicone SFP application is lazer-welded to the bill, ensuring that your flies won't go anywhere. The SFP tech will hold as many flies as you can stick in it, for as long as you need.
What led you to start Wade Deep, and what’s the mission behind the brand?
So the idea that eventually gave birth to Wade Deep was concocted approximately 3 years ago. I took my oldest son back to some of the water where I used to spend much of my time. We met my cousin (Erik), who still lives in the area, at a good entry point and loaded up to hit the water.
He pulled out a flat-bill hat with a misshapen blue patch on the bill and asked if it were possible that my company could make something better. Basically, he had cut out part of one of his fly boxes and epoxied it to the bill of his hat. I was like, “Dude, we can totally make that hat.” So that is what we did. Timing was good, I had gotten into the hat manufacturing business 6 years earlier and knew a lot about great hats.
Next came the hard part, developing a fly patch that would function, last, and look great. This process did not happen overnight, the U.S. Patent process is daunting just by itself. It took a good 12-18 months and many prototypes before my cousin and I were happy and confident to introduce it to the fishing community. We are currently in the home stretch of the Patent process which is awesome, but getting that “Patent Approved” for SFP Technology was a great day for us.
We spent some time thinking about what to call our brand. One day, it hit me, Wade Deep…and I couldn’t think about any other of the names we had thrown out. It captured exactly what I was looking for. Many anglers have stood looking across the river thinking, “Look at that riser, I need to get across, looks pretty deep, current is strong, etc…” Simply you have to Wade Deep to get where you want. It is that spirit that is behind the brand.
"Our mission is to create high quality products that are eco friendly and speak to those who love to fish, like really get out there."
What motivates you to keep chasing your mission?
Building something is GREAT, doing your own thing is GREAT. We have a passionate team that wants to see this through.
How will these products benefit the average 9-5er and weekend warrior who has limited time to get out on the water?
Simply put, it will totally benefit them. How about first, keeping those couple of great confidence flies close to you with easy access. If you have your hat, you at least have a couple trusty options right there. Second, if you are that weekend warrior, you are more than likely not airing out those flies and potentially inviting Box Rot to ruin those hard earned flies and fly boxes. Wade Deep SFP Tech, gives those flies the natural air dry time they need.
What challenges do you face turning a passion into an occupation? How do you find time to do what you love while growing your brand?
Time, time, time…Obviously, Wade Deep doesn’t pay the bills now, but it WILL get there. It is easy to turn this into a brand when we love the product and want to share it with others. Most people who use the hat once ask, “why isn’t this out there already?” It becomes as useful as a net on the river and, when left at home, makes it harder to fish and enjoy the adventure.
What advice can you give to others who are trying to spend more time chasing their passions?
Get out there…Wade Deep.
What’s on the horizon for the Wade Deep? Any big plans looking ahead?
Working on some hats for the fall and great art that will kill on some good cotton.
How can people connect with you and stay in contact?
Anyone interested in becoming an ambassador may go sign up here!