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Time and patience needed to create beautiful home decor

Roger Mangold creates a beautiful wreath to hang on a customers door.

BY: Kori Sciandra | November 17, 2012

NORTH TONAWANDA - Roger Mangold, 82, of North Tonawanda, has been making wreaths for the holiday season for almost 50 years now. Starting in 1965, while he worked at a nursery in Tonawanda, Mangold took over the task of making wreaths by hand in order to help out his supervisor. It wasn’t until the mid 80s’ that he realized how much he enjoyed the task and decided to turn into a craft instead.

This craft brings much joy to Mangold.

“I enjoy it. There is a lot involved in it,” said Mangold. “Like last Sunday, we spent the whole day in Franklinville just getting a load of branches.”

Each year, come Thanksgiving time, Mangold and his grandsons head to Franklinville where they gather a large pile of branches from pine trees and bring them back to Mangold’s home. He then begins the process of creating the core of his masterpieces.

“Nobody makes them by hand anymore. They have machines they use where they just lay the branches down, step on a peddle, and then they have a wreath made,” said Mangold.

Mangold spends November and December each year in his “workshop” at his home on Pioneer Drive, carefully placing each small branch together in order to create a beautiful decorative piece for his friends and family members.

The process, although Mangold says he can “whip one up in 20 minutes if he has to,” takes time and patience.

Mangold starts by cutting the branches into smaller pieces and then placing them on a wire base piece by piece. He then wraps a smaller wire around a gathering of branches to secure them to the base of the wreath and continues with the process until he completes the circle.

“I pace myself. There is quite a bit involved,” said Mangold. “I also put a piece in the back for backing. I have never seen anybody else do that. By doing that, it covers up the wire ring and you don’t see it. If you don’t do that, sometimes the wire ring will scratch the door.”

Some preparation is necessary for Mangold to be able to create such beautiful wreaths for the holiday season. He makes a variety of bows ahead of time and purchases the extra decals and materials that add to the detail for each individual wreath. Mangold also visits local cemeteries during the summer, where he collects pine cones and paints them in preparation for the holidays.

“After I finish the branches, I decorate them,” said Mangold. “Each one is a little different than the last.”

Mangold makes approximately 100 wreaths per season. The cost per wreath is $25 for a 24-inch wreath, or $20 for an 18-inch wreath.

Those interested in purchasing a wreath from Mangold, can do so by contacting him at 693-4575.

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