Where to Get Everything Fixed

A guide to some of St. Louis’ top home experts, as recommended by local interior designers, architects, real estate agents, and professional rehabbers.
By Pat Eby, Julia Feldmeier, Joan Lerch, Charlene Oldham, and Veronica Theodoro. Illustration by Chris Philpot.
Affordable Trim & Moulding
This business is run by George Wedel with the help of his son, Joshua, and his wife, Mary. The Wedels' expertise includes crown molding, bookcases, fireplace mantels, and finish carpentry.
This award-winning firm offers an unlimited variety of exotic and domestic woods, materials, and hardware of the highest quality, in addition to its experienced and talented craftsmen and technicians.
Derek Centorbi’s life of handiwork be- gan at age 14, when he helped out with his grandfather’s kitchen-remodeling business. Today, Centorbi has his own business, focused exclusively on custom cabinetry.
179 Hughes, 636-949-5438
Together, Mark Twillman and his brother Paul have more than 50 years in the carpentry business. Their focus is on craftsmanship, including higher-end trim work, crown molding, chair rails, and bookcases.
Scott Vogel offers general contracting services, including deck building and repairs, kitchen renovations, and finish work.
9124 Rott, 314-293-0852
A medical researcher turned woodworker, John DeMott now has clients across the United States who covet his bookcases, accent tables, bedroom furniture, and media centers. Known for crafting furniture with clean, sleek lines and Scandinavian and Asian influences, DeMott builds every piece by hand.
The St. Louis native has been tooling with carpentry ever since taking a wood shop class at his Kirkwood middle school. Today, the interior carpenter sources most of his wood locally, producing high-end bookcases, entertainment centers, desks, and finish trim work, among other things. Best also makes handcrafted wooden cookware.
Under the guidance of owner Larry Gisi, the company does custom kitchen and bath work, as well as custom furniture, including armoires, fireplace mantels, desks, and credenzas.
10830 Galt Industrial, 314-739-0828
Owner Jermain Todd builds eco-friendly interior furnishings and finishes for commercial and residential clients. By doing so, he hopes to improve air quality, reduce waste, and help sustain natural resources.
3412 Lemp, 314-200-4123
Founded in 1978, the cabinetry com- pany provides a full range of premier architectural woodworking services, including millwork, casework, and bookcases, and guides clients through every step of the process, from drawings to fabrication, finishing, and installation.
2136 Mallinckrodt, 314-621-4545
A full-service firm specializing in older homes with radiator heat, the company installs or rehabs existing systems. Check out WhisperSoft, a unique hybrid vent system that incorporates the best features of conventional and high-velocity duct systems.
8027 Big Bend, 314-968-8383
John Dawson’s company specializes in installing Unico high-velocity mini-duct systems to cool homes with steam or hot-water radiator heat. The company also installs and repairs boilers and designs systems for areas that are hard to heat and cool, like sunrooms.
9000 Watson, 314-729-1934
Do you have hot and cold spots? Allergies, asthma, or special air-quality needs? The Florissant-based company listens and recommends best solutions. A five-year labor warranty is offered on all installations in addition to a 10-year parts warranty. Bonus: Goldkamp installs gas, electric, and wood fireplaces, as well as wood-burning stoves.
890 N. Lafayette, 314-839-3332
Go green with two specialty systems: a ductless heating and air conditioning system comprises one outdoor unit plus a separate wall-mounted unit in each room for pinpoint temperature control. Geothermal systems use natural heat from the earth to produce power to heat and cool homes. The company handles conventional systems as well.
1025 Hanley Industrial, 314- 664-3011
Owner Jim Fozzy is highly recommended as the go-to guy in St. Louis for repairs to steam heating systems. He’s on the A list at the BBB and receives excellent testimonials on Angie’s List from people who know his work.
1947 McCausland, 314-781-6811
Although the heating and cooling business has changed since 1927 when his great-grandfather started the company, Dan Seliga says that one thing has remained constant: “We still deliver old-fashioned personalized service. We’re small enough to be personal and big enough to be quick.” Ask about Seliga’s Priority Club pro- gram.
6211 Gravois, 314-481-7333
Victor Vitt Jr. and his family have served generations of families since 1954. Their company is small. “My dad, my brother John, and I work with one other employee on our jobs,” says Jeff Vitt. “We fabricate custom ductwork in our shop for each job. It’s almost a lost art, but it makes for less air leaks than prefab ducts fitted in the field.” Customers over 55 and military personnel enjoy discounts.
4719 Morgan Ford, 314-351-5580
Vogel is the only Carrier equipment dealer in St. Louis to receive four consecutive President’s Awards. Estab- lished in 1946, Vogel provides HVAC maintenance, repair, and emergency services plus air duct cleaning.
1642 Manufacturers, 314-351-2533
Welsch furnaces began heating St. Louis homes back in 1895. Today, 20 technicians handle more than 5,000 calls for service per year.
2175 Welsch Industrial, 314-872-8070
From Pinterest to Perfect
If you’ve ever spent hours scrolling through Pinterest, then you know how easy it is to be enchanted by lofty ideas and dreamy aesthetics. Turning those ideas into reality, however, isn’t so simple. • Marni Deutsch says that’s where Derek Centorbi excelled. Deutsch, who began construction on her family’s home in 2013, showed Centorbi pictures she’d pulled from Pinterest boards, magazines, and elsewhere to give the cabinetmaker a sense of her style. Centorbi made it happen. • “He would take inspiration from pictures and make it work for the space,” Deutsch says. He also took drawings from Deutsch’s designer and brought them to life. • But as any carpenter will tell you, design doesn’t always favor practicality. Those family room cabinets with the huge wooden doors that Deutsch coveted? Pretty, yes. Pragmatic, not really. Centorbi figured out how to keep the integrity of the design while allowing for hinges that would support the doors without the risk of their drooping in the future. • “It’s not the stuff you think of, because you’re not the carpenter,” Deutsch says. • Centorbi built and installed custom cabinets throughout Deutsch’s home. But she isn’t yet finished poking around Pinterest—and she’ll tap Centorbi for his expertise. “He’s got that eye for it.” -Julia Feldmeier
BBB Accredited since 1986. Areas of expertise include ice makers and refrigerators, washers and dryers, dishwashers and ovens. Free estimates.
7584 Olive, 314-721-8330
Owner Richard Webert’s team often triages repairs during the first phone call. Whenever possible, the company preorders parts. Webert suggests that homeowners record the make, model, and serial number of each major appliance and keep it handy for future repairs.
328 Jungermann, 636-928-4131
Mr. Appliance offers flat-rate pricing, workmanship and parts guarantee on large appliance repairs, plus dryer vent cleaning.
9400 Manchester, 636-266-4658
Repairs are provided on all major appliance brands, whether or not the appliance was purchased from the store. Online scheduling available.
The company can age-match repairs, including 1880s white pine, and supply and install milled wide-plank flooring, in addition to refinishing floors and installing new ones.
7395 Flora, 314-583-0938
They offer roof replacement, cleaning and repairs, gutter products—including seamless aluminum, copper, and custom—in addition to tuckpointing.
8000 Manchester, 314-645-2000
The company tackles small roof repairs and installation of new roofs. Owner Greg Glandt and his team work primarily on older homes, but new construction is also a part of their business.
6182-86 Bermuda, 314-521-6200
Specialties include brick masonry, plaster repair, tuckpointing, and fine masonry. Free estimates.
6115 Pershing, 314-725-9024
This is a certified Women’s Business Enterprise offering tuckpointing, bricklaying, and stone restoration. Chimney sweeping and attic insulation, too
8212 Watson, 314-486-3303
Family-owned and operated for 23 years, the company is a recipient of the BBB Torch Award.
2619 S. Big Bend, 314-645-1387
The company has been in business since 1910. Potential customers can take a look at finished projects by visiting the varsity court at Washington University, or the Family Arena in St. Charles. “Our services include patching and renovating existing wood floors, and installing new floors,” says president Kirk Verseman.
2438 Northline Industrial, 314-432-2260
Founder Dan Hagerty counts some of his original employees’ grandkids among his staff. The company works on slate and tile roofs.
2700 Brannon, 314-664-4845
Crystal Anderson founded the company in 2007. Olneya is a GAF certified Master Elite roofing contractor, slate crafter, and certified green roofer. Free estimates.
1887 Craig, 314-432-6100
This is the umbrella company for Car- rera Exteriors and Carrera Plaster Res- toration. Jason and Jennifer Carrera founded Carrera Plaster Restoration and expanded to include Carrera Exteriors so they could capitalize on the experience of Jason’s brother Jake, a certified master shingle applicator. The company offers roofing, flooring, and plaster restoration.
6517 Michigan, 314-669-9741
Two of Vince Graye’s roofers have been with him for more than 20 years. Graye employs only a few roofers at any time to work on just one or two jobs, which means individualized focus on each project.
4709 Butler Crossing, 314-487-1819
A Barn's New Life
It was City Museum’s former creative director, Bob Cassilly, who first spotted the potential behind a casually constructed barn in House Springs, converting the property into a one-of-a-kind residence with a sunken tub, floor-to-ceiling mirrors, and stone hearth. • “Basically it was just an open four-walled structure,” says Amy Swartman, who took up residence there with her former husband, a friend and business partner of Cassilly’s, in 1981. • Over the years, the two added a living room, porch, and interior walls to create three bedrooms while striving to retain the home’s character. But its first life as a barn meant that every repair and renovation presented unique problems. • A lack of right angles means that plenty can go wrong, so Swartman typically hires independent contractors such as Alex Thonen, who recently overcame several challenges while remodeling the bathroom. The latest hurdle is a sunken patio with a clogged drain. One consultant suggested using water pres- sure to clear the clog; others think that Swartman may have to tear out part of her patio to uncover the problem. She’d like to avoid such drastic measures and find a plumber to clear the drain and a roofing specialist to devise a way to add gutters to divert water to other routes without detracting from the roofline. • “I believe there’s a way to do it and maintain the aesthetic value,” says Swartman. “We just have to be creative.” –Charlene Oldham
Owner Bill Andrews began working as an electrician more than a half-century ago and has held the title of master electrician for more than 40 of those years.
2802 Bee Hive, 314-846-4400
In business for more than two decades, the company provides 24-hour emergency services in addition to full-service electrical needs. Ten percent off service coupon available.
This Kirkwood-based company works on leaks and drips, new drain installations, and clogged water lines, among other service areas. Free estimates provided on large, complex projects.
639 Leffingwell, 314-965-3200
Family-owned and founded by former teacher and master plumber Ron Oberkrom in 1985, the company spe- cializes in making repairs to antique wall-hung toilets, cast-iron innards, and other plumbing peculiarities of many older homes. “A lot of these [younger] plumbers just haven’t seen some of this stuff, but it’s still out there in some of these old homes,” says operation manager Brad Hagan.
2725 Watson, 314-645-6350
The Valley Park–based company offers residential and commercial repair and installation services, and environmentally efficient technology. It is on its third generation of family ownership. “Our success,” says current owner Dan Laughlin in a BBB release, “is to treat people like you want to be treat- ed and do the work for someone else the same way you’d do it for yourself."
306 St. Louis, 636-225-0992
“Outside of the apprentice we just hired about a year or so ago, all of my guys have been with me well over 10 years,” says owner Brian Johnson. The company has been in business since 1978.
5798 U.S. Route 61, 636-464-5111
Randy Gibbs earned an MBA and worked in finance before becoming a plumber. He started his company in 2008 to fill a niche by taking on more minor repairs and maintenance jobs he felt that many of the larger companies didn’t want or need. “We do all the little things. We try to return all messages and answer phone calls unless we’re on a ladder—or worse.”
7330 Stanford, 314-580-8677
Founded in 1935, Schaeffer counts the Archdiocese of St. Louis as one of its clients and offers commercial and resi- dential services, which include electrical repairs, remodeling, additions, and backup generator installation.
4667 Green Park, 314-892-7800
Founder and president Tony LaMartina says customers appreciate modern conveniences, such as online booking, and old-fashioned attention to detail. LaMartina’s plumbers have solid customer service skills and arrive at homes in protective shoe coverings. “We respect clients, and we respect their homes.”
901 S. Skinker, 314-965- 9377
5 Tips for Hiring a Contractor
1 Research five to ten companies to determine their reputations, how well their work stands the test of time, and whether they specialize in the work you want done.2 Get at least three written estimates.3 Verify the applicable trade license, bonding, and insurance status.4 Insist on a payment schedule tied to project progress and keep at least ten percent back until the job is completed to your satisfaction.5 Include the payment schedule in your contract and a termination clause allowing you to walk away if terms aren’t met.Never pay in full up front.
The store offers designer fabrics and trims for the home, plus fabrics for the bride.
1328 Strassner, 314-968-0090
Ralph Lauren, Nate Berkus, and Lilly Pulitzer are just a sampling of the designer fabrics found at Calico. The store also sells furniture. Free design services.
903 S. Lindbergh, 314-993-1388
The Webster Groves–based company creates custom fabric window treatments, shutters, blinds, and shades, as well as custom bedding, pillows, benches, and ottomans.
9 Gray, 314-968-5355
Jose Gomez does custom furniture upholstery, makes cushions and pillows, and stocks accessories.
6487 Chippewa, 314-832-8331
The company has been upholstering and repairing upholstery for 34 years, plus creating throw pillows, bolsters, and window seat cushions.
2912 S. Brentwood, 314-918-1193
Lyn DeMoss’ skills include patternmaking custom drapes, slipcover design, and repairs.
822 Lafayette, 314-681-7455
The professionals in the workrooms are known for quality work that’s guaranteed. Find fabrics, decorative trims, and wallpaper, too.
11676 Manchester, 314-991-0020
Owner Steve Hasenbeck, who’s done work at the Governor’s Mansion in Jefferson City, is well regarded by interior designers and homeowners alike.
6700 Morgan Ford, 314-481-4870
Jo Axum creates everything from dining room chair and window seat cushions to outdoor furniture pillows and custom bedding.
The shop sells a variety of fabrics, trim, and wallpaper for every decor style.
17702 Chesterfield Airport, 636-530-0775
Find kits for quilts, purses, tote bags, as well as unusual fabrics. At Friday Night Retreats, customers gather to work on projects.
10403 Clayton, 314-993-1181
Established in 1880, the company works with stained, beveled, faceted, leaded, and etched glass.
412 N. Euclid, 314-361-0474
Windows and doors are available to order, plus finishing touches with designer hardware.
2714 Mercantile, 314-647-5000
The store’s collection of doors, furniture, and mirrors includes Balinese cabinets, benches made of reclaimed boat wood, and décor items celebrating India.
2714 Lafayette, 407-491-0421
The company is the only decorative cabinet and door hardware showroom in the Midwest. Its parent company, Theiss Plating, restores and refinishes metal wares, including fine silver, brass, bronze, and more.
314-918-8883, 314-961-0600 (Theiss Plating)
Family-owned since 1964, Kirkwood Glass offers expertise in mirror and shower enclosures, flat glass, and auto glass.
300 S. Kirkwood, 314-966-0271
The Studio can duplicate any window or create one-of-a-kind custom designs. It also handles repairs.
2651 Chouteau, 314-772-2611
Artisan John Schwaig custom-designs stained glass, incorporating bevels, jewels, agate slices, and shells. By appointment only.
The custom wood door specialist designs and renovates entryways and interior doors.
137 Chesterfield Industrial, 636-530-7545
The full-service design and fabrication studio also offers glassblowing classes and demonstrations.
5200 Delmar, 314-367-4527
Fine interior and exterior doors, windows, and skylights, including those made by Loewen and Lincoln Wood Products.
55 Lincoln, 314-699-9872
This is the only place left in St. Louis that does soft and hardcover bookbinding for textbooks, comic books, newspapers, and periodicals.
7917 Watson, 314-918-7017
Furniture Restoration
Robert and Erica Karleskint work with the old, broken, and ugly—and make it new and beautiful again.
2202 S. Vandeventer
Furniture Restoration
Donald Counts repairs furniture, restores antiques, and creates reproductions.
2010 Highway E, 573-656-3234
Furniture Restoration
Jonathan Wilson will take an antique sofa and give it new life.
3276 Ivanhoe, 314-645-3854
Gutter installation, repair, cleaning, and maintenance.
Focus is on heavy-gauge gutter protection andcolormatching.
50A Triad South, 636-928-2828
This company knows its way around copper gutters. Covers, cleaning, and repairs.
18 Tenbrook Industrial, 636-296-8900
Historic Millwork
Brothers Dave and Marvin Burkart specialize in curved crowns, archways, handrails, chair rail, and jambs. In-house knife grinding for custom profiles and trim.
2500 Ohio, 314-771-7727
Historic Millwork
Operated by a father-and-son team who understand the nuances of historic homes.
Historic Millwork
Sue Wheeler specializes in architectural woodwork, banisters, doors, mantels, and furniture.
5260 Washington Place, 314-367-6054
Historic Millwork
Bill Zuppann is known to make or match any wood molding or millwork.
2311 Victor, 314-771-0874
Lamp Repair
The shop has been fixing lamps since 1935 and offers a wide selection of lighting and lampshades.
2300 Big Bend, 314-647-3318
Carpet Cleaning
Carpets, upholstery, mattress, and leather cleaning services and repair.
Carpet Cleaning
A union shop offering full-service floor sales and cleaning.
2060 N. Highway 67, 314-831-8181
Carpet Cleaning
For nearly 70 years, the company has provided complete restoration services, mold remediation, and rug cleaning.
Art Restoration
Museum-quality restoration of paintings, antique porcelain, frames, alabaster and marble figures, and art objects.
2509 A Woodson, 314-427-3006
Art Restoration
Conservator Ellen Watt cleans, restores paint loss, fixes tears, and reconstructs paintings.
4814 Washington, 314-750-7493
Rebuilding History After a Really Wet Mess
The sound of running water should be soothing—unless ankle-deep blackness is pouring across your kitchen and threatening to collapse the second floor. • That’s the situation homeowner Vince Volpe faced on returning from vacation during a record-breaking cold snap in January 2010. Water pipes between the home’s joists and studs had frozen and snapped, triggering a chain reaction that ended with burst radiators, three floors of destruction, and an unpleasant smell. • The next day, Volpe was surveying the damage with an insurance inspector when a sound from above caught their attention. Second floor pipes burst and, as they watched, the ceiling collapsed, bringing most of the back bathroom to rest on the kitchen table, along with the kitchen ceiling fan. The water found its way to the basement, falling in a steady drip that destroyed more than 30 years’ worth of family keepsakes and photos. The restoration process took nearly a year and considerable research. • “The back of the house was destroyed, but this was not a whole-house renovation,” Volpe says, “so it was critical that the millwork be replicated with historical accuracy.” A canvas of neighbors provided a few names, but one was a favorite and Volpe’s final choice—Burkarts Woodworks. —Joan Lerch
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