Martha Place | Executive administrator

MBA in Economics | St. Ambrose University

BS in Business Administration & Marketing | Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville

We are pleased to welcome Martha Place as the newest addition to our Vessel team!  As our beloved Mary slips slowly into retirement, Martha will step in as Executive Administrator and take on the duties that keep this place running.

Martha joins us from Precision Builders and Associates, a commercial carpentry contractor in east-central IL; prior to that she spent six years at Edward Jones, and 20 years in the tourism industry.

Growing up, Martha’s father worked as a civil engineer and moved the family around the Midwest. Inheriting the gypsy spirit from her dad, she has moved 23 times – her move back to St. Louis will be her 24th. Her travels took her everywhere from a year in Sedona, AZ, to 7 months in Elkhart, IN (which seemed like 10,000 years…apologies to anyone from Indiana).

When she’s not in the office, Martha enjoys hiking, spending time with friends, reading and watching films. She, of course, still enjoys traveling and is heading to Switzerland this summer to hike the Grindelwald area around the North Face of the Eiger.

We look forward to getting to know you even more, Martha!

Welcome back, Morgan!

Here at Vessel, we look for really cool, super smart people to make coffee and man the copy machine. Thank goodness for summer interns!

Wait. That's not us.

What we actually look for are really cool, super smart people to assist with schematic design, aid in graphic creation, and help with all phases of construction document development.  A recent graduate from the University of Illinois - Urbana Champaign, Morgan Cooper joins us for her 2nd year as honorary summer intern. We're not sure about her coffee making skills, but we do know she can create a mean rendering. We're happy to have you, Morgan, and excited you liked us this much to come back!

KU Students Rock Chalk with Vessel

I greatly enjoyed meeting these students and hearing about their dreams and career ambitions as architects. Professor Jae Chang has a very talented group of students!
— Pete Schwartz, Vessel

For college students, spring break can be the perfect time to explore post-graduation career options. Last week, we were honored to visit with the students from the Multicultural Architectural Scholars Program at the University of Kansas - who took advantage of their spring break to get a glimpse of life after Kansas...which at Vessel, is pretty darn cool. Thanks for stopping by, guys, and Rock Chalk!


Last week, the seniors of Tower Grove Christian School stopped by the office to learn a thing or two about how Vessel does architecture, and of course, how Vessel does Foosball.

We couldn't have picked a cooler group of students to hang out with. Thanks for an awesome morning, guys - we hope you had as much fun as we did!

It was great to see such passion from these guys and gals. What we thought would be a simple drawing exercise turned into inspired dialogue and a deeper understanding of the world of architecture.
— Katie Luster, Vessel Architecture & Design

Vessel Winter Blockbuster | Hail, Caesar!

What's better than a a Vessel Blockbuster afternoon in the middle of winter?? Not a whole lot!

Friday, we shut down the office for a few hours, headed to the dine-in movie theater, and enjoyed lunch, some popcorn, those incredibly comfy reclining seats, and the Coen Brothers film, Hail, Caesar! Sometimes you just need some team bonding and a little relaxation...

Welcome, Denny Beinke!

We are excited to introduce yet another Vessel hire - Denny Beinke!

A St. Louis native and graduate of the University of Nebraska, Denny joins us with years of architectural experience and an energetic passion for the industry.

When he's not architecting, he spends time checking out the live music scene, playing and collecting Ukuleles (he owns 5...yes, 5), heading to car shows, and hanging with the two favorite people in his life, his son Griffin and daughter Jane.

Welcome to the team, Denny!

I think that my love of car design from an early age and an interest in the building process guided me toward architecture.

Also, my dad’s a carpenter and I had always been on the job sites when younger. I enjoyed seeing the process from start to finish....although never wanted to be a laborer on the job sites...
— Denny Beinke

Welcome, Michael Andresen!

Our newest Vessel employee comes to us from Des Moines! Aside from watching corn grow (that's what people do in Iowa, right?), he attended Iowa State University where he received his Bachelors of Architecture.

After 10 years in the industry, it was time for Michael to head to Missouri - he moved to St. Louis in December, got hitched in Iceland on New Year's Eve and took one of the greatest honeymoons ever - traveling all over Scandinavia!

Now that he and his wife, Amy, have settled into their new home, Michael's hobbies include: upping his cool status by working at Vessel, becoming an avid Cardinals fan (it's been rumored he used to root for the Cubs...we'll just leave that one alone), and getting pumped for the NCAA tournaments!

We are beyond thrilled to have you on our team, Michael. We have a Vessel March Madness tradition we're sure you're going to love!



My wife and I are fans of Scandinavian design, specifically mid-century modern furniture. I am a minimalist at heart. To this point in my career, my focus in architecture has been sustainable design, I guess I just want to use architecture/design to make the world a better place.
— Michael Andresen

Welcome, Amy Scherer!

Tenor saxophone, extreme automotive maintenance, and sewing with wearable electronics... 

What do these three things have in common? They are all the fabulous and way cool hobbies of our newest team member, Amy Scherer! Amy, a St. Louis local and Wash U grad, comes to us with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering and a Masters in Architecture.

When she's not swapping out motors or stealing the spotlight with a jazz solo, she spends time with her full house: her husband Dan, step-son Patrick and 4 furry friends - two rescue pups Lily and Winston, and two cats Sadie and Ducati.

We are so happy you joined us, Amy!

Why I love Architecture? It’s always a new puzzle that once solved, has a tremendous (and hopefully positive) impact on on the people it shelters and the landscape around it.
— Amy Scherer

A Very Vessel Christmas

What do you get when you combine an ugly sweater contest, a holiday potluck, Home Alone shenanigans and gallons of white frosting? Another epic afternoon at Vessel.

Last Friday, we celebrated the Christmas season the Vessel way: with some crazy-fun team bonding. Our activity of choice? Re-creating one of our current projects, the Boys Hope Girls Hope home, in the form of a Gingerbread House. After 4 hours, a ridiculous amount of icing and a dash of snow, we completed our masterpiece, basketball hoop and all.

On Monday, we made a surprise visit to BHGH, where we presented the office with our edible creation - and I think it's safe to say that they though it was pretty cool. Tis' the season for spreading joy, sharing sweet treats, and of course, giving hope!

Boys Hope Girls Hope with Vessel's Pete Schwartz

Welcome Sara Ferguson!

Well, folks, it looks like the guys are finally on the path to being outnumbered...

An avid crafter, baker, and lover of all things DIY, Sara Ferguson joins us from Denver, where she most recently attained a Masters in Architecture. When she's not making things, you can usually find her being outdoorsy with her husband, Ed, or snuggling with the other guy in her life - her rescue puppy Jack. We're so excited to have you, Sara!

Being given the opportunity to design someone’s personal space is an enormous privilege; being able to discover and shape what people truly need and want is such a fun, creative and rewarding process.
— SF
Although Sara and husband Ed are thrilled to be back in St. Louis (they met while completing their undergrad at Wash U) they will surely miss the sunny slopes of Colorado. Lucky for St. Louis, we have Hidden Valley...that's totally the same thing, right?  (Left) Hidden Valley Ski Resort, Missouri (Right) Pretty much every ski resort in Colorado

Although Sara and husband Ed are thrilled to be back in St. Louis (they met while completing their undergrad at Wash U) they will surely miss the sunny slopes of Colorado. Lucky for St. Louis, we have Hidden Valley...that's totally the same thing, right?

(Left) Hidden Valley Ski Resort, Missouri (Right) Pretty much every ski resort in Colorado

Welcome DeAnn Woerther!


In Vessel breaking news: Nik Chkautovich is no longer the sole representative of Drury University - welcome, DeAnn Woerther!

DeAnn, one of our newest architects, hails from St. Peter's, is married to a wonderful guy named Jeff, can't resist a good book, and enjoys long walks on the sidewalk with her adorable beagle, Trixie. We're so happy to have you, DeAnn - and don't forget that we love guests...Trixie can visit anytime...Jeff can, too ;)

I have always been passionate about the aspects of homes and buildings and how they impact our lives - especially when aesthetics and function come together to make a beautiful structure that will be embraced by people on a daily basis.
— DeAnn Woerther

A Vessel Halloween

We love any excuse to dress up and throw a party. So on this Halloween Eve, we did just that! Vessel wishes you a hauntingly spooky day! MUWAHAHAHA

Potato Salad for Days...

Six months ago, we moved from the first floor to the fourth floor.

Why? Well, if you think it was for the breathtaking views highway 270, you're absolutely right. But also because, as a growing company, we needed a heck of a lot more space. Last Friday, in celebration of this move, we decided to open our doors, order 10 lbs of corn bread and throw a party (also known as an Open House, because we are professionals). It was a success, to say the least, and we couldn't be more grateful for all of those who stopped by to say hello and inhale a few cake pops! We are also grateful for everyone who decided against the potato salad and instead opted for the mac n' have graced us with leftover potato salad for days. Maybe weeks. We'll see how far it takes us.

Cheers to our new office - and to fantastic friends, family and colleagues!

Great Scott!


It's #BackToTheFutureDay and we just have a few questions...

WHAT in the world is all over Doc's shirt? Yellow Oscar Mayer Wiener mobiles? Yes? No?

Who put money down on the Cubs? Be honest.

What is the deal with this guy in the red and why is he so creepy?

Where can we buy Marty's jacket...? For real though.

If you'd like to order a Vessel Marty McFly Jacket, please email Available for a limited time as they will return to 1985.

If you'd like to order a Vessel Marty McFly Jacket, please email Available for a limited time as they will return to 1985.

Vessel on Location: NBWA

Last week, Brian, Pete and Katie joined forces with Gene, Erin and Tex (Owner's Rep) at the National Beer Wholesalers Association trade show in fabulous (used loosely) Las Vegas! Aside from catching Elton John and Mr. Brooklyn Decker pair off in a ruthless tennis match (yes, this happened), they also met hundreds of awesome people, made solid industry connections and shared their passion for architecture and design with fellow colleagues. Cheers to new experiences, new friends, and new projects...and the Vessel Gas Pump returning safely back into the arms of the Vessel office...

Left to Right: Pete, Gene, Katie, Erin, Brian, Tex...who is really, really tall...Gas Pump


What is this?


a.      Life size origami

b.      Trader Joes grocery bags taped together

c.      A giant paper fan

d.      None of the above





If you guessed (d), you win this fabulous, holiday Jayhawks sweater! (just pay $7.95 shipping+handling).




But really, what the heck is this stuff?

The answer? Molo. Rhymes with Yolo. And trust us, you need Molo because Yolo.


Molo Softwall[mōw-lōw + saupht-wăhl]

Noun: Super awesome stuff that comes from Canada; a papery substance created to look cool and save space; ideal for fort-building.

When Pete decided to invest in something worthwhile, something for office and trade show use, Vessel employees took it upon themselves to create another use  - leading to the construction of Pete’s very own Vessel Fort, complete with small windows (breathing holes) and Little Rascals-inspired decor, printed straight off the internet (credit: Jennifer Stockhausen).

Molo design describes their product as:

A flexible, freestanding partition system that can expand and contract to freely shape more intimate spaces within larger open areas. A non-woven polyethylene material - tear, UV and water resistant - making it durable to handle and maintain.

Tear, UV and water resistant? Just lookin’ out for you, Pete! Embrace your safe space.