Take a quick peek at Bri Heiligenthal’s Instagram, burtsbrisplease, and it’s clear to see she is blessed with many talents. From baking to photography, designing, and homemaking, she brings elegance and ease to everything she touches. And most recently, we’ve been impressed with her knack for mixing the old with the new. Alongside being an avid Instagrammer and mother of three, Bri has managed to turn her Minneapolis space into a warm and welcoming abode filled with family heirlooms alongside new treasures. We caught up with Bri to chat about making a home, the story behind her Instagram handle (we couldn’t help but ask!), and her Schoolhouse favorites.
How long have you lived in this home, and how did you choose it?
We’ve lived in this home for two years, almost to the day. It was the first house we looked at, and we just felt in our gut that it was right for us. We loved that it had few owners for its age (1913) and that so much of the original character had been preserved while things like plumbing and electric had been updated.
How would you describe your decorating style?
I think I’d say some combination of modern and country farmhouse – a dash of cottage, a sprinkle of Scandinavian inspiration, and a lot of mixing vintage with modern!
What are you most looking forward to in your next home?
I’m excited to have a fireplace! We grew up having one, and it’s nostalgic for me to remember lighting fires in the winter.
Do you have a background in design? Where do you find inspiration?
Nope! And I’m sure many professional designers would cringe at my process. It’s easy to look at other designers, bloggers, Instagram, and Pinterest for inspiration (and I do), but I also try to trust my gut. At the end of the day, it’s your space. What matters the most is that you enjoy it, not others.
It seems like many bloggers live in the Minneapolis area. Do you all ever get together?
We’ve talked about getting together! I have met with some people, and I’m planning to catch up with others soon! Many of us have kids, so it’s one of those “someday soon” things. It’s a wonderful place to be a creative though. I can’t say enough good things about the twin cities (as evidenced by me living here all my life, ha)!
What is the story behind your Instagram handle, @burtsbrisplease?
It’s actually a pretty anticlimactic story. Years ago, before I had kids, we were on a road trip to Chicago when I decided I needed to spice up my username right then and there. We stopped at the store, and I asked my husband to get me some chapstick. He asked me what kind, and I said, "Burt’s Bees, please." So, @burtsbrisplease (pronounced breeze), became my username.
You make such charming sugar cookies! How did you learn to bake?
I was originally inspired by @homeiswherethehartis. I couldn’t get enough of how simple they were to make and how easy it was to customize them. I love coming up with new ones each year, especially for Christmas.
You take such lovely photos, what kind of camera do you use?
I use my iPhone! A quick wipe of the lens and whatever natural light I can get usually gives me pretty good results. Plus, you can’t beat the convenience!
How did you first learn about Schoolhouse?
Through Instagram! I’ve always loved how timeless your pieces are. When you purchase a piece from Schoolhouse, you’re purchasing it for life. The quality is unbeatable, as is the design!
What are your top 5 favorite Schoolhouse items and why?
The Diamond Ticking Quilt: I swear it gets better with time! It’s versatile, and it works in all seasons.
The 18" Utility Stool: If you have kids, you know how nice it is to have a stool that doesn’t wobble, slide, or tip. We have them on each floor, and they are used all throughout the day.
The Charter Cast Iron Hook: I love having these on hand because they work in every room (the bathroom for towels, a hat hook in my boys’ rooms, on the door for a blanket). The double hook is great on our porch. So, each of my boys can hang their scarf, hat, and jacket, and it all stays put!
The Schoolhouse Clock: You can’t beat a classic. I can’t tell you how often my boys ask me when dad will be home, and I point to the clock to answer, "when the little hand is at the 5, that's when dad will be here."
The Abrams Double Plug-in Sconce: I can think of five different places in this home alone that I’ve had this sconce. It just works anywhere – in the corner of your living room, over the mirror in a bathroom, or next to a bed. It’s nice to have a sconce that isn’t hardwired. It makes it easy to move as needed!
Photography by Bri Heiligenthal