‘Six Sips’ of Success

Local coffee shop owners leave impact on community
A new coffee shop in Prosper called Six Sips opened up on Dec. 18. It is run by three sisters and their husbands. Brittany McLeod, one of the sisters and Co-owner said she appreciates how the shop brings her family closer. I love being there, and I love that its something that I did with my sisters, McLeod said. Im just Im so proud of us (and) how far weve come.
A new coffee shop in Prosper called ‘Six Sips’ opened up on Dec. 18. It is run by three sisters and their husbands. Brittany McLeod, one of the sisters and Co-owner said she appreciates how the shop brings her family closer. “I love being there, and I love that it’s something that I did with my sisters,” McLeod said. “I’m just I’m so proud of us (and) how far we’ve come.”
Erica Deutsch

As all three sisters look around their new coffee shop, they take a step back and reflect on the journey it took to make ‘Six Sips’ what they call their second home.

“We have this video of the three of us in the shop the day before we fully opened, and we’re just sitting in there crying,” Brittany McLeod said. “You walk around the room. Everything was touched, and specifically decided for the betterment of ‘Six Sips’ and it’s just a lot of pride.”

Ashely Cotten, Brittany McLeod and Cynda Beardon, and their husbands ignited their vision of opening their own coffee shop after they established their own coffee cart. They opened up their brand new coffee shop right before Christmas on Dec. 18 in Prosper. This month will mark their third month of being open.

In a frame on one of the shelves in their Coffee Shop, are ‘Six Sips’ owners, Cynda Beardon, Brittany McLeod, Ashley Cotten and their husbands Jeremy Beardon, Brandon McLeod and Rex Cotten. “When you have six people working together, all of us have our strengths,” Cotten said. “You put all of them together we make one really awesome functional person.” (Erica Deutsch)

“We wanted to create something a little bit different that used better quality ingredients and were allergy friendly,” Cotten said. “We wanted to have a place where moms who were concerned about what they were eating and drinking could go and find something for their whole family.”

Cotten initially brought up the idea of starting the coffee business to her husband, Rex Cotten.

“I said, ‘Hey, we should do this little random side business,’ ” Cotten said. “I mean, immediately he was like, we can’t handle all this by ourselves. He was like, ‘Why don’t you ask your sisters,’ it was the first thing he said.”

After coming up with the idea of the company, Cynda Beardon’s friend reached out to her with a request to have an open house for the coffee at her and her husband’s wedding. They had bought a trailer that they wanted to have for their company, but then soon realized it would be more beneficial to have a cart instead. 

“The boys thought, ‘well, what if we do a cart for right now to get us into the venue?'” Beardon said. “We call her (the cart) a ‘her.’ She is what made our company what it is today, and she’s actually retired in the shop. All of a sudden, we needed a second cart because we had two events. Then we decided we don’t need a trailer, we can just stick with a cart and the cart is our company.”

McLeod said soon after starting the business she noticed the need for a company like this.

“It was gonna be a fun little side hustle thing, and we quickly grew to realize the community almost needed this atmosphere,” McLeod said. “All of (what) ‘Six Sips’ was able to do cultivate, and because relationships are huge for us.”

The business soon started having events for their coffee cart multiple times during the weekends. With all of them having full-time jobs, they started to think about moving their business to a storefront. Cotten works as a dental hygienist. Beardon previously worked as a high school teacher in Frisco, and McLeod works as an elementary school teacher in Frisco as well.

The thing I enjoy most about interacting with customers is probably getting to hear what everyone’s done today and hoping that I make their day better. This is the one job where I have felt like I’m truly taken care of as an employee, and I feel like I’m part of their family.

— Claire Smisek, employee

“Time constraints and you know, schedules made it really hard,” McLeod said. “It was very, very busy. We loved being at all of the events but we were at multiple events, and people were asking, you know, ‘where do we find you?’ “

They decided it would be best to open up a store, but they said they knew someone would need to run it and be there full-time. Beardon decided to take on the role as manager of the business, running the day-to-day operations at the shop. Beardon’s husband does commercial kitchens, which they said came in handy when building the shop. McLeod and Cotten plan and organize events, and social media marketing. McLeod’s husband is their coffee connoisseur and helps with catering. Cotten’s husband runs the finances.

“It kind of snowballed and it’s been really cool to look back at,” Beardon said. “This thing we were supposed to do randomly on weekends. If you asked us two and a half years ago, ‘Would you guys own a coffee shop?’ None of us would be like, ‘Yeah, this is what we’re going for.’ But it turned into that and we’re super grateful for it.”

Before they started the company, McLeod said none of them had a background in owning a business, and acquiring an LLC became a new and challenging process.

“‘Six Sips’ was nothing. It was completely started from nothing,” McLeod said. “So coming up with the name, creating the logo, everything has had to have our ideas put into it before it ever comes to fruition.”

Cotten said most people assume working with family can be difficult.

Smiling to a customer, co-owner Ashley Cotten carries a plate. My favorite thing is that our kids are watching it, and they feel like they own ‘Six Sips’,” Cotten said. “They’re like, it’s ours too, and it’s just really special. (Erica Deutsch)

“Because there are six owners and (we have) six different personalities, and six different opinions, I always tell them, ‘I have no idea how you would be able to have a business partner that’s not family,'” Cotten said. “At the end of the day, we have to love each other. We have to get along, and we have to make it work. Of course, there’s times when we don’t always agree on things, but our common goal is this legacy of this thing we all built from scratch together.”

McLeod said when it came to the aesthetics of the shop, they were inspired by their favorite show, “Friends.”

“We all grew up watching ‘Friends’ and we thought of ‘Central Perk,’ ” McLeod said. We loved the idea of a place where friends meet up together, and they sit on a couch and drink coffee. To us, a cup of coffee was more about the community and the conversations. We wanted to have almost a family room aspect.”

Around their shop, there are sprinkles of personal items that Cotten said make it unique from others.

“It’s an extension of our family – it’s our second home,” Cotten said. “We want people to feel that when they’re with us. We want them to feel like they are part of the whole process. So it’s a very special place.”

Along with some personal touches, the shop also includes merchandise, handpicked and all-natural items, and quality products, including allergy-free items.

“We have something for everybody,” Cotten said. “If you’re with a big group or your family, everybody will feel like they can enjoy the experience. Nobody’s going to feel left out, and the food is good quality. The drinks are good quality. We think our coffee is the best. I mean, it’s organic coffee.”

A main value the owners said they have always aimed for is providing above and beyond customer service. Beardon said when she hires new employees she makes it a point to build connections with customers.

My favorite thing about working here is meeting all the nice customers that come in. I love it. I love my customers.

— Aubrey Henry, employee

“You have to be an extension of that when people come in, we’re not just a coffee shop. We’re not just selling coffee and pastries. We’re making friendships,” Beardon said. “We want people to come in and feel like they are a part of our family. We want our staff to feel a part of our family. It’s remembering people. Make sure everybody’s feeling welcome and having more than just a cup of coffee.”

According to Beardon, ‘Six Sips’ aims to be a place where people can come to and feel more than welcome.

“A lot of people struggle with a lot of things,” Beardon said. “We can be a place people come to, to work through things and be a happy spot. Whether it’s, they come in for their morning coffee, and then leave. If they get a little bit of spark or joy while they’re in there, then I think we’re doing our part.”

McLeod said the location of the coffee shop, in Prosper, is where they are meant to be. It is surrounded by a church, an elementary school, a middle school, and what will soon be the next high school in Prosper, Richland High School.

Interacting with a customer, manager Cynda Beardon builds connections those coming into the shop. “I want us to be a spot that people come to, and they kind of relieve themselves of anything they’re going through,” Beardon said. “We couldn’t have asked for a better community to drop into.”
(Erica Deutsch)

“It can be a great place for kids to come and have a safe place,” McLeod said. “Like ones who come and do studies together. I love the opportunity to be around the next generation and have a physical shop for a place for kids to come to.”

Beardon said working in the shop has shown her all the hard work they put into their business has paid off.

“All the hard days all the tears we shed, you know, all the stress all the, disagreements all the agreements, it all kind of swept away when we open those doors,” Beardon said. “It was like holy cow, we actually did this. This is ours.”

Since starting the company, the sisters said as a family, they’ve have always been close to one another. They take it as a new appreciation that they can run the shop together.

“Our husbands, we could not do this without them, 100%,” Cotten said. “Not even what they contributed to the business or the actual shop, but being emotionally supportive, being supportive of our dreams. I mean, we put our families through so much stress and so much work. I think the cool thing about having six people was probably at some point all of us thought this is not worth it anymore, we need to be done. But not all six of us felt that at the same time. So it was never going to be done.” 

Beardon said they want the shop to be an extension of how close she and her sisters are as a family.

“You can kind of feel it when you come in,” Beardon said. “You can feel the love. You can feel that people are happy. If you can have a spot that brings people together (through) happiness or anything like that, (it) is so needed in so many different areas.”

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Erica Deutsch
Erica Deutsch, Feature Editor
Erica Deutsch, originally from Orlando, Florida, is a junior at Prosper High School. This is her second year working for Eagle Nation Online and she serves as the feature and entertainment editor. She adores photography and hopes to create a positive impact with her writing and podcasts. Outside of school, she enjoys playing guitar, watching movies, trying new baking recipes, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.
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  • L

    Linda BraniganMar 9, 2024 at 8:01 am

    Love this article, love my niece’s and “nephews”

  • N

    Nellie McLeodMar 9, 2024 at 7:48 am

    This is the best..Six Sips COFFEE ☕ shop in Texas……. they gave me Big Mama… my first birthday party …80 yr… and man was I completely surprised .. Brandon I gonna get you….. love ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️.. Big Mama..