Meet Allyson Johnson and Leisa Barger of SipSavorSisters
Tell us about SipSavorSisters. How did you and your sister get started?
For seven years, I lived in Colorado and away from my sister (Leisa Barger). Life was pretty busy for us both, and we didn’t get to see each other as much as we would have liked. We really missed being able to get together over a meal or coffee or wine whenever we liked. Not long into our living states apart, our dad passed away and we realized that family was first, time was short, and we longed to spend more time together. When our family (Allyson’s) moved back to the Dallas area last year, Leisa and I made a promise to reunite and reacquaint over good food throughout the DFW Metroplex area. Our first outing was at Woodlands American Grill where over a beautiful cup of cappuccino, we decided to start taking pictures of our reuniting meals and post on Instagram. We saw this as our “photo album” of beautiful food and drinks that brought us back together a little bit at a time, day by day, week by week, year by year. It started off simple enough, but in a short time a few wonderful chefs took notice of us and how their delicious food brought us back together, and they began supporting us and our Instagram account kept growing and growing from there!
What’s it like working with your sister?
She is the BEST! Leisa is one of the smartest, most creative and fun persons I know. We truly hear each other out and support all ideas. We talk about everything and it allows for thought flow and unique inspirations to be generated.
Are you and your sister similar or different? How does that help your business?
Leisa is definitely what I would term a “corporate” woman. She is a hard worker and enjoys a regular office environment that moves at a fast pace. I, on the other hand, enjoy being a stay at home mom with a flexible entrepreneurial lifestyle. I’ve owned my own business, worked in philanthropy, counseled, been a pastor on call, and volunteered as much as I could in the community in which I found myself. I like change and doing new things. My sister likes routine and steadiness more. Our personalities bring a balance to the page that allows for free flow and creativity as well as a business, productivity mindset. It seems to be a great measure for our success.
Can you share a funny childhood story about you and your sister?
We are quite a few years apart but my sister (Leisa) is a true “fashionista.” Apparently even before I could realize what was going on, I was her live Barbie Doll, and she was always dressing me up! (Maybe that’s why I like sweats so much…lol!)
What saying/phrase does your sister always say?
“I love you, sis.”
What is your favorite thing about your business?
SipSavorSisters is considered a food influencer Instagram page, although we really like to think of ourselves as true foodies who just like food and food environments so much that our attention to it just comes naturally. We know the food industry in Dallas and surrounding areas can be tough, and we want to support and promote the industry that reunited us as sisters. Meeting so many amazing people from hosts, to servers, to chefs, to sommeliers, allows us to hear the stories behind the food and what makes each morsel so special and alluring.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned in your business to date?
Never underestimate the power of social media, but also never underestimate the power of yourself. There is so much creativity in the world and yet the expression of it is unique for each person. We all truly have something to bring to the table, so to speak, that opens up portals of fun, creativity, and community for all of us. And when sisters come together to do that…it’s multiplied.
What advice would you give to an entrepreneur who is just starting out?
Dream small…medium…big (all dreams matter and will get you somewhere further than you were before). Expect difficult times and welcome them. They will make you better. Respect all others in your trade. Learn from and research the best and worst. Always be willing to change. Do not get stuck in a rut but adapt and change to the environment and world around you. With that being said, ultimately you need to find what is truly you and capitalize on that. It will make all the difference.
How are you finding balance?
Quite time of reflection and study. Going out to eat without taking ANY pictures now and then. Spending time with family and friends. Our backyards are our sanctuaries and we love to hang outside and listen to music while drinking Topo Chico, Pellegrino, or Seltzer (couldn’t help it there!) and listening to great music.
What have we not asked you that you want to say about entrepreneurship, sisters, or business advice?
Sisterhood gives you strength and an understanding of relationship like no other. We are so blessed to not only have each other but to be sisters who work at growing closer each and every day.
Favorite Restaurant? Dolce Riviera
Favorite spot to hang out with your sister? Woodlands American Grill where it all started.
Favorite place to work out? Walking in the ‘hood & swimming in our backyards.
Favorite product? Wine (oh, and cheese) plus more wine.
Favorite road trip? The San Luis in Galveston with our mom. Magnolia with our mom. Had a blast. Mom’s crazy on road trips!
Favorite song? This is hard. We both love music. Our parents were both musicians so we listen to everything.
Favorite Instagram account? All food and lifestyle bloggers. LOVE Katherine Schwarzenegger!
Facebook: Sip Savor Sisters