Why I Don’t Love Mother Tomcats With Flat Shoes (& Other Straight Leg Jeans I DO)

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I love trying on ALL the jeans. After my recent revisit with boyfriend jeans, I realized what was really in my heart right now was a desire for my go-to, high-rise straight leg jeans…but make ’em spring. So I was quickly back to hoisting up ALL the denim…I do it for you, because I love you. I hope it’s helpful!!

The Best Straight Leg Jeans To Wear With Flats

So, of course, my first attempt was with our beloved MOTHER The Tomcat jeans I featured this fall that I adore with all my boots. But…they just aren’t cutting it for warmer weather. I love, love them cuffed with Docs & clog boots, and I don’t mind them at all with heels, but when I went to try them for spring with sneakers and sandals, unlike some of my teammates, I just don’t dig them. They’re too cropped on me and cuffed they’re even worse.

The MOTHER Tomcat Jeans With Boots & Jeans, For Comparison

With Boots: So Cute

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Jacket | Similar Sweater | Jeans | Boots

I mean, love love. They cuff perfectly with all of my taller boots like my Docs, my clog boots, etc., But…when I try on flats…

With Flats: Not So Cute

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

They fall flat. Ta da! Haha. Sorry…they’re just too cropped. So, I was on a mission to find alternatives that had the wash and straight leg cut and distressing I liked just as much, but that worked better with all of my warmer weather shoes like sneaks and sandals and flats. I dig the AGOLDE Riley I tried out lately, but they had me itching to try more, too.

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

*A note on these sandals…besides my Birkenstocks, they’ve been my go-to favorites for years! I grabbed this tan pair at the end of last summer and just adore them. You can find them at both Amazon and Backcountry in a variety of shades. I’ve had brown, taupe and yellow over the years. You kinda can’t go wrong. Size down if between sizes as they will stretch to your foot and break in beautifully with wear!


Straight Leg Jeans With Flats: The Lighter Washes

AGOLDE Riley Straight** With Flats

at Bloomie’s | at Revolve | at Intermix

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans** | Sandals

Uh, hi. Spoiler alert. These are my favs. It comes as no surprise because I’ve already featured them, in another wash, in two or three posts already haha. These are the AGOLDE Riley Straight crop jeans. But I got them in a new springy wash and OH BOY. In love. I’m wearing a 28, which seems to be my size these days after living in sweatpants a majority of the winter. In olden times I probably would size down and work to stretch them out, but these days ‘please don’t squeeze my stomach’ is my main pant goal. These have a nice high rise and are cropped but juuuust above my ankle. **Indicates meets our requirements for sustainability

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans** | Sandals


Hidden Jeans High Waist With Flats

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

So, these Hidden Jeans were a complete $85 surprise! Look how good of a dupe they are for the MOTHER Tomcats, but yet slightly longer in front AND easier on the pocketbook. Score. They’re soft and comfy, and while I don’t know how these wear over time, they seem really well-made. This brand has gotten some “yes, I love them” from the Insiders group, too. If I needed to keep these, I’d probably trim just the front hem off of them to show a little more ankle and leave the cool back hem distressing you see below.

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals


Madewell Perfect Vintage Jeans With Flats

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Shoes

These are the Madewell Perfect Vintage jeans you’ve seen me mention before. While I have my ups and downs with Madewell pieces in general, I typically always find a favorite pair of jeans there. Currently, these are in my most-worn category. I hacked them off a bit more at the ankle to show off mine, but also love the shorter crop for wearing with my taller high-top sneakers a lot of times…and they’re still not quite as cropped as the Tomcats. Wearing a 28.

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Shoes


Straight Leg Jeans With Flats: The Mid Blue Wash Jeans

AGOLDE Wilder Straight** With Flats

at Revolve | at Shopbop | at Verishop

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans** | Sandals

These AGOLDE Wilder are just a bit wider version of the AGOLDE Riley I’ve reviewed recently. The wash is the same as the pair I’ve shown before, Whiplash. I think there’s something going on in the crotch here that I can’t put up with. It’s slight but I think maybe I should have gone with the 27 or else they’re just too long in the rise for me. I’m wearing a 28 here.

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

Topshop Dad Jeans With Flats


I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

These Topshop Dad jeans are rad. I have the black pair with the super ripped knees from last summer’s Nordstrom sale. I love this wash, too. These are a rigid jean with a little bit of a slouchy fit and a nice straight leg. They’ll break in well and form to your body. I still adore my black pair, and these are at a good price point, too. Wearing a 28. I feel like these are probably the jeans I’ll go with when I finally break down and do a full-length pair. I love my crops so much, but the more I see the slouchy or at least full-length jean, the more I’m intrigued to try to style some up…

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | jeans | Sandals


Hidden Jeans High Waist Ankle With Flats

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

Again, coming in at $85 these are a solid under $100 find. They’re selling quickly, as are this amazing pair from the same brand. While they weren’t my favorite for fit, they’re a great find for the price point. This pair, unlike the lighter pair above, are rigid denim and will loosen with wear, but they seem to run pretty true to size. I’m intrigued by this brand and need to try more. I’ve been curious about their cutoffs, but they are sized S,M,L so…hmm I don’t know. While perhaps not as springy, I just ordered this black pair to try. Really rad distressing.

I'm on a mission to find jeans w/ the wash & distressing of my MOTHER Tomcat straight legs, but that work better w/ warm weather shoes like sneaks, sandals & flats.

Tee | Jeans | Sandals

I don’t even know what jeans I have left to try on next, but have no fear. I’ll find them. If you have any requests on styles I (surprisingly) haven’t covered, let me know!

xo,

L

Would love to have you follow all my daily musings, donut pics and dance parties over on Instagram @laurajansenstyle. I try to keep it real over there, with a side of fun and a good dose of social justice.

27 COMMENTS

  1. This is super helpful – thanks, Laura! I’m a little taller and couldn’t put my finger on why my jeans didn’t look right with summer shoes… but it’s the crop! I’ve been wearing them too short. Loved seeing the various shapes and lengths in relation to ankles and shoe styles.

  2. Okay, seriously, you look great in all of these jeans! Doesn’t matter what size you are now or before, or will be… great choices!

  3. I actually love the tomcats with your sandals! I agree that they all look great. I’m craving a new white tee now lol. So cute! Appreciate you!

    • I’ve worn CoH in the past and loved them! I’ll have to check out those for sure! These are all a tight fit at first but the rigid will all relax with wear, so for my try-ons they’re definitely more fitted.

  4. Thanks Laura! I always love your posts and reviews. In your next Jeans roundup – could you find the unicorn I’m looking for? – Something like the hidden jeans with the frayed back ankle – but NOT high rise, do these even exist anymore? All the mid rise I can find are skinny Thanks!

  5. This is so helpful! You look awesome in all of these BTW. I hope you guys would consider an article doing a deep dive on different shoes with different bottoms for spring: like, sneakers, sandals, loafers or oxfords or whatever plus pants, shorts, dresses/skirts. This is my biggest challenge right now, how to pair shoes and bottoms for spring (especially if you have short legs and don’t want to look stumpy). Thanks and love all you do!!

  6. Thank you for this! I had been kind of freaking out lately about what to wear if/when we have to go back into the office. We’re a little more casual so jeans are fine, but don’t want to go back to my usual skinnies and flats from pre-Covid. Our complex is big and you can walk a ton throughout the day so heels are usually out, but I wasn’t sure how to do flats with straight leg jeans. So this was super helpful!

  7. Great post, Laura! I’ve been wanting to try the Mother Tomcats but fear they’ll be too cropped (I’m 5’ 8”). The similar-looking Hidden jeans have been sold out in most sizes on Nordstrom, but I just found them on the brand’s own website and ordered two sizes to try… I’m hoping they’re amazing!!

    • Ah great! Hope you love them. I saw their site had a few pairs but some of the styles were also close to sold out, so I’m glad you found some!

  8. Ok so is there anything we can do with those cropped jeans besides tall shafted boots? I don’t want to put them away for summer, but can’t find any way to wear them that feels good. I feel like they’re bordering on capris. Ack!

    • I do like some of my taller high tops with my more cropped pairs! I haven’t tried yet with a taller sandal like a gladiator or ankle strap but that could work, too!

  9. This feels like a dumb question, but do you guys do anything to keep the knee holes from getting bigger? It’s been an issue for me and I absolutely love the Agolde Riley. The knees tend to hit me right at the knee bend when I kneel down, I’m 5’4”. The models are all taller of course, and the holes hit them higher.

    • Not a dumb question! It kinda depends on the jean. I’ve found the blue AGOLDE Riley that I covered last month doesn’t bust through as much because the jean itself has some stretch. But some of the rigid denim typically does seem to because the rest of the jean doesn’t stretch, if that makes sense. So perhaps sticking to a pair with some elastane in it would help that! I’m 5’4″ also so I deal with this as well!

  10. Laura, I think the Tomcats look cute with the sandals. The Tomcats don’t seem much more cropped than the Agolde. I think the proportions work. Ok, I think I’ve studied this post like I’m going to be tested on it.

    • Haha Erin. Yes, a test! There’s something about them being juuuuust too short that I don’t love but I appreciate your dedication to this post haha.

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