1. A GREAT PAIR OF JEANS.  As much as I love dresses and skirts, most of my everyday outfits start with jeans. And as a mom of two active boys, finding jeans that allow me to run, play, bend over, sit on the ground, or anything else motherhood might call for, is an absolute essential. For me, there are three things I look for in a jean — the fit on my legs (especially my calves), the rise (I want something sort of mid rise so I stay covered when I bend over and sit, but also don’t feel like I’m wearing mom jeans with, um, the 12 inch zipper), and the stretch (because maximum mobility and movement with kids is obviously important).

I’ve found a few brands of jeans that fit this criteria, but was recently re-introduced to Levi’s jeans. My first thought when I think of Levi’s is “mom jeans,” but I love seeing brands that have updated their designs over the years and are targeting younger audiences. And Levi’s has definitely done that. Their new 700 series is full of cute skinny jeans with the perfect rise, just the right amount of structure and stretch, and a perfect fit. I’m completely in love with them. The best part is that they sell them at Zappos, which has become my go-to spot in the last year for clothing essentials. Their free two-day shipping makes it easy for me to find what I want and then have it on my doorstep almost immediately!

2. CASUAL TOPS. I own a handful of tees, and they are definitely in my regular rotation, but for my momiform I prefer tops that feel a little more dressed up while still being casual. Button ups, casual blouses, and tunics are my top choices because they give my outfit a little something more, while still being comfortable.

3. COMFORTABLE SHOES. Sneakers, flats, and ankle boots are my mom shoes of choice for every day, but I’m not afraid of wedges or higher chunky heels with my kids, as long as it’s the right occasion. And maybe this goes without saying, but I don’t buy any shoes that aren’t comfortable enough to play in so I can wear them any time.

4. THE PERFECT MOM BAG. Every mom needs one. Moms of small children especially have a million things they need to carry in their bags, so a bag with lots of space, compartments, and pockets is a must. I’ve blogged about my favorite brand right here.

5. EASY HAIR-DO’S. While I don’t get super creative with my hair, having a few easy and cute styles up your sleeve is key for looking pulled together in a few minutes. My gorgeous friend Abby, from Twist Me Pretty has a bunch of good options that are quick and easy, but I’m also a big fan of the half top knot, low messy pony, or high wavy pony (all three of which take about thirty seconds). And if all else fails, at least brush your hair before you walk out the door.

And as a bonus, I always love wearing a little bit of jewelry to make myself feel completely pulled together. A pretty watch, a few little rings, and maybe a delicate necklace and my momiform is complete.

photos by sara walk
created in collaboration with levi’s and zappos


  1. Laura says:

    How do you like your Petty boots? I just bought them but I’m struggling on whether or not I’m keeping them because they don’t seem very comfortable. The sole is so hard. Love your momiform. It feels so good to feel put together even if you are just hanging with the kids. If I can get dressed and feel good it makes me feel like a more organized and put together mom.

    • Merrick says:

      Shoot, I’m really surprised that they’re not comfortable. Mine are SO comfortable. Maybe try wearing them with socks? Or just return them, cause there’s no reason to own uncomfortable shoes!!

  2. Natali says:

    Fabulous bag and jacket! You look so cute in this casual outfit!


  3. Paige Cassandra Flamm says:

    After drooling over your taupe booties and olive green jacket for the last year I finally added them to my closet this last month and all feels right with the world!



  4. Adorable looks on both of you! And great style advice! My momiform ends up being jeans or leggings and an oversized T-shirt way too often and I’m hoping this fall I’ll be able to step it up with a little more style without sacrificing comfort.

    Morgan | theradwife.blogspot.com

  5. Gabriella says:

    Love the outfit, tried to find the olive green jacket, I even bought a super cheap one but it is what it is. Super cheap and doesn’t fit too well:( any suggestion where I can find a nicer quality, preferably lined one? Fall Can get pretty chilly in Ohio:)

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