Archive for the ‘
In Name Only ’ Category
Monday, November 4th, 2013
It seems like finding a good name for the third child is a challenge for some readers—last month we helped Lindsay come up with a name for her third baby, and now Melissa’s having a hard time finding the perfect moniker for her baby.
I wanted to get your advice on a name for our 3rd baby due in only 4 weeks. We’re at a loss!! We have a son, Myles, age 3- and a daughter, Claire, age 1 (almost 2). We want something a little off the beaten path, but not something strange or hard to say/spell. No “trendy” names for sure! Our last name is Upton, and nothing that we’ve come up with seems to flow quite right. My hubby is from England so he’s kind of hoping to incorporate that maybe by using his grandad’s name, William, as a middle name. I like Isaiah but don’t feel it goes well with the names of our other 2. We also like Emerson but I’m not sure it’s something that we would love forever. Asher is cute but kind of “in” right now. And Kyler we like but are concerned people will always mistake his name as Tyler. Help! What unusual but not odd boy names could work for us?
I think you’re right about Isaiah not really matching his sister and brother—and because it ends with a vowel sound, it doesn’t flow nicely with Upton, either. Of the three possible contenders, I like Emerson best—it flows nicely with his siblings’ names, and is classic without being boring. But I’m worried that all those ending ns and ms in Emerson William Upton could be a little bit much.
I really love the name Arthur—it’s a classic Celtic name that means “bear,” and is important in English history (think King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table), making it a lovely choice that pays homage to your son’s English heritage. It has that “r” ending you like in Kyler and Asher, but since the name is only #355 on the U.S. list right now, it’s offbeat enough that you won’t run into another child with the name in his school.
Along the same lines is Alastair, the British version of Alexander, which is unique but not odd—and yet it isn’t in the top 1000 baby names, either. It means “defender,” which is a pretty great name meaning.
Maxwell sounds wonderful with this sibling set—and I especially love the idea of Max and Myles as brothers. Maxwell is a little more popular than either of the two names I’ve suggested, but it still hasn’t broken into the top 100.
Scandinavian favorite Magnus is an up-and-coming name, chosen by two celebs for their sons. It means “great,” but still hasn’t cracked the top 1000.
A few other options:
What do you all think? Did I miss any boys’ name gems that pair well with Upton? If you’re still in search of a great name, feel free to send me your dilemma at firstname.lastname@example.org, or log on to our Baby Name Finder to help find the right name for you.
Add a Comment
baby name, baby name advice, baby name help, baby name inspiration, baby name meaning, boy baby names, boys' baby names, boys' names, British baby names, old-fashioned names, popular baby names | Categories:
In Name Only, Must Read, Top Baby Names
Monday, November 4th, 2013
Orlando isn’t just a theme park mecca—it can be a great boys’ name, too. Witness Orlando Bloom, of Pirates of the Caribbean and Lord of the Rings fame. The news of the end of his marriage to model Miranda Kerr helped remind me of how lovely his name is (and how lovely he is, as well).
It’s currently a top 500 baby name, but on a bit of a decline right now. It has a great meaning—famous—and a Shakespearean pedigree, thanks to his beloved play, As You Like It. Author Virginia Woolf also penned a novel titled Orlando.
If you’re picking a name like Orlando, you can’t pair it with something too plain as the middle name (or in the sibling set—Orlando’s sister should be something equally romantic, like Arabella or Lucinda). I’d give a middle name like Rhys or Lucas.
As for nicknames, Landi and Lando are the most common—Lando comes with a bit of a nod to Star Wars as well. I like the idea of Arlo as a nickname—a bit unexpected, with a musical pedigree of its own, thanks to Arlo Guthrie.
What do you think? Is Orlando too exotic, too Disney, or just right? And don’t forget to check out our Baby Name Finder to help you find the perfect name for your baby!
Add a Comment
baby name, baby name advice, baby name inspiration, boy baby names, boys' baby names, boys' names, celebrities, celebrity baby names, cool name of the week, orlando bloom, unique baby names | Categories:
Celebrity Baby Names, In Name Only
Thursday, October 31st, 2013
This week, we’re taking Throwback Thursday way, way back in time, to the 1890s. We may no longer wear our hair up and our hemlines way down, but our current fashionable names bear a striking resemblance to the hot names of the 1890s. The girls’ top 25 lists boasts currently chic names like Clara, Emma, Alice and Lillian; the boys’ list features perennial favorites like Henry, William, and James. But the top names of the 189s, Mary and John, aren’t quite as in vogue right now. Mary dropped out of the top 100 after decades of reigning supreme, while John is less unscathed, but currently resides at #28.
One intriguing trend I’m noting from the last century: Even if the fashion was all buttoned up, the names definitely weren’t so stiff. Many of the top 100 names are shortened nickname names—names like Willie (for girls or boys), Mattie (also for either), Effie, Nettie and Nellie.
So what intriguing names haven’t yet made their resurgence? Here are my picks from the 1890s for your consideration.
Ida was the 21st most popular name back in the 1890s, and it means industrious. It was in its heyday in the 1800s, and dropped out of the top 1000 entirely in 1980. Perhaps, as our friends at Nameberry noted, it’s about time for a comeback, on the heels of red-hot names like Ava?
It took a little longer for Louise to drop out of the top 1000—after reigning in the top 50 names from 1880-1930 (it was the 36th most popular baby name back in the 1890s), it dropped out in the 1990s. It’s a French name that means renowned warrior, and is a nice way to pay homage to a Louis in your family tree.
Esther reached its peak back in the 1890s, but it’s never really gone away. This Persian name that means star is currently #242 here in the U.S.
Lena started a slow but steady decline after the 1890s, when it was in the top 50 baby names. This short form of Helena is the name of legendary singer Lena Horne and now known for Girls actor/creator Lena Dunham. It’s starting an uptick now—but it’s currently in the top 400 names, so it’s still pretty unlikely your daughter would end up with another Lena in her class.
Alma is a Latin name that means soulful. It was most popular back in the 1890s, when it was the 54th most popular girls’ name. It’s a chic alternative to Emma, and one that’s appeared in pop culture, including characters on Desperate Housewives and The Hunger Games.
The 17th most popular name back in 1890 was Clarence—you’ll probably remember it as either the name of George Bailey’s guardian angel in It’s a Wonderful Life, or as the legendary saxophonist Clarence Clemons from Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band. It’s a lovely name that means bright and clear, and could make a cool comeback name.
Roy seems like it should be a short name that means royal, but it actually means red-headed. It was the 19th most popular name back in the 1890s, and it’s currently in the top 600 names.
Archie, a nickname for Archibald, means brave. This casual name was #89 in the 1890s, and fell out of the top 1000 back in the 1980s. It’s more commonly associated with the comic character or the grumpy Archie Bunker from All in the Family, but maybe it’s time for Archie to have a reboot—especially since it’s becoming more popular over in the UK?
Ernest peaked in the 19th century—perhaps the 21st century is ready for it? It’s a name that means serious, and it’s barely charting in the top 1000 these days. Legendary author Hemingway is the most famous bearer of the name, followed by Ernie of Sesame Street.
I think the silly Simpson dad is keeping Homer—which was #72 back in the 1890s—from staging a comeback. This name has a cool vibe and a cool history, as the author of the Odyssey.
What do you think of these 1890s choices? Anything on there you might consider? If you’re still searching for a baby name, don’t forget to check out our Baby Name Finder for some great suggestions!
Image: 19th century woman by Dolgin Alexander Klimentyevich/Shutterstock.com
Add a Comment
baby name, baby name help, baby name ideas, baby name inspiration, baby names, boy baby names, boys' baby names, classic baby names, girl baby names, girls baby names, girls' names, old-fashioned names, popular baby names, unique baby names | Categories:
Baby Name Stories, In Name Only, Top Baby Names
Tuesday, October 29th, 2013
This really must be the season of the witch—there’s two great witchy new shows, The Witches of East End and American Horror Story: Coven—and now there’s even talk of a Charmed reboot. The cool thing is that many of these witchy characters come with enchanting names that might be worth considering for your daughter.
• Fiona is an Scottish name currently worn by the Witch Supreme in American Horror Story: Coven (and played by the ever-amazing Jessica Lange). It means white or fair—though the current Fiona is hardly a white witch. The name’s been on a slow but steady rise since the early 1990s, and currently is nearing the 200th spot in popularity for girls.
• Willow’s one of the coolest witchy characters, courtesy of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She’s Buffy’s adorably nerdy best pal who dabbles in witchery, until a tragic death makes her go to the dark side. Willow’s an up-and-coming nature name, currently at #171 for girls.
• If you love Harry Potter, odds are good you love one of two witches featured in the story—Hermione, his brilliant BFF, or Luna, the offbeat pal who joins the crew to help defeat Voldemort. Hermione, which means messenger, still hasn’t broken into the top 1000, but not long after J.K. Rowling introduced Luna to the world, the name took off—it went from #890 to #223 in less than a decade.
• Truth be told, I haven’t had a chance to catch Witches of East End yet, but I’m loving the name Freya. It’s a Scandinavian name that means noble, and was also used for Merlin’s love interest on the BBC’s show.
• Wicked turned Glinda the good witch into Galinda, which I like a bit better. No word on the meaning, but I’m guessing it’s something like beautiful, given the “Linda” at the end.
• Phoebe was Alyssa Milano’s witchy Halliwell sister on Charmed. It means “shining one,” and it’s currently #303 in popularity here in the U.S.
• Sabrina was a Celtic goddess long before she was the teenage witch of 1990s sitcom fame. The name is currently #275 here in the U.S.
• Some might call Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks one of rock’s most bewitching singers, but her song Rhiannon was about a truly bewitching character from Welsh legend. The name means “divine queen,” and it was red hot after the song came out—but it dropped out of the top 1000 names back in 2008.
• Anne Rice may be known for her vampire novels, but she also wrote a witch series with a clever heroine, Rowan Mayfair. Rowan is a Scottish name that means red-head, and it’s just about to crack the top 300 in the U.S.
What cool witchy names did I miss? Share your favorites in the comments. And if you want to find out more about a baby name you like, check out our Baby Name Finder!
P.S. Don’t forget to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names!
Image: Witch baby by Hannamariah/Shutterstock.com
Add a Comment
american horror story: coven, anne rice, baby name advice, baby name ideas, baby name inspiration, baby name meaning, baby names, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, charmed, girl baby names, girls baby names, girls' names, halloween baby names, harry potter, hermione, popular baby names, rhiannon, unique baby names, voldemort, witch baby names, witches of east end | Categories:
In Name Only, Must Read, Top Baby Names
Sunday, October 27th, 2013
Anyone else watching this season of American Horror Story? I’m loving the witchy New Orleans crew, and I’m intrigued by the fact that they actually based one of the characters on a real-life person. Delphine Lalaurie, played by Kathy Bates, was an actual woman who lived in 19th century New Orleans, and severely abused her slaves (though it’s unlikely she turned any into a minotaur, as is alleged in American Horror Story).
She may not be anything close to a role model, but perhaps Madame Lalaurie, as she was known, will help bring the name Delphine back into the spotlight. Delphine is a French name, and it’s associated with either the flower delphinium or with dolphins, depending on who you ask. It’s pretty popular with authors, and has been used by characters in several novels. It peaked as a top 400 baby name back in the 1930s, and hasn’t been in the top 1000 names since the 1960s. But it’s a beautiful name, and it’s a nice alternative to some chart toppers, including Chloe, Josephine and Lillian.
Delphine can be matched up with lovely middle names—I’d pair it with Rose, Juliet, Eleanor, or Victoria.
What do you think of Delphine? Do you think it makes a fresher addition to the “ine” names currently on the rise? Or is it too fancy-French for your taste? If you’re still looking for a great baby name, don’t forget to check out our baby naming tool to help you find the perfect name.
Add a Comment