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Friday, August 15th, 2014
It takes a little longer for the U.K. to release their baby name stats, but we finally have a look at what was hot in 2013 across the pond. And to no one’s surprise, George made a huge surge forward, thanks to a certain young fellow born there last year. (It’s now officially top 10.)
In fact, it looks like interest in royal names surged at the same time—Victoria and Albert, which were both circulated as possibilities for the royal baby, also saw gains this year. But topping the British charts for girls was Amelia for the third year running, and Oliver regained the top spot, pushing Harry down to #3 for boys.
While the U.S. and U.K. charts definitely have some crossover—Olivia, Emily, Ava, Isabella, Jacob, and William are all top 10 in both countries—there are some unique ideas that could be worth emulating.
1. The nickname name. We definitely prefer formality in our names here in the U.S., but the U.K. favors just going with the nickname as the name—especially if you can make it end with that “e” sound. That’s how names like Charlie, Alfie, Sophie and Evie hit the top 20. Elsie is the biggest climber in the UK top 100 for girls, and Teddy for boys. Other hot “e” names in the U.K. included Archie, Rosie, Frankie and Gracie.
2. The undiscovered name. The U.K.’s top 10 includes names that don’t rank anywhere near that in the U.S. Consider Oscar, which jumped 10 places into the #7 spot in the U.K., but is on a bit of a decline and at number 178 in the U.S. On the girls’ side, Poppy hit the top 10 this year after climbing 6 spots, and it isn’t even in the top 1000 in the U.S. Other names to consider that are far lower in popularity here: Arthur, Hugo and Felix for boys, Florence, Zara and Eleanor for girls.
3. The stodgy name. While we have a tendency to be creative in spelling or in making up a new name (hello, Jaden and Nevaeh), the U.K. loves to recycle names—and there are definitely some old-school names in their top 100 that you haven’t seen much of here in the U.S. On the boys’ side, there’s the already mentioned Albert, plus Harvey, Stanley and Frederick; for girls, you’ll find Tilly, Martha, Harriet, and Beatrice.
You can view the whole U.K. top 100 baby names here, and tell us what your favorites are.
If you’re still looking for the perfect baby name, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and your dilemma could be featured here or in our sister publication, American Baby. (Or check out our Baby Name Finder to do your own searching!) And don’t forget to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the very latest in baby names!
Image: British baby by MartiniDry
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Baby Name News, Top Baby Names
Wednesday, August 13th, 2014
We have a spunky smart little girl named Ivy Catherine. Her name is perfect. Having a rough time for the boy due in September.
I like names that don’t have nicknames attached. Better to be traditional than trendy, for me. But I like somewhat unique….. Help?
Ivy’s such a great name—and definitely one that doesn’t lend itself to nicknames. But it does seem like plenty of boys’ names end up with nicknames. (I remember how my aunt was insistent that my cousin was Matthew, not Matt—but he goes by Matt now!)
Here are some names that might work within your parameters—I’ve highlighted a few of my favorites.
Henry does have Hank as a nickname, but most of the Henrys I know don’t go by it. This is a royal name with a long history—it actually means “ruler.” And it never goes out of style.
Jude has been on a bit of a popularity climb since the turn of the 21st century, but it appears to have leveled off for the past few years in the top 200, making it popular but not overused. It’s most well known for the Beatles song, and the patron saint of those in trouble. It’s one of my favorite picks for boys.
Rory and Ivy make a lovely sibset. Rory means “red king,” and it’s one of those rare unisex names that’s actually skewing more toward the boys right now.
Ian is the Scottish take on “John,” and it’s been a steady top 100 favorite since the 1980s. I like that your kids would have the same initials, without being too closely related.
Wyatt and Emmett are two classic names with a nice, sharp T ending that pairs nicely with your last name, Meier. Or look for names that end with the “ee” sound, like Ivy. I like Ari and Bailey, which don’t lend themselves to nicknames.
Three other one-syllable names that might work for you: Shane, Miles, and Jake.
Okay, readers, it’s your turn: What other names do you think suit our reader’s parameters? Share them in the comments.
If you have a big baby name dilemma, share it with me at email@example.com, and I’ll share my help with you here—or you might just be featured in a future issue of our sister publication, American Baby. (You can also do some DIY name picking with our Baby Name Finder.)
And don’t forget to like In Name Only to keep up with the very latest in baby names.
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Tuesday, July 1st, 2014
Boys’ names always seem to be much more challenging for parents-to-be—especially when there are already sibling names to consider. Reader Emily is having a hard time finding a name for her daughter Cassidy’s new baby brother:
My husband and I are expecting a boy in August. We have a 20 month old daughter named Cassidy. We almost came to blows trying to find the perfect blend of not too common, but not too off-the-wall, for her name. For our son, we are having even more difficulty trying to follow this path we set for ourselves. One of the biggest concerns (for me, at least) is our last name is Head (bleck!), so we have to find something that doesn’t sound ridiculous. We also don’t want it to be so common that he will have to be called by his full name in school (I had about 4 Jennifers as friends in elementary school, and STILL call them by their first and last names, out of habit).
We THOUGHT we agreed on Cameron. It met all of our criteria: two or more syllables; good choice of nicknames; and not too common…or so we thought. We’ve met two couples expecting boys, and each are naming their sons Cameron! We are also afraid Cassidy and Cameron are too “cutesy” together.
Any suggestions/thoughts you might have would be MUCH appreciated!
First, let me just say that Cameron and Cassidy are a nice sibling set, and not too cutesy. Cameron appears to be on a big upswing lately, thanks to Modern Family, but hey, if you love the name—you should go for it!
With the surname Head, you do have to be very careful with your name choices. (No word names for you!) You could go for another surname name, like Cassidy and Cameron. Sullivan, Jameson, Donovan and Callahan are up-and-comers that are still not super popular, or consider Finnegan, which has the cool nickname Finn. I do like the “n” ending with Head, and as a nice offset to the “ee” ending of Cassidy. You could also go with names like Declan, Kieran or Brennan, which all sound wonderful with your last name and Cassidy (I particularly like the way Declan matches up with Cassidy sound wise, without mirroring the name too closely).
You could consider some of the “son” names as well: Emerson, Anderson, or Grayson, for example. (I’d skip the uberpopular Mason, which is likely to be even more popular than Cameron is!) I’m a big fan of Emerson as a brother for Cassidy. And of course, there are all the “er/or” names, which are definitely on the rise—names like Sawyer, Jasper and Archer.
Readers: Share your ideas for Cassidy’s little brother! What should they call him?
If you’re still looking for the perfect name for your son or daughter, check out our Baby Name Finder, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. And don’t forget to like In Name Only to keep up with the latest in baby names!
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Tuesday, May 6th, 2014
First, it was twin girls, Charlene Riva and Myla Rose. But now, tennis great Roger Federer and wife Mirka are welcoming another set of twins to their family, and this time it’s boys. His new twin sons sport a pair of similar names, Leo and Lenny, according to his tweeted birth announcement.
Leo is close to hitting the top 100 for boys in the U.S., thanks to the popularity of Leonardo DiCaprio, who usually goes by the shortened Leo. It’s a Latin name with a cool meaning—lion—and it was used for literally a dozen Popes and many saints.
Lenny is usually short for Leonard—which means that he’s essentially giving his two sons the same name. (Leonard also means lion.) However, Lenny hasn’t fared quite as well as the cooler “Leo” nickname—it fell out of the top 1000 in the early 1980s, probably thanks to the doofus neighbors Lenny and Squiggy on the show Laverne and Shirley.
No word yet on the middle names, but I find it interesting that both sets of twins have one child with an “in vogue” name (Myla and Leo), and one with a retro choice (Charlene and Lenny).
What do you think of the names they picked? Would you go for Lenny or Leo?
Like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the very latest in baby names, and be among the first to know when the new red-hot baby name list arrives later this week! And if you need helping finding the right name for your little one, try our Baby Name Finder!
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Monday, May 5th, 2014
Happy Cinco de Mayo! In honor of our southern neighbor’s celebration, this week’s name has some very cool associations with Mexican history. Ignacio is a Spanish variant of old-school Latin Ignatius, and it means “fiery.” And it was quite the apropos name for two very fiery Mexican historical figures. Ignacio Zaragosa Seguin achieved a major (and very unlikely) victory against the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5th, 1862. That victory helped keep Mexico from falling under French rule—and may have helped the North win the American Civil War, as historians believe that the French would have provided some much needed aid to the South if they’d developed a Mexican stronghold. (So there’s good reason for the U.S. to celebrate, too!) And Ignacio Allende is a key figure in Mexico’s history—though he was a leader in the Spanish army, he took up the cause of Mexican independence and helped organize it, before he was executed for treason.
Ignacio has never broken the top 500 in the U.S., and is currently in a bit of a dip. But with so much great history behind it—and some intriguing nicknames (I’m seeing Iggy or Ace)—couldn’t this name head back up the charts? Its origin, Ignatius, was picked by Cate Blanchett for one of her children, and was featured several times in Harry Potter, as well.
What middle name would you pair with Ignacio? Allende’s middle name was Jose, and if you want to keep the Spanish flavor, Cruz, Rey or Paz would all be good choices. If you want to go in a different direction, try something with a little spunk. What about Justice, True, or even Rebel?
What do you think of the name Ignacio? Cool, or too old-fashioned for a modern boy? If you’re still hunting for the perfect baby name, check out our Baby Name Finder! And don’t forget to like In Name Only to keep up with the very latest in baby names!
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