Posts Tagged ‘ popular girls names ’

Celebrity Baby Names: John Krasinski and Emily Blunt’s Daughter

Sunday, February 16th, 2014

It’s a girl for former Office star John Krasiniski and his wife, actress Emily Blunt. And they picked a pretty old-fashioned name that’s making a comeback: Hazel.

Hazel was a red-hot name back in the early part of the 20th century, then bottomed out from the 1970s to 2000. But as the 21st century started up, it skyrocketed back into prominence again, and is now in the top 200 baby names. (You can also thank Julia Roberts for that, who picked the name for her daughter.)

It’s a type of tree (think hazel nuts), and an eye color that’s not quite brown, not quite green, not quite gray. And we think it’s a pretty lovely name.

No word yet on what middle name they picked for their daughter. I love Hazel with Clementine, Corinne or Josephine, if you’re looking for a longer middle name, or June, Rose or Wren if you like a shorter one.

What do you think of Hazel? Is it on your short list of baby names?

Try our Baby Name Finder to find your perfect baby name, and like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names.

Baby Names: How to Pick a Great Name
Baby Names: How to Pick a Great Name
Baby Names: How to Pick a Great Name

Image: John Krasinski and Emily Blunt by DFree / Shutterstock.com

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Cool Name of the Week: Pippa

Monday, January 20th, 2014

I’m always intrigued by the names authors select for their characters. It’s pretty clear when an author really has fun naming her characters—think J.K. Rowling with Harry Potter, or Suzanne Collins with the Hunger Games. But some of those offbeat names (a la Severus and Glimmer) aren’t exactly wearable in the real world, so you need to look to other lit for inspiration.

I just finished Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, which was chosen as one of the top novels of the year. (She also wrote the amazing The Secret History, which I loved.) With The Goldfinch, Donna shares a story of a decades-long (and possibly unrequited) love, of art theft—and lots and lots of crime. I couldn’t put it down.

Protagonist Theo Decker has a pretty standard name, but Donna Tartt came up with some other intriguing characters and names—from tatty Vegas cocktail waitress Xandra to eccentric best bud Boris. But name wise I loved Pippa, for whom Theo bears a torch, most of all.

Pippa is generally considered a nickname of Philippa, a name that means “lover of horses,” and hit the limelight first a few years ago, when Kate Middleton first became engaged to Prince William—and her sister Pippa Middleton a bit of a British style icon. But more people are intrigued by the shortened Pippa than the longer name now—and I’m imagining that this character, a lively and beautiful young musician whose life has been touched by tragedy, may help bring it into the top 1000.

As for middle names, I’d pair Pippa with something equally fun and fresh: Mae, Jade, and Quinn.

What do you think of Pippa? Would you pick it for your daughter?

If you’re still looking for a baby name, check out our Baby Name Finder or send your dilemma to lamilbrand@gmail.com to get more personalized advice. And don’t forget to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names!

Get baby name inspiration by playing our Baby Name Game. Then download our helpful charts and checklists to track your baby’s growth and development.

Baby Names: Is It Too Popular?
Baby Names: Is It Too Popular?
Baby Names: Is It Too Popular?

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The Rise (And Fall?) of Celebrity Name Miley

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

It’s often hard to predict which pop culture names will inspire parents to choose them. I would have thought that Barack might have cracked the top 1000 after our 44th president, but no such luck. Only a handful of people have used Katniss or Peeta for their offspring, despite the Hunger Games’ popularity. And there’s really only one Beyonce—that name, created for the singer by her parents, still hasn’t cracked the top 1000.

But another celebrity catapulted her totally made up (and not even official) name into the baby name stratosphere—Miley Cyrus, who was born with the name Destiny Hope. Miley was her nickname because she was so “smiley” as a kid, and it became both her stage name and her alter ego’s name from Hannah Montana, too.

The year after the show Hannah Montana hit the airwaves, the name hit the big time, becoming the 278th most popular name in the country. Its popularity peaked in 2008, and it’s been on a slow and steady decline since then—in 2012, it ranked 335th.

I’m curious to see if it’s going to make a much sharper trajectory into the basement with all of Miley’s latest hijinks—maybe parents don’t want their kids named in honor of someone so controversial. My guess? It probably will take a huge nosedive. For reference, take a look at the trajectory of the name Lindsay (a la Lindsay Lohan), which took a big bump down starting with her first brushes with the law in 2006. And Lindsay is an actual name with a real meaning behind it, so it has that going over Miley’s name.

What do you think? Is Miley destined for a big drop in popularity? Or will parents still like that “smiley” message behind it?

If you’re still looking for a baby name, don’t forget to check out our Baby Name Finder, and be sure to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the latest in baby names!

Image: Miley Cyrus by Joe Seer / Shutterstock.com

 

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Throwback Thursday: 1970s Baby Names

Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Were the 1970s long enough ago that the top names of the era deserve another look? Top girls’ names like Jennifer and Lisa may be a little too overdone to make a comeback now—and top boys’ names like Michael and Christopher never exactly go out of vogue. But the age of disco does have a few names in the top 100 that might be worth a second glance.

FOR BOYS

Kevin didn’t exactly drop too far from its pinnacle in the 1970s. It was #13 back then, but #67 now. The Irish name means handsome—and is a nice break from the Celtic Aidens and Dylans.

Jeremy, on the other hand, has fallen mightily from its peak in the 1970s—it was often a top 20 name, but now, this name that means “appointed by God,” is well below the top 100.

Gregory means vigilant—this #29 name in the 1970s has fallen to the top 300. I kind of like it in lieu of the equally classic Gabriel. Gregory’s a saint’s name and the name of legendary actor Gregory Peck.

Craig was the #56 baby name in the 1970s. But this name, which means “from the rocks,” has had a rocky time since then—it’s been on a precipitous fall from grace since the early 1990s. I like it in place of Caleb or Carter.

Shane is a real “cowboy” name, thanks to the film. It’s on a long, slow slide currently, after being the #60 name in the 1970s. Perhaps the fact that it’s been in a number of modern hits, including The Walking Dead, may give it a new lease on life.

FOR GIRLS

Angela was red hot in the 1970s—a top 10 baby name all the way. I’m seeing it as an alternative to the uberpopular Amelia. What do you think?

I’m a little sad to see the name Tracy (the 1970s 24th most popular name) fall so far—my sister was given the variant spelling Tracey back in the 1970s. My mom seemed to know how to pick names at their pinnacle of popularity! Tracy’s now fallen completely out of the top 1000, though it could make a lovely name for a boy, too—think Tracy Morgan.

Dawn was the perfect popular name for the post-hippie 1970s—and it’s no wonder it was the 26th most popular name. It fell out of the top 1000 at the dawn of the century, but might make a sweet middle name, if nothing else.

Monica was the perfect name for the Friends character who seemed to run the whole group—it means advisor. It was in the top 45 back in the 1970s, but these days, it’s hanging around in the top 500.

Melanie means dark, and it’s held pretty steady in the bottom of the top 100 ever since it hit #56 in the 1970s. It’s most famous as the name of Scarlett O’Hara’s best friend/rival from the classic Gone With the Wind. 

What do you think? Any of these 70 names worth a comeback? If you still haven’t found a baby name you love, email your question to me at lamilbrand@gmail.com, or check out our Baby Name Finder for more help!

Image: Disco chick by Nemanya/Shutterstock.com

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Cool Name of the Week: Annabel

Sunday, September 1st, 2013

My daughters start school this week—and while I’ve loved having them home this summer, I think we’re all ready to start a brand new school year. My older daughter is heading into fourth grade, which I remember as a big year for having more “grown-up” work. She’s starting to work in pen, for crying out loud!

One of my favorite assignments from fourth grade was choosing a poem to memorize and recite in front of the class. I picked one by one of my all-time favorite authors: Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe, a beautiful poem that he wrote after the early death of his wife Virginia. I can still recite the lines—”I was a child and she was a child in this kingdom by the sea/but we loved with a love that was more than love, I and my Annabel Lee…”

And I do love the name Annabel. It means “loving,” and it’s been on a big upswing since the beginning of the 21st century—though still outside the top 500. The spelling Annabelle is much more popular, currently sitting at #100—but I prefer Poe’s spelling.

It’s a name that could lend itself to an array of popular nicknames—Anna, Bella, Belle and Ella, to name a few. And it works beautifully with a number of middle names, including Poe’s choice of Lee. I also love June or Juno, Pearl, or Rose.

What do you think of the name Annabel? Does it seem too similar to the popular Isabella? Or is it cool enough to earn a spot on your short list?

 

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