Friday, May 30, 2014

Song Names: Simon & Garfunkel

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Simon & Garfunkel are a pretty cool band. I had not heard of them until I watched The Graduate for the first time (two-ish years ago), and my love for them was reaffirmed when I saw The Royal Tenenbaums. It turns out so many of their songs have names in them. There are quite a bit more boys  names and double barrels in the titles than usual, which is perfect if you want a son with an unforgettable name.

Girls:
Anji- Spell it Angie, then forget about it because why would you name your baby Angie?
April- A dated month pick, but the song is really pretty.
Cecilia- Perfect song, perfect name.
Emily- Overused and on the verge of sounding dated.
Kathy- If you need a nickname for Katherine, I would pick Kit or Kate.
Peggy- I could see this one working on a baby, but then again, I know a Peggy (who's my age).
Rose- Sweet. Lovely. Just don't put her in the middle.
Susie- I feel like I always talk about how Susie is a great choice due for a comeback. So I won't say it again.

Boys:
Benedictus- Is your son going to become the Pope? Then skip this one and go for Benedict.
Johnny Ace- Totally awesome, but a hard name to pull off.
Julio- If Julian is back, why can't Julio be too?
Richard Cory- This sounds like the name of a middle aged accountant. Richard by itself could work.
Frank Lloyd- Naming children after specific people is not a good idea.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

10 C Names You Never Thought of Using: Girls

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We're on to C names today. This week is the girls, and it's an excellent group. If you're looking for a C name (way) less trendy than Charlotte or Chloe, I've got your back. Take a look.

Calais- I think names that end in -lais are gorgeous. Calais is a wonderful name, and makes a great middle as well, due to the emphasis on the second syllable.

Cameo- One of my favorite word names. Name your daughter Cameo, then decorate her nursery in vintage silhouettes. It will be awesome.

Carmela- A very sweet name that is often overlooked.

Celestine- Celeste ranks at 469. Too popular for you? Try Celestine, her cooler, moodier older sister.

Ciel- More creative than naming your baby Sky.

Circe- I'm not a big fan of Greek names, but I adore Circe. She's upbeat and spunky.

Citron- Citron is one of my guilty pleasure names. She's a little outlandish, but I think people would get over it.

Cleo- It baffles me that people don't use Cleo. Every -eo name is so popular, how could she have missed the boat? I say take her for yourself. Another cute spelling is Clio, like Abby's daughter.

Clove- I thought this name was going to get a boost from The Hunger Games but it didn't. She's more modern than Clover, and a great name for a foodie.

Coral- Has Downton Abbey made your favorite girl name too trendy? Darn. Give Coral a chance, she'd be super adorable on a baby, plus you have a built in color scheme for the nursery.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Nicknames for Magnolia

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Congrats to Magnolia on breaking into the top 1000! She stands at 981, so while not popular yet, she's definitely on the way up. Magnolia is a great alternative to Margaret, but feels a bit more whimsical. She is a long name, however, and some would say she needs a nickname. If you fall into that camp, take a look at the following list for some inspiration.

Expected:
Maggie- Classic nickname for the Mag- names.
Meg- I recently heard this one on a baby. Very retro-cute.
Lia- With so many other options, I don't think Lia is the right choice of nickname.

Unique:
Mae- Watch out, Mae and May are up and coming.
Molly- I would hesitate to use Molly nowadays considering she's the street name for ecstasy.
Nolia- A little long for a nickname, but still very charming.

Unheard of:
Aggie- People would mishear it for Maggie, but she's a little more interesting.
Nola- Spunky. This would be a fun one if you were from New Orleans.
Nollie- A better alternative to Molly.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Song Names: ABBA

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Do you guys have that one band that is totally not your style but you love them anyways? For me, ABBA is that band. Swedish 70s pop might be the exact opposite of my usual indie rock. They have an interesting mix of names throughout their songs, take a look.

Girls:
Cassandra- I'm not sure if I'd call her a modern classic, but she doesn't sound dated to my ears.
Helen- Ready for a comeback? All the other El- names have, so why not?
Jeanie- I can see Jean, but Jeanie is a stretch.
Mia- Very popular, no one would get the reference.
Nina- The song is Nina, Pretty Ballerina, so you better hopes she likes to dance.
Piper- Cute and peppy.
Suzy- This spelling seems dated to me. Try Susie.

Boys:
Bobby- If you're looking for a nickname for Robert, try Robby or Bertie.
Fernando- This is the only one on the list where I could see people understanding the connection.
Livingston- It might take a while for him to learn how to spell it, but Livingston is a great name.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

10 B Names You Never Thought of Using: Boys

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Time for the boys! None of these are in the top 1000, which is perfect if you are looking for a unique name. In my opinion, some of the best boys names are short and sweet, which is what many of the names listed turned out to be. I tried to include something for everybody, but they all turned out to be two syllables or fewer. Oh well, enjoy!

Baird- A lovely choice, so long as you don't call your daughter Bird.

Banning- It's not often that you find a name ending in -ing. Banning is one that works.

Barlow- Marlowe, Harlow, Charlot, all the -low names are coming back, why not add Barlow to the list?

Bauer- An occupational surname meaning farmer that would make a good choice regardless of your job.

Beacon- He shares sounds with Reese Witherspoon's Deacon, yet has a calming, nature-ish feel.

Beal- It will remind people of Ally McBeal, but that's not a bad thing.

Birch- Hands down the best tree name.

Boone-A fun hero name. Decorate his nursery with a woodland theme.

Brio- Brio fits in with names like Leo and Theo, but is way more unique.

Burke- Preppy names are coming back, Burke should be in consideration.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Alternatives to Emma

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Emma is a very loveable name. She's poised to take the top spot from Sophia, which means she's very popular indeed. Lots of people love Emma, but don't want to commit to such a popular name. Fortunately there are some other options that are similar to Emma in terms of sight, sound, and style.

Sight
Elle- She sits safely in the 300s, so popularity is not an issue, but the actress Elle Fanning has made her name rise quite a bit.
Esme- A wonderful literary name.
Etta- Funky retro Etta is a great choice for parents avoiding Emma and Ella.

Sound
Emer- She's pronounced EE-mer, and is a delightful French name.
Enya- A little Enya would feel right at home with other preschoolers named Emma, Anya, and Oona.
Gemma- Seemingly very British, but would work well on an American child.

Style
Eliza- She's got the same old-fashioned feel as Emma, while still being modern.
Imogen- An up-and-comer. Idgie is a cute nickname.
Nina- Elegant and short, just like Emma.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Song Names: The Rolling Stones

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Happy Friday! I'm back with another installment of Song Names, this time from The Rolling Stones. These names don't have the same cutesy feel as The Beatles, but many of them are very useable. Take a look.

Girls:
Angie- She's not used much in her own right these days, but Angie would make a sweet nickname for all those Angelinas and Evangelines.
Claudine- You're more likely to meet a Claudia, but the -dine names are beginning to sound retro. Save this one for a few years.
Fanny- We're seeing a rise in Fran- names, but Fanny probably won't make a comeback. Lookout for Frannie though.
Jane- Sweet, loveable Jane. What's not to like?
Melody- Great choice for music lovers.
Mercy- One parent loves the Rolling Stones, the other loves Kanye? Name the baby Mercy, problem solved.
Ruby- Ruby is such a happy name. I expect her to break the top 100 this year.
Virginia- She's slightly dated, but call her Vivi, Gigi, or Ginger to spice her up.
Winter- This season name is newly up for consideration.

Boys:
Jack- Always a classic. You can't go wrong with Jack.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

10 B Names You Never Thought of Using: Girls

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Time for the latest installment of this Wednesday series. Today we are looking at B names for girls. The most popular ones are Brooklyn, Bella, Bailey, and Brianna, which I consider overused. There are so many great options out there, so lets take a look.

Beah- She sounds like Leah with a B, and makes a great nickname for Beatrice or Beatrix.

Bergen- Many consider this a boy name, but the Bergen I know is a girl, and she wears it well.

Beryl- I fell in love with Beryl after reading A Taxonomy of Barnacles (I know it doesn't sound like it, but it's a novel). Slightly old-fashioned, but full of charm.

Bijou- One of the best water related names, along with Bay.

Bird- Super fun. Use it as the first name and call her Birdie, or stick it in the middle to make a more popular name spunky.

Blanca- She would make a great sister to Sofia.

Boheme- Girls Gone Child's Rebecca Woolf gave this name to one of her twins. She goes by Bo, which is super cute on a girl.

Bonita- Bonita means pretty in Spanish. She's a great choice if you want a girly name with a tomboyish nickname.

Britta- Bridget feels slightly dated, but Britta would be perfect for a baby.

Bronte- A gorgeous literary name, she would sound wonderful as a first or middle.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Unexpected Flower Names

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It's hard to argue with a good flower name. Lily, Daisy, Iris, Violet, Rose, these names are well liked, but they are also the most common flower names. If you know you want to use a flower name for your baby, why not choose something unexpected? I have the perfect list to spark some inspiration.

Girls:
Amaryllis
Anemone
Aster
Azalea
Begonia
Calla
Camellia
Chrysanthemum
Clover
Daffodil
Dahlia
Freesia
Gardenia
Hyacinth
Larkspur
Lavender
Liatris
Lilac
Lotus
Marigold
Mimosa
Peony
Petunia
Poinsettia
Posy
Primrose
Tansy
Zinnia

Boys:
Cosmo
Quince

Friday, May 9, 2014

Mom Names Reinvented

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Sunday is Mother's Day, and many moms-to-be would like to honor their mothers with their daughter's name. Unfortunately, Janet just isn't the name you picture your daughter with. Many names from the 50s and 60s are easily updateable, so have no fear. Baby girl can have a name that is both modern and honors Grandma.

Carol, Carolyn, Karen
Carina- Pretty and not too princessy.
Carmen- Given new life, thanks to Alec Baldwin's daughter.
Carys- The latest Car- name.

Janet
Jana- Simple and gorgeous.
Jane- A classic that is becoming more popular again.
January- The chicest month name, a la January Jones.

Lisa
Elisa- Both Elise and Elisa are rising, but Elisa is the less common of the two.
Lissa- Also a good way to honor a Melissa.
Lissy- Cute, but probably as a nickname.

Lori
Flora- Elegant.
Gloria- People are beginning to see Gloria's charm.
Lorelai- New moms that watched Gilmore Girls have been choosing this name for their daughters.

Mary
Margot- Margot Tenenbaum's sophisticated and blasé name transcends her name.
Marlowe- Not in the top 1000 yet, but I think this will be her year.
Marnie- Girls has helped Marnie become a recent hit.

Nancy
Annabel- All-American sweetheart.
Anneliese- Incredibly charming.
Annika- Annika has fallen in recent years, which makes her perfect for parents avoiding popularity.

Pamela
Paloma- Pamela's sounds rearranged.
Pamina- Makes Pamela sound less frumpy.
Pimm- One of my favorites, and a great update to Pam.

Sandra
Alessandra- Latin beauty.
Alexandria- Long, elegant, and rising in popularity.
Cassandra- Many parents nowadays would opt to call her Cassie.

Susan
Sukie- The cutest nickname for any of the Su- names.
Sunday- Whimsical, yet totally useable.
Susanna- It's hard to believe, but Susan is more popular than Susanna. She's an undiscovered gem.

Teresa
Tess- A name that definitely stands on her own (just ask my sister).
Tessa- But if you really don't believe me, go with Tessa.
Thea- Very sweet, and perfect for girls of all ages.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

10 A Names You Never Thought of Using: Boys

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Last week we talked about unusual A names for girls, and now it's time for the boys. The boys names in this series will be slightly different than the girls. Due to the lack of variety of boys names, some of the ones listed are in the top 1000. However, they are all below 500. Take a look, and tell me if you'd consider any of them for your own child.


Alaric- Alaric sounds cool, calm, and collected, traits you might want to give to a son.

Alban- Has that popular -an ending. Spell it Alben, and he's another way to get to Ben.

Ansel- I was inspired by my ACT passage on Ansel Adams to put this one on the list. It sounds slightly feminine, but there's an obvious connection, so he wouldn't get confused for a girl.

Anton- Joanna Goddard's baby is named Anton, and it wears very well. I wasn't too keen on it before, but seeing it on an actual baby made me see how useable Anton is.

Argo- Yeah, there's the movie, but Argo would make a fun name for a son. I would wait a few years, until people forget about the movie's catchphrase though.

Arlo- Arlo is Argo's softer, safer cousin. Plus, he fits in with rising names like Marlowe and Harlow.

Asa- Actor Asa Butterfield brought his name back into the spotlight. Even so, some people will think it's a girl name, a la Ava and Ana.

Axton- There's Paxton, Maxton, Braxton, and Jaxton, why not Axton? He's not my favorite name in the world, but he's a good option for parents looking for a name that's unique with trendy sounds.

Aza- Spices up Asa.

Azriel- This Hebrew name is a cool alternative to the overused Gabriel.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Catalog Names: Anthropologie Spring 2014

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Anthropologie is my all time favorite store. I love when their catalog comes in the mail, it's always so beautiful. Many of their Spring clothes have interesting names, so I thought I'd list them here. Tell me what you think.

Expected:
Brooke
Daisy
Eden
Flora
Isla
Lila
Lily
Tessa
Willow

Unique:
Aralia
Calliope
Ciel
Cleo
Fleur
Galen 
Glenna
Halsey
Majorelle
Mandala
Poesy
Stevie

Unheard of:
Ancora
Camia
Laelia
Lolanthe
Tippi
Tisana
Tonnelle

Friday, May 2, 2014

May Names

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Hooray, it's finally May! May is one of my favorite months. School begins to die down, and it feels like Summer is on it's way. To celebrate, lets look at some names that would be perfect for a May baby.

Birthstone:
Beryl- May's birthstone is Emerald, which is a member of the Beryl family. Beryl definitely has some charm, which many people don't appreciate.
Emerald- She's getting popular. I prefer Beryl.

Birth Flower:
 Lily- Lily of the Valley is May's birth flower, but many people won't get the connection with such a popular name.
Shoshana- Shoshana means lily, and makes a subtle connection to the month.
Valley- The other half of Lily of the Valley. Fun Fact: My second grade teacher named her daughter Chloe Lily-of-the-Valley, but the next day changed it to Chloe Regina.

Star Signs:
Gemini- People born later in May are Gemini. I'm not sure how useable she is, but it does work.
Taurus- Much better than Gemini, and the only boy name on the list. Taurus is a cool name, and he could be called Tor.
Venus- The planet Venus governs the star sign Taurus, but you have to be brave to use her as a name.

Related to May:
Amy- An anagram of May.
Maia- May is named after the goddess Maia.
May, Mae, Mabel, Maisie, etc.- Any May name works to honor a baby girl's birth month.


P.S. Tomorrow is my blogoversary. Three years old! I can hardly believe it :)