Friday, June 26, 2015

Middle Name Statistics

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Middle names are something we all like to talk about, but unfortunately, the Social Security Administration doesn't record middle names of babies, only first names. So you can imagine how thrilled I was when I saw that my high school graduation program included most peoples' middle names--this offered me a set of data. Now, my high school only graduated 736 people, and some don't have middle names, or didn't want it to be listed in the program. However, my area is extremely diverse--racially, socio-economically, and religiously--so the small set of data I do have is still worth anaylzing. So, here's the data for the most common middle names among the Class of 2015 ('96 and '97 babies).

1. Marie (15)
2. Elizabeth (14) and Elisabeth (1)
3. Ann (4) and Anne (5)
4. Nicole (7) and Nykole (1)
5. Rose (8)
6. Grace (5)
7. Lee (2) and Leigh (3)
8. Jean (3) and Jeanne (1)
9. Louise (4)
10. Lynn (3) and Lynee (1)

Notable Trends
  • Alex- Names: Alexandra, Alexandria, Alexis (2)
  • An- Names: Analiese, Angelin, Anna, Ann (4), Anne (5), Annie
  • -Ay Names: Kay, May, Monet, Rae, (2), Shae
  • El- Names: Elaine, Elena, Elisabeth, Elizabeth (14), Ella, Eloise, Elvira
  • Esme Names: Esme (2), Esmeralda
  • Iman- Names: Iman (2), Imani
  • La- Names: Lanae (2), Lan'Yel, Larae, Lashae, Lashay, Latasha, Latefah, Latoya
  • Heritage Choices: Abu, Fatima, Fionnuala, Guadalupe, Inez, Keiko, Ondina, Roisin
  • Only two: Claire, Catherine/Katherine, Mary
  • Bartholomew
  • Bean
  • Beata
  • Chiffon
  • Elvira
  • Hopes
  • Houston
  • Love
  • Magaly
  • Saffia
  • Salome

1. James (10)
2. Edward (7)
3. William (7)
4. Charles (6)
5. Thomas (6)
6. Joseph (5)
7. Michael (4) and Micael (1)
8. Anthony (4)
9. David (4)
10. John (4)
11. Patrick (4)

Notable Trends
  • Al Names: Alan, Alexander (3), Allen
  • Ed- Names: Edmond, Eduardo, Edward (7), Edwin
  • Mark Names: Marcus, Markus (2)
  • Zach: Zachary (2), Zachery
  • Brit Picks: Basil, Edmond, George, Phillip (2), Sinclair, Tucker (2)
  • Heritage Choices: Angel, Azriel, Enahoro, Hong, Mitja, Sohail
  • Only two: Lee, Matthew, Peter, Robert
  • Aksel
  • Basil
  • Jewel
  • Kirby
  • Moss
  • Sinclair
  • Soliman
  • Winter
  • Wolfgang

*I'm taking next week off for the holiday. Sorry for the infrequent posting--this has been a busy summer for me!*

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

10 French Names You Never Thought of Using: Boys

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Last week was our first installment of this new series, and I want to know what you guys think! How is it compared to the alphabet letters? Today's list is all about French names for boys. Americans love French names for girls, but many don't consider using one on a boy (or don't even know their favorite boy name is French). Take a look.

Bastien- Bastien is the French form of the Latin Sebastian, and is often considered an alternate spelling to the more popular Bastian. Bastien, Bastian, and Sebastian are all skyrocketing in popularity, each one at an all time high (with Sebastian at #34). Bas or Baz makes a cute nickname.

Croix- Croix means cross in French, making him a sweet and subtle way to honor both heritage and religion. He can be prononced KROY (like the drink La Croix, most Americans' first association) or KWAH (as it would be said in France).

Emeric- Emeric would make a great import to America. The Em- prefix is very popular right now, and unlike most of them, he's exclusively for boys.

Florin- The Flor- names (mostly Flora and Florence) are experiencing a slight rise in the United States, and they're all over the place in Europe. Florin is quite popular in France, and would be very charming on this side of the pond.

Gable- With Gabriel being so fashionable (#24), it shocks me that Gable isn't even in the top 5000. He's such a wonderful name! Clark Gable makes a dashing namesake, especially if you love Old Hollywood.

Jules- Jules may sound girly to American ears, but in French he's very masculine (and trendy! He's #6). I think it's time for Jules to go back to the boys--we need a swanky nickname for all our Julians and Juliuses.

Mathis- Matthew is an ever-popular classic, and Matthias is on his way to becoming mainstream. Next in line? Mathis. Pronounced like Matisse, he's a slim, stylish variant of Matthew with a lot of potential.

Olivier- Oliver is becoming a big hit in the U.S., and soon parents are going to be searching for alternatives. Olivier (oh-LIV-ee-ay) could be the answer. Oli or Ollie are nice nicknames.

Vardon- I've been hearing a lot of -arden names lately, is that the next big sound? If so, put Vardon on your list before the trend hits. He's a French surname meaning "green knoll."

Yann- Yann is the French form of John, and makes a very preppy pick for a baby boy. He can be a nickname for Yancy or Yannick if you prefer longer names.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Full Names for Nick

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Nick is a name of the nineties. He's most commonly used as a nickname for Nicholas, which maintained a steady popularity of 6 from 1995 until 2002. He's now at #54 and falling. However, Nicholas hasn't been out of the top 200 since 1881. That means he's a classic in every way, shape, and form, even if we don't think of him as one. If you're dying to use Nick, but aren't a fan of Nicholas, I have some other options listed here that will get you to him.

Benicio- Benicio may be pronounced (ben-EE-see-oh), but that doesn't mean you can't use Nick as a nickname. He gives Nick some Latin flavor.

Dominic- Dominic is as popular as ever, and arguably the most trendy name on this list. He sits at #69, down a spot from 2013's #68. Mario Lopez's son Dominic goes by Nico, but Nick works just as well.

Finnick- Finnick is an English name made popular by the book and movie series The Hunger Games. Hardcore fans of the books are a little young to be having chidren, but could we see a rise in Finnicks in the near future?

Monico- Rarely does it happen that a male name is derived from a female name. But so it is with Monico. He's the male version of Monica, a '70s staple. Monico is undoubtedly more modern than his female counterpart, and Nick (or the simpler Nic) makes a wonderful nickname.

Nicasio- Nicasio is a Spanish form of Nicholas, with a powerful meaning--"victory." He's an exotic yet wearable option for an American baby.

Nicholas- You can never go wrong with a classic.

Nichols- Nichols (and alternate spelling Nicholes) are almost unheard of as first names in the United States, but are fairly common surnames. Unlike Nicole, the emphasis is put on the first syllable.

Nicholson- Nicholson is quite a name, and most people would assume you named your son after Jack. But if you call him Nick, this is not a very significant problem.

Nicolai- Nicolai, while only ranking at #2020, is at his highest popularity ever in the United States. He's very dashing, and an easy alternative to Nicholas.

Nicolo- Nicolo is Italy's answer to Nicholas, and lends himself more to Nico rather than Nick. Nick is still a more than usable nickname though.

Nikhil- This Sanskrit name had a brief run in the U.S. top 1000, charting from 1997 to 2009. At his peak he was #818. Nihkil is a lovely choice for Indian-Americans who like Nick (or Nik).

Yannick- I first came across Yannick when I was researching for this post, and ever since then, I can't stop thinking about him. He makes a truly unique way to get to Nick.

Friday, June 12, 2015

W Surnames: Part Two

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A couple weeks back we looked at 10 W surnames that could be worn as first names. Today I have 10 more for you to consider. Take a look.

Wellington- Wellington may seem like quite a mouthful for a little dude, but the nickname Wells makes him worth the while.

Westerfield- Wes and West names are all the rage, but Westerfield is rarely used. Field and Fielder (along with Wes and West) are good short forms if he's a little long for your taste.

Weston- Weston is at an all time high on the U.S. popularity charts, sitting pretty at #136. He's cowboy-chic, a sound many parents are going for.

Wharton- For those of you who like namesake names, Wharton is a great one. Edith Wharton is definitely someone to be inspired by--she was the first woman to recieve a Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

Wheeler- Another name that's cowboy-chic, Wheeler conjures up images of western wagon wheels. He fits in with the occupational name trend, but is relatively undiscovered. He ranks at #3728.

Whittaker- Whittaker is one of the preppiest names on this list, and even more so with the nickname Whit.

Wilkinson- To many people's ears, Wilkinson does not sound like a plausible first name. However, he is a variant of William, and the nicknames Will, Wilkie, and Kinsey make it an option.

Wilson- Considering William's popularity, I'm surprised Wilson isn't more popular. He is only at #594, which is perfect for parents wanting a familar yet uncommon name.

Winton- Winton is an English surname with a sweet meaning--"friend's farm." He's rare but stylish, and you can call him Win for short.

Woodson- Woody hasn't been a popular nickname for decades, but as the Toy Story generation grows up, who's to say they won't bring it back? Woodson is a lovely choice for a full name, espeically if you like the surname feel.

*I'm taking next week off (it's my birthday, and I'm starting a new job), so I will see you all back here on the 22nd.*

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

10 French Names You Never Thought of Using: Girls

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You guessed it, the next leg of this series is going to be by culture. Today we are going to look at French names, a perrenial favorite among American parents. If you're looking for something beyond Gabrielle or Vivienne, consider one of the following.

Anais- Anais is the lovely French version of Anne, and most people are familiar with her as the name of author Anais Nin. She's got a quirky cute feel, perfect for the daughter of creative parents.

Axelle- French names aren't known for being rebellious, but Axelle is just that. She has legitimate French roots, though most people will think you just made an addition to Axel. Nevertheless, she is an interesting pick. I'm putting Axelle on my list of future celebrity baby names.

Celestine- If you've read this blog for a while, you will know how much I love Celestine. She's been meantioned in six previous blog posts, which is a lot more than most other names can say. Celestine is absolutely gorgeous. For those of you too afraid to put her in the first name position, make her a middle for a short first name.

Delphine- Delphine means exactly what she sounds like, "dolphin." She's a name I often hear meantioned among the baby name crowd, but I've never encountered one in real life. Though most likely the average Joe on the street has never heard of her.

Francoise- Frances and Francis are on the rise. Francesca and Francisco have hit plauteus. The impeccibly French Francoise has never even broken the top 1000, making her a truely unique pick. Adorable nicknames Frannie and Francie are a bonus.

Leonor- Eleanor is just getting more and more popular, but her exotic variant Leonor is practically unheard of. She lends herself to the nicknames Leo and Leonie, which Eleanor doesn't offer.

Lilou- Lilou is a catch-all nickname for all L names in France, and even non-L names as well (I know a French Amelie called Lilou). She's a whimsical option, and a charming alternative to Lily.

Maelys- Maelys has all the right sounds. She's pronounced (may-LEES)--her long vowels and soft consonants make her a great contendor for parents who love liquidy names. There is normally an umlaut over the e, which makes her kind of tricky for American use. However, that should never be a deal breaker.

Magalie- Part Margaret, part Amelie, Magalie is the best French name you've never heard of. She'd make a great import.

Pomeline- Pomeline wins for my all time favorite guilty pleasure name. I would never use her on my own child, but man is she gorgeous. Pomme (the French word for apple) is a sweet nickname.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Catalog Names: Paper Source, June 2014

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Hooray! Ever since I wrote this post I have been waiting for Paper Source to switch their invitation designs and incorporate new names into their catalog. It finally happened, so take a look at all the new names mentioned.

Amelia (x2)
Amelia Caroline
Amy (x3)
Anne (x2)
Anne Marie
Cecilia Mae
Christina (x2)
Deborah Monique
Elizabeth (x4)
Elizabeth Marie
Emily (x5)
Erin (x2)
Gabriella Marie
Heather (x3)
Joanna Marie
Kara Anne
Katherine (x2)
Lindsey Claire
Lucille Frances
Maggie (x2)
Mary (x3)
Mathilda Marie
Nahlia Rae
Naomi (x2)
Rebecca (x2)
Rose Ellen

Alexander (x2)
Anthony Joseph
Brandon Joseph
Clifford Louis
Dave (x2)
Dean Weber
Hunter Aidan
James (x3)
Jeffrey David
Jeremy (x2)
Milan Oscar
Peter Arthur
Theodore Jackson
Tom (x2)
Tyler Horace
William (x2)
William John

Jamie (x2)

Friday, June 5, 2015

Share a Coke Names: Summer 2015

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Some of my most-viewed posts profile last summer's Share a Coke campaign (part one, part two). This year, Coca Cola is bringing it back, and they've added tons more names. Here I've listed all the names that didn't appear on the U.S. or U.K. lists last year. It's all after the jump.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

10 Z Names You Never Thought of Using: Boys

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On April 30, 2014, I wrote a post entitled 10 A Names You Never Thought of Using: Girls. Now, over thirteen months and 52 posts later, this little series is coming to an end. Sob! Enjoy the final installment of this alphabetical series. Without further ado, I present to you, 10 Z Names You Never Thought of Using: Boys.

Zacha- Lately we have come to see Sasha as a possibility for boys, but if that's still a little feminine for you, try Zacha. This spelling is definitely more masculine than Zosia (of the same pronunciation).

Zade- Names like Cade, Kade, and Jade all reside within the top 500, so why haven't parents gravitated toward Zade? I don't have a satisfying answer, but if you like modern, invented names, just know that Zade is an underused option.

Zale- Dale is more likely to be baby's grandpa rather than the baby, and that name can be a tough one for honoring purposes. Zale offers a contemporary equivalent.

Zed- Zed is the pronunciation of the letter Z in English speaking countries besides America. So I know he'd be an interesting and usable choice here in the United States, but what about for Canadians and Europeans? (someone tell me). That being said, we name our children Bea, Sea, Jay, Kay, and Elle, so why not Zed?

Zelman- Zelman is a variation of Solomon, which means "peace." If you're looking to put a modern spin on a biblical classic, Zelman is one to consider.

Zen- What better name for the baby of spiritual, meditative parents? Zen requires a brave namer, so if you're not up to the challenge, put him in the middle.

Zero- Zero might not be the best number to name your kiddo for, but after watching The Grand Budapest Hotel a couple of times, I'm convinced it could work.

Zeru- Of course, the name Zeru eliminates the number connotation, all while keeping the same sounds. He's actually a Basque name meaning "sky."

Zevi- If you love Levi, but not his popularity, Zevi could be the right name for you. The two are actually not related--Zevi comes from Zvi, both Hebrew names meaning "deer."

Zorion- Zorion (and brother Zorian) is the Basque form of Orion, a name that is surging in popularity. For a shorter version, you could use Zoran or Zoren, of the same origins.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Catalog Names: Mini Boden, Summer 2015

via Boden
Happy June everybody! A few weeks ago, Mini Boden's Summer catalogs were released, and guess what? The names are back! I am beyond thrilled that we get to continue these posts (because we all know Boden models have the best names).


Kai (x2)