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Blue Jean Baby Names

bluejeans

by Pamela Redmond Satran

Maybe it’s because I used to be a fashion editor, but I’ve often thought that names were like clothes: coming into and going out of style, some choices enduring through the ages while others are momentary trends, everywhere for a season and then sinking from sight.

But the other day I started thinking that names are like clothes in a different way.  Some names, I decided, are like magnificent couture ballgowns – gorgeous, luxurious, distinctive, dramatic, but a bit grand for everyday use.  This may be the factor that keeps parents from choosing names like Raffaela and Orlando, Atticus and Anastasia, lovely as they may be.

More comfy and cozy, better suited to real modern life, may be the blue jean baby names.  Down-to-earth and easy to wear, these blue jean names are popular but not trendy, attractive but never showy.  With these names, you register the person first and the name second….or maybe fifth.

Of course, their blue jeanness may be the very quality that makes many parents avoid these names.  More and more parents are looking for names that transcend the ordinary, standard-issue choices.  These names have at least as many obvious cons as they have pros.

Not every popular or classic name qualifies as a blue jean name.  Sophia, Isabella, and Olivia are far too florid, for instance, while Mason and Liam are too de la mode.  Many stylish nickname-names slip into the blue jean class, yet Bella and Jace seem overly trendy to me – blue jean names, maybe, but with orange rivets and fancy stitching.

And being classic or basic doesn’t automatically give a name that blue jean quality: Mary, George, Catherine, and John are all a bit too formal and old-fashioned to be blue jean.

And how about Blue, Jean, Levi, Denim, Lee?  Ironically enough, I don’t think any of them make the grade.

Here, my nominations for Blue Jean Baby Names:

girls

Addie

Annie

Claire

Ellie

Emily

Emma

Evie

Jane

Jenny

Jessie

Kate

Lucy

Maddie

Sadie

Sally

boys 

Adam

Alex

Ben

Charlie

Daniel

David

Henry

Jack

Joe

Luke

Matthew

Nick

Sam

Tom

Will

Zack

Any you would add?  Subtract?

Recycled baby blue jeans on Etsy at vintagebabyjane.

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