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By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

We’re just days into the new year, and there’s so much to anticipate.

What will Zara Phillips Tindall, the least conventionally named of Queen Elizabeth II’s grandchildren, name her first child?  When the 2013 data is released, will Jacob still be the most common name for boys born in the US, or will Mason unseat him?  Which fictional character names will take us by surprise?

But this week, I’m thinking about a very specific question: of all the unconventional word name possibilities, which will go from sounding wacky and way out there to mainstream in 2014?

Kids called Willow, River, Scarlett, Genesis, Serenity, and Cash are nothing new, but not so long ago those all sounded as outlandish as Apple or Bear.

Earlier this week The Tennessean reported that the majority of Americans are completely fine with kids called Messiah.  That’s pretty tolerant – if we can handle Messiah, surely Pilot is no big deal.

And yet, I wonder about the power of noun names to influence our choices.  Nancy recently shared a quote on nominative determinism – an elaborate way of saying that your name determines your future.

Will calling your child Forest make him outdoorsy?  Will Aria love to sing?  Can Cash expect to hit it big on Wall Street – or maybe Vegas?  Is Valor brave and Honor honorable?

Plenty of parents must be hoping this is true.  Or at least they’re untroubled by the possibility.  Because we’ve been borrowing from the dictionary with abandon as 2013 slipped into 2014.

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Stylish Baby Names

Nameberry guest blogger and star intern Hannah Tenison uncovers a catalogue of intriguingly stylish baby names.

Savvy shoppers know that the best deals and sales are to be found after the holidays, when retailers who need to make room for new spring inventory drastically slash prices. This year, with my gift cards in hand, I have been browsing clothing websites in search of the best deals and steals.

What I found, however, in addition to the array of beautifully discounted clothing I had anticipated, was a plethora of stylish baby names. Retailers, perhaps in an effort to imbue their clothing with a certain personality or style, are frequently naming their garments, and some clothing manufacturers are surprisingly (and delightfully) very skilled at the name game.

One of my favorite websites to troll, Rugby Ralph Lauren, offered up such a dazzling bevy of holiday delicacies that I felt compelled to share them with all the other berries out there! The choices range from the lusciously feminissima (Calixta and Forsythia) to crusty surname (Talcott and Ackley) to epic medieval (Baldric and Rowena), and all of them were so appealing that it was hard to whittle down the complete list of stylish baby names I’d found. The ones I’ve compiled for the sake of this blog are my favorites; unusual, fresh, and imminently “wearable.” In any case, Rugby is brilliant for putting so much effort into these names; I can’t be the only one who, given the choice between a blouse called “Araminte” and one called “Maddysin,” would take the former!

Girls

Aberdare

Althea

Araminte

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