Thanks for the responses! Some of the suggested names I'm digging are
Emery (Too many "Em" names out there?)
Emerson (see above)
Marlowe (This has been growing on me, but our last name starts w/ 'M'. Not sure I like the alliteration)
People seem to like Penelope most out of the list... truthfully, I'd probably rarely use the full name. I love it for the nn Penny. I think it feels spunky.
It seems as though I gravitate toward surnamey names, and would love something unusual but not weird...
I was just going to suggest Marlowe, but saw someone else did. So...
Monroe ( Not super feminine and an M)
I like your list a lot! I once wrote a similar list myself of surnamey names for ladies. Bold are my favorites.
Elliott -- no no no
Quinn -- I love this short spunky name! Twice a cheerleader (Glee and Daria) she's got a lot of pep.
Connelly - I love this, seems very literary
Greer -- This is great one too! I've met one Greer, and I thought she was drop dead cool soon as she said her name.
Bellamy -- i love this!
Leighton - I think this name is so beautiful and unique but sadly too tied to one actress (whom I love, no doubt). Once met a little girl Anniston and all I could think of was the mom must love friends. Don't used unless married to Gossip Girl (XOXO)
Waverly - I love this soft feminine name. It's so pretty.
Penelope (Penny) - Kardashian katastrophe.
Do you like: (?)
I like your list a lot! My favourites are Waverly, Elliott and Quinn. Other pp suggestions that I like are Hadley, Winslet and Emory.
I don't think there are too many "Em" names, but Emery isn't my favorite. I just think of emery boards like for your nails. I prefer Emerson. Still like Penelope, and Penny is definitely spunky and cute! I was the one who suggested Marlowe and I love it, but if you don't want alliteration (though I don't mind it), what about Harlow? Other suggestions: Ainsley, Reese, Maren, Amity, Verity, Devon, Auden, Blythe.
I'm not a big fan of unisex names, or boy names being used on girls (which is what I feel that some of your choices, like Elliott, are), but I don't mind Leighton, Greer, and Waverly. I like Penelope.
Not a fan of Quinn really for a boy or a girl. I dislike Elliott very much on a girl as it is a fabulous boy name and there are so many better ways to get Ellie as a nickname. Connelly and Bellamy are far too surname-y to be nice girl names for me.
How about Arden, Adair, Linden, Tatum, Fallon, or Sloane?
es. The following are my current faves:
Elliott - I know an Elliott who's an accomplished artist and a stylish, feminine person. She has made me love this name.
Quinn - I love that Q, but Quinn doesn't do it for me. I find it cold. I think Quince could be wonderful.
Connelly - I immediately think of Jennifer Connelly. It's not exactly like Aniston, but it's a surname that has a pop-culture association.
Greer - I like Greer. Makes me think of Pam Grier. I think it's tough and cool.
Bellamy - Something about this sounds like Cockney slang to me... I feel like it must mean something rude when said with a British accent.
Leighton - I know two male Leightons, both lovely people. I'm fond of the name, but it IS surnameish, a bit hard-edged, a bit cold.
Waverly - Sounds like a hotel to me.
Penelope (Penny) - YES we have a winner. Penny is so frickin cool. I knew a Nell in college. Everyone wanted to be her friend. She was cool, gorgeous, talented, and so mysterious. Penelope is beautiful and versatile.
Elliott - LOVE know a darling little girl with this name
Quinn - ok but nms; more boyish
Connelly - dislike; very boyish and doesn't have a nice sound to me
Greer - ditto - sorry!
Bellamy - ok but nms
Leighton - is this pronouced lay or lee? If the former, I see a lot of teasing; if the latter, I don't love the sound
Waverly - LOVE
Penelope (Penny) - nms but it's a great name; not a huge fan of Penny as a nn though.