The name Gretchen is a girl's name of German origin meaning "pearl". Gretchen and is often added to lists like Unique Vintage Baby Names for Girls and discussed in our forums with posts like "Heaven / Hell / Purgatory Girls".
From the experts:
Like Greta, Gretchen is a German Margaret diminutive that has become an American quasi-classic, though not much used today, having dropped off the list in 2009. She was at her high point in the 1970s, making it into the top 200.
Gretchen appears in Goethe's Faust, and has been seen more recently on Heroes and Breaking Bad. The name is currently enjoying a dash of modern glamour via actress Gretchen Mol.