Brand New Baby Names: Atom, Hutton, and Swift
Here’s the beautiful thing about baby names: the well never runs dry.
No matter how many names cycle through Top Ten lists, no matter how many celebrities choose truly outlandish names for their children, there are always more names. Neglected gems from years gone by, novel words never before considered names, imports from abroad.
Need proof? Look no further than the overwhelming response to last week’s Invent a Name Challenge.
Or just read the baby name blogs, high profile birth announcements, and Nameberry message boards any day of the week. Plenty of parents, from Hollywood A-listers to the family next door, are choosing inventive, daring names for their children. The boldest might surprise us with their first name choices, while others play it safe with firsts but choose sparky, unexpected middles.
There are no guarantees, of course. An obscurity you choose in 2015 could hover just outside the US Top 100 by the time your kiddo heads off to kindergarten. But that just opens the door for another group of parents to innovate with the names of their children.
Some of the most interesting names making headlines this past week were:
Atom – Rosamund Pike named her firstborn Solo, as in Han. And solitude. So she and Robie Uniacke were bound to choose something surprising for their second son, born in December. Rosamund recently shared that baby #2 is called Atom, inspired by her “easy and elemental” homebirth. It’s a name that pairs well with Solo. The only downside? Having to explain that his name isn’t Adam – pretty much all the time.
Swift – While we’re talking about word names, did you see Joanna Goddard’s post on middle names? Gone are the days when we were all Anne, Elizabeth, or Marie. Jo mentions a friend who gave her child the middle name Swift after a very fast labor. She also lists kids with the middle names Buffalo (from dad’s childhood nickname), Rocket (chosen by the child himself), and Sunshine.
Plum – Scroll through the 300+ comments on Jo’s post and you’ll read one mom’s story. Her maiden name was Plummer. And so her oldest daughter’s middle name is Plum. Writer Plum Sykes first made waves in the 1990s. Sykes was born Victoria, but she’s known exclusively by her nickname. Since then, Plum has been heard in the middle spot more and more often. One of my favorites is Milla Plum, daughter of blogger James Kicinski-McCoy of Bleubird Blog.
James – Yes, the blogger behind Bleubird is a woman called James. But James is making headlines today because it’s rumored that Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds gave this traditionally masculine name to their daughter. If there were a trophy for controversial name of the week, this one would win. Of course, we’ve fallen for rumors about Blake and Ryan’s baby name before, so no promises that this is any more true than the stories about Violet.
Jupiter – June, Juno, Juniper and … Jupiter? Mila Kunis’ first post-baby movie is Jupiter Ascending. She plays a cleaning lady destined to save the Earth, named Jupiter thanks to a star-gazing dad. The film hasn’t been a huge hit, but on sound alone, it is easy to imagine Jupiter as a brother for Orion or a sister for Harper. The movie is packed with surprising names.
Jaci – Parents are in love with Luna and wild about Phoebe. Ready for a new moon name? This article about Brazilian baby names mentions Jaci as a Tupi name meaning moon, one used for boys and girls. Europeans and Amerindians alike once spoke Tupi throughout the country, and even though the language is nearly extinct, the names remain popular. The writer also explains some of the inspiration for the anything goes approach to naming babies in Brazil.
Scout – Have you spotted pint-sized fashionista London Scout, also known as @scoutfashion on Instagram? Scout’s mom Sai has made a style icon of three year old, who is called London, Scout, London Scout, and LS – but mostly Scout on social media, like her blog, Scout the City. (That’s her looking fierce and adorable above.) On the heels of fellow To Kill a Mockingbird-inspired choices Harper and Atticus, Scout seems poised to become a go-to name in the near future.
Amoret – Smoosh together Amelia, Harper, and Juliet, and you’ll have this poetic invention first used by Edmund Spenser in The Faerie Queene, Amoret comes from the Latin word for love. It’s a name that I always think of around Valentine’s Day. The lovely Rubyellen of Cakies has a daughter named Glow Amorette.
Hutton – Just when it seems like every surname under the sun has been used as a given name, something fresh and original appears. 7th Heaven alum Beverley Mitchell and husband Michael Cameron recently welcomed a son, Hutton Michael, a little brother for Kenzie Lynne.
Have you spotted any new or surprising names lately?
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on February 16th, 2015 at 12:02 pm
Maybe the name Jaci should turn yellow to represent its unisex appeal.
Jupiter I love for a boy, and I can see it being a hit in the future.
on February 16th, 2015 at 12:04 pm
I KNEW someone was going to use Atom one day. It was only a matter of time. I weirdly like it.
Scout is my favorite name but I don’t want to hear my family’s mouth about it.
I prefer Mars over Jupiter.
James is most likely just another rumor (I hope it’ false but it could just as well be true). But how is Blake so different from James? They’re both boy names and Ryan is a boy name girls are taking too so we can’t get too gung-ho about it.
on February 16th, 2015 at 12:29 pm
I don’t see the big deal about James on a girl…well, I do get it. It’s a Biblical male name which to me makes it all the more MALE but I do like it on a girl. No problem here. It’s a surname as well so I feel like that opens the door for it to be used on a girl.
I know a little boy who is school aged named Hutton. So that one isn’t new to me.
I also know a little boy with the middle name Swift…after the author.
I think Plum for Plummer is adorable 🙂
on February 17th, 2015 at 12:46 am
Plum is so cute! I’m definitely going to steal that one. I read the comment, and their other daughter’s middle is Lemon. How cute!
on February 17th, 2015 at 9:07 am
Using the middle name Plum as a way to honor the last name Plummer is so innovative! I never would have thought of it but I absolutely love it. And continuing the fruit theme and giving their second daughter the middle name of Lemon is completely adorable.
I don’t mind James being used for the Reynolds new baby girl (if the rumors are true) as indiefendi2 said above both Blake and Ryan are unisex names so it would be sweet if they continued that with their own children.
on April 6th, 2018 at 7:51 am
My Son’s middle name is Atom – signifying that he is the most elemental and essential key component for my wellbeing, happiness, and to experience love in it’s purest form.
I love it, and don’t mind that most people think I’m saying Adam…it’s like our little special secret, unless they see it written down or I feel inclined to share.
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