Category: Unusual Baby Names
By Linda Rosenkrantz
One of the most recognizable images of Halloween is that of a witch riding her broomstick across a full moon, which explains why trick-or-treat expeditions have long featured little girls garbed in black with tall pointy hats and maybe a few warts and moles. But pop culture has given us a variety of witches, some of which are actually nice and comical and even beautiful. So if you’re looking for a baby name that subtly references the holiday, here’s a mix of unusual witch-inspired names way beyond the expected Samantha and Sabrina.
By Kathleen McIntosh
With two new Harry Potter extensions, A History of Magic and Harry Potter: A Journey Through a History of Magic, set for release on October 20, this is a good time to revisit some of J.K. Rowling’s most cleverly-named characters.
Many names are references or wordplay that, had we been aware as children, reveal that character’s role or personality. Take note, writers: you can really pack a punch with your characters’ names. It’s the kind of clever detail that makes you say “aha!” as a teenager or adult, that engages you, and surprises you years after the fact.
If you’re looking for baby girl names that are unusual but not weird, international yet familiar, we’ve pulled together this list to suit your style.
You may recognize a handful thanks to their star connections: Ilaria is the name of Alec Baldwin‘s Spanish-born wife, for example, and Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds named their younger daughter Ines just last year. The African-born daughter of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt is named Zahara, and actress Uma Thurman got her name from a Hindu goddess.
Here, 31 baby girl names that are exotic, elegant, and eminently usable.
By Linda Rosenkrantz
So you’ve come up with what you’re sure is a unique name for your baby. A Biblical/word/animal/place name no one else has thought of using. Right? Wrong! That special, singular, clever, utterly distinctive name that you imagine no one else has considered was actually used by as many as a few hundred other parents in the past year. Some have even already reached the Top 1000.
Here are 20 of these surprising names on the path to popularity.
By Melissa Willets
In the 1970s, Melissa was the third most popular name for girls in the country. So naturally, my parents named me Melissa, and thus, not a year went by without me being one of several girls with my name in my class. In case you can’t tell, I hated it.
So, when it came time to name my first daughter, I was determined to pick a baby name that no one else her age would share. I can proudly report that Dana has never met another little girl with her name, as it was far more popular in the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s.
The fact that my name strongly influenced my baby name choice made me wonder how other parents’ names might inform their decisions.