Name Sage: Solving the puzzle of a name for sister #3
My husband and I cannot figure out a name for another girl.
Both daughters have eight letter first names and a flower/color name. Any ideas?
The Name Sage replies:
The basic requirements are as follows:
- First name must have exactly eight letters
- One of the names must be a color/flower
But there’s a little more to it than that. Your older daughters’ names have a very definite style. They’re a mix of the old-fashioned and the unexpected. Cordelia just barely ranks in the US Top 1000. Lavender never has been even that popular.
Lastly, since you’ve already used Rose and Miriam as middle names, I’ve avoided Rose– and Mary– names on my list of suggestions. It was painful, though, because Rosemary seems like a great sister name for Lavender and Cordelia!
Happily, we still have plenty of names to consider:
Delphine – It’s the French form of a Latin name referring to Delphi, in ancient Greece. I think it splits the difference between Cordelia and Lavender, style-wise. It also gives all three girls a different ending for their names, which can be nice. The bonus? Delphinium is a flowering plant, often called larkspur, so it could be your botanical name. Larkspur, of course, is also eight letters … but I think that might be too out-there!
Lucienne – I initially had Vivienne on this list, which is gorgeous and has eight letters, too. But Vivienne is awfully popular – maybe too popular for your family. Instead, would you consider Lucienne? Again, it’s French, and the feminine form of Lucien. With Luke, Lucas, and Lucy so popular, Lucienne could be a perfect fits in/stands out name.
Winifred – Is it too soon to bring back Winifred? Jimmy Fallon has a daughter called Winnie, and there were more than 550 girls named Winter last year alone. Lavender, Cordelia, and Winifred – it might not work for every family, but I think it’s really quite gorgeous in yours.
Annalise – Here’s a safer option: the compound name Annalise. In German, it’s typically Anneliese, from Anne and a short form of Elisabeth. Annalise seems to be the spelling that’s preferred in the US. (Viola Davis plays an Annalise in How to Get Away With Murder.) It ranked Number 457 in the US in 2014, which is more common than Lavender or Cordelia, but not overwhelmingly so. Another A-name option might be the regal, but increasingly popular, Adelaide.
Amethyst – An interesting thought: right now Lavender and Rose are flower names and color names. If you named your third daughter Amethyst, they’d all become color names, and you’d have to name a future son Indigo or Hunter. The only problem with Amethyst is that, color-wise, it’s pretty close to Lavender, which might make Cordelia feel like the odd one out.
Magnolia – Magnolia has the same feminine, ends in –lia style of Cordelia, but it’s a botanical choice like Lavender. It seems like the perfect compromise. Also, like Cordelia, the name currently ranks just inside the US Top 1000, which makes it nicely underused. Another M- possibility with eight letters and a botanical tie? The lovely Marigold, recently used by blogger Tara Wood for her new arrival.
Felicity – Felicity means happiness, so it’s a word name like Lavender, but shares the vintage style of Cordelia. It’s another choice that seems to pair perfectly with her sisters’ names. Another eight-letter F name from way back? Florence.
Campbell – I wanted to suggest Annabel, but the spelling Annabell seems tortured. Arabella has the right letter count, but is it too frilly? And then I thought about Campbell. Lavender and Cordelia are different, style-wise, so perhaps it makes sense to choose a third name with a different style altogether. Adding tailored Campbell to antique Cordelia and gentle Lavender would make this an eclectic set of names, indeed.
Some other possible combinations:
Overall my favorites are Felicity and Magnolia – I think they strike exactly the right note with the sisters’ names. But I can’t wait to hear what readers have to say, and how they mix and match the possibilities!
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on September 8th, 2015 at 11:09 pm
on September 8th, 2015 at 11:11 pm
These occur to me:
for flowers, off the top of my head.
(Hope I can count tonight!)
Cerulean (though I prefer it for a male slightly)
Well, those are all that I can think of that are the right number of letters.
on September 8th, 2015 at 11:17 pm
For the name with no letter requirements, just floral or color:
Celadon (though again nice on a male too)
Ghislaine (beautiful old rose name)
Zephirine (ditto above)
on September 8th, 2015 at 11:21 pm
on September 8th, 2015 at 11:23 pm
I love love love Felicity with Lavender and Cordelia! I like the previous commenter’s recommendation of Felicity Clover.
Another name that occurred to me, thinking along the lines of Amethyst… Sapphire! Different color, distinctive, and pretty. I can totally picture sisters Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, and Sapphire Lucille.
on September 8th, 2015 at 11:39 pm
Lavendar, Cordelia and Marigold sounds enchanting.
on September 9th, 2015 at 12:23 am
I think magnolia or marigold work really well.
I also like the middle name fern
on September 9th, 2015 at 1:12 am
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:00 am
My favorite suggestions are Marigold and Rosemary, despite the middle name thing! They both give this enchanting vibe to the sibset! And I don’t really think it matters about the middle names if they did love Rosemary. It’s a nice way to tie them all together!
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:09 am
I have to agree with Shaebaby.
Lavender, Cordelia and Marigold is just fantastic.
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:38 am
i like delphine and winifred, and would suggest arabelle instead of arabella. i would avoid an obviously botanical name like marigold not to leave cordelia out. also, annalise and felicity sound way to “normal”.
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:40 am
Agree with above Marigold is the best!
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on September 9th, 2015 at 2:52 am
[…] Nameberry – Baby Name Blog […]
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:53 am
Love the suggestion of Delphine – Delphina is also lovely.
on September 9th, 2015 at 3:57 am
I love the suggestions of Delphine, Winifred and Felicity – all would go really nicely with Lavender and Cordelia. I think Magnolia is a bit too close to Cordelia but PP’s suggestion of Marigold would work nicely.
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:15 am
It’s a hard one, as very few other floral names are so closely tied to a specific colour image… For that reason I’d suggest Iris, Lilac or Violet as middle names, which gives you more options for a first name.
How about Araminta as a first? Araminta Iris, Araminta Lilac or Araminta Violet. Plus, sisters named Lavender, Cordelia and Araminta would be lovely!
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:23 am
I like Magnolia or Felicity. With Ivy or Sage as a middle. Red, Purple, and Green. Plus botanical.
Sapphire is nice as well.
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:53 am
I would choose Delphine, I think that Lavender, Cordelia and Delphine sound nice together. I like the name Edelmira but I don’t think it could work. I agree that if you use a botanical name in the first place, it will be “connected” to Lavender and Cordelia might seem odd. It is not obvious that Delphine is somehow a flower name (delphinium). I also like Camellia but it sounds too close with Cordelia. Sapphire or Sapphira might also work.
For the middle spot I would suggest Iris, I think that Delphine Iris flows well.
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:57 am
How about Winifred Clover?
on September 9th, 2015 at 5:04 am
Wow, such a beautiful sibset! I really like Delphine and Felicity from the Name Sage’s suggestions, and I LOVE Sapphire that @swangirl suggested.
on September 9th, 2015 at 5:32 am
My first thought was Magnolia, but I love Marigold as well. Both would be perfect fits.
Lavender, Cordelia and Magnolia
Lavender, Cordelia and Marigold
on September 9th, 2015 at 5:41 am
Middle names: Coral, Fern, Goldie, Jacynth, Sienna,
on September 9th, 2015 at 5:55 am
I would pair Florence, Clover, Marigold or Matilda with Lavender and Cordelia (which are gorgeous!)
on September 9th, 2015 at 5:55 am
I also second Sapphire and Araminta!
on September 9th, 2015 at 6:25 am
I immediately thought of Marigold – I see others did too! 🙂
on September 9th, 2015 at 6:27 am
I second (or third?) Mathilda! Lavender, Cordelia & Mathilda would be great!
Of Abby’s suggestions, I agree with Abby, and my favourites were also Felicity & Magnolia (slight preference for Felicity). Love the MN Goldie, but it wouldn’t work with either. How about Felicity Golde? I have an ancestor whose name was Golde and she pronounced it GOLD-uh. Felicity Golde would be pretty!
on September 9th, 2015 at 6:49 am
I love the name Delphine Sage or Felicity Hazel, since both are botanical as well as colors that are distinct from the soft purple of Lavender and the varied hues of Rose, Sage is a pale green and Hazel is the lovely yellow-green-brown eye color or pale brown of hazelnut.
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, and Delphine Sage … Lavender, Cordelia, and Delphine (plus all 3 have the letters D and L in common)
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, and Felicity Hazel … Lavender, Cordelia, and Felicity
on September 9th, 2015 at 6:57 am
A+ on this post, Abby! I love Delphine and Winifred for this family.
on September 9th, 2015 at 7:10 am
I don’t think there is anything more anyone could really add – suggestions were all so great.
But I did think of a few more color/flower names that might work. (Finding names that are both really isn’t easy especially when you have Lavender and Rose to contend with).
Olive (not a flower but a plant)
on September 9th, 2015 at 7:15 am
I love Camellia, but it might be too close to Cordelia. Same with Rosemary- it is perfect, but from Lavender and Cordelia’s middle names! I really like Rosalind, but then again, Cordelia Rose.
on September 9th, 2015 at 7:26 am
My first thought was Zinnia! Felicity Zinnia maybe.
Susannah fits in nicely with the set, and is not very well used today. It means lily so it fits the flower requirement, or you could use a color name in the middle. Susannah Sage or Susannah Olive?
on September 9th, 2015 at 7:31 am
I love all of these names ( with the exception of masculine Campbell. Why??)
My favorites would be Magnolia and Marigold. However, it might make Cordelia stand out as the only non botanical name. I would also keep Rosemary on the list, despite having a middle name Rose. Rosemary has a totally different feel, and it’s a herb rather than a flower. Also, it’s botanical and vintage. I also love the suggestion of Araminta!
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on September 9th, 2015 at 7:47 am
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on September 9th, 2015 at 8:07 am
I love the suggestions of Magnolia Cecile and Juliette Iris. Scarlett could work with Cordelia and Lavender too.
on September 9th, 2015 at 8:21 am
I love Rosemary and Magnolia from the list. Yes, Rosemary was knocked off and Magnolia wasn’t officially on there, but I like them with Cordelia and Lavender.
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Rosemary Fern?
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Magnolia Sage?
on September 9th, 2015 at 8:55 am
Mazarine, French color name for deep blue and 8 letters. I love this name.
on September 9th, 2015 at 10:03 am
Ooh – great suggestion, detailsgirl!
on September 9th, 2015 at 10:04 am
Love those combinations, nadjajay – and maybe I was too hasty to kick off Rosemary!
on September 9th, 2015 at 10:05 am
It’s a mystery why we don’t hear more of Susannah, isn’t it? Great suggestion!
on September 9th, 2015 at 10:05 am
on September 9th, 2015 at 10:06 am
Ooh … isn’t Golde just gorgeous? What a great find on your family tree!
on September 9th, 2015 at 10:06 am
Lovely additions to the list, ellicrow!
on September 9th, 2015 at 11:27 am
I love the suggestions already. I just wanted to second (or maybe it’s third by now) Hyacinth. It fits the requirements beautifully and has the bonus of being a vintage unexpected pick.
Or has anyone suggested Violetta yet? I know Violet is popular, but Violette and Violetta aren’t in the Top 1000.
on September 9th, 2015 at 11:32 am
Marigold feels perfect! It’s a flower and has the color association of “gold.”
on September 9th, 2015 at 12:04 pm
I keep coming back to Marigold or Rosemary, although Delphine and Felicity are also nice with Lavender and Cordelia. Something simple for middle. Mae with Delphine or Felicity, Leigh with Marigold or Rosemary.
Do let us know what the parents decide!
on September 9th, 2015 at 12:24 pm
I love the idea of Winifred! I agree it goes beautifully with Lavender and Cordelia.
What about Saffron as a middle? It is obviously a color, but I think it also works as a flower tribute since Saffron is a spice derived from the pollen of the crocus flower.
I think Winifred Saffron is lovely.
on September 9th, 2015 at 12:29 pm
Cordelia and Lavender are beautifully quirky but still sound somehow classic (without being ‘classic’ names)
Out of the Name Sage’s ideas, I like Annalise or Delphine. Some of the others seem either too formal or too biased towards matching with Lavender (eg. Magnolia)
Some braver choices:
Names with nature links (but not too matchy with Lavender):
Names with nature links for the middle:
I also love @LadyOh’s suggestion of Felicity Clover!
on September 9th, 2015 at 12:37 pm
I also thought of Emmeline – not sure how popular it is in the US, though. Emmeline Clover would be an awesome addition. I also like Mathilde, Eleonora, Angeline and Madelief (daisy in dutch!) for you.
on September 9th, 2015 at 12:41 pm
This goes right with my girl name sets. Lavender is one of my all time favourites. I like:
on September 9th, 2015 at 1:19 pm
on September 9th, 2015 at 1:24 pm
on September 9th, 2015 at 1:43 pm
Angelica is 8 letters and fits the flower requirement I also think it fits with the other two names.
on September 9th, 2015 at 1:51 pm
I like the idea of having each girl’s name have a different ending so that there’s not a group of two & one different. From Abby’s choices, I really like Delphine, Winifred, & Felicity. From pps’ suggestions, I like:
Kim W Said
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:04 pm
I love Marigold, Florence, and Felicity. There are gorgeous names!
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:31 pm
Lavender, Cordelia and…
on September 9th, 2015 at 2:51 pm
I like the suggestions Lucienne, Marigold, Annalise, and Delphine the best. They all coordinate well with your daughters’ names but feel special and distinct on their own.
Mathilde, Jessamyn, Mirabela are more ideas I second. Zinnia as a middle too.
on September 9th, 2015 at 3:09 pm
I’m going to focus on syllables rather then letters and I’m also going very to say that even if a name is 100 through 500 that doesn’t mean she will have another in her class, especially is her middle is unique. itd be nice to stick to 8 letters but I think any name with 3 or 4 syllables that’s flowery
Amaryllis Jade – Lavendar Miriam, Cordelia Rose, and Amaryllis Jade is very pretty (but hopefully you can find a better middle name then I did for Amaryllis)
Azalea Claire- a bit shorter but still 4 syllable sound and I think that Lavender, Cordelia and Azalea would be the sweetest sister set. Vintage, southern vibe going on with the names.
Florence too is a great choice.
on September 9th, 2015 at 3:13 pm
If your okay with branching away from flower names maybe think about sea names such as Coraline. It’s a literary name but it just reminds me of Coral which I find beautiful and refreshing.
on September 9th, 2015 at 3:59 pm
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:28 pm
My favorite suggestion here is Delphine! As someone else has said, it’s nature-related without being an outright flower or color word (which kinda does leave Cordelia out). Can’t wait to see what you choose to go with this beautiful sibset!
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:33 pm
Marigold 100% Gorgeous sibset!
on September 9th, 2015 at 4:50 pm
What about Clementine?!?! (I know it’s 10 letters but seems like a nice fit with your other names). I also like Marigold, Magnolia, Delphine, Tallulah, and Lorelai. Happy naming!!!!
P.S. I looooove Cordelia and Lavender. Do you use any nicknames for them?
on September 9th, 2015 at 5:13 pm
I love Araminta and Felicity with Cordelia Rose and Lavender Miriam
on September 9th, 2015 at 6:03 pm
Marigold or Magnolia would be beautiful! Plus they sound lovely with Cordelia and Lavender. Such great names!
on September 9th, 2015 at 11:36 pm
Color names that are plant related but not necessarily flowers:
fuchsia, iris, periwinkle, poppy, lilac, ash, hazel, fern, Heather, ivy, sage, jade, jett, coral, Cerise (cherry in French)
Eight letter names:
Margaret, Florence, Virginia, Patricia, Caroline, Dorothea, Meredith, Jocelynn, Beatrice, felicity, emmaline, Marianne, violetta, Clarissa, Penelope, Cristina, Adelaide, Rosalind, Eleanora, Savannah, Isabella, Victoria, Marcella, Angeline, morganna, angelica, annalise, Brooklyn, Carlotta, Catalina, charlize, Collette, Danielle, Georgina, Gisselle, Katarina, Lorraine, Madeline, Rochelle, Samantha, Tatianna
on September 9th, 2015 at 11:46 pm
Lavender, Cordelia and
Vivienne ** my favorite
Emerald- Only 7 letters tho
on September 10th, 2015 at 12:24 am
Mazarine. Name her Mazarine.
It’s a deep, rich blue color. And a Mazarine Blue is a type of butterfly. Also, Dahlia could be a nice middle name. Good luck.
on September 10th, 2015 at 12:29 am
on September 10th, 2015 at 5:09 am
Felicity Iris gets my vote.
on September 10th, 2015 at 6:47 am
on September 10th, 2015 at 8:58 am
The first thought that struck me was that Lavender and Cordelia are both names from L. M. Montgomery books. Staying with that theme:
I took these from a list, not my memory. There may be more that would be 8 letters.
on September 10th, 2015 at 9:47 am
I love SO many of the suggestions, but the name which lept to mind when I first read Lavender Miriam and Cordelia Rose was Florimel! I adore both Lavender and Cordelia and Florimel is equally dainty, soft, and unusual! Florimel is a Greek Name which means “Flower Honey” or “Nectar”! It’s a treasure I’ve been quietly storing away for a possible future Daughter, but it seemed too perfect not to share it for your third Daughter! 🙂
on September 10th, 2015 at 10:07 am
Already many great suggestions so sorry for repeats! Big sisters have such gorgeous names. I like the suggestions Marigold, Winifred, Felicity, Florence, Ivy, Iris, and Delphine.
I’m also liking:
Ione (rhymes with Hermione and means violet-colored stone)
Margaret (too popular? Has the daisy reference)
Irene (pronounced the old fashioned way as three syllables: Eye-Ree-Nee)
on September 10th, 2015 at 10:27 am
I guess the Mathilda and Violette spellings would be better here. 🙂
LOVE that PP caught on to the Anne of Green Gables theme. Marilla and Ruby <3
Also looking at PPs and remembering how much I love Fern, Sage, Clover, Juliette, and Susannah.
Daphne means laurel and Jessamine is Jasmine!
on September 10th, 2015 at 12:26 pm
on September 10th, 2015 at 1:00 pm
I absolutely love Magnolia & Delphine so gorgeous especially as sister’s for Lavender & Cordelia : )
on September 10th, 2015 at 1:50 pm
Oh my!….it has to be Marigold!!!! *swoooooon*
on September 10th, 2015 at 5:43 pm
on September 10th, 2015 at 5:47 pm
My own combos:
Florence Hazel or Felicity Hazel
And I love Marigold but am stuck on a middle and noticed that it borrows the first 4 letters from Lavender’s middle name…
on September 11th, 2015 at 1:19 am
Some not mentioned…
Baptisia [wild indigo]
Calanthe [beautiful flower]
Cassiope [mountain heather]
Ceranthe/Cerintha [wax flower]
Darwinia [scent myrtle]
Dianella [flax lily]
Dianthea/Dianthus [carnation; heavenly flower]
Galantha/Galanthe [galanthus; snowdrop]
Melantha/Melanthe [honey flower]
Millaray [golden flower]
Solandra [chalice vine]
flower + color:
Capucine [nasturtium; orange-red]
*in top 1000
on September 11th, 2015 at 8:35 am
on September 11th, 2015 at 4:57 pm
I know there’s a Hunger Games reference, but Primrose is 8 letters!
on September 13th, 2015 at 2:03 pm
on September 13th, 2015 at 4:39 pm
I love a lot of those names, Cordelia Rose and Lavender Miriam are just perfect by the way. Off of that list and all the names mentioned on it, my favorites are Delphine, Lucienne, Vivienne, Florence, Annalise, Adelaide, Amethyst, Magnolia, Arabella, and Marigold.
Some more 8 letter possibilities:
Some nature/flower/color middles:
Lilia/Lillian/Liliana/Lilliana/Lilou/Lily (all lily variations)
on September 13th, 2015 at 4:59 pm
I immediately thought of Magnolia Kate and love Magnolia Claire. Magnolia Gem, Magnolia Pearl, Magnolia Hope, Magnolia Dawn, Magnolia Jayne, Magnolia Jane, Magnolia Lace. I have yet to meet a Magnolia. I love Felicity Jayne, too.
on September 13th, 2015 at 7:49 pm
Something Lavender and Cordelia have in common is their long histories. I think it would be nice to have another name that fits the bill like Marigold or Felicity or Florence or Clemence. I think something like that is more fitting than some new age name that looks like it belongs in hollywood.
on September 13th, 2015 at 11:19 pm
Beautiful names, I adore Lavender, but doubt I’ll be able to convince my s.o. to use it as a first. I have so many loves, but maybe I’ll use it as a middle, I would love to see your sweet Lavender, since it’s so rare! Out of the Nameberry suggestions I like Delphine and Campbell the best! Other suggestions for firsts I like that fit in style, meaning with Cordelia, root, syllables, letters, and more unusual include: Florence, Araminta, Theodora, Dorothea, Estrella/Estella, Carissa/Karissa, Aurelia (nods to color gold as well), Beatrice, Adelaide, Josephine, Valencia, Ottiline, Sabrina, Prudence, Emmeline, Adalynn, Matilda, Amadea, Augusta, Nerissa, Morwenna, Marianna, Maribel, Annabelle, Elianna, Mariela, Mireya, and Nathalia. Your middle are still vintage, but shorter and I think would be the more appropriate spot for a word botanical or color name. Pearl, Calla, Teal, Azul, Hazel, Meadow, Sage, Olive, Fern, Coral, Fleur, Aspen, Maple, Flora, Peony, Poppy, Rain are all great fits imo! Combo examples:
on September 16th, 2015 at 10:51 am
Lavender Miriam and Cordelia Rose- My children also have 8-letter first names (Old English obscure surnames) and middle names beginning with -m so I relate 🙂
What lovely names! Their sister is just as deserving.
Amethyst or Felicity is spot on. I picture Joy or Pearl as the mn for each, consecutively.
Annelise Fleur came to mind for me.
Jessamyn would also be a strong contender.
Ivy or Lilac are great middle names in your crew.
Enjoy the hunt 🙂 Ginger
on September 17th, 2015 at 7:01 am
Fiorella- Italian for “little flower”
on September 21st, 2015 at 10:03 pm
Lavender, Cordelia & Winifred!!!!
or Lavender, Cordelia & Florence
on September 28th, 2015 at 10:43 am
After much conversation with my husband, in which his newfound love of the name Dahlia was revealed, we have chosen the name Felicity Iris.
on October 8th, 2015 at 1:40 am
on October 18th, 2015 at 8:23 pm
8 Letters, some of them *flowers or **colors
Other Colors (Many are Gems):
on October 21st, 2015 at 5:18 pm
I absolutely LOVE Magnolia. My second choice would be Amethyst.
on October 28th, 2015 at 6:03 am
Ixora would make a lovely middle name!!!
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Scarlett Ixora
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Julianne Ixora
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Mireille Ixora (pronounced mi-RAY)
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Felicity Dahlia
Lavender Miriam, Cordelia Rose, Victoria Iris
on November 1st, 2015 at 8:28 am
on November 20th, 2015 at 7:33 pm
Can I just say how obsessed I am with her other daughters’ names?!?!?!? They are gorgeous!!!
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