Celebrity Baby Names: New Names in the Celebrisphere
Just when it seemed that the stormy seas of extreme celebrity baby names were calming down (you can see our comments on this at Celebrity Babies Blog), a new crop has come along introducing a whole bunch of innovative choices, ranging from the ridiculous to the semi-sublime:
BARDOT (first name of David Boreanaz’s daughter) Following in the footsteps of Harlow and other Hollywood sirens and sex kittens of the past(Dad Boreanaz admitted being inspired by a Brigitte Bardot poster), Bardot could easily fit in with the growing group of o-ending girls’ names: Juno, Lilo, Willow, etc.
BETSI (middle name of Ioan Gruffudd & Alice Evans’ daughter Ella). Much to my surprise, I find this new take on an old name—I’m not usually a big fan of changing y’s to i’s— appealingly fresh, cute and perky.
CZAR (middle name of Tisha–Campbell–Brown’s son Ezekiel). Powerboy #1. In Beyond Ava & Aidan we had an extensive list of strong, sometimes royal, boys’ names, but leave it to the creatif celeb community to come up with a few that escaped us.
ECHO (name of Nick Hexum’s daughter). Although it sounds like a modern word name, Echo actually goes back to ancient Greek myth, where she was a loquacious nymph who was forever distracting Juno, provoking him to take away her power to say anything original; and then she fell in love with Narcissus, who was incapable of loving anyone but himself, so that didn’t go too well. In modern times, Echo is the name of the lead character in Joss Wheden’s Dollhouse. Another prospective member of the new o-ending girls’ sorority.
GOLDIE (first name of Ione Sky & Ben Lee’s daughter). For a long time Goldie was more Sadie than Sadie—until Goldie Hawn came along and modernized and energized its image. And it does have that precious metallic gleam.
LORD (middle name of Elaine Cassidy & Stephen Lord’s daughter Kila). The name itself has a double dose of potency—both noble and religious, which could have made it Powerboy #3, except that in this case it belongs to a girl. In an unusual switch, Lord, the dad’s surname, is placed in the middle, with the mother’s last name in final surname position.
NASH (first name of Cat Cora’s son). First heard widely in the early 90s TV show Nash Bridges, this is an English surname (think mathematician John, poet Ogden), with the soft ash sound reminiscent of Ashley and Ashton.
PRIYA (middle name of Ione Skye & Ben Lee’s daughter Goldie). This Indian name meaning ‘beloved one’ in Sanskrit belonged to the daughter of a King in Hindu legend. The two names form an unusual cross-cultural combo.
SPARROW (first name of Nicole Ritchie & Joel Madden’s son, brother of Harlow). This couple went to great lengths to balance the three names of their daughter and son, but Sparrow has proved a bit confusing to some who had considered this avian name to be feminine.
WEST (first name of Marley Shelton’s daughter). West has been one direction celebrity names have been going in since Tea Leoni and David Duchovny named their daughter Madelaine West and began calling her by her middle name.
YATES (middle name of Megyn Kelly’s son Edward) A solid surname choice with possible family connections and a poetic link to William Butler Yeats; Megyn has been quoted as saying that this is the name her son will be known as.
Do you think any of these will catch on?
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on October 15th, 2009 at 1:58 am
Betsi (along with Betsan) is actually the traditional Welsh spelling of Betsy, so it actually has a lot of history to it (not just a trendy i to y spelling).
I’ve always loved Priya! So pretty 🙂
on October 15th, 2009 at 2:10 am
Oh, yes, and I also wanted to say that Priya isn’t all that unusual in the UK. I have known/met 4 Priyas and I hear it on television a lot as well etc.
on October 15th, 2009 at 2:51 am
The only one I see with real potential is West.
Kelsey Rose Said
on October 15th, 2009 at 6:13 am
I happen to think a few may stay..
Priya is beautiful and I feel has a lot of potential to stick around.
Betsi is really lovely. I will be using this as an alternative to Betty (my grandmothers name) and I think it will also start to grow on people
Lastly Kila. As you said. It has a familiar sound. Similar to Lila and even Keira which are both in the top 100 in the US
on October 15th, 2009 at 6:16 am
I was just going to come on and say exactly what Elea has already pointed out that Betsi is the traditional Welsh spelling and Ioan Gruffudd would have been going back to his roots with this one, so it is not at all “trendy” or gimmicky! You beat me to it Elea. Forgive me asking again, are you Welsh too? xx brain like a sieve at the moment . . . .
on October 15th, 2009 at 6:46 am
Priya is beautiful. It is my sister’s middle name (we are half Indian). It is certainly quite popular amongst British Asians and perhaps some celebs are catching on.
on October 15th, 2009 at 8:26 am
There are always a few imitators, though it usually depends on how high profile the parents are and how often the kid’s name and picture shows up on the cover of the tabloids. I’d guess Czar and Czarina might get some use, particularly among black parents. I think that style of name is already accepted since Princess and Prince are fairly common names in that community. Weston is more common than West on its own and Greysun and Kila are just odd spellings of what are already fairly common names. Knight, Lord, Echo, etc. are the sort of names that will probably appeal most to comic book fans and sci fi convention attendees. I would guess a few baby Echos will have older siblings named Anakin and Arwen.
on October 15th, 2009 at 9:23 am
Funny, I already knew a Czar, a hippie white man.
I also know a Priya, she’s Indian as well. I don’t know how I feel about non-Indians using it. This blog seems to encourage co-opting ethnic names, but I think it is an important cultural marker that shouldn’t be thrown onto someone with no connection.
I’ve had West as a middle name for a boy for quite some time now, its an adventurous name whose connotations are uniquely American. It might get too popular before I get to use it!
I think Sparrow is Nicole’s way of saying she hopes she has a clever, quick boy who will probably have a slight frame like herself.
on October 15th, 2009 at 10:53 am
Although I like a few of these, Priya and West are the only ones I really see sticking around. West, too, was on our boys name list, but it didn’t work well with our last name and the first name we finally picked out.
on October 15th, 2009 at 11:30 am
Speaking of Czar, Knight & Lord. Joss Whedon has a son named Squire.
on October 15th, 2009 at 12:31 pm
I taught school and had a student names Czar. He was the nicest kid, well liked and athletic. I quite like that name based on him but it may not be for every kid. It really suited him though. I asked him how he got that name (and this may or may not be true) but he said his mom always wanted a dog named Czar, but she never got a dog and named him Czar instead. I thought it was a clever tale nonetheless.
on October 15th, 2009 at 1:15 pm
I think Goldie and Bardot will definitely catch on. Goldie fits right in with the Sadie trend, and Bardot with the surname as first name trend.
on October 15th, 2009 at 3:25 pm
I think that non- idian or anyother culture really can use any name they want. I think that Idian names look better on non-idain peopl more than say 90% of Japanese, Korean and Vietnamiese names.
on October 15th, 2009 at 9:41 pm
I wonder if Goldie might be a family name for Ione Skye. Wikipedia says her mom was Jewish and Goldie is a Yiddish name. It’s not really a name I can see becoming widely popular, but maybe it’s one of those grandma names that will come back in style if you already have a relative with the name. It reminds me a bit of Birdie and I did know a very nice old woman named Birdie when I was growing up. That’s another one some celebrities seem to have used because they had grandmothers named Birdie.
Charlotte Vera Said
on October 16th, 2009 at 2:20 am
Czar is too out there for my taste and the spelling of Greysun just makes me go, “Ick!”
I must admit that there aren’t really any in this list that I’m particularly fond of. Echo has a fascinating history, but the name doesn’t seem so incredibly unusual to me since I’ve known an Echo before (and my husband’s known a couple of them). Since I grew up in India Priya seems rather ho-hum to me — like hearing Sarah.
If I had to pick, I’d favour West and Yates, although I prefer West on a boy than a girl.
on February 3rd, 2010 at 3:50 am
I love the names Harlow and Sparrow.. I also like Lilo, that’s my cat’s name. 🙂
on May 9th, 2010 at 3:25 pm
I LOVE the name Echo, it is probably my favorite name for a girl right now. I also love Sparrow (on a girl not a boy) and Priya. Midnight I think would be cool on either sex as a middle name.
on November 29th, 2010 at 5:49 am
I’m 31 and there was a Kyla in my class in school all the way (small town) so Kila could just be a weird butcher job on Kyla.
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