by Sophie Kihm
When it comes to naming babies, everyone has a different set of priorities and values. One we talk about a lot is sibset coherence. Whether or not you’re a name nerd, it’s easy to see the merits of a coordinated sibset. Oftentimes one has to refer to their children as a group, and well-matched names makes it easy for others to view them as a set.
But how much does this matter when the siblings of a new baby are adults? My inclination is: not much. Adult children are off living their own lives, and the number of times they will be lumped into the same group as their infant sibling is much less than if they had grown up together. Therefore, I don’t think anyone should stress over trying to find the perfect name for a son who will be twenty years his sister’s junior. Tastes change over the years, and after a few decades, so do styles.
Many celebrities expecting babies this month are going to be naming children with 20 or 30-plus age differences from some of their siblings, and will have to determine the importance of this issue for themselves. Daniel Craig‘s adult daughter Ella will have a little sister or brother at the end of this year, as will Norman Reedus’s grown son Mingus. Josh Brolin’s 29- and 24-year-old children are going to be the older siblings of a baby girl, and Brigitte Nielsen‘s four adult sons (ranging in age from 23 to 34) will welcome another sibling into their brood.
For some, like Daniel Craig, creating a harmonious sibset shouldn’t be too much of a problem. For others, like Brigitte Nielsen, it’s already a lost cause. As for the rest, I’m curious to see how it will play out–will these stars decide that a well-matched sibset is the way to go, or give it up to choose the name that most speaks to their heart?
Five years ago, Claire Danes and Hugh Dancy gave their son the historic, regal-adjacent name Cyrus. It strikes that elusive unpopular-but-familiar balance that is so often coveted by parents-to-be. I’ve got my fingers crossed for Claire and Hugh to do it again—any of my suggestions below would fit the bill.
Girl: Cleo, Della, Fern, Greta, Isadora, Lucinda, Minna, Phoebe, Romy
Both Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig have children from a previous relationship. Daniel‘s 25-year-old daughter is named Ella, while Rachel‘s 11-year-old son is named Henry. The two names already work well together in terms of style, so the pressure is off for the new baby’s name to cohere their blended family. As long as they stick with the modern classics, this combined sibset will be perfectly coordinated.
Girl: Alice, Amelia, Clara, Ivy, Lily, Lucy, Mila, Nora, Sophie, Ruby, Violet
90210 star Shenae Grimes-Beech is a hardcore rock fan. Luckily for her, rock and roll (and music more generally) offers a wealth of baby name inspiration. From guitar-strumming surnames to soulful ballads, Shenae and Josh should have no trouble finding the perfect name for their little wild child–whether they prefer girly and sweet or sassy and androgynous names.
Model Chanel Iman and football player Sterling Shepard are expecting their first child together later this year! Chanel‘s style is unabashedly feminine, so I predict we will see something lovely and romantic for her baby’s name, no matter if it’s a boy or girl. I’d like to see her use a name with French origins like her own—Celeste or Sabine are my favorites for girls, and I’m partial to Julien if baby is a boy.
Clint Eastwood‘s daughter Francesca‘s name is a variant of her mother’s: Frances. I would love to see her continue the tradition and use another Franc– name if her baby is a girl—something like Franny or Frankie, or even just France—a cheerful (and drastically underused) place name. Even if Francesca does not want to be her child’s namesake, I expect something frilly and ladylike for a daughter, or handsome and classic for a son.
Back in the late eighties and early nineties, Josh Brolin named his kids Trevor and Eden. Trevor was a well-used name during his son’s birth decade—sitting well within the Top 100—although Eden was barely in the Top 700 when his daughter was born in 1994. Now, with an age gap of almost a quarter century between his two youngest children, I’m curious to see if his tastes have changed. For their newest daughter, will Josh and Kathryn choose something well-established like Trevor, or an up-and-comer, as Eden once was?
Girl: Aurora, Briar, Emerald, Grace, Harper, Haven, Ivy, Lena, Lyra, Piper, Willow
Norman Reedus’s adult son has the unusual Scottish name Mingus— named for Charles Mingus, the jazz musician. Perhaps Norman will be inspired by jazz again for his second child’s name, although expectant mother Diane Kruger is a native of Germany, so maybe a Bavarian name is in order. No matter which direction they choose, there’s a plethora of good options.
At 54, Brigitte Nielsen is officially the oldest celebrity mom-to-be I’ve ever profiled. She has four adult sons, each with a name of different origin. Husband Mattia Dessi is Italian, so it’s likely we’ll see an Italian name for baby number five. Although Brigitte appears to have eclectic taste in baby names, so that’s not a guarantee.