Twin Names for Girls Pack a Surprise

March 18, 2020 Abby Sandel
twin girl names

Finding twin names for girls is double the challenge! They’re wild about Primrose, but what to call her sister?

Hillary writes:

I need a bit of help as my baby naming duty just doubled! We need twin girl names.

For a long time, I’ve loved the name Primrose. Luckily, my partner agrees. The problem is that we can’t find a name we love as much for our other daughter. Primrose is whimsical and pretty. My partner likes the nickname Rosie.

I’m nervous the other name will always end up being second-best, and I want to love both names. Ideally, the names will go together without being matchy-matchy.

We both like traditional, British, Irish, and French names. Our list right now is:

Charlotte – very popular

Florence – the name of a close friend’s child

Maeve – we both like it, but feel underwhelmed compared to Primrose

PenelopeNell” – but it feels plain compared to Primrose


The Name Sage replies:

Primrose is gorgeous. I can see why naming her twin feels difficult. And yet, this isn’t just about dreaming up fresh options. It’s really about falling in love with a second choice – fast! That’s tough to do when you’ve spent months or years dreaming about a daughter called Primrose.

My best advice? Have confidence that you’ll love your daughters equally, even if one of the names is newer to your heart.

Now let’s work on finding that name.

I agree that your current list isn’t quite right. Maeve lacks a sweet nickname to match Rosie. Penelope and Charlotte might be too mainstream compared to the delightful surprise of Primrose. Florence could be perfect, but duplicating a friend’s name might be off-limits.

We’re looking for an uncommon name that feels light, even pretty. A great nickname helps. It shouldn’t be too frilly, and it must have traditional roots.

AriadnePenelope reminds me of so many other Greek girl names. I wonder if you’d like Ariadne? The mythological figure helped Theseus defeat the Minotaur, so there’s much to admire. Ariana comes from Ariadne, but I think the original has more oomph. It shortens to Ari, Addie, or maybe Andi, but I like Addie best with Rosie.

Cosima Cosima feels British, even though it comes from the Greek kosmos – order – via Italian. It’s the source of our word cosmos, referring to the universe. I’d shorten it to Coco, but maybe Mimi is more your style?

Delphine – I love Primrose and Delphine together! Rosie and Della, maybe? Delphine is French, and it has the same known-but-underused quality as Primrose. It also brings to mind a flower – the spiky, colorful delphinium.

Juniper Juniper is rising in use faster than Primrose, at least for now. But it makes a perfect pair. Not only are they both nature names, but Rosie and Junie sound like sisters.

Maribel Primrose comes from a Latin phrase meaning first rose – prima rosa. Maribel is a smoosh of Maria and Isabel. Both names feel layered, and I think that makes them compatible without being too matchy. Maribel could shorten to Mari, Mimi, Bella, or Belle. Rosie and Bella are my favorite combination.

Millicent Millicent sounds delicate, but it comes from a Germanic name meaning “strong in work.” Primrose and Millicent are both familiar names that surprise and delight, and Rosie and Millie sound just like sisters.

Persephone – There’s no hard-and-fast rule about how much to match twins’ names. Primrose and Persephone sound like something out of a storybook. Whether that’s exactly right, or a little much, is up to you. Primroses are associated with spring, as is the goddess Persephone. I’d call her Persie for short.

Sybil – Tailored, feminine Sybil occupies the same space as Primrose – we all recognize the name, but it remains rare. You might shorten it to Sibby, as in Downton Abbey. Another option is boyish Billie.

Winifred Winnie sounds like the perfect sister name for Rosie, and Winifred is the obvious formal version. But there’s also Gwendolyn – that’s the full name of Winnie Cooper from late 80s television series The Wonder Years – and Winter, though that might be too much with a spring-focused sister name like Primrose.

Much as I love the sound of Primrose and Delphine, I think the key is matching the formal names and the nicknames. That pushes me towards JuniperJunie” or MillicentMillie.” But I know there are many more options, so let’s turn it over the to the readers.

What would you name a twin sister for Primrose, with the nickname Rosie? Are there any great twin girl names I’ve overlooked?

PS – Expecting twins? Don‘t forget to check out our Twin Naming Guide.

About the author


Abby Sandel is nameberry's Senior Editor and resident Name Sage. Look for her baby name news round-ups every Monday, and her Name Sage columns on Wednesdays. Abby is the creator of the baby name blog Appellation Mountain and mom to Alex and Clio. For a chance to have your questions answered, contact Abby at

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