Category: baby name SIenna
By Abby Sandel
When we talk modern girl names, we’re often thinking about picks like Harper and Sloane, or Willow and Sage. They’re surname names and word names, choices that trend girl, but could just as easily be given to boys. Tailored and trim, these unique baby names feel right at home in the twenty-first century, even though many have roots in ages past.
But there’s another class of modern girl names. They’re novel – at least in the English-speaking world – and yet they’re traditionally feminine in sound.
But the dominant quality of romantic girl names? They’re just plain pretty. With warm weather arriving, these are the sundresses of baby names.
By Linda Rosenkrantz
I was asked by a magazine interviewer recently why I thought some vintage names come back and others don’t. Why Cora and Flora and not Dora? Why Edward and not Edwin? All of which got me thinking about the influences that do propel names out of the attic and into the spotlight.
The most obvious and evident of these is the celebrity factor in all its manifestations. Stars’ names, stars’ baby names and the names of characters they play:
Scarlett—Yes, the name of Miss Scarlett was used by a handful of parents following the publication of Gone With the Wind, but it wasn’t until Ms. Johansson burst on the scene that it really took off, bringing it now into the Top 50.
Some parents of baby boy Wyatts are nervous. Will Wyatt go girl? Others who had shortlisted Wyatt for a possible child someday might be rethinking. No one wants to introduce their child and have another mom respond, “Oh, like Ashton and Mila’s baby?”
The kerfuffle reminds me of singer Michelle Branch. In 2005, at the height of her success, she married her bass player and had a daughter called Owen Isabelle. Owen remained a Top 100 choice for boys in the US – gaining more than 20 places since – and is barely a blip for girls.
This week’s baby name news has me wondering: what makes a name truly off limits? I don’t mean names that just aren’t your style, but names that actually strike you as inappropriate, even unfair, to give to a child.
It’s a tough line to draw. Some names are fine until they’re paired with a specific surname, like famed Texas philanthropist Ima Hogg. Others have associations that are difficult to shake, be they positive or otherwise. Would you name a child Elmo? Adolf seems like a burden, but what if your beloved grandpa was an Adolf?
Creative respellings put many parents off, while others have negative reactions to surnames, invented names, place names … the list is endless. But when does it cross the line from not for me, thanks, into who does that?