The Nameberry 9:This week’s newsiest names are right smack on trend

The Nameberry 9:This week’s newsiest names are right smack on trend

This week, Appellation Mountain‘s Abby Sandel looks at the baby names in the news and finds that many of them are living examples of our last week’s projections.

We know that Sophia and Ava, Jacob and Mason will probably stay in the US Top Ten for another few years.  But like many a name nerd, I’m fascinated by what’s next.  Will there really be more babies called Viggo, Juniper, January, and Walker?  We can only hope.

There won’t be many, of course.  Even amongst the name obsessed, a relatively small percentage of us dare to use a truly cutting edge name.  Sometimes we have a partner in naming whose tastes are more conservative.  Besides, our shortlists often range from William to Wilder, and there’s quite a bit of pressure to go with the equally stylish but more common of the two.

Of course, Isabella was once dismissed as too flowery and Aiden and Jayden as too weird.  Should Leo crack the Top Ten and Camden creep into the 25 most popular, many will embrace them as normal names and raise an eyebrow at whatever comes next.

Last week’s most newsworthy names matched up quite nicely with the predictions, both for 2013 and for 2012, the year that is now drawing to a close.  It turns out that the Nameberry crystal ball is pretty accurate.

The nine newsiest names for last week were:

LionOne of the 14 predictions was the rise of leonine names, for both boys and girls.  Hawaii Five-o’s Alex O’Loughlin is a new dad to baby Lion.  O’Loughlin’s cub isn’t the very first baby LionSeven boys received the name in 2011.  Leonine names pick up where 2012’s prediction of fierce names left off.

Leonid – Take Lion and mix in some astronomy and you’ll arrive at Leonid.  The meteor shower is at its peak at this time of year.  Leonid is a Russian spin on the Leo names, and he’s among the rarest of them.  Add a syllable, and he becomes Leonidas – and another trend prediction, the continuing rise of ancient names.

Alexei – While we’re speaking Russian, could the new Keira Knightley-Jude Law version of Anna Karenina bring back some elaborate Russian appellations?  I’m a fan of Alexei, the first name of Law’s character.  The letter A was last year’s Now Vowel, and a powerfully popular letter for boys’ and girls’ first names in theUS.

Aden John Tanner – It’s another letter A name, this time for actress/reality star Tamera Mowry-Housely and her husband, Adam.  But is Aden pronounced like Aiden?  Or does he sound more like dad’s name, Adam?  I’m betting it is the former, but I couldn’t find an interview with the new mom to confirm.  Tamera’s twin sister and frequent co-star, Tia, has a son of her own, 18-month old Cree.  Between the cousins, here’s guessing that Cree will be the more influential of the two.

Magnus – Actress Elizabeth Banks has welcomed a second son, a little brother for FelixMagnus is a big name for a little boy, and one that we are already hearing more often.  Will Ferrell’s three boys are Magnus, Matthias, and Axel.  It’s also another name highlighted in the 2013 Trend Report, thanks to the growing interesting in Scandinavian names.  Plus, M was named Consonant of the Moment in 2012.

MillerScott Wolf and wife Kelley are the latest to welcome a baby boy MillerDavid Duchovny, Stella McCartney, and Melissa Etheridge all gave the name to sons in recent years.  Wolf’s older boy is Jackson Kayse.  Miller makes for a logical brother name for Jackson, or even a substitute for parents seeking something less popular.

Millie – Are you watching Made in Chelsea?  It’s a reality show import from the UK, something like a British spin on The Hills, but with much more money.  The first season has just arrived in the US via The Style Network.  The names are delicious: Caggie, Cheska, Fredrik, Hugo, RosieMillie Mackintosh is a member of the main cast.  She’s BFF to it-girl Catherine “Caggie” Dunlop.  Millie is also identified as part of another 2013 trend to watch: the rise of mid-century nicknames.

Hephzibah – Okay, Hephzibah isn’t in the trend report.  But she does feature in a conundrum tackled by Swistle this week.  If you were the seventh generation of women to share a name, would you dare break the streak with your firstborn daughter?  If the name was Elizabeth or Katherine, we’d all be adamant that number eight should share in the tradition.  But what happens when the name is Hephzibah?  Perhaps it is some encouragement that one of the 2013 trends is that we’re embracing longer, elaborate names like Macallister and Penelope.  Could Hephzibah be wearable after all?

Plum – Let’s end with one last trend, the rise of non-name middles.  You’ve heard that anything goes in the middle spot, and more and more parents are taking this to heart.  A recent list of birth announcements at Matilda Magazine included Matilda Plum, along with kids sporting the unexpected middles Jubilee, Hawke, Gray, Fern, Marsh, Zephyr, and Tuesday.  Parents are clearly on board with this prediction.

Have you spotted some great examples of the 2013 – or 2012 – trends in action?  Which names do you think are likely to be the most successful?  And could Hephzibah work today?

About the Author

Linda Rosenkrantz

Linda Rosenkrantz

Linda Rosenkrantz is the co-founder of Nameberry, and co-author with Pamela Redmond of the ten baby naming books acknowledged to have revolutionized American baby naming. You can follow her personally at InstagramTwitter and Facebook. She is also the author of the highly acclaimed New York Review Books Classics novel Talk and a number of other books.