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VER-y Chic Names for Girls

July 14, 2015 Kara
baby girl names

by Kara Blakley

Name trend watchers are no longer limiting themselves to the waxing and waning popularity of certain letters. Vowels are certainly having their moment on monogrammed onesies, but endings (particularly -o and -ett) and sounds are catching the attention of keen observers.

Recently, Brooke Cussans wrote about PERfect names: a wonderfully diverse list of names all sharing the PER syllable.I was inspired to create a list of VER names, and found that like PER, this sound leads to a diverse list of names that are fresh and vibrant. VER names are so plentiful, in fact, that the list is divided into girls and boys. This is the girls list; stay tuned for a boys version.

CloverClover is shockingly yet to hit the US Top 1,000. I say shocking since she fits into a number of trends, including botanical names, names ending with -er, and names with a V in them. It could be considered as a less-popular alternative to chart-topper Chloe and rising star Violet, but with 153 baby girls receiving the name last year, she’s as popular as she’s ever been.

Ever and EverlyEverly, a potential substitute for evergreen Emily or rediscovered Evelyn, is a sepia-tinted name with a modern vibe. Since Channing Tatum brought the name into the spotlight, it was one of the fastest-rising names between 2012 and 2013, and 1,854 babies were named Everly in 2014. Ever, meanwhile, is a low-key word name used on boys and girls equally.

Guinevere – With nicknames galore, Guinevere makes for a compelling literary choice. Guinevere has never ranked in the Top 1000 in the US, but it would be a lovely yet subtle way to honor your best friend, Jennifer. It’s also a great choice for parents looking for a Welsh name that would work well in the US.

Laverne – If any of today’s new parents watched Laverne & Shirley growing up, it was probably already in syndication. Fewer than five girls were named Laverne in 2014, but because it peaked in the 1920s, we might be hearing the name more if the 100-year rule holds true. The rise of actress Laverne Cox makes this an intriguing possibility.

Reverie – Depending on your idea of mainstream, River (another VER name) may very well be there already. If this has you down, Reverie may pique your interest. Part fantasy, part word name, part musical tribute via Debussy, Reverie has all the makings of a unique but memorable name.

Silver – Color names are no longer limited to Ruby and Scarlett. Vintage picks like Hazel and Olive are rising alongside new age choices such as Indigo and Azure. Silver is a great unisex choice that feels simultaneously hippie and tech-savvy. Fewer than 50 babies are named Silver each year, so while it’s not at risk of taking over the playground, it doesn’t seem impossible to pull off, either. Vermilion is another VER color for the boldest parents to consider.

VerityVirtue names Grace, Hope, and Faith are ubiquitous, but Verity remains virtually unused; in the US, she hasn’t been chosen more than 60 times per year for the past century! With V-names and vintage names in full-bloom, is Verity, meaning “truth,” poised for rediscovery?  Vera makes this choice even more accessible.

Veronica – As the patron saint of photography, Veronica has a spiritual side, but as Betty‘s counterpart, she’s alluring and sensuous. Named one of Nameberry’s Hottest Names of 2015, Veronica is the perfect example of a sweet spot name: standing out and fitting in at the same time.

Waverley (or Waverly) – With sparse use on both genders, Waverley is a modern-sounding name nowhere near the Top 1000, unlike sound-sister Avery. That could change, though, since it fits many trends: V in the middle (think Ava), a -ley ending (Bailey, Hadley, Riley), and a surname-turned-first name (Harper). Waverley has nature and literary connections, and has made a plethora of TV appearances in recent years.

Which VER name for girls is your favorite, and what would you add to the list? What are some other sounds that lead to interesting lists?

About the author

Kara B

Kara Blakley is a PhD candidate in Art History at the University of Melbourne. Her interest in names began when she received her first Cabbage Patch doll. Today, Kara’s name obsession is enhanced by her love of nature, history, music, art, and traveling.

View all of Kara B's articles

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