Surnames with Girly Nicknames

September 24th, 2014

Parents today have such a vast array of options when it comes to naming their baby girl. The surname trend is red hot, and yet many parents may desire a more traditionally feminine nickname for their baby girl.  It might help appease the grandparents, too.


So look no further.  There may be a way to have your baby-naming-cake and it eat it too.


Abbot, Abernathy“Abby”

Adler, Adelson“Addie”

Calder, Calloway“Callie”

Campbell - “Cammie”, “Bella”

Carrigan, Carrington, Carlisle, Carroway“Carrie”

Connolly – “Connie”


Ellery, Ellington, Ellison“Ellie”

Embry, Emerson, Emory“Emmie”

Halliday, Halloway“Hallie”


Hollis  – “Holly”

Jamison – “Jamie”

Larraby, Larsen – “Lari”

Madden, Madigan“Maddie”

Marsden, Marshall“Mari”

Milligan - “Millie”

Sullivan - “Livvie”

Willets, Willoughby, Wilson“Willa”

Windsor, Winslow, Winthrop, Winthrow“Winnie”


I’m sure the list is endless.  You could get very creative with this.  What would you add?

(Image above: From my curated collection at UGallery this week, Fun by Talia Rainyk)

Blogger Kids

September 19th, 2011

Birthing in the blogosphere was BIG NEWS last week.  Boheme and Reverie made their entrance, as did the as-yet-unnamed first son in the Dill family.  My Cakies also had her fourth daughter, who we’ve yet to announce here:  Joining True, Brave, and Soul?  Glow Amorette.

Yes, blogland is a veritable treasure trove of unusual names.  Some of these blogs, like Baker’s Dozen, actually came across my path because of the children’s names.  Others, like Crib Chronicles and Bijou and Boheme, are written by mamas who go way back with me to early baby name boards, before I started this blog.  Many are kindred name spirits, and all take an interest in one of the first gifts we give a child.  We even helped name a few!

Are they the new reality stars?  Will these blogger children start offshoots of mini trends, as I suspect Archer and Olive already have?

What blogs do you follow?  Are you anxiously awaiting the birth of any blog babies? 


Archer Sage, Fable Luella, Boheme Shalom & Reverie Lux – From the much talked about Girl’s Gone Child -See our guesses for the twins here and here.

Divine, Pearl, Olive, Azure, Clover & ???No Big Dill; SEW inspiring.

Eleanor Ann & August RayMaking It Lovely - Mid-century taste and dedication make for a pretty, pretty home.  Find our suggestions for Nicole’s son here.

Finnian, Blaise, & ScoutDoobleh-Vay - A creative soul adept at many diverse endeavors, from writing to toy-making. We also tried to help name Scout!

Fox & AnnikaMomfluential; Personal blogger and creator of the media outlet “network of co-conspirators.”

Hudson Paxtyn- Hither & Thither; Wanderlust at its best.

Iris & Jasmine - Pirouette.  Interviews and behind-the-scene looks at the world’s greatest children’s fashion.

Kingston Harlow - Baby Blackbird.  Kinder style.

Leta & MarloDooce.  The first.

Mia & Claudine - Sweet Fine Day.  A fellow Brooklyn Mama who holds nothing back, and takes the loveliest photos.

Moses & RomanOh Happy Day, currently spending a year in Paris.

Nona Plum & Valo June ReverieMarginamia.  My new name-blog crush.  Find their name stories here and here.

Oscar & Josephine ”Posey” – Crib Chronicles; A must-read for anyone who loves great autobiographical writing.

Philippa Violet “Pippa”, Romilly Alice, Beatrix Joanna, Juniper Lucy- Jodilightful.  They also have one son going through the adoption process, and another baby on the way!  You can read about their name stories here and here.

Ralph Wallace, Maude Emma, Olive Jean , Oscar Stanley Groberg, Betty (no middle), & Flora “June”- Design Mom.  See your suggestions for baby #6 here.

Scarlett & Malcolm – Bijou and Boheme.  Lust-worthy feminine baubles, interiors, and frills.

Tilly, Ezra, Keziah, Boaz, Adalia, Enoch, Judah, Kalina, Jubilee, Mordecai, Hezekiah, Avi, Tucker, Apollo - Baker’s Dozen.  Life with a large family.

True, Brave, Soul & Glow Amorette- My Cakies; California, and the livin’ is easy.

Viola Frank; Della & Beppe- Dos Family.  After reading this blog I would move to Sweden in a heartbeat.

Vivi Charles - Lay Baby Lay.  New nursery inspiration boards posted weekly.

WolfModern Kiddo.  A one-stop-hop for all things mom + kid vintage.


Image via Dos Family

January Jones Welcomes A Son

September 15th, 2011

Meet January Jones.  The stylish, charismatic Mad Men beauty is behind one of the most highly anticipated celebrity names of this year.

We have an answer.  Welcome to the world…

Xander Dane Jones. 

It’s an on-trend choice.  Safe enough not to ruffle any feathers, and xingy enough to attend class with Bear and Bing.  Originally a form of Alexander, many parents opt for “just” Xander these days, with its attractive X initial and lack of obvious nickname Alex.  And let’s not forget about the influential Buffy The Vampire Slayer.  Dane makes me wonder if they’re originally from Denmark.  I knew a baby Dane once who wasn’t, and of course it irked the daylights out of me.

The “er” ending is a pleasant alternative to the popular N endings for boys these days.  Jasper, Dexter, and Oliver are all ascending, while Xavier is just starting to slide from a triumphant reign.  Come to think of it, Xander sounds like something you would name Xavier’s little brother in an effort to match.

I’m a little “meh” on the choice overall, but thumbs up for relative normalcy.  Of course I would have preferred to see Alexander on the birth certificate.  What say you, by name-lovin’ readers?  

With my girls.

The mystery is solved.  After months of plotting, scheming, guessing, canoodling, and even attempts at bribing the mother in question, Rebecca Woolf has given birth today to twin girls. (We’ve talked about this before here AND here).

Their names, as previously indicated, begin with R and B.  Rhythm and Blues they are not.

Last chance.  Anyone want to venture a guess?

They are so her.  Perfectly lovely in every way, and word names of French extraction.

Let it be known that the twins’ names are

Reverie Lux, 5lbs 3oz, 18 inches and

Boheme Shalom, 5lbs 12oz, 18.5 inches

They join siblings Archer Sage and Fable Luella.  As per her tweets, one is raven haired and the other is flaxen. Yin and yang.

I feared my hopes for a little Reverie had been dashed when they revealed that Revere Blaze had been on of their picks for a boy (Vox Shepherd was the other).  Reverie was my favorite R!  Yea!  And Boheme?  SO them, so right for this child, and just delightful to say aloud.

Their names are a gift from Bec and Hal, as if to say, “Dare to dream!  Be an individual!  Peace and Light!”

They done good.

Pic from Twitter.

Back to School: Class Lists

August 29th, 2011


While my mind has been somewhere between Eastquake 2011 and a woman named Irene*, I hear that many of you are starting school this week or have already?  Did you just burst with excitement when you received the roster of your child’s classmates?  For me, it’s one of the best parts of the year.

Let’s share.  Post your child’s class list here, and give us an idea of where you are.  Feel free to be general.  Live in Tallahassee?  Just say Florida.  Omaha, Nebraska?  Midwest is fine.  Boston?  Try urban New England.   My international readers please do chime in too, wherever you may be in your school year.

Can’t wait to read them.

Hope Irene was as kind to you as it was to us.  East coasters and Caribbean Islanders, we’re thinking about you.


Paul Stanley Talks Baby Names

August 23rd, 2011


Kiss front man Paul Stanley has a thing or two to say about baby names.   His wife Erin just gave birth to baby girl Emily Grace, little sister to Sarah Brianna,  Colin Michael, and Evan Shane.

A stark contrast from the rhinestone-studded glam rock image he portrays on stage.  His taste in names may have more in common with the bubble gum rock that Kiss actually plays.  My three-year-old could jam to “I’m Gonna Rock and Roll All Night.”

“I guess we’re not cool enough for names like Peach or Astro Girl”, says Stanley.  Take that, Bob Geldof.

“We were a little more traditional and stick with names our children hopefully won’t regret when they grow up,” he goes on. “Your kids aren’t objects for amusement, so why would you give them a name that would subject them to possible ridicule at school?  Kids can be pretty tough on each other, and who wants to put a child named Spaghetti through school?”  Stanley seems to share a baby name philosophy with fellow Kiss founder and entrepreneurial genius Gene Simmons, whose names on reality television have always struck me as startlingly sensible: Nick and Sophie.  Easier for the child of a rocker to divorce herself from her parents with a name like Sophie, erm– should she ever want to.

If I can do one thing at You Can’t Call It “It”!, it would be to echo this sentiment that YOUR KIDS AREN’T OBJECTS FOR AMUSEMENT.  Laura Wattenberg just posted a depressing collection of names given to real babies.  Rotunda?  Fashionette?  Is this really necessary?  Seriously people, do you even love your children?

It’s not for me to question the love between parent and child.  I take that back.  But I do question the wisdom in giving over to the impulse for self-aggrandizement or, in many cases, self-abasement.  These days, it almost takes a special kind of courage and confidence to use a “boring” name.  Even Ava and Ethan are often attempts, however misbegotten, to give a child an unusual name.  But Emily has always been an English classic and reigned number 1 for over a decade straight.

There may be a lot of them, but I’ll take an Emily Grace in my family over Ephemeral Gadfly any day.

Children’s Brand Names

August 17th, 2011


Mired in the world of children’s fashion for my other blog, The Itsy Factor, I often come across names that find their way to the Zeitgeist via product names.  To my chagrin, *sigh*, such may be the case with my own daughter’s name, Beatrix.  And just yesterday, a celebrity (whom I’ve never heard of) announced the birth of his fourth child, Clover.  A lot of the smaller boutique brands such as Anaïs and I, were named for the designers’ children.  These names often stylistically mirror the visual  concept. With toy giant Melissa and Doug, the company was named after the adult founders.

Many of my readers consider Ada and Finn for their first child, and I’m trumpeting Hank and Gus as pet names for Henry and August.  There’s still room for more Nicos and Larks on the block.

If you are currently pregnant or have little children at home, follow me over at The Itsy Factor for more scoop on boutique brands and deals on the latest trends, and a window into the quirky self-styled fashions of my own children, “BeBe”and “Lolly.”

Have you ever discovered a name via a children’s product or store?  Did I miss your favorite?


Ada Ada - clothing

Aden & Anais – baby accessories, including their famous swaddle blankets.  Oddly, they pronounce Anais “Uh-NAY.”

Anaïs & I – clothing.  I’m nearly positive this Anaïs is said with three syllables, hence the umlaut.

Anne-Claire Petit – crocheted toys

Atsuyo et Akiko – clothing and accessories

Beatrix NY – gear

Clover New York – clothing

Dagmar Daley – clothing

Finn + Emma – bedding

Flora & Henri – clothing

Gus & Max – bedding, now defunct

Hank & Jojo – socks

Janie and Jack - clothing

Little Lark – clothing & gift

Lucy & Michael – play tents

Max & Lola – clothing

Melissa and Doug – toys

Morgan & Milo – shoes

Nico Nico – clothing

Sailor Rose – dresses

Serena & Lily- bedding, etc.

Shirin NYC- clothing


Haven Garner Warren

August 15th, 2011

Yes, you read that right!  In a surprise announcement that was not predicted for another month or so, Jessica Alba and Cash Warren have welcomed a baby sister for Honor Marie:

Haven Garner.

Cash’s alma mater is Yale.  Yep, that’s right.  He’s no dummy.  Know where Yale is?  In New Haven, Connecticut (incidentally, if you ever go there, it’s not pronounced NEW Haven like we say NEW York, but they put the emphasis on Haven, as in New HAVEN — I digress).  Cash’s middle name is Garner too, so it seems dad got a double does in there.  It’s appropriate for them.  She’s always struck me as very private, and I imagine her family is her safe haven.

At first glance, the name is also rife with religious meaning, especially when negotiated around Honor.  But I can’t help but see a rebellious future for little Haven.  Honor was so old world, but at one letter off from Heaven, this, the new “New Haven”, just misses the mark.  It perfectly mirrors Honor… almost.

What do my readers think?

Tina Fey Names Baby #2

August 13th, 2011

Before it was only a mild flirtation, but this has done me in.  I officially want to marry this woman.

As if Alice Zenobia weren’t absolutely fabulous enough, Bossypants author Tina Fey and her husband Jeffrey Richmond now have a second daughter.  Please, join me in a round of quiet applause for the birth of:

Penelope Athena.

Swoon.  I love it.  Can’t say that enough.  The quiet beauty of Alice paired with the zany Zenobia was genius, and Penelope exists in the same echelon as Alice while bumping up the quirk.  Athena serves to amp up its Greekiness.  It’s not an uncommon choice among fashion conoscienti. Ranked at #200 in 2010 it’s poised to break into the precarious top 199 next year and continue to climb.  Still, Penelope the Weaver is a symbol of creativity and steadfast loyalty, and I shall be forever loyal to her.

In case you were wondering, yes, Tina Fey is of Greek descent.  She was born Elizabeth Stamatina Fey.  Stamatina derives from the Greek stamato, which according to Behind the Name means “stop.” Her mother (Zenobia), was a Xenakes who went by the simple Americanized Jeanne.  I love that Tina went full throttle with her heritage this time, though I’m told Penelope is very old fashioned, even laughable, in Greece.  Can anyone confirm?  Maybe she’ll spearhead the old lady chic movement there.


Ohdeedoh Bambinos

August 10th, 2011

Here’s the latest bumper crop of Ohdeedoh wee ones.   They really run the gamut this time, from exotic (Tormentina) to all-too-familiar (Madison).  I’m not sure if this is more a sign that modern design is becoming popular throughout all parts of the United States, or that popular names are popular throughout all strata of society.  What’s your take?  Do you think that taste in names is reflective of a broader aesthetic?



Ainslie Jaymes




Beatrix “Trixie, Bix”



Elizabeth Catherine Anne, “Libby”






London Taylor











Olivia Madelen












Vivien Charles

Zoe Ellen









Everett Elliott




Jax Hudson

Kahlo Roel













Sayer Theiss


Above, Charlie.  I hope his mama doesn’t mind.   He’s too yummy not to share.