2012 has officially arrived!   Welcome to the annual You Can’t Call It “It”! Mitzi Awards, the best and worst in celebrity baby names. For the year 2011, no baby was left unturned.  Georgia Geraldine, sister to Billie Beatrice (mentioned in last year’s awards) and child of Rebecca Gayheart and Eric Dane.  They certainly have a penchant for alliteration.  Wonder if they’ll call her Georgie?

Rumors of babies Ethel Mary Cooper, potential name of Lily Allen’s daughter, and of Tiana-May Carter, Beyonce and Jay-Z’s possible babe, remain unconfirmed, so they remain off the list.  But if they are indeed true, this could spurn a new generation of extra dusty grandparent names as well as double-barrel firsts.  Were these to receive a Mitzi, what do you think it should be?

Without further ado,  the 2011 Mitzi Awards:

Best Boys’ Names:

Arlo Robert- son of Toni Colette.  O endings are becoming increasingly popular among the hip crowd.  Arlo is no exception.

Arthur Saint – son of Selma Blair.  What was that we were just saying about dusting off antiquarian grandparent names?  Arthur comes across as a distinguished, international choice, and the middle name “Saint” gives the name an added mystery.

Milo Thomas – son of Alyssa Milano.  A sweet nod to mama’s surname, it manages to sound both modern and classic with family name, Bugliari.

Henry – winning because of his surname Hornsby, more alliterative love here.

Flynn Christopher Blanchard Copeland – son of Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr.  His first name is a nod to grandmother Evelyn, and middles all have family meaning too.  We’re big fans at YCCII of multiple middles, especially if they have personal meaning.

Other Trends Worth Mentioning:

MARCEL ET AL: Marcelo Alejandro, son of Ali Landry and Alejandro Monteverde, and Marcel, son of Marion Cotillard and Guillame Canet.  Diablo Cody has a Marcello, born in 2010.

NAMESAKES, INTENTIONAL AND NOT:

Rex Harrison, son of Niki Taylor, would be on the “Best” list with a tweak of the middle.  But the exact same name as “Sexy Rexy”?  Too weird.  Bingham Hawn was also a near miss from the best list for being slightly odd, but we love how the name has ties to both sides of the family.  Bingham is Bellamy’s mother’s maiden name, and Kurt Russell’s father was called Bing.

Best Girls’ Names:

Clover Elizabeth - daughter of Neal McDonough.  A rarified botanical, with all the makings of a big hit.

Agnes Lark – daughter of Jennifer Connolly and Paul Bettany.  Another unusual nature name in the middle, buffered by an understated antique first.

Cleo Buckman Schwimmer - daughter of David Schwimmer and Zoe Buckman. Cleo is a great twist on mom’s popular modern day first name, and we love to see her maiden name in the middle!

Hattie Margaret – Tori Spelling (pleasantly) surprised the world with her choice of Hattie for her third child.  Similar in sound to Addie but with the sweetness of Sadie, expect this to go huge in the next few years.

Arabella Rose – daughter of Ivanka Trump, Arabella makes the list because it highlights a brilliant alternative to the overplayed but equally gorgeous Isabella.

Other Trends Worth Mentioning:

GREEK NAMES: Cleo is in good company with other beauties Penelope Athena (Tina Fey) and Helen Grace (Robert DeNiro!).

NICKNAMES: Zuzu Audrey, daughter of pastry chef Tania Peterson, made many a “worst name” list, but with its vintage charm a la “It’s a Wonderful Life”, I think it belongs at the top. It’s actually quite similar to Hattie, and of course the beloved Lulu.

NATURE NAMES:  Willow Sage (Pink) would make a great sister name to Clover Elizabeth.

ELLA, ELLA, ELLA, HEY, HEY: Mirabella Bunny (Bryan Adams), would make another great solution to the Isabella conundrum (at least the first would).

VINTAGE: The aforementioned Georgia Geraldine almost knocked Arabella clean off the list.  Look for more alliteration in 2012.

Worst Boys’ Names:

Cree - son of Tamara Mowry (I just don’t “get” it).

Skyler Morrison- son of stylist Rachel Zoe and Rodger Berman could not have picked a less stylish choice, and the middle reeks of trying-to-hard.

Kase Townes- son of Jewel and Ty Murray.  I grew up loyal to Jewel’s ingenious music, but her taste in names leaves much to be desired.  If you didn’t know already how I feel about the letter K, you’re getting the picture now.

Colt – son of John Rich.  Colt brings to mind images of guns and baby horses.  His brother Cash (yes, Cash Rich), made the list last year.

Kannon Valentine – Now I adore Kevin James as much as the next gal, but like Colt, Kannon is just violent.  And again people, WHAT is with this affection for the letter K where it has no business being?

Other Trends Worth Mentioning:

WE CALL HIM JUNIOR: Spike Myers may not have dad’s exact name, but he will never be able to escape from his shadow with a name that not only rhymes, but is somewhat comical (in a different way). Just one more krime to report: Kroy Jagger, son of Kroy Biermann and Kim Zolciak.  They obviously loved it enough to use it again, but sheesh.

THE ALPHANUMERIC:

Harper Seven, daughter of David and Victoria Beckham, & Aleph (Hebrew letter “A”), son on Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied, burst onto the scene the same week.  Numbers and letters as names are the wave of the future, I fear.

NATURAL: Alicia Silverstone’s Bear Blu also popped up on many a worst list, but for some reason I find this relatively inoffensive.  I felt the same way about Buddy Bear Maurice.  Thoughts?

UNNATURAL: Jennie Finch’s son Diesel.  Just too cool for school.

Worst Girls’ Names:

Arlo- daughter of Johnny Knoxville.  A first for the Mitzis when the same name appears on the Best of AND the Worst of lists in the same year.

Monroe – Mariah Carey named her baby girl after a temptress and a tart.  Marilyn Monroe certainly had her charms, but is she a role model for young girls?

Jordan Kay – Like Skylar, a terribly unstylish choice.  Unlike Zoe, we expected nothing more from Federline.

Mosley – Yes, it’s probably a family name for Peyton Manning.  But as a twin, it’s hard to keep straight who’s the boy and who’s the girl, plus the most famous Mosley was also not one to emulate.

Haven – daughter of Jessica Alba and Cash Warren.  We loved the story behind this choice, but independent of that it reads downmarket, especially next to big sister Honor‘s venerable name.

Worth Mentioning: Genesis.  We would have loved to see Viola Davis bequeath an equally lovely name to her child.  Like Haven, it does have lovely symbolism.

Best Twin Names:

Vincent Frederik Minik Alexander and Princess Josephine Sophia Ivalo Mathilda, Danish children of Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik.  It was impossible not to go royal in this category.

Worth Mentioning: Children of Girl’s Gone Child’s Rebecca Woolf have received a lot of attention on this blog.  Reverie Lux and Boheme Shalom will have many a namesake to be sure.

Worst Twin Names:

Moroccan Scott and Monroe.  Nicknames Roc and Roe notwithstanding,  I’d almost rather call them “dembabies.”

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Ohdeedoh Baby Name Inspiration

December 16th, 2011

Ohdeedoh remains a constant source of inspiration for me, for everything from baby names to decor to tips for keeping clutter at bay.  I’m happy to announce that I am also now a regular contributor there.  I’ll keep the name game based at You Can’t Call It “It”!, but for all other things baby and child find me over there.  You can find links to my previous posts here and here.

Also, I would like to extend a warm congratulations to both Ohdeedoh and Nameberry (where I am also a contributor) on making newparent.com‘s list of top 10 websites for parents!  It’s nice to be in such good company.  Congratulations friends.  What a way to end the year!

Without further ado, a list of most intriguing names from the pages of Ohdeedoh:

 

LADIES:

Athena

Bea

Bell

Betsy

Campbell

Cecily Claire

Clara

Clio Irene

Eulalie (!)

Fedra (& Dario)

Felicity

Frances

Ida (& Lars)

June

Lucinda

Margot

Maxine

Mila & Elena

Mildrid

Neve

Nina

Nola & Kira

 

 

LADS:

Cohen

Dario (& Fedra)

Darwin

Ezra

Felix

Graham

Gray

Hank (Henry)

Heracles

Ike

Kai

Lars (& Ida)

Leif Oliver

Levi

Oscar & Abel

Rocky

 

Image source

Rumored: Ethel Mary Cooper

December 12th, 2011

Hat tip to faithful reader Jane for this one.

Have you heard?  Though not officially announced, internet rumor has it that Lily Allen and Sam Cooper’s new baby is named Ethel.  Ethel Mary Cooper to be exact, per this tweet from a friend.

I think it’s lovely!  While Ethel is not necessarily an oldie I would have predicted to make a comeback quite so soon, it does have soft sounds of other names popular today, like Lily and Isabel.  Most people will still put her in the same category as Beulah and Irma, though it wasn’t so very long ago that Mabel and Hazel were unthinkable.

Internet rumors proved to be true with Casper and Aleph.  There’s no reason to believe a friend would purposely put out a red herring that appears by all accounts to be so believable, right?

What do you think?

Happiness is the definition of Joy Cho.  Do you read her style blog, Oh Joy!?  It’s a delight.  I love her “this and that” combos and that she incorporates all her passions from food to flowers.  Not long ago she and hubby Bob announced that they were going to share their joy with a new bambino.  And then we found out that it was a bambina (which is fab — Joy’s design sense has a distinct feminine sensibility).

She’s due super soon, and I’ve been laboring myself over what name matches them best.  It should be something cheerful and slightly hip, but manage to stand the test of time.  Here are a few recommendations/guesses.  Will she go a heavy duty Agatha-Winifred route, with a happy-go-lucky Daisy, or with something else entirely?  We’ll know soon!

Agatha - If anyone can pull off Agatha, it’s these two.  Can they breathe new life into this old saint?

Blythe – If my name were Joy, the felicitous Blythe might be too tempting to pass up.  It might be anyway.

Cecily – While Cecily may not mean “happiness”, it connotes it in the bounce and rhythm of the name.

Cordelia- Shakespearean Cordelia.  She could go by Coco or Dells, Delia or Cora.  Though Hollywood’s already gone there, the symmetry of Coco Cho could be appealing to a designer.

Daisy – If ever there was happiness wrapped up in a name, it would be here.

Elsa – Should they opt with short and sweet like mom’s name, Elsa is like the chic up-do of Ella.

Flossie” (Florence?) – The British are coming, and names like Flossie are long overdue on these shores.

Georgina- I do see these two picking something with a vintage European flair.  Though I don’t know him one iota, perhaps daddy Bob would like having a daughter George, but Georgina is just enough frills for mom?

Harriet- Compiled before yesterday’s bombshell of an announcement, I almost left this one off.  While I can’t see them choosing to call a daughter Hattie now, Harriet is still just the right amount of retro for a pair like the Chos to bring it boldly back to the fore.

Imogene – I was preferring Imogen until I met a local girl who uses the long E version.  It’s due to return, so I bequeath it to this baby.

Louisa- While sister names Sophia and Olivia reign, Louisa is another queen’s classic that has been overlooked.  They could be “Lulu” types.

Marjorie- Yes, I love Marjorie for many of the reasons mentioned above.  Retro chic, unexpected, and undeniably peppy on the right child.

Mirabel- Will Joy go for something classically “pretty”?

Penelope – My gut instinct and first thought for them.  Not sure if the celebrity birth of Tina Fey’s babe will have any bearing on this one way or the other.

Poppy- While it could be a nickname for Penelope, it deserves its own entry.  Poppy Cho has designer written all over her.

Susannah- Will somebody please use this?  You could call her Zuzu, Susie, Sanna, so many options!

Sylvie- Sylvie gives the somewhat dowdy-but-not-dowdy-enough Sylvia a lift.

Tabitha- It would take just one more style maven in the public eye to push this into the mainstream.  That of course may not be what Joy wants.

Viola- Love the long O repetition of this with Cho.  Fits the criteria we’ve set up nicely.

Winifred- I’ve met several Chinese women named Winnie, no doubt because it works well in both languages.  I believe Bob’s family is Chinese, I’d be just tickled if they had a little Winifred.

 

Born This Morn.

September 29th, 2011

Siobhán’s been in touch with me lately but didn’t want me to post anything until the baby was here.  After much suspense, she gave birth this morning to a beautiful baby boy!  Many congratulations from the whole YCCII clan.  He still, however, needs a name.

 

Hi Elisabeth,

I would absolutely love your help, and the help of your readers in choosing a name for my second son, who arrived earlier today!

My partner and I have a two year old son named Luca Cy B– – –well (two syllable English surname), and while I’m not a fan of matchy-matchy names, I would love any siblings, including this baby, to have names that sit nicely together as a sibset.

As such, I considered several other European names, and have settled on the name Remy (pronounced ‘Rem-ee’ – I’m still trying to decide whether should add the French accent to the ‘e’ or not, and would love your thoughts).

Other names that I shortlisted early on include Rafferty, Rafael/Raphael, Aurélien/Aurelius, Roman, Etienne, Clement, Florian, Cassius, Caspar, Aubrey, Tobias, Tobias, Eero, Miro and Olmo, to give you an idea of the style of names I like, and all of these could now be middle name possibilities.

While I’d love your opinion on my first name choice, I would especially love to get some thoughts on my shortlist of middle names, as these seem to be proving particularly difficult. Originally, I had planned to give this baby only one middle name, as I did with my firstborn son, however I have been seriously thinking about adding another middle name to my son’s existing name (my current favourites are Luca Cy Theodore or Luca Cy Maxim, but I’d love other suggestions…), and as such, I think I would like to give this baby and any future children two middle names.

I’d like to find names that somehow tie together or bridge a European first name and an English surname. My shortlist of middle names to go with Remy includes:

Lucian** (or Lucien)

Atticus

Theodore

Aurélien

Aurelius

Levin

Maxim / Maxime

Mateo

Cassius

Cassian

Caspar

Leon

Caspian

Casimir

Clement or Clemént / Clemente

Artemis

Magnus

Albion

Hugo

Jude

Otto

**I absolutely adore the name Remy Lucian, but wonder if it would be odd to give my newborn son a middle name that’s so close to my first son’s name, Luca (even though they apparently have different etymologies)? Originally, I had wanted to name my first son Lucian and use Luca as a nickname, but my partner refused, and I’ve always grieved the loss of that name, hence why I’d love to use it now! But I’m open to hearing other people’s (honest) opinions about this, as well as thoughts on each of the middle names mentioned above. Oh, and please don’t be too influenced by the fact that my son has a very short middle name, as most of the middle names I like for this and future babies tend to be longish, so Cy will just have to be the odd name out (we chose Cy after the late American painter Cy Twombly, a favourite artist of mine, and I would love to use Lucian as a tribute to Lucian Freud, another favourite artist…). Also, I really love the Lucian spelling, but wonder if Lucien flows better next to Remy, given that both names are French…

While it’s by no means essential that I use family names as middle names, the one person I would like to honour in naming each of my children is my youngest sister Mairead, who died suddenly four years ago. As she died in quite tragic circumstances, however, I feel uncomfortable using her actual name, but would like to honour her in some other way… One reason I named my son Luca was because he was born shortly after my sister’s death, and his name means ‘bringer of light’, which felt very significant at that time.  My sister was a philosopher/lecturer, whose main area of study and teaching was ancient Greek philosophy, and who was obsessed with anything Greek-related, and this is why I thought Theodore could make a good additional middle name for Luca, and why it could be nice to have a Greek influence somewhere in each name I choose for any other children. I am also open to hearing other name suggestions that could honour my sister in some way.

So… some of the name combinations that I’m considering for my son are:

Remy Lucian Atticus

Remy Lucian Aurelius

Remy Lucian Cassius

Remy Lucian Clement

Remy Lucian Caspar

Remy Lucian Casimir

Remy Aurélien Cassius

Remy Aurelius Clement

Remy Aurelius Maxim

Remy Aurelius Leon

Remy Etienne Casimir

Remy Leon Atticus

I would love to hear thoughts on the above, and welcome further suggestions on first and/or middle names, as well as name combinations.

I am as name-obsessed as everyone else who frequents YCCII, so I’m sure you can understand my desire to find the perfect name for our beautiful baby!!

Thanks so much for your help in advance!

Siobhán

 

Siobhán, I’m thrilled to welcome your son to the world, and absolutely smitten with your choice of Remy!  Even though this is a middle name poll only, we still have much to discuss.

As for the accent in Remy, depending on what country you live in, you may not be able to include it on the birth certificate at all.  I would go with your gut on this one, and what seems the most culturally appropriate to where he will grow up.

On middles:

I’m afraid I won’t be the only one who is genuinely twitchy at the thought of LUCA Cy and Remy LUCIAN together. You said yourself you wanted to name Luca “Lucian”, but got vetoed.   You chose Luca for a reason.  For me that would mean that the ship had sailed on the name Lucian, which while according to scholars do derive from different sources (Luca being “from Lucania” and Lucian being “of light”, from the Latin lux) are awfully similar.  Luca is also sometimes used as a nickname for Lucian.  What if by chance, Remy found his name too feminine and wanted to go by a middle name some day?  You would have sons Luca and Lucian.  It’s much, much too similar.  Plus, there’s such a wide variety of amazing names to choose from.  If you do opt for this in the middle, note that the French spelling Lucien does have a different pronunciation, though English speakers will likely say them the same.

My condolences on the loss of your sister Mairead.  I love that you want to honor her by choosing something she would have loved.  We’ve featured several posts here offering a host of names inspired by Ancient Greece.

Remy needs robust, masculine names to balance out its softer feel. For this reason I would personally eliminate Etienne or use it third.  Atticus, being a name of the moment, feels like too obvious a choice in this case.  Artemis is a girl’s name.  She was the goddess of the moon and of hunting, and Apollo’s twin.  Apollo could be nice!

I advocate for Remy Aurelius Clement, a heavenly combo.

Raphael would be a nice tribute to your sister as well, with the meaning “God has healed.”

I also favor:

Remy Cassian Aurelius

Rémy Aurélien Cassius

Rémy Cassius Aurélien

Remy Casimir Leon

Remy Ulysses Leon

Remy Raphael  Aurélien (love the alliteration here)

Remy Raphael Tobias

Remy Theodore Leon (again, the alliterative repetition in sounds is intentional)

Remy Magnus Casimir

Remy Casimir Hugo

Remy Maxime Theodore

Remy Tobias Hugo

 

For big brother, the combo Luca Cy Theodore is calling to me.  Luca Cy Raphael would be lovely as well.  Another thought– if you are changing his name anyway and you truly mourn the loss of Lucian, why not call him Lucian nn Luca as you had originally intended?  For balance, his brother could be Remus nn Remy.

Readers, are Luca and Lucian too close for comfort for brothers, even if one is used in the middle?  

Have you changed or added to a child’s name years after their birth?  What was your experience?  

What fabulous three name combos can you come up with for both Remy and Luca? 

 

Image by Cy Twombly

A Sibling for Virgil and Hector

September 26th, 2011

Lots of pleas for help in the inbox this month culminate in one great week of consultations.  To start, put your thinking caps on and let’s assist Alexandria in naming her third.  She writes:

Hello Elisabeth!

Thank you so much for your website. I’m a long time reader, but only now find myself in serious need of some baby-namin’ inspiration. And after pouring over your site for hours and hours, I’m so sure I’ve come to the right place.  Here’s the situation:
-
My husband and I have two fab boys, Virgil Ephram and Hector Adrien, 5 and 2.5 respectively, and I am pregnant with our third. We’re so super psyched, and not so secretly crossing all our fingers and toes for a girl :)
-
But we’ve decided to not find out the sex of the baby until he/she arrives, so we’re trying to decide on names for a boy and a girl.
-
Some details about us and our naming style:
-
When we decided to give our first son the name Virgil, most people thought we were completely bonkers. We got, ‘Hahaha… but seriously, what’s his name?’s and “The poor kid…’s left and right and we just didn’t understand why. I mean sure, it’s a letter off from Virgin and it’s not terribly common, and we certainly took that into consideration and went back and forth a bit, but in the end we were just so in love with the name there really was no other option for us. We have zero regrets. At home we call him Virg (read like verge) affectionately but he goes by Virgil to everyone else and he wears his name very proudly for such a little guy. The story behind us choosing that is as simple as that, we just really loved it. Ephram is my father’s name.
-
Hector (Heck to us) was named for Hector of Troy, my most beloved literary character in all the literature I’ve ever read or studied (I literally weep over my book every time I read his death. I can’t even explain the connection I feel with him). Since I first read the Iliad as a girl I’ve wanted to have a son to call Hector. And I do, and his name suits him so perfectly. Adrienne is my husband’s mother’s so Adrien is in homage to her.
-
We love names from literature and myth, uncommon names, sturdy names. My husband’s last name is Armstrong. Some names we’ve been thinking about but simply aren’t in love with (asterisks next to the top contenders):
-
Girls: For a girl we want something feminine, but strong. Nothing too frilly and that fits in with the boys.
Hero*
Cordelia
Viola
Etta
Gaia*
Lavinia
Valentina
Phebe
Constance
Ophelia
-
Boys: Again, something strong that goes with the boys.
Orion
Sebastien
Luca*
Silas*
Remus
Cornelius
Dimitri
Othello 
Phinnaeus 
-
I hope this gives you an idea of our tastes and what we’re looking for for our third-to-be.
Any input is beyond appreciated. :)
-
Cheers,
Alexandria
Oh Alexandria I do hope we can help!  Thank you for your sweet words about the site.
-
If you’re not in love with your current list, I’m inclined to say keep moving.  Maybe one of your old favorites will present itself in a new light, or maybe you just haven’t uncovered “the one” yet.  I will say I’m loving Lavinia and Remus.
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Your boy’s names are divine and you’ve shown you can really do this all on your own.  BUT, I have a few additional ideas that you might like.  I have a feeling you actually like “frillier” girls’ names than you’re willing to admit to yourself.  Your own name, Alexandria, is an ancient city that fits with your children’s names, but it’s also used today as an amped up version of Alexandra.  Valentina and Ophelia certainly both fit into the frilly category for me.
-
With that in mind, here are a few thoughts culled from the ancient world:
-
Althea
Ariadne
Aurelia
Cosima
Delfina
Eugenia
Flavia
Magdalena
Olympia
Phaedra
Philomena
Sybil
Theodosia
Ursula
Verena
Virginia
Xanthe

-

Ambrose
Barnabas
Bruno
Cassius
Erasmus
Ignatius
Isidore
Julius
Linus
Lucius
Raphael
Solomon
Simeon
Theodore
Theron
Titus
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Readers, what do you love with Virgil and Hector?
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Image: Hector Reproaches Paris by Pierre Claude François Delorme

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.

 

Selma Blair’s Baby Arthur

July 27th, 2011

I posted this on Facebook earlier, but the name is generating so much interest it was time to bring it back to the blog for hot debate.

Selma Blair and Jason Bleick have welcomed their son Arthur Saint Bleick to the world.

You may recall not long ago, I’d wrongly predicted Arthur as Natalie Portman’s choice.  Yet I’m thrilled another high profile fashionable mama has taken up the charge.  In my opinion Arthur is terribly au courant.  But what’s with Saint?  Is it an old world throwback, or new incantation incarnation?

Arthur has climbed to the top 100 in England and as “ahr-TOOR” remains a favorite in Belgium and France.  In America, however, he’s been on a downward crawl throughout the 20th and now 21st centuries, resting comfortably now in the upper 300s.  What do you think?  Will this birth help turn the name around? Is this Euro-chic choice destined to rise in the ranks on our shores with the likes of Henry and Eloise, or do you think this is a flash in the pan?

What say you? Is America ready for Arthur?

 

Rhythm & Blues

July 20th, 2011

IMG_6559

A big thank you to my readers Kristen and Debbie for urging a return to this topic:

Rebecca Woolfe is just taunting us!  After our speculative Girl’s Gone Child post I really wanted to let her completely surprise us, but she has alluded to twins “Rhythm and Blues”– their pseudonyms, and even bought the letters “R” and “B” for their room!  So it seems a second shot at this is inevitable.

The question remains, after son Archer and daughter Fable, will she stick to word names for her twin daughters?  My gut tells me yes.  How will the names relate to one another?

Here are a few “R” and “B” names that to me, feel very her.  We’ll have to wait until October to find out what they choose for sure!

B: Babette, Bijou, Boheme, Bronwen, Briar, Blythe (on the discarded list, sadly), Bryony, Bronwen, Bard, Bright, Bloom, Bliss, Ballad, Bellamy, Brio

R: Reve, Reverie, Ray, Rhea, Rain, Raven, Rhapsody, Roxanne, Roxy/ie, Regina, Renata, Rio, Romy, Rowena, Rue, Runa, Ruth, Rune, Rowan

I absolutely love the way Reverie flows, its dreamy connotations, and the nickname “Rev” feels very rock and roll.  Rune, a name I was previously unfamiliar with, has a layered meaning I can see appealing to them:  according to Behind the Name, it’s derived from the Old Norse and means “secret lore.”  Pronounced with two syllables, it’s a common name in Norway, though the Irish have a word with similar meaning, rùn.

For the Bs, Bloom keeps calling to me, as does Bijou.  It’s so hard to speculate beyond this.  I do love how R and B honor the mother (Rebecca nicknamed Bec), and wonder if this was subliminal or intentional.  What do you think Bec and Hal will name their baby girls?  What do you like paired together? Renata and Bloom ? Rune and Bijou . . .?

 

Namecandy led us to the report in Israel’s leading newspaper that Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied named their baby boy Alef (or is it Aleph?) This is the first letter, “A”, in the Israeli alphabet, and from my understanding, is not traditionally used as a name.  The name was first reported on Israeli TV show “Good Evening With Guy Pines” and may have been leaked by one of her cousins who lives there.

It wouldn’t be the first time the rich and famous coined a new name.  Maybe it’s just wishful thinking, but I’m still hopeful Natalie will revive an underused classic.  Maybe they actually chose an “Alef” name.  Her father is Avner, but they wouldn’t have named the child directly after him, for Jewish custom does not allow for naming after living relatives.

Arthur is my guess for Natalie Portman’s baby boy.  She is said to have adored her grandfather Arthur’s stories, and it’s so perfect!  In 2010, Arthur ranked 20th among top baby names in France.  It’s lovely and sophisticated in French, and fashionably stodgy in English.

Perhaps they did name the baby Alef after BOTH her father and grandfather, and who knows who else?  Does anyone know his family names?  I’m still hopeful the name is actually Arthur, and for now, enjoy the suspense.

Maybe they’ll announce on Father’s Day.