Style Spotlight: Andro-Girly Names

Sep 27th 2012

Picture the color orange-purple. Or a sound that's whisper-loud. "Androgynous-girly" baby names may seem like another entry in that list of contradictions, yet the style is emerging as one of the top trends of this decade. The recipe is to start with an androgynous name -- typically a surname -- and play with the spelling until it looks as brightly girlish as a Justice clothing store. Popular examples include:

Addyson
Aubree
Brooklynn
Brynlee
Emersyn
Kennedi
Kyleigh
Londyn
Maci
Ryleigh

The historical graph of those names is a portrait of "right now":



This isn't the first wave of girls' names built off riffs on the opposite sex. Think of the old song in which "Frankie and Johnnie were lovers" but "he done her wrong." The Frankie, Johnnie, Eddie, Jimmie, Bobbie, Freddie, Billie, Bennie, Robbie, Tommie girl gang peaked in the 1920s:

That generation of names, though, had a different and more straightforward style profile than the andro-girlies. They were simply boyish. In fact, if you look at same the 10 "Frankie & Johnnie" names for boys, the popularity profile is similar:



The andro-girly names, in contrast, aren't even graphable for boys -- not one of them has ever cracked the top 1000 as a male name. Yet the underlying androgyny of the names shapes their style. Their impact comes from pulling hard in two opposite directions at once, in multiple dimensions; a youthful/feminine vector and an adult/masculine vector. Picture a pinstripe suit covered in hearts and flowers.

Like any strong flavor, andro-girly is not for everyone. The name style is rare in some parts of the country, but wildly fashionable in the region shown on this map:

You might recognize the Eastern contour of that map from the 2008 electoral map. This ultra-modern, areligious style that blurs gender boundaries is most popular in conservative-voting states. As usual, political/social ideology runs counter to baby name style.

Comments

1
September 27, 2012 9:04 PM

I'm surprised that Utah and Alaska aren't on that map! How interesting.

My daughter had a boy named Jaidyn in her class last year. The spelling was very counterintuitive to me.

2
September 28, 2012 4:28 PM

I love the "recipe" start with an androgynous (sur)name and then play with the spelling, etc, lol! Probably funniest since I just set foot in a Justice store for the first time yesterday shopping for my niece! I do love this too since my husband and I like the root Bryn due to personal meaning so we've liked Brynlee for years now, if we're ever to have a girl. With 2 boys now we're keeping Brynlee on the table, but have recently discussed Brynner if we were to wind up with a third boy:)

 

3
September 29, 2012 3:12 PM

(I posted this on the forum but I just realized that it its this weeks's blog entry perfectly!)

Yesterday, I met a 14 month-old girl named Annast0n, whose name was inspired by Jennifer Aniston's last name, but whose parents opted to change the spelling to include the girly "Anna".

4
September 30, 2012 10:49 PM

I'm so sorry to have to get out the in-flight motion sickness sanitary storage unit for these kinds of names.  I know we are supposed to be all non-judgy and I appreciate Laura's restraint.   But these names scream lack of courage; as if people who use them want to be trendy and kicky but are terrified that anyone might ever mistake their princess for a boy.

5
October 2, 2012 1:04 PM

I think there is a more interesting trend that involves only the first part of the recipe ("start with an androgynous name -- typically a surname"), i.e. girls named Avery, Parker, Leslie, Ridley, Stacy, Scottie, Ashley, etc., which are traditionally male names (especially on the other side of the Atlantic) but sound "girly" to American ears without having to play with the spelling.

6
By hyz
October 2, 2012 1:21 PM

Well, I see my state is not included in this trend, which helps explain why I can't remember seeing any of these kids in real life (--oh wait, except once, on an Elliette), although we do have the traditionally spelled surnames for girls trend a bit here.  The Frankie and Johnnie comment also made me want to mention that I recently met young sisters here named Bobbie and Charlie--not sure if those are full names (likely) or nicknames (I hope), but it does have kind of a retro appeal.  Of course, I thought they were boys when I read their names on the roster, but once I met them and realized they were girls, it was still passably cute--much better, I think, than Ryliegh and the like, in any event.

7
October 3, 2012 7:44 AM

I'm actually reassured by the map that this trend isn't nationwide.  I live in one of the pink states and I see a ton of them.

9
March 30, 2014 2:17 AM

Surely, a change of scenery isn't a be-all, end-all cure for depression by any stretch of the imagination, but for me at least, it can really work wonders .

Check this link

10
March 30, 2014 3:48 AM

Baby names may seem like another entry in that list of contradictions, yet the style is emerging as one of the top trends of this decade.

BroadConnect USA

11
March 30, 2014 4:19 AM

Economic analyst Eric Bloch said infrastructural development should be one of the key priority areas for the new government considering its implications on economic growth.

View this site

12
March 30, 2014 5:11 AM

The recipe is to start with an androgynous name -- typically a surname -- and play with the spelling until it looks as brightly girlish as a Justice clothing store. Popular examples include: Paul Mathieson

13
March 30, 2014 5:31 PM

Their impact comes from pulling hard in two opposite directions at once, in multiple dimensions; a youthful/feminine vector and an adult/masculine vector. 

Farrah

14
March 30, 2014 6:23 PM

The recipe is to start with an androgynous name -- typically a surname -- and play with the spelling until it looks as brightly girlish as a Justice clothing store. 

best garcinia camboja

17
March 31, 2014 7:36 AM

typically a surname -- and play with the spelling until it looks as brightly girlish as a Justice clothing store.  

Fridge repairs london

18
March 31, 2014 9:39 AM

What larger customers really want is an enterprise-class unified storage platform that can handle their stringent Service Level requirements for critical business applications.

air conditioning company

20
April 1, 2014 2:08 AM

I thought they were boys when I read their names on the roster, but once I met them and realized they were girls, it was still passably cute--much better, I think, than Ryliegh and the like, in any event.

Hydraulikservice

21
April 1, 2014 7:25 AM

Income Tax Credit (EITC). If the value of SNAP benefits were counted as income in 2011, 3.9 million people would not have been considered poor, and accounting for the EITC would have lifted 5.7 million people above the poverty line. Click this link

24
April 2, 2014 4:43 AM

I’m impressed. Very informative and trustworthy blog does exactly what it sets out to do. I’ll bookmark your weblog for future use.
New York Arraignment Lawyer

25
April 2, 2014 9:42 AM

drogynous name -- typically a surname -- and play with the spelling until it looks as brightly girlish as a Justice clothing store. Popular examples include: Baby Hazel

26
April 3, 2014 1:50 AM

Tidwell said it was crucial that Congress extend his agency's authority to conduct stewardship contracts, which allow it to use revenue from timber sales to fund forest restoration activities including culvert and road repairs, ferrari rental miami

27
April 3, 2014 9:03 AM

This isn't the first wave of girls' names built off riffs on the opposite sex. Think of the old song in which "Frankie and Johnnie were lovers" but "he done her wrong."

sarkari naukri in mp

29
April 5, 2014 3:39 AM

f I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning.

buy twitter followers UK

30
April 5, 2014 5:31 AM

Their impact comes from pulling hard in two opposite directions at once, in multiple dimensions; a youthful/feminine vector and an adult/masculine vector. Picture a pinstripe suit covered in hearts and flowers.

green coffee bean extract

32
April 5, 2014 3:32 PM

Vollan said that he does not understand why more independent retailers are not offering ethanol blends and staying abreast of how RIN values can impact their bottom lines.

free video software

33
April 6, 2014 2:30 AM

I really enjoy simply reading all of your weblogs. Simply wanted to inform you that you have people like me who appreciate your work. Definitely a great post. Hats off to you! The information that you have provided is very helpful.
Rekha R

34
April 6, 2014 6:00 AM

Justice store for the first time yesterday shopping for my niece! I do love this too since my husband and I like the root Bryn due to personal meaning so we've liked Brynlee for years now, if we're ever to have a girl. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-tS-Fl03dqI

35
April 6, 2014 6:38 AM

 I fair anticipation that you don't fail your method therefore you are definitely digit of the coolest bloggers absent there.

colon cleanse

38
April 7, 2014 7:54 AM

It is imperative that we read blog post very carefully,I would like to thank you for this excellent information!!

vietnam visa

39
April 7, 2014 9:56 AM

he recipe is to start with an androgynous name -- typically a surname -- and play with the spelling until it looks as brightly girlish as a Justice clothing store. Popular examples include: hidden cameras

41
April 8, 2014 4:41 AM

Androgynous-girly" baby names may seem like another entry in that list of contradictions, yet the style is emerging as one of the top trends of this decade.

model mayhem

42
April 8, 2014 5:06 AM

Androgynous-girly" baby names may seem like another entry in that list of contradictions, yet the style is emerging as one of the top trends of this decade. lean muscle site

43
April 8, 2014 8:58 AM

First, they offered scholarly troves of historical information on each name, deeper than you'd find in a practical guide for English-speaking parents. PPI Claims

44
April 8, 2014 9:26 AM

à Abidjan, poucez vous me dire si cette police existe vraiment j'ai peur de me faire encore arnaquée car elle me demande des frais de recherches, de timbres etc ....  

free movies

46
April 8, 2014 2:15 PM

 They were simply boyish. In fact, if you look at same the 10 "Frankie & Johnnie" names forboys, the popularity profile is similar:

agen bola

47
April 10, 2014 5:18 PM

I like this article very much because it is very much technical and useful for us to gain more knowledge. Good to be here...

how to ride a unicycle

48
April 10, 2014 5:02 PM

This is certainly good post that i had been anticipating intended for such an content so i have got gained some practical details from this website

Kelly

49
April 9, 2014 4:49 AM

retro appeal.  Of course, I thought they were boys when I read their names on the roster, but once I met them and realized they were girls, it was still passably cute--much better, I think, than Ryliegh and the like, in any event.  

Low Rise Construction