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March 29, 2015 07:08 PM

Oh, the nickname Ren is lovely.  Just that is enough to make me like the name more.  

I do agree with your previous statement that Clarence could be just one celebrity baby away from at least a small revival.  At least, in some areas it would be enough.  Where I am, Henry & Arthur are still seen as really fusty and not ready for a comeback.  I've only met one little Henry and no Arthurs yet.  

I also agree with comments about the "ence" ending.  I hadn't quite made the connection to other names mentioned previously, but the "ence" names just aren't happening right now.  I would do Claire or Clara in a heartbeat, but that "ence" just adds a harsher sound to my ear.


March 29, 2015 09:29 AM

I have to admit I'm not crazy about it.  I think some people will assume it is made up (I did at first).  I would also be concerned about how to say it.  My first guess was Jar-ah.  But it seems as if the correct way is more like Jare-ah.  I agree it will probably be misheard for the more familiar Jared.  I could also see some people who aren't familiar with the name guessing girl because it is similiar to Farrah.

If you like the sounds, I think Jared would be a nice option.  Or perhaps Judah, Elijah, Ira, Garret or Gareth?

March 29, 2015 09:17 AM

To be honest, my first thought about Clarence was "that's really musty, kind of harsh sounding."  When I thought about it some more, I remembered Claire & Clara are both on the upswing.  So it's probably not just the sound of Clarence that is turning people off.

I think the problem with Clarence is that it hasn't been gone long enough to be revived.  If you look at Clarence on the SSI baby name site, it's popularity was steady for a really long time.  It's only relatively recently that it has started to really drop. Looking at sound-alike Claire, I notice that it's had more peaks & valleys in popularity.

Clarence also doesn't have the same soft/fluid type sounds or romantic imagery of Henry & Arthur-which is what many parents who like revival names seem to prefer.  It lacks nickname potential and it don't really fit with any current boy name trends.  

Nothing is wrong with Clarence, this just isn't the right time for the name to be really popular.  I don't think I would use it (though I would seriously consider Claire & Clara and Henry & Arthur both made the list for my youngest).  However, I wouldn't find it horrible if someone else used it.  

FWIW, I've known a handful of Clarences in my life. A couple of older Black men & the younger brother of a boyfriend I had in high school (who went only by a nickname based on his initials).

March 28, 2015 07:47 PM
In Response to Sam or Daniel

I agree with all of this.

March 28, 2015 07:46 PM

Vivienne is lovely and unless you come from a family of chronic nicknamers, I don't think Viv or Vivi has to happen.  A lot of kids don't use nicknames.

Violet is nice, but I don't care for it with Scarlet.  They seem too matchy-they share the same ending and are both color names.

Since Vivienne & Violet both start with V, perhaps you'd also like Vera, Veronica or Verity?  I also really like Viola for you.  No obvious nickname and it seems similiar to Violet (without the matching endings or color association).  Or perhaps something with an internal V like Ivy, Olivia, Sylvia, Maeve or Ava?

For some non-V names, I am struggling to think of names that work with Scarlet but don't have any obvious nicknames.  I'll suggest Audrey, Felicity, Lydia.

March 19, 2015 08:02 AM

Since style is important to you, I will say that I don't think you can go wrong with anything on your current list.  They might be a slightly different direction, but they all still work together-and with your daughters' names.  Everything you've got fits within a larger vintage style.    

If your current list was full of modern, unisex style names, I would say that would be pretty jarring with Lilla & Vivienne.

March 19, 2015 07:56 AM
In Response to Help with baby names

I think you'll likely have to provide guidance for how each of these names should be said, simply because most will be unfamiliar to people in the U.S. (I assume that's where you are).  However, most are pretty easy to figure out with a bit of help.  Visually, Faruh is similiar to the name Farrah (fair-ah).  Because of possible confusion between the 2, I could see people having more problems getting Faruh correct.

I can't think of any negative connotations for any of these names, none of them sound like slang terms or anything like that.


March 19, 2015 07:51 AM

I generally prefer the K spelling, since that is the one used in my family, so I'm more used to it.  

I did check the initials & noticed that with the C spelling, they will be ACD-which makes me want to say ACDC.  I don't know that this will come up that often though.  How many times will people actually say all 3 initials out loud?  

March 18, 2015 10:15 AM

I also notice the shared "en" endings-and the fact that most of your sons' names have a modern and/or surname feel.  If you wanted to continue those themes with something feminine, perhaps Payton, Gracen, or Madison.  

If you are OK with something less modern, but still keeping the "en" theme, perhaps Megan, Caitlyn, Lauren or Jasmin.

If you want to keep surname/modern but aren't worried about the "en" theme, Kelsy, Delaney, Avery, & Shelby.

If the themes aren't important at all, then I'll suggest Lily, Nora, Ava, Sophie/Sophia.

March 17, 2015 01:46 PM

If you are worried about names that sounds too French with Vivienne, I would eliminate Eloise & Sylvie (and yes, I think Sylvie and Vivi are too close).

I'd say my top 3 from your list are Beatrix, Cecily & Felicity.  Beatrice is a close 4th, but it lacks some of the spunk I think you are looking for.

I like both Matilda & Winifred, but they seem a bit fusty next to Lilla & Vivienne.  Tess is another name I like, but it feels a bit plain.  I've just never cared much for Penelope.

March 17, 2015 01:42 PM

There's also Cordelia, Constance & Courtney. 

Really, with Coco I think any C name is fair game.  I don't mind something like Gabrielle with Coco as an organically derived nickname that just happened.  But naming a child Gabrielle with the intention of using Coco seems a bit off to me.

March 17, 2015 01:38 PM
In Response to Lia as a first name?

I agree.  Lia/Lea/Leah is a legitimate first name on its own.  There is not reason it has to be a nickname for something longer.

I also agree with the 1 syllable middle name suggestion.  Lia-Jane, Lia-Grace, Lia-Clare.

March 17, 2015 01:36 PM

It's also important to remember that a lot of this is cuturally determined.  There is a large Hisapanic population where I live, and double names in that culture are often Dad'sSurname Mom'sSurname.  Mom's surname would traditionally be dropped when a girl marries.  My former boss was from the DR and he Americanized his name by dropping his second surname (mom's surname).  He did this mainly because he was tired of people who use library practice getting it "wrong." If a name was to be dropped, he did not want it to be his father's.

People used to this system (myself included) will likely file names under the first surname, not the 2nd.

March 17, 2015 08:25 AM

I agree.  While helping out at my son's school, I was once yelled at because I couldn't find child with a hyphenated name in the system.  The surname was something along the lines of Jennings-Lane, so I was searching under J.  Turns out, whoever enrolled her had put Jennings under the middle name, left our her middle name, and then entered Lane as her only surname. As a volunteer, I wasn't able to fix it.  Once mom calmed down, she was able to explain that this happened a lot, so I can understand her frustration (though not her yelling at some random volunteer).

I can see the appeal of double surnames, and seriously considered it myself.  But I think parents need to be aware that this is still not the norm and there will be mistakes.   Every family has to decide if the potential hassles are worth it.

March 16, 2015 05:43 PM

Another option would be to add the hyphen.  In that case, her initials will most likely be listed as simply M.B.  I admit the hyphen isn't ideal, but it does address the specific issue you are concerned about.

And I know parents who choose to use both last names often don't want to hear this, but it's highly likely that without the hypen, her one surname will often be dropped, making her written initials M.M. or M.B.

I'll add that while I am not a huge fan of alliteration, I readily admit this is a matter of personal preference.  In most cases, alliteration does not make a name unusable.  When I sub 2 syllable M-er names, I don't see a huge problem with any of them.  FWIW, I tried M3yer, Mi1ler, Mue1ler, Min3r & M4yer.


March 16, 2015 04:10 PM

I agree with the suggestion of naming him John.  People seem to forget that is where Jack comes from anyway.  JFK is a great example of a famous John/Jack, if people ask or are uncertain about it.


March 16, 2015 01:51 PM
In Response to Help with Huxley

My favorite is Huxley Tobias Lane.  However, if you paired Ignatius with something other than Jove, it might get my vote.  Perhaps Huxley Ignatius Lane or Huxley Ignatius August?

March 16, 2015 01:49 PM

Apollo is a name, but it is also a name with a lot to live up to.  I don't think you are crazy for wanting to use it, but I do think you should consider if you'd want it for your name.  For me, it's in the category of names that I think some kids could pull off without a problem, while other kids (maybe quieter/more nerdy types) could find it to be just too much.

A girl named Tulip is going to hear that old "two lips on an organ" joke a lot.  This will be a problem, especially during those middle & high school years.  It is nice in theory, but definitely falls in the "not a name I'd want for myself" category.  

Do you mind explaining what you like about Tulip?  If it is because of the actual flower, we could help you with alternatives.  For example, Lala & Laleh both mean Tulip (according to  If it is more that you like the idea of unusual botanical names, I'm certain the readers on this forum will have plenty of suggestions.  

March 15, 2015 05:04 PM
In Response to Short list help!

My favorite from your boy list is Arthur.  I think it best matches the kind of familiar but not common vibe I get from Felix.  I also have had a long time name crush on Arthur, so I'm excited to see someone seriously considering it!

My second choice is Laszlo, though I do have some hesitations.  I'm also in the midwest and I get the feeling this name would cause confusion for some people.  You'll likely encounter spelling issues & I think the pronunciation issues already mentioned would bother me.  My guess is most midwesterners would say Laz-low, with the first syllable sounding like Jazz.  I prefer something closer to the already described lass-low, with the first syllable sounding closer to bass (the fish).  

I don't think Violet sounds awkward with Felix at all.  To answer your question about syllables, I normally say Vie-ah-lit; however, the "ah" is barely there.  For me, the name is more like 2.5 syllables.  If I try, or am speaking slower than usual, I'll say Vie-oh-let.

Octavia is lovely & I really, really like Violet Octavia.  From your other girl names, I'd probably rule out Flora just because I don't care for repeat initials (though I do like the name on its own).  Stella is probably my top pick.  I do also really like Hester, though it's probably going to get a few raised eyebrows. It's still pretty fusty for where I am. 

March 15, 2015 04:50 PM

I would not use Tripp & Chase together.  However, you could still use Charles with a different nickname.  Tripp & Chaz seem similiar to Tripp & Chase, but without the same issue.

I don't think Caroline is too long to use.  If you are concerned, perhaps you could use a nickname.  Carrie, Lina, Caddie, Caro, etc.