If the Shoe (Name) Fits...

Oct 27th 2011

Walking through a warehouse-style shoe store, I couldn't help but notice how many of the shoeboxes bore women's names. The DKNY "Sophie" flat; the The Mephisto "Alison" mary jane. Why those names and not others? What kind of names do shoemakers choose most? And do certain names match certain shoes?

To find out, I turned to a vast shoe data depository: Zappos.com. I searched Zappos for shoe models named for 100 different popular girls' names. (More methodology detail below.)

The top female shoe names:

1. Bella
2. Madison
3 (tie). Chloe
   Olivia
5. Naomi
6 (tie). Julia
   Bailey
8 (tie). Maya
   Taylor
   Kimberly
   Sadie
   Avery

And the popular names with the fewest shoe namesakes (tied at zero):

Stella
Angelina
Valeria
Nevaeh
Aaliyah
Madeline
Gabrielle
Kaitlyn
Katelyn
Aubrey

Some definite trends emerge. The popular shoe names names are visually simpler. They're shorter on average, with standard spellings and mostly straightforward pronunciations. It's definitely about visual/written impact -- the number of syllables in the spoken name doesn't correlate with shoe namesakes at all.

The chosen names are vowel heavy as well. Names ending in a vowel sound averaged 1 1/2 more shoe namesakes than names ending in a consonant sound. That might seem to point to a preference for clearly feminine names, but androgynous usage doesn't turn out to be an issue. Notice, for instance, names like Bailey and Taylor in the top 10.

I also found some differences in the kinds of names given to infants' and kids' shoe models vs. women's. Kids' shoe names are, well, cuddlier. More Bellas and Emmas, fewer Averys and Vanessas.

And now for the finding that surprised me most: they shoemakers aren't choosing very well. I can say this with confidence because there's almost no relationship between the style of name and the style of shoe. I routinely found the same name being applied to spangly flip-flops, sleek leather boots, comfort walking shoes, and leopard-print platform stilettos. For a typical example, here are the three models of shoes called Scarlett:

(Images above are from the Scarlett shoes available for purchase at Zappos.com.)

Now, I can see that there could be value in naming against type. If you're creating a comfort walking shoe, for instance, you might want to avoid comfy, old-fashioned names to keep the words "old lady shoe" far from buyers' minds. But if you're delivering a black, studded, high-heeled cross between a cowboy boot and a motorcycle boot, what the heck does a name like Emma or Amelia do for you? And why would your competitors turn around and apply that same name to an espadrille?

With their apparently random shoe-name matches, the shoemakers aren't using the names to signal ANYTHING about their products. Isn't that a waste of a good name?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Shoe name methodology:

I looked at the the 100 most popular names for girls in the U.S., after eliminating: names that could be chosen by marketers based on non-name meanings, such as Serenity and London; the name Mary because of thousands of search results for the "mary jane" style of shoes; and the name Eva because search results included the thousands of models with EVA insoles.

Model (not brand) names of women's and girls' shoes (not slippers) were counted at Zappos. Exact spelling matches only. A shoe family (multiple colors, fabrics, etc.) counted as just one model. The name had to be used as a first name, so "Mamma Mia" didn't score for Mia, or "Madison Avenue" for Madison.

And a final note: don't try this at home. Not only was my head swimming after many hours of squinting to tell shoe models apart, but I'm now at serious risk of spending $300 on a really awesome pair of Sophia boots.

Comments

51
October 31, 2011 4:02 PM

would love to play the game, but i know there's no way i would *ever* be able to narrow it down. my list would be filled with slashes, starting with something like august/amos/ambrose/abel/ansel/alistair/atticus/absalom/abraham/axel/algernon/amadeus
i wouldn't even make it past the first letter! am loving reading everyone else's though.
i also find that i don't really like any k names outside of kathryn/katherine. i guess i could spell casper or casimir (both of which i love) with a k, but i prefer them with Cs. oh, just saw that beth the original used kermit; i could get behind that!
i also have a problem with q for girls because i don't like quinn on a girl, and don't really know of any others (am intrigued by hyz's quilla though--care to share your thoughts?).
i don't have any problems with the Us though.

also: wanted to announce babies born in my church:

Lazarus
Ellenore
Sophia Rose
Sylvia

aside from that non-standard spelling of eleanor, which i'm not a big fan of, i was pretty pleased. especially with lazarus, because i have recently been lamenting the underuse of lazarus and boaz, which i feel could really work. i'll let you know if i learn middle names for the other three (i only know of sophia's).

52
By Essy01 (not verified)
October 31, 2011 4:17 PM

...because I'm bored and it's so much, doing the opposite thing.

Ariadne,
Briar, Callum
Darian, Enzo, Frederick
Glory, Helen
Isaac
Jacoba, Kelly
Loulou, Marguerite, Naomi, Olalla,
Penn, Quade, Roland, Spencer

53
By hyz
October 31, 2011 4:53 PM

emilyrae, I think we all have that problem! In fact, doing this game makes me a bit sad, since it makes me think of all the names I love that I'll never get to use! Even if I had as many kids as the Duggars, I'd still be mourning the roster of unused names!

As for Quilla, it was kind of a punt that worked. I thought it sounded like it could/should be a name, and seemed like a fun Quinn alternative, so I looked it up and found a few entries for it on name sites, basically as Quill + a. I almost did Quenilla--another "invention" that worked--googling it yielded this entry on nook of names: http://nookofnames.com/2011/07/13/minding-my-ps-and-qs-quenilda/ . That post also lists such interesting options as Quenilda (related to Gunilda/Gunhildr, apparently), Quinnell, Quennell, Quennella, etc., all with the very usable nn of Nell, etc.

I also thought of Quelle/Quella, from the German word for the source of a river/stream. I would like this option better than Quilla, but for the pronunciation issues--Quelle is like "KVELL-eh" in German, but that's obviously not an intuitive pronunciation in English, so I couldn't decide if I'd rather go with the kv- pron. and deal with confusion, or accept the kw- pron. Obviously, I'm overthinking this, given the highly hypothetical nature of the exercise.... ;)

Essy01, I like your sets--not exactly my style, but fun and interesting. Your use of Booth intrigued me--I only know of one, a member of a WV political family, Booth G0odwin, who, incidentally, has a cousin named Carte. I think both are family surnames. Oh, and I guess there's Booth Tarkington, too. Anyway, it caught my eye.

54
October 31, 2011 5:00 PM

@zoerhenne, yep I like the reverse list better too! Found it much easier for some reason

@Amy3, I'm not surprised we had similar issues as we have similar taste in names! I also quite like Katherine but went with K versions of C names. Katherine was almost on the list though ;)

My rest of the alphabet (boy)

Theodore
Ulysses
Vaughn
Wesley
Xavier
Yvo
Zephyr

Girls:
Theodora
Ursula
Vivienne
Winter
Xanthe
Ysabeau
Zinnia

I notice a lot of overlap with hyz which is not surprising since we like a lot of the same names!

55
By hyz
October 31, 2011 5:07 PM

Chimu, yes, a lot of overlap, and there was almost more!, because I strongly considered Yvo or Yves (and Yule, Yuriy, etc.--Y turned out to have a number of decent options), as well as Ulysses and Theodora.

56
October 31, 2011 5:28 PM

emilyrae-you always make me smile/laugh with your posts. Your indecisiveness with names rivals mine on other subjects.

Here's my reverse list since you all have posted yours:
My choices would be:
Alexis; Bethany; Connor
David; Elliot; Finn
Gabrielle; Hailey
Ignatius; Jessica; Kalaina
Lydia; Molly; Nicole; Olivia
Patrick; Quincy; Rhys; Steven
My toughest letters were F and I(for both genders).
The rest of the alphabet reversed from my previous post.
Trent; Ulysses; Vallerie; Wesley; Xavier; Yves ;Zoe (of course)!

57
By hyz
October 31, 2011 5:48 PM

Ok, since everyone else is doing reverse lists, I'll indulge in mine--again, so many good choices left off...

Anthea
Blaise
Clementine
Drake
Everett
Forrest
Gretchen
Hyacinth
Isaiah (but sorely tempted by Isadore)
June
Katerina (nn Katja--Kat, Kate, Katie also good)
Laurel
Mariska
Narcissa
Opal
Peregrine
Quincy
Rowan
Silas

58
By EVie
October 31, 2011 8:02 PM

Here's my list:

Alexander (Alec)
Bennett/Charlotte
Delilah, Elodie, Felicity
Gabriel, Henry
Ismay (though if I were doing the whole alphabet, I would save Ysmay for Y and use Imogen instead)
James/Kaspar (but I too prefer the C-spelling)
Leverett, Marcus, Niccolo (Nico), Oliver
Phoebe, Rosamond, Susanna, Tamsin (nothing I come up with for Q is something I would actually consider using, so I'm skipping it).

And the reverse:
Amalia
Beatrix/Caspar
Darius, Edmund, Felix
Genevieve, Hazel
Ivan
Juliet/Kara
Lila, Marigold, Noelle, Ophelia
Percival, Quintus, Raphael, Soren

I've been busy the last few weeks, so I'm catching up. lucubratrix - congrats! Rupert James is a very handsome name.

Regarding the slave name discussion in the last thread, I seem to recall hearing/reading something about how slave owners gave their slaves classical names because they were pagan names, and thus not appropriate for Christians. The sense I got was that it was just another way of dehumanizing them (kind of the same way we often give our pets names that we wouldn't give our children). I wish I could cite my source, but unfortunately I don't remember where I read that.

59
October 31, 2011 8:19 PM

I overheard my husband talking on the phone to his sister. She must have asked him how we picked Alexander's name because I heard him say that following:
Husband: "I made up a list of names I liked and it took me forever. Then I looked in this name book Elizabeth has and discovered that the author had already done the work for me! It was amazing! Apparently all the names I like fall into a certain style category because there they all were on one list. Isn't that crazy?"

I almost fell over. Here I've been a daily reader of this blog for YEARS and have been talking to him about it for as long. This just proves that he has only been half listening to me since he hasn't even grasped the basic tenets of baby name wizardry! Good grief!

The other crazy thing about that conversation was that it wasn't even true! My husband did compile a list, but he got frustrated after the Ds and stopped. So his list contained names that ranged from Alexander to Demetrius and Drake. Those three names hardly fall into the same style category! After he gave up, he looked at my list, discovered it also started with Alexander, and decided that was a good name (he also picked Brendan and James from my list). Many weeks later he found the lists at the back of the BNW book, but that wasn't how he picked the names on his list.

I got a good laugh out of it, especially since my sister-in-law was apparently equally surprised by the idea that names reflect different styles. Good thing I have this blog to quench my naming thirst because I'm surrounded by the uninformed! Laura, you're providing a public service for both the uninformed masses and those of us who need to escape them!!!

60
By izzy_nli (not verified)
October 31, 2011 8:19 PM

Emilyrae, i am the same way!! but, here is my best shot:

Ansel Alexander
Bennett and Catharine
Dahlia, Elisabeth, Felicie/Fleur
Graham and Hugo
Isobel
John (nn Jack) and Kit
Luca, Mathieu, Nathaniel (Nate), Oliver
Piper, Quinn, Rose, and Sophie

Amelie
Bridget and Charles (Charlie)
David, Emmett, Felicie/Fleur
Grace and Helena
Isaac
Johanna and Katharine
Lily, Marie, Natalia, and Ottilie
Peter, Quinn, Rory, and Samuel

fun!!

61
October 31, 2011 9:38 PM

Elizabeth T-you are so right! Hugs to you.

hyz-your last list was wonderful. With maybe 2-3 exceptions I would use them.

I've noticed many of us using the name Quinn for the Q name for both genders. I think Laura needs to do a post on the only?/best usable Q name around.

62
October 31, 2011 10:01 PM

OK, ghosts and goblins are finally in bed so I have time to play zoerhenne's game.

Alexander
Benjamin
Camille
Diana
Emily
Fern
Gabriel
Herbert (tribute to my dad--I'd probably actually use Henry)
Iris
James
Kristopher (not my favorite spelling, but if I never wrote down his name I'd be okay)
Luke
Michael
Nathaniel
Oliver
Patricia
Quianna
Rachel
Sarah

Truly, though, if I got to Q, I think I'd be sorely tempted to use Quit! (Echoes of the last post, right?)

For the reverse:
Adrienne
Bronwyn
Charles
Dominic
Edward
Francis
Gael
Hannah
Ivan
Jessica
Katherine
Lily
Monica
Nancy
Opal
Peter
Quentin
Ryan
Sebastian

And the rest of the alphabet:
Theresa
Ulysses
Victoria
Walden
Xitlali
Yondra
Zeus (why not? At this point I'd be so insane that naming my child after the chief god might seem like a good idea.)

63
October 31, 2011 10:49 PM

Elizabeth T-I love your lists. You are the closest to my style of the regular posters. :) Yea for liking Jessica!

64
By ozy
October 31, 2011 11:06 PM

Harder than it looks!

Arthur
Bo
Clark
Drusilla
Eliza
Flora
Giovanni
Hector
Ivy
Julian
Kaspar
Lysander
Myles
Noah
Odin
Phoenix
Quincy
Roxie
Selma

65
By Anastasia (not verified)
October 31, 2011 11:29 PM

I have been reading this site for four years but rarely write in. I am always astounded by how helpful and insightful you all are and am excited to hear your thoughts on my current naming situation. My daughter is Emelia Marion and am expecting my second very soon but don't know the gender. We have (i think) settled on the names Oliver and Delaney. We are a little concerned about Delaney because we have an Italian last name and neither of us are Irish. Mattea and Elyse were close seconds. I welcome your thoughts on that issue as well but am writing for suggestions on middle names. We had settled on Oliver Quinn and Delaney Jane but have both decided we don't like either anymore. I would love to hear your thoughts.

Thank you!

66
By mama gray (not verified)
November 1, 2011 4:02 AM

I tried to think of names that the Duggars might actually use:

Axel
Brayden, Charis
Dakota, Emilee, Faith
Gunnar, Hudson
Ivy
Josiah, Kaleb
Logan, Mason, Nolan, Orion
Piper, Queenie, Riley, Sadie

And then another set with a different feel:

Alexander
Bentley, Charlotte
Dahlia, Eliana, Felicity
Gareth, Henry
Ionia
Julian, Kallum
Lucas, Marcus, Nicholas, Oliver
Penelope, Quinn, Ruby, Sophia

I like Quinn for a girl. I knew a girl named Quinn in grad school who was super clever, thoughtful, musical, articulate so I associate the name with all those positive attributes.

67
November 1, 2011 8:15 AM

Anastasia, I know two girls named Emelia. One has a sister named Lily and the other has a brother named Max. Both go nicely I think, although I like Delaney and Oliver paired with Emelia.

68
November 1, 2011 9:05 AM

I like them both mama gray.

Anastasia-I like both first names and think they match well with your first child's name. I agree though that the combos of Oliver Quinn and Delaney Jane aren't perfect though. Quinn stops Oliver. Oliver is a Da-da-da sound. Essentially 3 short sounds followed by a 1 syl short sound doesn't work for me. You did the reverse with Delaney Jane. Your other child works though:
Da-dee-dee-dee Da-da-da
I don't know what your LN is but my ideas are:
Oliver Daniel; Oliver James; Oliver Wesley; Oliver Tristan;
Delaney Marie; Delaney Celeste; Delaney Michelle; Delaney London
I tried to get a few different styles for you. Let me know how I did.

69
November 1, 2011 9:37 AM

Hello all,
I don't know if anyone will remember me, but I posted several months ago with a baby boy name dilemma, which at the time was purely hypothetical. I'm back for more advice because now I'm pregnant with a boy, due in March, and the problem isn't so hypothetical anymore.
My original problem was that I seem to only like boy names that are surnames, such as Harrison, Archer, and Cooper. However, our last name is a common male first name beginning with S. My husband maintains that it would our sons would constantly be called by our last name out of confusion, so I've agreed to save my favorite names for the middle name spot.
As far as strictly first names go, I prefer names like Oliver, Oscar, and Sebastian, while my husband prefers Christopher, Logan, and Peter. So far we've only agreed on Simon, and possibly Tristan (though we have a good friend by that name that I don't really want to use as a namesake). I'd like to have more than one and a half options to take into the delivery room though, so any suggestions would appreciated!
Also as far as name pairings go, which middle name goes best with Simon? Our list of possibilities include: Archer, Harrison, Carlisle, and Randolph (all family names).
Thanks for your opinions!

70
November 1, 2011 10:24 AM

anastasia,
congrats! how about...
delaney roxana
delaney isabel
delaney iris
delaney eleanor
delaney margaret
delaney pearl

oliver amos
oliver benjamin
oliver nicholas
oliver maxwell
oliver quincy
oliver beckett

kakicloud,
also congrats!
for what it is worth, i know a little boy named t0wn3s (he's adorable). his last name is one of the very common surnames used as first names (think of things like parker, carter, cooper, tyler, tanner, tucker, hunter). when i asked his parents about how they chose his name, they did mention that teachers occasionally think his last name is his first name and vice versa (when it is in the LN, FN position), but they didn't seem too concerned. they just said, "oh, that happens every once in a while, but he just corrects them, and then it's fine." just presenting an alternate point of view!

i love both you and your husband's names, with the exception of logan, which is "just okay" for me. i especially love oliver, oscar, sebastian, and simon.
regarding middle names, i think my favorites are simon archer and simon carlisle, but i think all four work well--none of them are bad.
additional name suggestions!...

silas
august
amos
julian
milo

anywhere close or way way off? :]

71
By Essy01 (not verified)
November 1, 2011 10:46 AM

hyz - I got Booth from the tv show Bones - one of the main characters is an FBI agent named Seeley Booth (played by David Boreanaz, who also was Angel on Buffy/Angel) but most of the time the characters call him Booth. I like it as a name but I worry people would think of the noun booth (or John Wilkes Booth) so it's one I keep on the only use in hypothetical situations list :D I like anything that could potentially have the NN Boo. thanks for the shout out :)

kakicloud - the only one that rolls off my tongue weirdly is Simon Harrison maybe because they both end in "-on" but I think the other three combos Simon Archer, Simon Carlisle, and Simon Randolph - I personally like Simon Carlisle the best. sorry not much name help, but congrats!!!

72
November 1, 2011 10:51 AM

Lucubratrix: Congratulations!!!! Glad you both are home safe and sound.

Off topic...My sister recently asked me if we were still considering "Sea Witch" for a daughter. Ugh.

73
November 1, 2011 11:21 AM

random tidbits:

lucubratrix,
ah, your announcement got lost in the shuffle! congratulations! i am so excited because i've always wanted to meet a rupert in real life. i love it! rupert james is wonderful. :]

regarding julia:
i wanted to second whoever said that julia is not middle-aged. i definitely agree. i actually think of julie as middle-aged (or at least approaching middle-age. didn't it peak in the 60s?), but julia seems timeless to me or even young. it's ranked 55 right now, the highest of all the female juli- names by almost 100 spots.

zoerhenne, juli, and elizabeth t,
i just wanted to thank you for including emily on your lists. :] i know that for many people emily is boring, overused, etc, but i actually like my name very much, so i'm always really pleased when others do too. (even if you only like it a little bit.)

elizabeth t,
your story about your husband was hi-larious. "Apparently all the names I like fall into a certain style category because there they all were on one list. Isn't that crazy?" ha! yes indeed, so crazy.

hyz,
hmm, that is very interesting about quilla. it sounds very natury to me, i guess because of porcupines...? ha, just did a google search, and this fits in well with the topoic: it's a shoe! :D
http://www.zappos.com/gabriella-rocha-quilla

zoerhenne,
haha, i think boys' 'a' names are the worst as far as indecisiveness; i don't think any other letter would be quite as ridiculous as that one. but the thing is, with very few exceptions (i don't think i would use algernon or amadeus in real life), i would actually consider using all of those! oh, and random fact, did you guys know that algernon means "one with mustaches" or something like that. hilarious!

74
November 1, 2011 11:04 AM

pennyx,
ah, rude! :[ my pregant friend has recently got some very impolite comments about some names that she likes (and they are much, much more mainstream than ursula). why do people do this!?

75
November 1, 2011 11:07 AM

naming question:

i have a friend who is considering the name silas. her concern: "do you think people who a) aren't familiar with the bible and b) aren't familiar with the book silas marner will know the name? will they just look at me like, 'what is that?'"

thoughts? i say no way, sounds like a non-issue to me, but it's hard for me to be objective.

76
By mama gray (not verified)
November 1, 2011 11:26 AM

Regarding Silas, I don't think it would be a problem. It has the familiar Greek -s ending which is known in names like Marcus. It's also pretty common, at #222 on the SS list last year. It would be similar in style to the biblical Titus (#397).

77
By Beth the original (not verified)
November 1, 2011 11:54 AM

Well, I like the name, but it is true that I am familiar with both the Bible and Silas Marner.

There are TWO Julias in my daughter's Kindergarten class of 18, so I'm thinking it's on the upswing.

I had the same problem with boy K names (none of which I like, so I chose Kermit because it's sort of cutely nerdy) and girl Q names (I chose Quinn because it's crisp and clean, not fluffly like Queenie or Quenella or whatever). Also, for whatever reason, girl D names. I kept thinking of very dated names like Dana and Donna and Dierdre (sp?).

78
November 1, 2011 11:59 AM

continuing on the silas thing, my friend compared her concern to when i tell people that my dog's name is pippa, and they're just like, "huh?" they often don't know that it's a name, and i get a lot of blank stares. i think she wants to avoid that.

79
By hyz
November 1, 2011 12:06 PM

lucubratrix, I think I missed your announcement, too--congratulations!!! I hope you are all home and well now--I know that NICU stays, even short ones with a relatively healthy baby, can be hard. Best wished to you and your family!

emilyrae, I just put Silas in wikipedia, and it is surprising to me how few major/pop culture references there are to the name. The best I saw were a character in The Da Vinci Code (which I did not read/see), and the son in Weeds (which I did see, but forgot about). Still, though I'm biased, I feel like this name should at least be floating around in most people's brains so that it wouldn't seem too odd to anyone. So I'm with you--a non issue.

elizabeth t., that was a pretty funny story. husbands. sheesh. :)

Anastasia, I think both Oliver Quinn and Delaney Jane flow nicely. I particularly like how Jane rhymes with the middle of Delaney, giving nice strong repetition without being too much. Delaney doesn't bother me with an Italian last name, because it sounds more like an on-trend modern name than an Irish surname to me in this context (I might feel differently if you were considering O'Hara or McCleary or something). Of your other options, I do like Mattea, though--although that would make her sound very Italian (neither good nor bad, just saying), and I'd be prepared for the possibility of the nn Matty at some point (which would bug me, and I would feel compelled to fight it, but maybe it's ok with you). I grew up with so many kids name Elyse (and its variants) that it sounds sort of dated and unexciting to me, but I know it continues to be popular (there's one in my daughter's preschool class), so maybe I'm just odd. Anyway, if you're sticking with Delaney, and you aren't happy with Jane, here are a few ideas--Victoria, Violet, Julia, Cecile, Adele, Eloise, Louisa, Paloma, Gianna, and I second all of emilyrae's suggestions.
On the boy side, Quinn doesn't really excite me--as shown on the exercise above, it has the feel of a unisex filler name to me, like a modern Leigh, unless you have some strong connection to it (family surname, etc.). How about Oliver Matteo, Reed, Gray, Graham, Samuel, Jude, John, Dante, Dominic, Joseph, Nicholas, Julian... Anything?

Essy01--oh, that makes sense--I've heard that, too. It's a bold and interesting choice for a FN--in both of the cases I mentioned, it was a family surname given as a mn, and in yours it is a ln--but I kind of like it as a first.

kakicloud, yes, congratulations! If your surname is the one I imagine, given your description, then the repeat of S_m in the first and last name would give me pause. I like alliteration, but that seems like a pretty strong dose to me. If it is a different LN, (e.g. Sc__?), then I think Simon works nicely, and it is a great name. The number of syllables in the LN makes a difference to me, but assuming for now that it is one syllable, I think each and every one of your suggested MN choices sounds excellent. From personal preference alone, I might pick Carlisle or Archer, but they're all very nice. For other first name suggestions, I think your husband's suggestion of Peter is worth considering, and then, other than seconding emilyrae's list again, maybe Owen, Luke, Isaac, Benjamin, Aaron, Evan, Malcolm, Calvin, Emmett, Patrick. I tried to think of some that might appeal to both you and your husband, since your list looks much like mine, but your husband's list seems to lean more modern traditional.

80
By hyz
November 1, 2011 12:22 PM

Oh, and kakicloud, if it makes any difference to your husband, I can tell you that Logan is, without a doubt, the most common name I see on young boys. There has always been at least on, often two Logans in every one of my daughter's classes, and that's saying something as the max class size has been 15, about half boys. Some of the others on your list (and mine, above) are fairly popular in my set, like Oliver, Evan, and Benjamin, but none hold a candle to Logan.

81
November 1, 2011 1:13 PM

okay, i will try it...
two notes:
a) i got a little lazy; i just listed boys' and girls' names alphabetically, as opposed to in the order of the duggars. sorry, zoerhenne. : /
b) i didn't use names that were in close family. for example, i like the name olivia, but it is my sister's name, so it's not something i'd really consider for a child.
c) i cheated, big time. oops! enjoy...

august/amos
benjamin/bartholomew
casper/casimir
dexter
evander/elliott
frederick/ferdinand/felix
graham
hugo
ivan
julian/julius
kermit/kingsley (well, it does have kingsley amis in its court...)
linus/leander/leland/leo
magnus/miles/milo
noel
oliver/oscar
peter/phineas
quentin/quincy
rupert
simon/silas
theodore
ulysses
valentino
wolfgang
xavier
yale
zebedee

adelaide/ada/agatha
beatrix/bianca
charlotte
dahlia (beth the original was right about the lack of girls' d names!)
eleanor/eva/eve
felicity/fern/flannery/flora
gwendolyn/genevieve/greta
hope/hazel
ivy/iris
june
katia
lucy/lucia/luna
may/mae/mabel/margo
nora/noelle
ophelia/olympia/olive
penelope
(am skipping q)
rose/rosemary/rosamond/ruby
sylvia
tess/tessa
ursula
violet
willa/winter/wednesday
xanthe
ylva
zelda/zora

82
November 1, 2011 1:10 PM

hyz,
regarding silas: yes, i looked it up in namepedia and the standouts to me were the davinci code, weeds, and deadwood. i haven't seen/read any of those things, but i hear about all of them quite often, so i feel like surely the name is in the public consciousness...
oh, and it was also the name of one of the members of the who.

mama gray,
it's funny that you compare silas to titus because the silas on deadwood is played by a man named titus. :]

83
By hyz
November 1, 2011 1:27 PM

emilyrae, there you go, glad you joined in. I can't believe I forgot Dahlia--I was wavering between Delphine and Damaris, but probably would've gone fore Dahlia over those two. It really is hard to narrow down, though, isn't it? My toughest letters were A, C, E, H, I, L, M, S, and V. Even when there was a relatively clear winner, there were other excellent ones it was hard to leave behind. Much like actual naming, I guess, which is why it's such an agonizing process.

84
November 1, 2011 1:35 PM

hyz,
haha, yes, i'm glad i joined in. it was fun, but difficult, though my blatant disregard of the rules made it slightly easier.
yes, my friend's pregnancy has made me realize how much harder naming is in real life. in the abstract, i make all these sets ("oh, i like julian, oliver, simon, and august together" or whatever), but in real life, you have to pick ONE NAME. if i ever have children, i've no doubt they will be nameless until they are several months old.

85
By Stuart Rubenstein (not verified)
November 1, 2011 1:37 PM

I love the list of potential names listed here!!

Stuart

86
By SLV
November 1, 2011 1:40 PM

My list:

Anthony
Benjamin and Caroline
Delia
Emma
Felicity
Garrett
Harrison
Ivy
James and Kelvin
Lucas
Miles
Nathan
Owen
Pauline
Quinn
Rosa
Susannah

87
By mk (not verified)
November 1, 2011 2:01 PM

emilyrae: I don't think your friend will have a problem with Silas. I didn't know there was a Silas in the Bible, and Silas Marner is not a book I often think of, even upon hearing the name. Actually I can't think of any Silases in pop culture or history (and I don't know any personally), yet I recognize it as a name.

88
November 1, 2011 2:18 PM

mk,
thanks, that's exactly what i was hoping to hear!

has anyone checked out the "what's my candy name?" feature on name candy? mine is:
"emilumpies"
"round mounds of emilumpy goodness!"

i wish my candy was slightly less sexually connotative, but it's kind of a fun game.

EDIT: oh never mind, never mind, laura did a post on it that i apparently missed.

89
By Scarlettb (not verified)
November 1, 2011 2:30 PM

For those of you doing the "Duggar-esque" family names, it's worth noting that in the opposite-sex twins that are in the B&C spots, the girl, Jana, is actually a few minutes older than her brother, John-David. So you should be doing a B girl's name and a C boy's name, not vice-versa. I wonder what it is that makes people assume the boy is older than the girl?

90
November 1, 2011 3:04 PM

Scarlettb-I was the one who made up the game and most everyone is just following the gender list I made in the original post. I actually went to wikipedia and a Duggar site to find out the order because I didn't remember everyone. So that is how they had it listed on those sites. No assuming from me!

Essy-Glad you decided to play along. I recognize the name Booth from the Bones TV show too. (Reminds me by the way that the premiere of this season begins on Thursday Nov 3-thanks!)

PennyX-I would respond "You know we've been thinking that over and we might actually go with Sea Cucumber instead. I think it flows better with the LN"! LOL!

emilyrae-I've always liked the name Emily. For me it's in the category of frenchified classics like Natalie, Claire, Samantha. Now I know all these names are not french-derived but to me they have an air about them that makes them lovely.

I'm also going to say I think you should change your screen name to "emilumpies" :)

Re Silas: I do remember the character in Davinci Code now that you mention it, but I don't think the connection is that strong. It does sound biblical but that's not a big deal either.

hyz+emilyrae- I liked your suggestions for the Oliver/Delaney question.

Oh and Emilyrae-you reminded me that I like Bianca. So I might change my girl B name to that. It is such a tough responsibility.

91
November 1, 2011 3:22 PM

kakicloud-You've gotten some good suggestions already and sorry if I repeat but here goes:
Alexander; Owen; Preston; Nathan; Isaac; Mason; Dylan; Elliott; Gavin; Victor; Orrin; Colby; Blake; Trevor; Graham; Griffin; Zane; Wesley; Vaughn; Bryce; Alistair; Marshall; Edmund; Phillip; Lincoln; Solomon; Timothy

Simon Randolph is my favorite of what you listed above by the way.

92
November 1, 2011 7:23 PM

@kakicloud, I do remember you! I do like Simon but if your last name is S_m then I don't like the aliteration. Sebastian works ok for me though. I like a lot of the suggestions given by above posters, anything take your fancy and we can work on some combos? In reference to the suraname/first name mix up thing. I have at least 4 sets of friends with common boys names as last names (and one set of friends with a common girls name as last name) and they all get the reverse order thing no matter how 'normal' the first name actually is. So I don't think you can actually avoid it no matter what you do. As such, I'd just pick the names you like!

@Essy, I also guessed Bones as a reference for Booth too.

@Penny X - I still love Ursula for you so ignore or the naysayers :)

Re Silas, it's towards the top of my boys name list and I am a big fan (obviously). I actually associate it most strongly with the Weeds and Deadwood characters. I have read the Da Vinci code but that isn't a strong reference for me. I do think it's not unrecognisable as a name.

93
By Stephanie (not Steffie) (not verified)
November 1, 2011 9:09 PM

In the style of the Duggars or my own personal style? My own personal style is much different from the Duggars. Assuming that is what you mean, here I go:

Antares, Bram, Ciara,
Danae, Estrella, Francesca,
Gideon, Hayden,
Ilyra, Jareth, Kaleb,
Liam, Marco, Nico,
Phaedra, Qia, Roslyn, Scarlet or Skya

94
November 1, 2011 9:30 PM

Atticus
Bronte & Caspian
Delphine, Eden & Freesia
Griffin & Hawthorne
Indigo
Jasper & Kipling
Laszlo, Matteas, Nico & Orion
Phoenix, Quinn, Renata & Seraphim

It's hard to have stylistic consistancy with so many restrictions. :)

95
November 1, 2011 10:29 PM

Reverse names:

Aria
Banyan & Cambria
Drake, Everest & Falcon
Gemma & Haven
Indio
Juniper & Kai
Lark, Meadow, Nova & Oceane
Paxton, Quincy, Rio & Skylar

96
By Jane 7 (used to be Jane 6) (not verified)
November 1, 2011 10:57 PM

My lis:

Archer
Boaz
Cordelia
Diana
Enid
Fleur
Graeme
Hesperus
Ione
James
Keats
Lysander
Milo
Nicodemus
Oberon
Psyche
?
Rose
Solveig

97
November 1, 2011 11:00 PM

Tirzah-Thanks for playing. I think your style came across loud and clear. In a good way of course, I quite like your reverse list.

98
By Anastasia (not verified)
November 1, 2011 11:21 PM

Thank you all so much for your comments re: middle names for Oliver or Delaney! I am just getting to them now and reading them to my husband. I will report back in more detail tomorrow but wanted to say thank you right away.I can't tell you how much I appreciate it!

99
By Essy01 (not verified)
November 2, 2011 9:14 AM

Tirzah - I looooove your lists! especially Bronte and Hawthorne and Kipling(!) in the first and Drake & Lark in the reverse list. British authors & pirates are definitely a few of my favourite name sources :)

Jane 7 - yay for Keats, I've never thought of that as a first name before and I really like it! and super yay for Oberon! Oberon/Auberon is one of my favourite names. a lot of Shakespeare and Greek influences going on, I really like your list!

100
By alr as guest (not verified)
November 2, 2011 1:11 PM

Haven't been following, but just wanted to pop in and say 'hello' from Africa! I've been here 3 weeks and will likely not be headed home for another 2 (if all goes as planned). Naomi and Henry are wonderful!! And now that I'm here, the Naomi middle name dilemma is over. The kids names will be:

Henry Cortland
and
Naomi Violet

I couldn't shake my age-old favorite, but the newcomers, Dahlia and Vivienne, stuck around too. I decided to ask her "mommy" at the orphanage which of the 3 she liked. She'd never heard either of the flower names and when I explained them, she said "the purple one!" It was a sweet moment, and my gut said "yes, yes it's Violet... it's always been Violet!" DH and I have had that name on the list for years - it felt right.

Can't wait to come back on over and let you all know when we're home safe. :)