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Why Isn't This Name More Popular?

We are expecting a baby girl later in the year. I have stumbled across the name "Hartley" which just feels special to me. I love the idea of the nickname "Hart." It's just surprising that it's so uncommon. Am I missing something obvious as to why we shouldn't use it?

- Perhaps Hartley's mum

Many parents worry about a name becoming "too popular." You're smart to be worried about the reverse — a mysterious lack of popularity. It's like a seeing a product advertised for a ridiculously low price. You figure there must be a catch.

Often, a name that other parents have passed on does have a hidden flaw. Maybe it's the name of a movie villain, or maybe it sounds like some rude slang term you're not familiar with, or maybe it just sounds unattractive to everybody else.

Often...but not always. Every once in a while you'll stumble on a perfectly stylish name that has simply been overlooked. I think you've found one in Hartley.

Hartley has a scattering of cultural associations, but none that should cause any trouble. Style-wise it's a perfect fit with popular surname-based names like Kinley and Hadley, and especially Western-accented choices like Oakley, Paisley and Landry. And unlike those alternatives, it comes with that perfect built-in nickname.

So go ahead and choose your special name. If surnames are hot in your area, your neighbors should swoon over it. You might even find yourself starting a new trend.

Comments

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June 30, 2014 12:07 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

Ithink it's a lovely name and she will be a very lucky little girl to know she has ur "hart".

June 30, 2014 12:41 PM
By Gila (not verified)

For what it's worth, the only Hartley I know is male, and in his mid-forties.

June 30, 2014 1:00 PM
By Mel (not verified)

I personally don't love it. It reminds me a bit of Harley, which, well, let me just be blunt - is a bit white trash sounding to me. I'm also not sure that I'd automatically think it was a girl's name. It may just not be my style though.

June 30, 2014 3:07 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I was also going to say it sounds male to me and still very much a surname rather than a first name.

June 30, 2014 11:16 PM
By Megan (not verified)

A bit too ooey- gooey for me.

July 1, 2014 11:50 AM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I love it! You should use it!

July 1, 2014 11:55 AM
By Meg (not verified)

Maybe it isn't popular because it sounds too much like Harley? As in Harley Davidson...

July 1, 2014 11:58 AM
By Anonymous (not verified)

In my neck of the woods, the crispness of the T & L consonant sounds would likely run together so that the actual pronunciation would sound closer to "Hardly". I wouldn't choose it for that reason.

July 1, 2014 12:03 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

We chose Amberlyn for our daughter and it is so uncommon that the only person I have found with that name is an adult in the US (Canada here). But people always tell me how much they love her name!

July 1, 2014 12:15 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I have a niece named Hartley! For her, the name ties into her mom's maiden name, which is a sweet touch. FWIW, I think it's a lovely name, sweet and sunny.

July 1, 2014 1:03 PM
By Charly (not verified)

^Bush, Eisenhower, Polk,and van Buren have to all be far down the list.

July 1, 2014 1:43 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

It's not popular because it's unappealing to many people, myself included. If you love it, use it, but the reason it's not in popular use is because not everyone does.

July 1, 2014 2:59 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

The spelling "Hart" actually refers to dear (as in the animal). It brings to mind a gentle creature, and makes a good nickname... Just don't go cheesy and think of it like "heart"

July 1, 2014 7:37 PM
By Perhaps Hartleys mum (not verified)

Thanks for the feedback all.
I actually like unisex and strong sounding names on females.
We are Australian, so some of the pronounciation issues don't apply for us.
And I love the name Adair :)

July 2, 2014 2:06 PM
By Christi with an I (not verified)

There was a football player at one of the major colleges here in the 80's named Hartley Dikes. So at least in Oklahoma it is seen as a boys name.

July 2, 2014 11:37 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I find it sweet and not to girly sounding. All the above reasons you were given not to use the name sound silly to me. Not sure how Hartley could ever sound like Hardly. Really? Not for people who know how to pronounce words and talk right. Go with your gut and good luck with your baby.

July 3, 2014 5:17 AM
By Anonymous (not verified)

hartley fartley

July 4, 2014 9:26 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I love the previous poster's comment about unicorn names! Sums it up perfectly I think.

Hartley fits well with surname and unisex names. It does remind me of Harley, which is quite popular where I am. However, that is no reason not to use it, Addison reminds me of Madison but people use it all the time.

It isn't exactly my style, but I see nothing wrong with it and I don't think it will stand out in a negative way from the names of her peers.

I will suggest you use a more traditional, feminine name as a middle. I think using a gender distinct middle can be helpful when the first name is more unisex. A more traditional/familiar middle will also give her an option if she ever decides she wants something less unicorn.

July 5, 2014 12:08 AM
By Perhaps Hartleys mum (not verified)

We are thinking Hartley Florence at this point. Traditional feminine name to balance it :)

July 5, 2014 10:17 PM
By Abbe (not verified)

In 2013, 127 baby girls were named Hartley, along with 22 named Hartlee and 7 each named Hartleigh and Hartlie. Only 20 boys were named Hartley. So while it may have an androgynous "sound," it doesn't seem like you need to worry that it's a boys' name.

July 8, 2014 12:07 PM
By Mo (not verified)

I think you've chosen a great name. We all have a style of name that we like but want that special something that fits our style but is not to high on the charts. I think Hartley will serve you both well.

July 10, 2014 10:14 AM
By bookworm134 (not verified)

I love Hartley Florence, I think that is a great name. It has the fun, fancy, free attitude and the classy, girlishness that is not as popular these days.

I love unisex names, they are my fave. I know not everyone does but they just make me happy.

I am adding Hartley to my name list, to join alongside Harley and Hayley. Just wonderful! Thank you!

July 10, 2014 12:52 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

Hartly is an awful name that reeks of trendiness. Enjoy, it's all yours.

July 10, 2014 4:31 PM
By Kestrel (not verified)

No, I don't like it much. It sounds too soap opera-ish plus it REALLY sounds like every other name for kids these days. Whether it's Kinley, Brinley, Linley, Olivia, Sophia, Ava, Gabriella, Isabella, Amelia or Brayden, Hayden, Aiden, Jaden , it seems like all babies are given a name that fits the formula but the parents think it's sooo original.
I met a woman who's baby was named Cannon. Because the formula (the -yn, an, en, or on) worked but she had found a NEW prefix! But....it's already a word. A girl named Cannon. smh
Your name just seems to be too common without being common at all. So, if you want her to sound *just like* other kids but not exactly then you're in. If you are looking for something new then you're out. If you want her to be on General Hospital then you struck gold.

July 10, 2014 4:33 PM
By Kestrel (not verified)

No, I don't like it much. It sounds too soap opera-ish plus it REALLY sounds like every other name for kids these days. Whether it's Kinley, Brinley, Linley, Olivia, Sophia, Ava, Gabriella, Isabella, Amelia or Brayden, Hayden, Aiden, Jaden , it seems like all babies are given a name that fits the formula but the parents think it's sooo original.
I met a woman who's baby was named Cannon. Because the formula (the -yn, an, en, or on) worked but she had found a NEW prefix! But....it's already a word. A girl named Cannon. smh
Your name just seems to be too common without being common at all. So, if you want her to sound *just like* other kids but not exactly then you're in. If you are looking for something new then you're out. If you want her to be on General Hospital then you struck gold.

July 14, 2014 10:25 PM
By Kayt (not verified)

Honestly, it's not my style, but I don't understand the nasty comments. It's fine. I actually like it more in full, Hartley Florence is a great balance.

July 17, 2014 2:14 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I don't think it is surprising that it is uncommon. I do know a few Harleys though so it fits that style.

I personally don't like surnames as first names but I don't think it is a bad name.

July 17, 2014 2:17 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

And yes, it may sound a bit different in different accents, which has nothing to do with whether or not people "talk right." Simply a development of regional accents.

August 4, 2014 2:11 AM
By Sbobet Casino (not verified)

I agree with you. This post is truly inspiring.

September 3, 2014 11:55 AM
By Stephanie (not verified)

My daughter's friend, Bailey, in class has a little sister named Hartley. I think it's a great name. Go for it if you want to use it!

September 10, 2014 3:13 AM
By Anonymous (not verified)

This post is truly inspiring

September 10, 2014 3:14 AM
By gunblood game (not verified)

This post is truly inspiring

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