baby name trends

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What's Wrong with Being Popular?

Is it weird to only like popular names? I tend to love names that are in the top ten or 15 in my state. However, I always hear how they are "overused," "boring," or "he/she will be one of five in their class." On the flip side, I've never really liked any of the more unusual names that I have found. Is there really no more room for another Olivia or Jacob?

–Happy at the Top

You're not weird at all! The popular names are at the top of the charts because lots of people are using them. And yet so many parents put unnecessary pressure on themselves to choose a name that’s not popular (but yet, not odd or … too unpopular).

There are many things a name can and should do: Represent your child to the world; honor a special person or place; highlight a quality or virtue you value. Being wildly creative needn’t be on that list.

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Why Did These Names Go the Way of the Poodle Skirt?

How come names from the '50s are no longer popular? Like Gary, Dale, Joyce, etc.

–Ron

Well, if they were still popular, we wouldn’t call them "names from the '50s"! Right? Names take their period style—the feeling that they are the essence of their time—from popularity peaks and valleys.

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What Makes a Mom Name?

Is Grace a mom name?

–Naming a New Generation

It’s funny to think of a Victorian favorite as a "mom name," in the same vein as Ashley or Krista, rather than a great-grandmother name! Grace was at its most popular in the 1880s, alongside antiques like Minnie, Martha, and Florence.

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Are We Giving Our Baby a Mom Name?

What's your opinion of the name Whitney? Is it too dated? We are considering Whitney Rose for a baby girl (Rose is a family name).

–How Will I Know?

Whitney does have an eighties/nineties feel, thanks to superstar Whitney Houston. As a baby name for girls, it peaked in the 1980s. It even influenced the transformation of Brittany (a place name in France) into Britney (as in Spears). The similar-sounding Courtney also peaked in the 1980s, and Sydney followed with a high in the 1990s.

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Are Calendar Names Cool or Cheesy?

How do you feel about calendar names and whether or not they coincide with the time of year when a baby is born? I know an April born in September and an Autumn born in midwinter, but also a Natalie born on Christmas Day. I feel that names like this should fit somewhat with the season of birth (if June is born a few weeks early, the parents shouldn't have to change her name to May, for example). A friend, however, thinks this is cheesy and names that fit too well with the season or month of birth should be avoided. Can you settle our debate?

--'Tis the Season

This has been a cultural change over time, which means that while your view was once the prevailing one, opinion has now shifted toward your friend's position. It used to be that seasonal names were selected based on the season. But today, style trumps meaning, and April and June are farther apart in style than they are on the calendar. June is enjoying the 100-year resurgence that we often see in baby-name style trends (the name peaked in 1910 and has been on its way up again since 2008).

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Did Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari Follow the Trends with Baby #2?

Did Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari Follow the Trends with Baby #2?

Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari Welcomed their second son, Jaxon Wyatt Cutler, on May 7th.  Just two short days later, the Social Security Administration released the list of 2013's most popular names, which let us dig a little deeper into the trends behind Jaxon.

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Jesstin? Timberbiel?: Jessica and Justin’s Names Through the Years

Jesstin? Timberbiel?: Jessica and Justin’s Names Through the Years

Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel’s "magical" "fantasy" wedding in beautiful Fasano, Italy went down this weekend, according to People. The gorgeous couple was joined in a union of two of the most popular names of the 80s. Yes, there’s a baby name angle on this A-list merger. How have the names fared since Jessica and Justin were born?

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Isla Fisher and Sacha Baron Cohen's Baby Name: Elula

Isla Fisher and Sacha Baron Cohen's Baby Name: Elula

The (unofficial) name of that stripes-wearing, red-haired baby girl strapped to Isla Fisher's front? Elula Cohen. She's a sister for Olive, the second daughter for Fisher and her comedian husband, Sacha Baron Cohen. While the privacy-loving pair have not confirmed the baby's gender, let alone her name, this week's photos of Isla and Elula in LAX speak for themselves. (Click through to see Elula.)

Elula is six months old, and reports of her name have percolated through the comment sections of celebrity blogs for five of them. Here's what you may have heard. Elula is a derivation/feminization of Elul, the sixth month of the Jewish calendar. (Cohen and Fisher are observant Jews.) The name is seen as fashionable and stylish, reminding people of Marcia Gay Harden's choice (Eulala Grace) and the namiscenti revival, Eulalia.

But the difference between Eulala and Elula is more significant than you might think. Though spelled with the same letters (save an "a") in almost the same order, Eulala and Elula ride opposite trends in their path toward celebrity fashion.

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Biggest Celebrity Baby Name Trends of the Past Year?

The Annual Baby Name Pool is underway over at our sister site BabyNameWizard.com.  While name enthusiasts and numbers crunchers make their predictions for the the fastest rising and falling names of the past year before the Social Security Administration announces actual numbers in May, we thought we could try our own interactive "game" here at NameCandy.com. Tell us, what do you think were the biggest trends in the celebrity baby naming in the past year?

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