How to steer clear of overly popular names??

I have a list of names that I love and it is constantly growing. The problem with this list is that all but a few are in the top 1000.

Here is the list of names I like…

[name]Lucia[/name] (ranked # 304)
[name]Olivia[/name] (ranked # 6)
[name]Clara[/name] (ranked # 206)
[name]Willow[/name] (ranked # 408)
[name]Everly[/name] (not ranked but, I’m not too fond of the meaning)
[name]Savannah[/name] (ranked # 33)
Laureline (not ranked but, would ONLY be used as a middle name)
[name]Avalon[/name] ”[name]Ava[/name]” ([name]Avalon[/name] is not ranked but the nickname [name]Ava[/name] is ranked # 5)
[name]Evelyn[/name] (ranked # 54)
[name]Amelia[/name] (ranked # 68)
[name]Rosalie[/name] (not ranked but, it now is associated with Twlight)
[name]Grace[/name] (ranked # 21)

Any suggestions on how to get past my current love of names that are so popular?

I don’t think you need to get past your current loves of names that are popular! :slight_smile: If you love them, I personally think that that’s what’s important. I worry about popularity, too, but when you think about it, no name is really safe from massive popularity; all it takes is one celebrity to use a seldom used name, and then…BOOM! Granted, some names have a trendier feel than others, but in the end, I think it’s really important that you love the name!

Some less popular alternatives:

[name]Lucia[/name]: [name]Luciana[/name], [name]Louisa[/name]
[name]Olivia[/name]: [name]Livia[/name], [name]Livinia[/name], [name]Octavia[/name], [name]Ophelia[/name], [name]Olympia[/name], [name]Lydia[/name], [name]Viviana[/name]
[name]Clara[/name]: [name]Clarissa[/name], [name]Laura[/name], [name]Clementine[/name], [name]Celia[/name]
[name]Willow[/name]: [name]Willa[/name], [name]Eloise[/name], [name]Eloisa[/name], [name]Penelope[/name]
[name]Everly[/name]: [name]Evangeline[/name], [name]Waverly[/name], [name]Ellery[/name], [name]Emery[/name], [name]Verity[/name]
[name]Savannah[/name]: [name]Susannah[/name], [name]Georgia[/name], [name]Viviana[/name]
[name]Avalon[/name] ”[name]Ava[/name]” ([name]Avalon[/name] is not ranked but the nickname [name]Ava[/name] is ranked # 5): [name]Evangeline[/name], [name]Ada[/name], [name]Adeline[/name], [name]Maeve[/name], [name]Vivienne[/name]/[name]Vivian[/name]
[name]Evelyn[/name]: [name]Evangeline[/name], [name]Eve[/name], [name]Genevieve[/name]
[name]Amelia[/name]: [name]Adelia[/name], [name]Celia[/name], [name]Cordelia[/name], [name]Matilda[/name]
[name]Rosalie[/name]: [name]Rose[/name], [name]Rosamund[/name], [name]Rosalind[/name], [name]Cora[/name], [name]Coralie[/name], [name]Felicity[/name]
[name]Grace[/name]: [name]Greer[/name], [name]Blythe[/name], [name]Hope[/name], [name]Jane[/name], [name]Maeve[/name], [name]Mae[/name], [name]Rose[/name], [name]Sage[/name], [name]Tess[/name], [name]Verity[/name]

Good luck! :slight_smile:

It’s more important to love a name than to worry about whether it’s popular - unless the name is in the top two or three. Then I would stay away from it. I will star all the names on your list that I love:

[name]Lucia[/name]* (ranked # 304)
[name]Olivia[/name]* (ranked # 6) - This is such a pretty name, and it’s not that popular where I live.
[name]Clara[/name]* (ranked # 206) - I also love [name]Claire[/name].
[name]Willow[/name] (ranked # 408)
[name]Everly[/name] (not ranked but, I’m not too fond of the meaning)
[name]Savannah[/name] (ranked # 33)
Laureline (not ranked but, would ONLY be used as a middle name)
[name]Avalon[/name] ”[name]Ava[/name]” ([name]Avalon[/name] is not ranked but the nickname [name]Ava[/name] is ranked # 5)
[name]Evelyn[/name]* (ranked # 54)
[name]Amelia[/name]* (ranked # 68)
[name]Rosalie[/name]* (not ranked but, it now is associated with Twlight) I guess I’m out of it because I’ve never watched “Twilight”.
[name]Grace[/name] (ranked # 21)

They’re popular because they’re nice names. I don’t see why that’s something that you have to “get over.”

I would just stay away from popular “name families”. You know like [name]Caden[/name], because then they will not only get confused with other Cadens, but Jadens, Haydens and Braydons too. Also, stay away from names that are new and very popular (like [name]Neveah[/name]) because they’ll be so linked to this decade and probably never seen again :). Your names choices are beautiful and classic, and I wouldn’t worry about the popularity.

They’re popular because they’re nice names. I don’t see why that’s something that you have to “get over.”[/quote]

They’re not [name]JUST[/name] popular because they’re nice names. Some nice names get overlooked, some nice names were nice a while ago and people got sick of them or too rooted in imagery with nice people like moms or people you knew in high school. Sometimes these things trend around where someone thinks of a name that hasn’t seen the light of day in a while or invents a name of a character, and maybe you heard of them from somewhere like a meme, and everyone heard that meme - that’s how names gain popularity, from people liking them from somewhere. Maybe you don’t watch TV or you loved a name since you were a child and then some popular book/movie or celebrity “stole” that name because they loved it too, suddenly everyone is getting the same idea.

Some names like [name]Madison[/name] were unheard of before a certain movie came out and that became very popular as a result - people who hadn’t even seen the movie maybe met someone who named their daughter [name]Madison[/name] the next year, and they thought wow! What a cool and unique name - all at the same time. Some, like me, were only 14 or thereabouts when Splash! came out, and might have saved the name for 10 years or more, by which time it was 50th most popular. Quite certainly nobody decided as a young child or old enough to have children that [name]Madison[/name] was their favorite name prior to 1984. This happens every once in a while.

I don’t think any name below 200th in popularity, other than re-creating the spelling of a more popular name on the list, is really awfully popular in the culture, although some may rise in popularity rapidly. Something below 300 one year, last year, might seem unusual enough to a lot of people such that it comes up to 80 or so by all the babies named this year by parents unaware of such popularity swelling by leaps and bounds. I think some of those names you love will become more popular but some will not appeal to that many people. They will choose other names instead, as they have to narrow it down to one or possibly two. Rarely 3 or more at a single go (not as rare as it used to be with fertility treatments being available and somewhat common, but still).

I think if you stick with a classic name, they will not feel like a symptom of a trend, despite the fact that say, [name]Olivia[/name] is a classic name… I knew nobody with this name who is my age, and eventually it will have to drop in popularity as something else sounds cool and unique and ideal to a lot of parents all at once. [name]Willow[/name] seems more trend-powered than anything. It’s only #408 right now, but it didn’t even chart until the year after “[name]Buffy[/name] the Vampire Slayer” debuted on tv. The original movie didn’t have a character named [name]Willow[/name]. It seems quirky for a tv character for her fictional parents to think of it, and less plausible as a real-person name, although it is a nice sounding name close to [name]Willa[/name]. You might choose something more substantial like [name]Willa[/name] or [name]Wilhelmina[/name]. [name]Olivia[/name], by reckoning, should never feel embarrassed to have a name situated in a period of time or which popularity was inspired by a tv character even when it eventually goes out of style.

FYI, I never watched [name]Buffy[/name], but I was aware of the character. You might not have and heard the name elsewhere, it is kind of nice, but somewhat odd. Pair this with a fascination for coming up with an odd name (not just unpopular), like [name]Madison[/name], and really milk the heck out of that one unusual name (lots of parents at once think it’s so unique it becomes popular), or think of others that don’t seem so odd now that [name]Willow[/name] is in the mix and seems acceptable.

TL;DR version is: don’t like names from books or tv aimed at 12-25 year olds because everyone gets the same unique idea simultaneously (over about a decade), or don’t be concerned when you like a name that becomes appropriated by some figure or character of popular culture, it’s not that big a deal. You can name your child this year not even in the top 1000 while somewhere someone else is developing a big budget screenplay for the teens using a likable character with that name to be released in 3-5 years. You cannot control things like this - as long as you pick a good name, it should still be good!

On your list, [name]Olivia[/name], [name]Savannah[/name] and [name]Grace[/name] are the only ones that jump out at me as being super popular. Unless uniqueness is an extreme priority, I can’t see a name past 100 causing a big problem. The top 1000; I wouldn’t even consider it being a problem. There’s no way of knowing what names may end up being popular in your daughter’s classroom. There may not be anyone with the name that ranked number one their birth year, but there maybe three kids with an otherwise uncommon name. When I was in elementary school, one classroom has three girls named [name]Adaire[/name]! You can never really know.

Check the rankings for your state on the SSA list and the birth announcements in your local newspaper to see what’s most popular in your area. The top names can very a lot from what’s on the national list, especially if you live in a small state.