I don’t like [name]James[/name] for a girl - exception was that the character [name]Jamie[/name] on “Mad About You” was sometimes called [name]James[/name] as a nickname - like you might call someone [name]Jules[/name] if their name was [name]Julie[/name], or Ames if their name was [name]Amy[/name], etc. I don’t think that qualifies those to be “girl’s names.” I really love [name]James[/name] for a boy. I think someone a while ago named their daughter [name]Jameson[/name], or was considering it. I’m not so strict on names where boys weren’t using it anyway, like [name]Bailey[/name], which revived at least a decade earlier for girls than boys and has always, in the current era, been more common for girls than boys. [name]James[/name] is not a girl’s name. I don’t know where you hear “soft” in the name, and apply that “means it’s for girls.” I disagree with that sentiment, if that’s the kind of name you are going for, just name her something that’s not a boy’s name.
If you want to be avant garde, and I think [name]James[/name] is as avant garde as naming her [name]Steven[/name] or [name]Jeffrey[/name] or [name]Robert[/name], that’s entirely a different thing. If you are going for a “unisex” sort of soft name, surname, boy’s name for a girl, try [name]Avery[/name] or [name]Finley[/name] or [name]Emerson[/name]. Those are a little more understandable.
I also understand the sentimentality of the poster who, with her [name]SiL[/name] is using [name]James[/name] for a middle name to commemorate someone. To consider it soft like [name]Blythe[/name] is heresy. Sorry.