Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A Violet Opportunity

Violet Affleck out with Mom and Dad
I was talking to one of the moms from Edward's kindy the other day who has 3 kids and is expecting again. After general chitchat about both our pregnancys I asked her about names. She said "We are looking for something quite uncommon, just like our other kids names". And what are her other kids names? Harrison, India and Summer.

I told her that Edward might have indeed been a Harrison if it had been solely up to me but that Nathan thought it was just too popular. He was in the top 50 names for the year Edward was born (I checked now and he was ranked 24th) so we opted for the unranked Edward. She didn't seem to know that Harrison was such a high flyer.

I also mentioned that Summer and Sienna are amoung our (evergrowing) favourites when she asked. Her response was "I loved Sienna for Summer but we just couldn't have an India and then a Sienna." I checked the stats for my state for the year her little daughter was born abdSummer ranked 23rd, Sienna 8th. What!?!?!?! Since when did 15 places count for all that much? Summer even outranked Sarah at 29, Sophia at 30, Elizabeth at 33, Kate at 47 and ALL the variants of Caitlin! So much for unpopular.

Even the least common of her kids names, India, bears great correlation to the very popular Indiana, who now sits at 47 for us West Aussies.

Tut, Tut, Tut. Why won't people do proper research? If your looking for an uncommon name I would very strongly suggest having a long hard look at the trends and stats. Otherwise you just might find your 'rare' choice isn't rare at all.

So I had a good look at all the names on my list. The habit we have been getting into recently will either be our making or our breaking. We write any names that take our fancy on a white board I put in the lounge, next to the TV, so we have too look at it every day when we flick on the news. Its great! It gives me something to look at during the add breaks plus, we have a big pool to pick from. But anyways, I picked my favourites and had a look at their rankings. It was the best thing I could have possibly done to educate myself. I got some pleasant and some not so pleasant suprises.

For the Boys:
  • Did you know that Christopher didn't rank at all in West Aus. !? And his name-cousin Christian ranked 76. I think its safe to use him don't you?
  • Oliver was ranked 4th which is sad because he was a big favourite of mine though Olivia was 11th so that might be usable with the nickname Olive.
  • Not many more surprises with my boy favourites except for Alexander. He ranked 26th. Yes! I'm happy about this one - just when he cracked it into the top 10 in the States!
For the Girls:
  • Madeline didn't rank (but they do only do top 50 occurances). And even if she did,most people pronounce her like mad-e-lin, whereas I prefer mad-e-lie-n (rhyming with crime).
  • His favourite girl, Phoebe, ranked 49th.
  • My beautiful Imogen is 24th. I shed a tear or two over this one.
  • No Isabel's Isabelle's Isabell's or Isabele's appeared anywhere! Which is fantastic because I am just enamoured with scottish Isobel (with a definate 'Oh' sound) and fellow -bel ender Claribel. Though, predictably, Isabella its hot stuff at rank 8.
  • One of our strongest honarary middle name possibilites, dissapointingly, was 10th on the charts, Matilda.

And one last one that really took me by surprise:

  • Sweet little Violet didn't chart in the top 50 occurances in West Aus. nor in the national statistics. This was quite a shock for me. I always thought, perhaps a little biasedly, that Australia usually, was a bit ahead on the baby name trend front. I did a post a couple of weeks back detailing all the little darling names Aus. has in our top 100 that have escaped popularity in the US. Well since that post, it appears that the US had taken our lead and added a couple of those Australian Favourites to their top 1000, like Gemma and Callum for example. Well it looks like you Yanks have beaten us to this one. I think I might bump Miss. Violet up my list after this discovery.

Shows the importance of doing research, I guess. But I know all you reading this all ready know that. That's why your reading this of course.

1 comment:

Sebastiane said...

I had no idea that Indiana had gotten so popular in Australia. I have always liked it as a GP, after reading the novel by Georges Sand by the same name. Its about a Creole servant girl who is named Indiana due to her indigenous heritage. I guess it was occasionally used a first name before it was a State.

I have always liked Summer & Sienna but would never use them myself. I have recently fallen for the Lithuanian form of Summer: Vasare (vah-SAH-ray).