America's favourite baby names of 2014

Picking a name: It's just one of those things you gotta do when you bring life into this world. But where can you find inspiration to give your baby a super cool name? I'm talking celebrity-Apple-Blue-Ivy-North level cool? Why, television, of course. And, specifically, the creations of TV producer-director-writer Shonda Rhimes.

Americans are increasingly turning to television, Netflix and sports for creative ideas for what to name their wee ones, according to online parenting source BabyCenter, which released its list of the most popular baby names in 2014 this week.

The list, which combines similarly spelled names, comes from data submitted to the site by the parents of more than 400,000 babies. The site's 2013 baby name list included many of the same names on the Social Security Administration's 2013 list of new baby names.

Influential: Dr. Callie Torres (Sara Ramirez) and Dr. Arizona Robbins (Jessica Capshaw).
Influential: Dr. Callie Torres (Sara Ramirez) and Dr. Arizona Robbins (Jessica Capshaw). 

Television inspired 20 per cent of names in the site's database this year, with big increases in names ripped from Rhimes's shows, such as Arizona from Grey's Anatomy (a 35 per cent jump) and Huck from Scandal (a 44 per cent jump). The popularity of Callie (Grey's Anatomy) increased 30 per cent, and Fitzgerald (Scandal) jumped 56 per cent. Granted, such names don't come anywhere close to the top 100, but how many Arizonas do you know, really?

Then there's the name Jeter, which increased 82 per cent, the same year the baseball player Derek Jeter retired.

Even Idina showed up in the database this year, after being absent last year. Perhaps that baby girl was named after Idina Menzel, who sang the title track for the film Frozen, a song that children just cannot stop singing.

The top 10 names are mostly the tried-and-true that have been among top picks for years, although hints of television inspiration do lurk there, including Zoe (House of Cards) and Olivia (Scandal).

Top 20 girl names for 2014

  1. Sophia
  2. Emma
  3. Olivia
  4. Ava
  5. Isabella
  6. Mia
  7. Zoe
  8. Lily
  9. Emily
  10. Madelyn
  11. Madison
  12. Chloe
  13. Charlotte
  14. Aubrey
  15. Avery
  16. Abigail
  17. Kaylee
  18. Layla
  19. Harper
  20. Ella

Top 20 boy names for 2014

  1. Jackson
  2. Aiden
  3. Liam
  4. Lucas
  5. Noah
  6. Mason
  7. Ethan
  8. Caden
  9. Jacob
  10. Logan
  11. Jayden
  12. Elijah
  13. Jack
  14. Luke
  15. Michael
  16. Benjamin
  17. Alexander
  18. James
  19. Jayce
  20. Caleb

Washington Post