Choosing a baby name

Choosing a baby name

With gossip magazines and celebrity obsession at an all-time high, are traditional names a thing of the past? With Jamie Oliver, the Jolie-Pitts, Sir Bob Geldof, TomKat and Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow as inspiration, young parents are certainly more daring when naming their babies than their own parents were.

But while you are well more likely to meet a Fifi Trixibelle down at the local swing-set these days, traditional names are still popular, judging by even the most recent Top 10 lists.

Will your baby grow up with a name that just disappears into cyberspace? 

If you're still undecided about whether to choose a traditional baby name or whether you'd like to venture down a more 'experimental' baby name route, one alternative is to go midway and take a traditional name but modernise it. How? Well the spelling is obviously a key element.

While one baby name book we found ludicrously suggests throwing in random letters at the start or the middle of a name; so a name you may like such as Harold becomes a 'whole new name of your own' like Hartold, Essential Baby suggests doing something new again and take a more phonetic approach. For instance, can that 'i' be a 'y'? Or can you make that a double 'e' or 'l' or 'r' or 's'? Can you spell that 'a' sound 'ay'? What about that 'u' sound. How does exchanging it for 'oo' look? Naming your baby should be a personal thing, so don't be afraid to personalise it. We'd advise against choosing a baby name that is clearly mispelt or likely to cause your child grief in the years to come of course!
With modern baby names, more media savvy children and the web, there are even more things to consider than just how it works with your last name. With so many modern day things to consider, here's our brand-new Top Five Things You (Probably) Haven't Thought Of Before:

  1. What will your baby's initials be? Even if you heart is set on Darren Oliver Green or Brianna Ursula Miller or Patrick Owen Osbourne, we'd probably suggest against it.
  2. Have you Googled it? Is there may an infamous porn star or a ruthless criminal with the same name? Stranger things have happened...
  3. Take modern politics, music and even reality TV into account. We're not sure about you, but we just couldn't imagine having a little Paris or Britney running around the house. But at least it'd have more of a chance than George Walker! (George W.)
  4. Facebook! With social networking taking over the world, will your baby grow up with a name that just disappears into cyberspace, left with no friends! There are 500 Alex Smiths on Facebook!
  5. Predictive text... does the baby name work in predictive text? Do you really want to go through life having to spell out their names every time you want to write their name in a text? We are kidding. Really.

Discuss baby names with Essential Baby members. They'll give you their honest opinion!