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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Baby Girl Naughton, Sister to Atley

Kelyn writes:
I am due mid Sept and my husband and I are having trouble agreeing on a name for our second daughter. Our first daughter's name, Atley, was suggested to us early in the pregnancy and we immediately agreed on it. Naming decisions have been a bit more contentious this time around. Our last name is Naughton. My husband and I both have "K" names so I've been steering clear of those. The main problem is that I like unusual names and while my husband isn't opposed to them he wants them to have a very familiar sound. We'd nearly agreed on Harper but it's steady, almost astronomical, rise in popularity has turned me off. If it weren't for that problem, I think we'd have a winner. Other names that have made the short list we can agree on are: Beckett, Dempsey, Connelly, and Sutton. As you can see, I'm one of those...a stealer of surnames and boys' names for my little girl. I'd apologize but I just can't help myself. It may still come down to one of these names but since we're not in love with any one of them, can you suggest any similar names that match well with Atley? Thanks!!!

I suggest Arlo. It's a boy's name, but it has a similar sound to Marlo and Margo, and its gentle sound makes it a good girl-name crossover. It also has the "ar" sound like in Harper. Arlo Naughton. Atley and Arlo.

Or Winslow. Winslow Naughton. Atley and Winslow.

It's too bad it's a K name, because I think Kiefer might be adorable on a little girl. Kiefer Naughton. Atley and Kiefer.

Murphy works because although it's a boy's name, Murphy Brown made it almost too girl-associated to use for boys. Murphy Naughton. Atley and Murphy. (But I'd avoid a middle name starting with A.)

Brice is a boy's name, but the sound reminds me of Bree and Chrissy---as well as sugar/spice/nice. Brice Naughton. Atley and Brice.

My friend and fellow name aficionado Mairzy is going to KILL me, but Sterling is a boy name that would make a good girl name. Sterling Naughton, Atley and Sterling. (Oh, I am in such trouble.)

Memphis would be pretty on a girl. Memphis Naughton, Atley and Memphis.

Bridger is a boy name, but it's closeness to Bridget makes it hard to use. Bridger Naughton, Atley and Bridger.

The King of England gave up his throne to marry a Wallis. Wallis Naughton, Atley and Wallis.

I love the name Percy, but it's almost too gentle to use on a boy. Percy Naughton, Atley and Percy.

Same with Clarence: great name, but hard to use for a boy. Clarence Naughton, Atley and Clarence.

I read a book with a little girl in it named Fisher, and I have to admit I was completely won over. Fisher Naughton, Atley and Fisher.

Name update 09-03-2010! Kelyn writes:
Our liitle lady arrived a couple of weeks early. Thankfully, we'd agreed on a name the day before I went into labor. Her grandma says she decided to join us when she finally heard the name she wanted. We decided on Caris Violet. In the end it's not a boy's name or a surname. Despite not picking one of the many names recommended by you and your readers, you really did help us come to a decision. Caris was one of my favorite names from the start but my husband wasn't sold. Your responses forced us to sit down and really look at all the options and hallelujah we came to an agreement. Thanks for your help!


M.Amanda said...

I really like Swistle's suggestion of Memphis.

Wesley (-ley too much with Atley?)
Linley (again with -ley, it's sounding so right to me)

Lisa said...

Love Harper.


I like Swistle's Winslow and Fisher.

Morgan, Reagan, Camryn (Not quite your style, but they are my girls names and I love them...)

Can't wait to hear what you come up with!

Anonymous said...

Swistle's suggestion of Memphis knocked me off my feet! Love it!

Other thoughts:


Good luck!

~ Annie

Carla said...

Okay, so at first I was like, no don't do the boy name/girl name thing!!! I'm so into princessy girl names that it goes against my grain. But the more I read the more I opened up and actually like some of the options. I really like Atley and Connelly is by far my favourite from your list. (Dempsey might turn into Dempy and then Dumpy?)
From Swistle's list Percy, Brice, Memphis or Sterling are working for me, probably because to me they have a slightly softer sound
Just a thought with Fisher - be prepared to have a "Fish".
What about the name Collins?
Good luck! I can't wait to hear what you go with.

Erin said...

Instead of Harper, maybe Harlow? I like the end in "lo" names, like Arlo that swistle suggested, or Shiloh, or Milo?

What about Piper? I feel like Piper is less popular but feels just like Harper.

You know what name I LOVE for a girl, and am kind of sad that its used more often for boys (but used for girls too): Logan. Its perfect. It sounds like Megan with the soft L at the front. Its unexpected on a girl and familiar. I wish it would come over to the girl side because the sounds are divine. I would suggest London too, but thats a lot of Ns with Naughton.

I also quite like Connelly, which makes me think of Carrigan. Its a surname, kind of girly I guess, but not common at all. Kerrington too. Oh, and maybe Juniper? Feminine but cool. Sawyer on a girl I like too, and of course Scout!

Fun names, good luck!

Barb @ getupandplay said...

What about

James (I love this on both girls and boys)
Charlie (I have a boy Charlie but it's cute on girls, too)

Suzanne said...

I love Winslow and think you could get your husband to agree - it sounds like "Willow", isn't close enough to any other name to cause constant confusion and goes well with Atley.

I also love Sterling and the pp's suggestion of Sawyer. Both are unusual and gender non-specific but still sound like names, if you know what I mean.

sara said...

I like Sloane, James, Harlow and Greer from above. And Piper, maybe Paisley. Not a boys name, but different. I know of sisters named Macy and Carter, both different, but familiar.

Michele said...

WOW! I just want to say that this is the first time in my life I've heard the name Atley used outside of my own family! My 55 year old uncle and 37 year old cousin share the name.

I LOVE it for a girl!

Anonymous said...

I also have a bit of a problem with boy names on girls. Primarily because I am trying to name a boy right now, and most of the names I love are being used a lot for girls and don't want that. Which leads me to suggest (or ditto) Harper. My favorite boy name that is being used on girls. However, I like Piper and Harlow best for you. Even though Piper isn't a boy name, it isn't girly, and is a little out there. It was on my top girl list with both of my kids. Piper and Harlow would both sound/flow well with Atley and add to it. Harlow is a girl name that sounds like a boy name, and it was a similar vowl/consinant flow to Atley. The more i think about it, I think Harlow is PERFECT for you!

Carolyn said...

Connelly makes me think of Kenley or Kinley. I know you prefer no "K" names, but you could go with McKinley and just use Kinley as a nn.

Love the suggestion of Delaney, so cute.

Another unique name I like that is surnamey is Malley (as in O'Malley).

Mairzy said...

Dear Swistle,

It sure was nice being friends with you. Back when we were friends, you know, before the Sterling thing.

I have to say: impressive lineup of name options! Even as a former friend, I can acknowledge your accomplishments with a courteous nod.

-- Mairzy

Kelyn said...

I truly thought I might have considered ever possible name out there for this little girl but you and Swistle have truly surprised me with a LOT of names I hadn't thought of and really love. Now to get DH to get on board with one or two of them. Thanks and keep 'em coming!! We'll definitely let you know what we decide.

Christine said...

Hee Mairzy's comment made me laugh. I knew a girl named Shelly (Michelle) with the middle name Shepherd which I think was her grandfather's name, and her mother had originally wanted to name her that, but then got swayed. Shelly always wished she had been named Shepherd. I don't know if it works for you guys, but maybe there are some great sirnames lurking around that you could use?

Another you could consider is Fallon.

Good luck!

Megz said...

I thought I had the perfect name for you, until I re-read your surname and realised it wouldn't work. But I'll mention it anyway.

It's Manson. Similar sounding enough to the ultra-popular Maddison to work as a female name but still masculine (Man-Son). And if she turned out to want a more feminine name she could use the nickname Mandy.

I like the suggestions for Piper and Harlow.

How about Harley? A boys name but similar enough to Harper and Hayley that it could cross over quite easily.

Harley Naughton
Atley and Harley

Love it!

Kirsten said...

Lots of good suggestions! I really like Greer from the suggestions above. Also like Avis, Carrigan, Rory, Paige, Claret and Harper.

beyond said...

There are some great suggestions already! I like Winslow and Logan from above, and I love Beckett from your list. Atley and Beckett. Very cute.
Other suggestions:
These are all unusual yet slightly familiar, i would say. Fun and vaguely feminine...

Steph the WonderWorrier said...

Hm. This one is tricky for me because it's really not my personal style... I like Swistle's suggestion of "Brice", though I'd spell it "Bryce". This is definitely a name used on boys, BUT Bryce is Ron Howard's daughter's name, so it works for a girl. It's not completely unfamiliar, but isn't overly popular either.

Atley and Bryce are nice sibling names; both have five letters and if you spell Bryce with the y, they both have a y in them which is sort of a nice looking tie-in.

So that's my vote. I think I could also support Connelly from the mother's list.

Personally, some of the other name suggestions just bring up strange associations for me. (Winslow is the family's last name from the TV series Family Matters; Kiefer is Kiefer Sutherland from 24; Memphis makes me think too much of Elvis and the character from Happy Feet; Percy Jackson and the Olympians are a currently very popular YA novel series... I'm so sorry, Swistle, but I just can't help but share these associations and how I just don't think these names work on a girl).

Oh, and my last name is Greer and I've always found it really strange when I've heard of someone using it as a first name. Although I know that lots of people's last names are currently very popular first names; Greer just doesn't look that pretty to me to make it to a first name slot. Must just be because I'm SO used to it as a last name.

Anyway, I like Bryce/Brice! Atley and Bryce. I think it's a fantastic suggestion.

(Also, I'm sorry if this is a bit of a negative reply; I'm just adding my two cents because I think it's good to debate or discuss some of the associations that names bring up, in case the parents didn't think of it and wish they had of later -- no disrespect meant at all in my comments here).

Anonymous said...

i once met a little girl named felix.

actually, i think it's the best idea EVER:

atley and felix.


Anonymous said...

How about Harris? or Merrit? Teagan, Asli (or Aslee, Azlee), or Fallon? Annali (long I sound) is feminie but goes well with Atley. You could also consider Avis, Yardley, Berkely, Denver, Canaan, Emerson, Isak, Jace, Ryder, Sawyer, or Zane.

Best of luck!!! I LOVE your names so far! Please let us know what you decide on!!

Emily S. said...

I just saw the movie The Blind Side and liked the girl's name.. one i never heard before: Collins. It seems to match your style.
Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

I used to nanny for girls named Logan and Tate. Very cute.

Anonymous said...

I don't think Manson is a hot idea. I immediately thought of Marilyn Manson and Charles Manson. Yeaaaah.
But Memphis, wow, LOVE. And now I'm off on a place-name tangent-
Farralon (ok, that's a bit of a stretch, restauarant in the SF area)
Grinnell (mountain range)

Atley and Montana is interesting, but maybe it's too many Ns. Guh, a lot of those have too many Ns, alas. Halifax at least sounds like Hailey and gives you a nn. Topeka sounds feminine. Kennebec sounds like Kenny/Kenna (it's pronounced Kenn-eh-beck, whereas the town Kennebeck sounds more like Kenny-beck) and with the K ending, works with Naughton. Atley and Kennebec, hmm.

Anonymous said...

Of Swistle's suggestions I like Murphy and Fisher.

Of pp's suggestions I REALLY like Bryce, Tate, James & Cameron.

What about:

Tilda (I know it is a girls name, but I think it goes well with Atley)


My favourite: Atley & Brynn!!

Good luck

Frazzled Mom said...

I like the suggestions of Memphis, Wallis and Sloane.

Tracy H. said...

I love Sutton from your list. Here's my list, some mentioned already, some not:
Harlowe (this might turn trendy)
Collins (love this as someone suggested above-loved the name in the movie The Blind Side)
Doesn't really narrow things down, does it? Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

Ooooo, I just thought of another one: Ramsey

I also really like the suggestion Merrit!

~ Annie

alexis said...

Oooooh, I love both Memphis and Wallis. Very nice.

Janelle said...

Atley is such a great name! What I really love about it is that it sounds very surname-y, but it's not used regularly for boys or girls, and so it's easier to make a gender-neutral connection to the name. Some of the suggestions (Clarence comes to mind) are so firmly masculine that it takes a lot of thought to consider it for a girl.

Which is all to say: I'd go for a slightly-more-obscure surname for your second daughter also.

My votes go to:

And if you can deal with/ if you enjoy a presidential connection, I've always liked Roosevelt for a girl.

Twee Poppets said...

With your surname and the sibling name, I'm really liking the sound of two-syllable names that end in -er. On that note, if you really love Harper, I'd say go for it. But here are a few others to consider:

And as mentioned above, Piper, Fisher, Parker, Sawyer, Kiefer, Spencer, etc.

I have to say, I'm really LOVING Casper for you. Atley and Casper, Casper Naughton. Casper is usually used for boys, but it has the familiar "Cass" sound like the nickname for Cassandra, so I think it would be an easy crossover. There IS the friendly ghost thing, but I think it's time for this name to come back into use. Casper! So cute!

With Atley, I don't like names that end in -ley/ly, UNLESS they're 3+ syllables. I think the extra syllable helps to break up the matchiness a lot. How about Everly or Waverly? Yes, Waverly, LOVE it! Atley and Waverly, Waverly Naughton. Wonderful!

I also like some usually-boyish nicknames that are also sometimes used for girls. Charlie, Andy, Joey, Jamie, etc. Anderson, nickname Andy? Then again, Atley and Andy is probably too matchy.

Since Naughton starts AND ends with an N, I would definitely avoid names that end in N. With the last name starting in N, the two names would blend together; with the last name ending in N, the two names may sound singsongy. It's a double whammy. Which is too bad, because otherwise I would suggest Dylan, Larkin, Layton, Paxton, etc.

I'll second Merritt, James, Harlow, Marlowe, Sinclair, Colby, Reese, Quincy, and Bryce. I'll add Elliott.

(Whew, sorry that was so long!)

Twee Poppets said...

Oh, you know, I just thought of something! I might consider avoiding names that end in an S-sound. When you say the first and last names together, the S and "Naught" part of your surname make a less-than-desirable word...snot. So if you used James, for example, it might sound a bit like Jame Snot-on when said quickly.

So maybe I'll retract my suggestions of James, Reese, Bryce, etc. Then again, maybe I'm overthinking this? Does anyone else hear the snot problem?

(P.S., I also wanted to second Juniper. I love it.)

Anonymous said...

Interesting post.

(Ronan) - Atley and Ronan. For a more feminine nn, your little girl could use Nan.

(Delaney) - Atley and Delaney. So many possible nn choices!!

(Paisley) - This name has the same sort of Meadow origin as Atley.

(McKenna) - Last name feel. Origin is from a man's name. This still has a traditional feel, even if it isn't.

Janelle said...

Caris Violet is a beautiful name, and goes so well with Atley!
Congratulations on your sweet girl, and a wonderful name choice!