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Monday, September 10, 2012

Baby Name to Consider: Nicaya

N. writes:
I have read your blog for quite some time now. I am not expecting, nor will be for a few years at least! However, I have a question for you. I am one of those that watches Dance Moms. Earlier this week a girl appeared on the show with, what I thought to be, an interesting name. Her name is Nicaya (pronounced Nick-Kai-Uh). I kind of love it. It combines two names I really like - Nicole and Kaia, without seeming too out there and also giving cute nickname options. What do you think of it? Does it sound too made up? I'm curious about what you and your readers think!

I think it's a pretty smart combination. I looked in the Social Security Administrations data base to see what other spellings I could find:

Nakiyah 59
Nakiya 42
Nakia 41
Nakiah 20
Nakyah 15
Nikiya 15
Nikiyah 12
Nakya 11
Nikia 11
Nakeya 8
Nakaya 7
Nikiah 7
Nikya 6
Nikaiyah 5
Nikyah 5

Some of those might be more like nicky-ah or nick-KEE-ah.

There were also several spellings of Nikayla, which seems similar.

Let's have a poll over to the right [poll closed; see results below]; it'll be a little tricky, because the particular spelling might greatly influence how we'd vote---so just pretend the poll mentions whatever spelling you like best.  And in the comments section we can discuss what those favorite spellings are. It's a little tricky to find a spelling that makes the pronunciation clear.

Poll results for "What do you think of the name Nicaya?" (503 votes total):

I love it! I'd want to use it! - 4 votes (1%)
I like it! I'd want to consider it! - 13 votes (3%)
I like it for someone else's baby - 85 votes (17%)
No particular opinion - 32 votes (6%)
Slight dislike - 184 votes (37%)
Strong dislike - 184 votes (37%)


Anonymous said...

It's not really my style for a name but i think it could be sweet.

Jill said...

Yep, agree with above. I have a hard time not voting "I like it for someone else's baby" because I tend to like names on other people's kids that I would never pick for my own! I think my reason for not liking it particularly is because it sounds like Nicotine. Just like Nicolette sounds like that brand Nicorette smoking gum. Basically I have a hard time with Nic names :)

Anonymous said...

This reminds me of the suggested name Kimbra a while back, I think it would work for a certain boisterous, center of attention kid. Its such a distinct name that I can't see someone like my shy little niece pulling it off! But I don't hate it.

Anonymous said...

I also got the nicotine connection. Besides that, I just don't particularly care for the sound. To me, it's a very harsh sounding name. I'm also not crazy about any of the spellings, as they all seem potentially problematic. With the spelling Nicaya, my first guess was Nick-Kay-Ah. Some of the others also reminded me of Nokia.

sarah said...

My first thought about the Nicaya spelling was not nicotine, but Nicaragua.
It seems made up to me. I don't mind the sound, but it's not my style.

beyond said...

This reminds me of the name Nicander discussed a while ago.
Nicaya sounds pleasing, and the nickname possibilities are plentiful. I like it.

Diane said...

I definitely prefer Michaiah, which is actually a Bible name. Though it's a male name in the Bible, I knew a girl named Michaiah, and I thought it was a lovely name on her. It seemed like a refreshing alternative to Michaela.

Nedra said...

I have to say that Nicaya does feel made up. It's also hard for me to get the pronunciation right. If the asker hadn't included the pronunciation guide of Nick-Kai-Uh, I would have pronounced it nih-KAY-uh. It's still pretty hard for me to get it right.

I'm a teacher and it's amazing to me how many kids' names (if spelled in a way that doesn't seem logical to me) are REALLY difficult to master. I have a student whose name is pronounced "Keena" (with a long "e" sound) but it's spelled "Kenna" and it drives me crazy. If the spelling doesn't lend itself to one particular pronunciation, then it's easier to learn, but when it feels more "natural" to pronounce it a different way, it's really difficult to break out of your usual habits.

Nicaya is a little easier for me than the Keena/Kenna situation, but it's still kinda difficult. I'd spell it Nakiah or Nakaia in order to get the "kai" sound as opposed to the "kay" sound.

It's not my favorite name either way, though. But then, I am not partial to Nicole or Kaia either!

Megz said...

Already knowing a Makaya, a Jakaiah and a Lakaiya, (not to mention a Maia and a Myah) I just roll my eyes and think "not another -aia name".

I would prefer the spelling Nakaya or Nakaia.

Nicole said...

I strongly dislike this name. I did not get the nicorette reference (maybe because my name is Nicole), but I DID get the Nicaragua reference. It sounds like a made up name to me.

Karen L said...

I like it. I like the spelling with a c, probably because it is more reminiscent of Nicole. As with most names, there will be more than one possible pronunciation. niKAYah vs niKAIyah. I could see how that could be off-putting for some people but, meh, we deal with SONyah and SAHNyah. Myself, I did read it as niKAIyah first but would have been unsurprised if niKAYyah were intended. I did not think of nicotine.

As for does it sound too made up? Nah, unless the question means, "Does it sound made up at all." A lot of people will answer "yes, it sounds TOO made up" if it IS made up at all. I happen to think there's a difference. Beamargadette or Faiereming or Grynise seem TOO made up to me. Nicaya almost feels familiar.

Anonymous said...

nick-KEE-ah? It sort of reminds me of Ikea, haha!

Tara said...

As soon as I read the title I was like 'Dance Moms!!!' LOL.

What I found most interesting about Nicaya's name, is the fact that her mom's name is Kaya. I'm wondering if Nicaya's other mom's name is Nicole and they combined them?

Anyway I'm not too fond of it. I love just Kaia though. My favorite spelling would be Nakaia I think.

Eva.G said...

I voted strongly dislike.

I pronounced it properly in my head before I read the pronunciation. Ni-KAI-uh. It's not an unpleasant name and doesn't seem complicated to spell or pronounce, and the sounds themselves are nice. However, it does seem made up, and in an unoriginal way. I just prefer different styles of names myself!

Colleen said...

Sounds made up, pretty much however so spell it. Not sure its one of those "names that will make the HR person laugh" when its on a resume, but its close in my book.

British American said...

I want to say it "Nic-KAY-ah". It reminds me of Nicola and Mikayla. As if those had been smooshed together.