|Joy Harmon Prouty/NestingShoppe.com|
While nicknames are considered common, the given names celebrity parents select are often anything but. When Victoria Recaño named her 3-month-old baby girl Maximilienne – Emme, for short — she gave her daughter a special gift, however: The gift of choice! Providing a child with the ability to decide between a more dramatic or quirky given name and a shorter, low-key nickname is “definitely a trend we’re seeing,” nameberry.com developer and author Pamela Redmond Satran told us.
Brad Paisley and Kimberly Williams Paisley did just that with their 2-year-old son William Huckleberry, whom the couple call Huck. The same can be said for Amy Poehler and Will Arnett‘s 7-month-old son Archibald, called Archie, and Amanda Peet and David Benioff‘s 2-year-old daughter Frances, who goes by Frankie. For those who aren’t quite as adventurous, Pamela notes that Alexander and Alexandra have become “very popular” as of late due in no small part to the litany of nicknames they provide, like Alex, Lex, Ali, Lexi, Xan or Zan. Meanwhile Isabella — currently the second most popular name for girls — can be shortened to Izzy or Bella; Madison or Madeline can become Maddy; and “grey-bearded Old Testament names such as Nathaniel and Zachariah are simplified to Nat and Zac,” says Pamela, adding,
“As parents become more thoughtful about choosing a name that will serve their child well throughout life, they’re looking to names with flexibility: These can be used in their full impressive forms on college or job applications, and shortened to something friendly and easy to understand on the playground or at a party.”
Thinking long-term is key, and Pamela advises that you keep in mind there are no guarantees about who your children will ultimately grow up to be. “Image and gender enter into it,” she explains. “You can give your daughter the option of being ultra-feminine Aurora or tomboyish Rory; Your son might choose to be down-to-earth Jeff in high school but be Jefferson in college.”
Did you choose a given name for your child with a nickname already in mind?