Choosing a name for your new arrival is one of the most exciting and important decisions you'll make as a parent. While there's no shortage of baby name inspiration out there, it can be hard to know where to start. That's why we've found some of the top baby names for 2023, along with some predictions and inspiration to help you find the perfect name for your little one.
I think my husband was amused (at least I hope he was) by all the reasons I had for why we couldn’t name our babies this or that: "The shortened version is not cute", "that name reminds me of a girl I went to school with who didn’t wash very often", "that name is SO generic in English".
I used all the baby-name generators, and it's nice to see they are still around! I loved looking up what a name meant, finding names that started with a certain letter, or just randomly selecting a few.
I think it's important to start thinking of names soon after finding out you're expecting. A name you choose in the beginning might sound or feel very different at the end of the pregnancy.
One piece of advice I heard more than once was to stand at your back door and yell out the name you're thinking of as if to call the child in from playing. Does that name sound silly? Does it sound different when yelled out loud?
My favorite way of searching for names was to scan the closing credits of a movie. Sometimes they go a bit fast, and while pregnant, that can give you a bit of nausea, but a long list of names never failed to grab my attention. Key Grip - Arnaud Peiny, Set Designer - Es Devlin. See? Endless inspiration!
I had a few rules for baby naming, in no particular order:
- No ex-boyfriend/girlfriend names.
- Nothing that brings back memories I'd rather forget (see above about smelly classmate).
- Nothing that can be teased or bullied about in later life.
- No complicated spellings of ordinary names – that's not fair to anyone. How do you spell that? "T.H.O.M.M, it's just Tom with an H and 2 M’s’…Huh?
- If the name can be shortened, you must be okay with the short version – all of them.
- Think of the future. If you name your child with a name that is typically a last name, consider them meeting and falling in love with someone who has that name as a last name. I.e: "Hello, my name is Bailey Bailey". Though, they could always choose to not take their partner's last name
- Must fit with the last name.
- Doesn't make for strange initials.
I admit, my rules are quite thorough. I've had three babies, so I would say it got a little more difficult each time.
Just when you thought we had covered everything, here are some other things to consider:
- You give them a head start in life if their name is short. "Tom can already write his name!" Early bragging rights.
- Filling out forms (oh, the endless forms!) is much faster with a short name.
- Gender-neutral: On the rise in recent years, and we expect this trend to continue in 2023. Names like Avery, Jordan, and Riley are popular choices for both boys and girls.
- Nature: With more and more parents seeking to connect with nature and the environment, we predict that nature-inspired names will be a top trend in 2023. Names like Willow, River, and Forest are all beautiful choices for both boys and girls.
- Vintage: Classic names from the past are making a comeback, and we expect to see more vintage names on the rise in 2023. Names like Clara, Theodore, and Evelyn are timeless choices that will never go out of style.
- International: With the world becoming more connected than ever, international names are gaining popularity. Names like Sofia, Aiden, and Liam are all popular choices around the globe.
No matter what type of name you're looking for, the most important thing is to choose a name that you love and that will fit your little one's unique personality. So, take your time, explore your options, and enjoy the process of finding the perfect name for your baby. If you really cannot decide, you can't go wrong with naming your baby after a beloved family member, either with a first name or a middle name. What an honor!