Baby name expert Linda Rosenkrantz picks the awesomely-named pop culture icons of 2014 who could inspire this year’s babies.
1. Linda Rosenkrantz co-founded Nameberry.com — the web’s go-to names database — so when she weighs in on naming trends, she kind of knows what she’s talking about.
2. The expert recently laid out her top baby name choices from popular culture in 2014, so get ready to see these names on birth announcements in 2015!
According to Rosenkrantz: “Young Ansel Elgort hit the daily double this year via leading roles as Caleb Prior in Divergent and Augustus (Gus) Waters in The Fault in Our Stars. His father being a photographer, it’s a no-brainer that his name was inspired by the iconic Ansel Adams.”
Rosenkrantz marvels — “Daenerys Targaryen is the silvery-haired, purple-eyed character in the megapopular Game of Thrones. Invented by author George R. R. Martin, Daenerys ranks a surprising Number 77 on Nameberry—though it’s nowhere near as prevalent as GOT name Arya.”
Another fan favorite? Khaleesi is currently one of the top searched names on Rosenkrantz’s site.
“Lupita Nyong’o not only won a Supporting Role Oscar for her superb performance in 12 Years a Slave but electrified the world with her intelligence, charm, and beauty, becoming an instant fashion icon,” Rosenkrantz said. “Lupita is a Spanish diminutive of Guadalupe, and the actress will surely inspire some baby-namers to use it.”
As for baseball stars, Rosenkrantz expects Madison Bumgarner to shift his already popular name firmly into the unisex category, and noted that Derek Jeter has seen his surname name rise in popularity: “The name Derek is old news, but a surprising number of parents have begun using Jeter in honor of the recent retiree.”
Says Rosenkrantz: “With singer Iggy Azalea, forget Iggy — Azalea is one of the fastest climbing flower names—it came on the list in 2012 and jumped 269 places last year. (We do wonder why she dropped her gorgeous birth name of Amethyst Amelia.)”
“Another hot young singer bears an even more popular, if less distinctive, name” Rosenkrantz writes — “Ariana has been in the Top 100 since 2001 and is now at #54.”
Why does the seasoned name expert expect Bruno to dominate? “Bruno Mars, born Peter but nicknamed Bruno as a child, performed last year at the most watched Super Bowl half-time show in history and won the Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Album of the year,” Rozenkrantz reminded us.
“The biblical Dinah is the protagonist of the best-selling Anita Diamant novel, The Red Tent, now a TV miniseries. Perhaps this will help popularize this lovely but neglected Old Testament name, which hasn’t been on the popularity list since the mid-sixties.”
Love her or hate her, “19-year-old Kendall Jenner has stepped out of the Kardashian family circle to become one of the top young models on the runway,” Rosenkrantz said.
According to Rosenkrantz, Shonda is primed for a popularity renaissance. “Named one of Time magazine’s 100 people who shaped the world, Shonda Rhimes has been the executive behind hit after hit TV show — from Grey’s Anatomy to Scandal to How to Get Away with Murder,” she said. “The name Shonda had its moment of popularity in the early 70s, just around the time of Rhimes’ birth.”