Blue: Baby Name of the DayThis post was originally published on January 9, 2012 in celebration of Beyonce and Jay-Z’s daughter, Blue Ivy. It was substantially revised and re-posted on November 9, 2015.

Blue Ivy Carter is a pint-sized celebrity, the child of trend-setting style icons.

But has her given name caught on? Our Baby Name of the Day is Blue.

Blue: Starbaby Staple

Color names are popular in 2015, from botanicals like Violet to more masculine hues like Gray.

Beyonce gets credit for boosting our awareness of Blue as a baby name, but she and Jay-Z weren’t the first. There’s also:

  • Way back in 1976, Cher used this name for son Elijah’s middle name.
  • David Evans, better known as U2’s guitarist The Edge, is dad to Blue Angel.
  • John Travolta and Kelly Preston used the French form of the name for daughter Ella Bleu.
  • Rocker Bret Michaels followed suit, with daughter Jorja Bleu.
  • Former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell is mom to Bluebell.
  • Rascal Flatt’s Joe Don Rooney also used Blue for his daughter Raquel’s middle.
  • Alicia Silverstone left off the ‘e’ and named her son Bear Blu.

We see Blue in birth announcements most often as a middle name. Because data on middles isn’t widely available, it’s tough to say if that’s a trend.

As a first name, the color remains rare. In 2014, there were 19 girls and 16 boys were given the name.

Blue: True. And Other Things.

English: Eastern bluebird

The word dates to around the year 1300. It’s a primary color, but there are plentiful associations, some favorable, others not so much:

  • It’s the color of constancy – true.
  • It’s also the color of sorrow – you can have them or sing them.
  • Little Boy Blue wears the color we associate with our sons, at least in the last century.
  • Blue ruin is an old slang term for gin, though today Bombay Sapphire feels rather sophisticated.
  • It’s the color of first place ribbons. Blue chip means high in value.
  • If this it the color of your blood, then you’re a royal by birth.
  • A moon this color signifies something that happens rarely.
  • A blue dahlia has never been produced – so it implies something unattainable. The Blue Dahlia is a 1946 film noir, and before that, a nineteenth century Russian ballet.
  • Skies and birds take the color in a happy, optimistic direction.
  • It’s also a nature name – the color of the ocean, and the sky – as in the wild blue yonder.
  • Lastly, add red and white, and it’s a patriotic name, too.

From navy to carolina, there are many shades. Because they’re more typically associated with boys, there’s something slightly gender-bending about choosing the name for a girl.

Blue: Calamity Physics and More

BlueBNoDsquare2006’s much-lauded novel Special Topics in Calamity Physics introduced a girl called Blue Van Meer. The book is part-coming of age novel, part-murder mystery.

Children’s author Blue Balliett was born Elizabeth, but uses her childhood nickname professionally.

There’s also the dog on Blue Clue’s – another girl, for what it’s worth.

Blue: On Trend Option

Names like Luke and Ruby, Lucy and Jude are quite stylish today. And short B names for girls – from Brooke to Blair and even Bess – have a certain charm.

Blue fits right in to their company. As colorful as Scarlett, as upbeat as Blythe.

We’ll likely hear more of this name in the years to come – though perhaps mostly as a middle.

What do you think of Blue? Does it seem like a wearable first name to you, or is this one better in the middle?

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. I’m the only one here that doesn’t like it. Blue Ivy? Too short, and sounds like a *thing*. You wouldn’t name a person Red Envelope or Gray Goose.. so what makes Blue Ivy any less ridiculous? I’ll never understand.

  2. Blue Ivy brings to mind the play “The House of Blue Leaves.” Great play, but since the title is referring to a mental hospital, it isn’t really namesake material. Blue Ivy also feels like a restaurant or an Inn, like “The Blue Ivy is my favorite spot for Sunday Brunch.”

    As for the actual name Blue, it feels more fitting for a coonhound or a Blueheeler. But the thing really holding me back is the phrase “going blue” as in a profane comedian or an actress who switches to porn.

  3. Blue’s Clues, sure – what what about Paul Bunyan’s trusty ox, Blue?

    I would also include Bluebelle as the name most likely to mix with Scarlett or Violet.

    And I wonder if the fact that blue is a ‘boy’ colour has encouraged the fact that the name seems perfectly unisex these days. We do fight back against gender and racial stereotypes, as a society, more and more every day, I think…

  4. I really like the name Blue. I always have. I like it on both genders but slightly prefer it on a girl.

  5. I like Blue. What gets me about this baby’s name is that her first name is acting as a descriptor for her middle, sort of nullifying the whole first name in the process.

    But Blue alone is pretty nice, or if the middle name wasn’t a noun. I read of a character in a book one time named Bluma, called Blu. Nice.

  6. In his new song, “Glory,” Jay-Z says – “Baby, I paint the sky blue; my greatest creation was you.” It might be some elementary rhyming, but I think it speaks to the sweetness, significance, and, quite frankly, soul of Blue Ivy Carter (no Knowles)’s name.

    Blue clearly has significance to Jay-Z, evident in this above lyric, a tribute to his child, and his three Blueprint albums. Not to mention his color: Jay-Z Blue. Blue, to me, is a color of brightness, life, vibrancy, and youth. I love it – it’s my favorite. I see the sadness that the color could have, but it is such a rich, pure, beautiful color and strong collection of letter sounds that I find the name rather striking. The addition of Ivy, an on-trend nature name, feels even more interesting in the middle spot, I think, although I’ll agree that Ivy Blue sounds less like something in a botany book (though more like something you’d find on a paint chip) and overall more pleasing to the ear, Blue Ivy is just that much more original – though not wildly so in the least! – significant, and subtly charming. I know some have maligned Ivy as a silly, roundabout way of honoring the number four, via IV, but I think it’s the perfect way to work it into a girl’s name in a classy, charming way.

    Go paint that sky, Baby Blue! Congrats to mama and daddy, too. 🙂

      1. Thanks! Speaking of, Glory would be a perfect song for a future sister to Blue – it’s family and musically inspired!

  7. I am not blown away by the name. Honestly it kind of bores me. I think Ivy Blue has a better flow.
    The supposes story is that Blue is after Jay-zs album Blueprint and his favorite color blue. Beyonces favorite number is four or the Roman IV ie Ivy. Voila you have an instant name.

  8. By nature, I’m a very laid-back, relaxed kind of person and I relate that attitude to the colour blue.I do like the colour blue, and I could see it working as a name since it isn’t far removed from mine, but my sister has just shouted over my shoulder: ‘ Blue is a BOYS colour, Lou.’ Gotta love the thoughtful insights of an eight-year-old, but I guess she does have a valid point.