UPDATE: I’m so sorry we never shared the name we chose! Our daughter is Georgia Grace. We love her name! Thank you for your help. We’re hoping to add to our family this year, so hopefully we’ll be back for more help!
We have a three year old daughter named Evelyn Kate. I love (almost) everything about her name. It sounds crisp and sophisticated, but it’s not too much for a child. And it doesn’t scream “born in 2018” like some names do.
OR maybe it does, because the only thing that I don’t love about Evelyn is that we’ve met a lot of them since our daughter was born. Not, like, baseball teams’ worth of little Evelyns. But more than a few, not to mention girls with names like Eva and Everly who are also Evie/Evy, as our daughter sometimes is.
That’s not enough to make me dislike the name, but now that we’re expecting again – and it’s another girl! – I’d love to find something that’s a lot like Evelyn, but maybe a little less popular. But I’m not sure I trust our judgement this time around – we were sure that we’d never meet another Evelyn!
Can you help?
Please read on for my response and leave your thoughtful suggestions in the comments.
Congratulations on your new daughter!
Evelyn Kate is a great name – strong and tailored, but feminine, too.
I do think that our radar for popular names gets much better after we’ve had our first child. After all, I’m guessing you didn’t spend a lot of time around small children before you were parents, right? At least, not this kind of concentrated, hours-on-the-playground time.
It definitely increases our awareness of which names are common.
And here’s the thing: it will especially make you aware of the name that are most common in your circles. Data is amazing, but we tend to look at it nationally, Or state-wide. But my little corner of the world has slightly different trends than a county an hour away. And everyone’s circle of friends and family tends to share certain favorite names – just like we love the same music and television series and restaurants.
And so, yes, Evelyn was already near the top of the popularity charts when your daughter was born. You’re right that factoring in all of those other Ev- names can make it feel even more common!
So it’s easy to see what we should avoid. Evelyn’s sister can’t be Amelia or Sophia or Charlotte. (Though Evelyn and Charlotte would be great together!)
Instead, it’s a question of how different your new daughter’s name should be.
And I’m guessing we’re not really talking Georgette/Delphine/Mariel. Because even though they fit the bill, they might be a little too different.
Instead, let’s look for names that share the same tailored qualities as Evelyn, but fall somewhere between the very popular and the quite rare.
A SISTER FOR EVELYN KATE
Adeline is just a little too close to Evelyn, but Adelaide – with that distinctive ‘d’ ending sound – feels like a perfect pair.
Every bit as vintage as Evelyn, Dorothy is just a decade or two behind Evelyn in terms of a comeback. So your Dorothy might eventually coach a bunch of smaller Dorothys in youth soccer, but she won’t share her kindergarten class with them.
Frances manages to be strong and delicate all at once. Nickname Frannie sounds exactly right with big sister Evie.
A short name with plenty of nickname options, Louise makes a logical sister for Evelyn.
My first thought wasn’t Maren – it was Miriam. Both are often connected to classic Mary. But while Miriam is a sepia-toned throwback, Maren brings a more modern energy. Either works as a sister for Evelyn, but if vintage gems like Dorothy and Louise fall flat, perhaps Maren is the answer.
There’s something timeless about Meredith. It’s ranked in the US Top 1000 for over a century straight, but the name has never entered the Top 100. It’s impossible to pin to a particular era. And Evelyn and Meredith sound great together.
Serious Ruth transforms to sweet Ruthie, a surprisingly flexible name contained in just a single syllable.
It might not have the long history of Evelyn, but I think Winter is a great match sound-wise. And season names have many of the same appealing qualities – they’re easy to spell and pronounce. I’d call them modern traditionals, the kinds of names that will stand the text of time.
For a perfect match, I keep going back to Adelaide. I think it satisfies your criteria exactly without being too close to Evelyn.
But I wonder if it’s worth exploring some of the slightly different options? Winter and Maren both offer something a little different, but still very compatible. I love the sound of Evelyn Kate and Maren Frances.
Our first daughter is Evelyn (Mary Evelyn – goes by Evelyn), and then we have twin daughters Meredith and Maggie (nn for Magnolia) and Beatrix Jane (who answers to Beatrix, Beatrix Jane, or Janey depending on her mood).
Jean C. says
Judith (nn Jude)
All of these sound crisp, sophisticated, tailored and like a kid who could be in my kids preschool class (but I have only encountered 1 Alice, and none of the others yet). I think you are going to be in good company that you’re more aware of what is popular in your circles and in your region. They also sound like a sister to Evelyn (to me).
Another Emily says
Not sure how popular Annabelle is in your area but I think it fits well with Evelyn. We’ve only met a few, other than our daughter who is 2, and it feels familiar but fairly uncommon.
Susannah is also lovely. I’ve only met one and she’s in her twenties.
Alyssa Flick says
Just throwing in these potential sibling combinations to the mix!
Consider Evelyn and … Janine.
Consider Evelyn and … Audra.
Consider Evelyn and … Teresa.
Consider Evelyn and … Camille.
Consider Evelyn and … Iris.
I love Meredith here! And I was going to suggest both Viola and Sabine, but others beat me to it. Maybe Clementine or Josephine? Althea? Ooohh, Evelyn Kate and Althea Jean sound fantastic!
I have an Evelyn and we considered Kate as the middle too! A lot of the names that were on our list have already been mentioned. Some other ones we love are
Margaret. Nn Meg or Greta
Ingrid. Nn Indy
I like Evelyn and Meredith and Ruth. Other suggestions with Evelyn Kate.
I feel like Lydia would be a great choice. Familiar but not overly popular but still sounds right with sister Evelyn. Evelyn and Lydia, Evie and Liddy; so cute!
Also want to suggest
Kim Waggoner says
Oh I like Sylvie/Sylvia. Love the matching v’s. Frances is one of my most favorites and makes Evelyn sound so classic and tailored!
Evelyn Kate and…
Miriam Rose (Mimi! Miri!)
Juniper Anne (ok, just throwing that out there!)
I love Adelaide (though my fave nickname is Lady!) and Lucille, but I do think you may be trying to avoid other popular sounds? So Addy and Lulu might be out? I love the suggestions of Florence and Sylvie, and I think Meredith is just perfection.
Sabine (Bean or Bea!)
Imogen (Midge or Minnie)
Whitney (Wit or Win)
Phillipa (Pip or Pippa)
I will offer a word of caution, because I was chasing the same thing as you. For daughter #1 we chose a name we thought was more uncommon, which ended up being way more common than we liked. So for daughter #2 we wanted something guaranteed to be less common. Well, we did choose something objectively less common in general, but friends in our larger circle used the same name as a nickname for their daughter just six months later and told us we’d made it feel more useable. And because it’s less common, people we know are more likely to say ‘Oh I love that, we know a kid aged X with that name.’ So I don’t hear it as much out and about, but the universe conspired to laugh anyways.
I actually really like Georgette/Delphine/Mariel with Evelyn! 🙂
What about Harriet? Evie and Hattie? Or Colette? Priscilla? Cecily?
The thing about Adelaide is that all the Addie names may make it feel closer to Evelyn popularity wise than the other options. I really like the option of Dorothy!
Adelaide would be perfect! Evie and Della
Marina Evie and Mari or Evie and Marnie (Mari is definitely more common)
Magdalena Evie and Maggie or Evie and Lena or Evie and Madge
Anastasia Evie and Annie
Georgiana Evie and Georgie or Evie and Gia or Evie and Gina
Erin Beth says
Erin Beth says
I love many of these suggestions. A few more ideas: