Name Help is a series at Appellation Mountain. Every week, one reader’s name questions will be discussed.
We’re relying on thoughtful comments from the community to help expectant parents narrow down their name decisions. Thank you in advance for sharing your insight!
We found the perfect name for a boy – Simon! Traditional, smart, everybody knows to spell and pronounce it, but he wouldn’t have to be one of three in his class. Plus, my husband is a big fan of Simon Pegg from way back when he made Shaun of the Dead. Perfect, right?
Sure. Except we’re having a girl!
What’s the equivalent of Simon for a girl? We don’t want to use Simone because we might have our Simon someday.
Please read on for my response and leave your thoughtful suggestions in the comments.
Congratulations on your new daughter!
Simon is a great name for a boy, for all of the reasons you’ve mentioned.
Happily, there are plenty of traditional girl names that feel just a little different, too. In fact, there might be more girl names in this category!
Let’s find some appealing possibilities that would work with a possible future brother named Simon.
GIRL NAMES INSPIRED BY SIMON
Adeline is a Top 100 cousin. And Addie is familiar as a nickname for Addison, too. But regal, traditional Adelaide stands a little bit apart. It’s strong and smart, with history to spare.
Sound-wise, Celeste is similar to Simon. But it’s distinct, too, a pretty, vintage name that suggests stargazing.
Originally an Elizabeth nickname, Elise has stood on its own for years. It’s been used in song by everyone from Beethoven to The Cure. Timeless and tailored, Elise could be the perfect sister for Simon.
There’s something serious and capable about Frances, without feeling too heavy. Frances is the sweet badger of bedtime stories by Russell Hoban and talented actor Frances McDormand, too.
A form of Mary used in the Old Testament, Miriam sounds old-fashioned and vibrant. It’s also the given name of the title character on The Talented Mrs. Maisel. (Though she often answers to retro nickname Midge.)
A name from Greek mythology with a lovely meaning: bright. Phoebe is the name of a small bird and at least two very well-known television characters. Despite that, it feels less like a trending possibility and more like an overlooked gem.
There’s a bounce to Veronica – it’s just plain fun to say! With centuries of use, Veronica is impossible to date to a decade. Like Simon, Veronica could be two years old, or 72.
William is an impeccable classic, but the feminine form has remained somewhat unsettled. Wilhelmina feels a little long; Willow, a touch modern. But Willa gets it just right. It fits with Stella and Bella, but feels a little more modest than those dramatic names.
Overall, I think Veronica and Elise are the obvious choices. But I can think of lots of names that work.
Carly Zuno says
Simon and Tamsin, Thea, Saskia, Ruby, Ines
For a big sister to Simon, I like:
Here to second Julie/Julia, Ann/Anna and Bridget. I also love one commenters suggestion of Marie, it’s so beautiful with Simon.
If you want to have a clear, go-to spelling, I think that rules out Elise, Frances, Adelaide, and Phoebe. All of those either have common spelling variants or are just commonly misspelled. Other ideas, some that others have mentioned –
One of ours would have been a Simon, too! Girl names we would have paired with Simon were Bridget mentioned above a few times, Heidi, and Rose, all of which hit that spot for us of familiar and recognizable but not too common.
Personally Bridget comes to mind – Simple , Strong constant sounds etc. Though honestly if you love Simon as much as you sound like you do I’d use Simone. You may never end up having more kids for any number of reasons or you may have all girls. And I think you would regret it more if you didn’t use it than if you used it and then gave Simone a brother. I really think you should just go for it.
A few more suggestions –
My first thought was Jane and I see I’m not alone! I think Simon’s appeal is an Everyman that would be at place in a storybook and feels a little special. To me the female version is:
Jane, of course
Anne or Anna
Emily, maybe, or Emmeline
Molly or Polly
I love the suggestion of Beatrice above and think Simon and Bea are adorable and classic sounding sibling names.
But might also go with:
Clémence has some similar sounds to Simon without being too similar though I realize the pronunciation may be tricky for Americans. Celia is also tailored and shares the “s” sound without sharing first initials. I also like Abby’s suggestions of Willa and Celeste.
How about Anne? It is actually pretty rare these days. It is classic, dignified, can be nicknamed Annie, etc. Marie or Mary would work as well. Others that have that type of vibe foe me: Adele, Cecile, Claire or Clare, Helen or Helene, Irene, Jeanne, Kate, Laurel, Rose.
Delaney & Harlow
For me, Simon pairs well with…
Iris also has that long I sound.
Elise was a good suggestion.
The Mrs. says
Congratulations and best wishes!
The first name I thought of was Phoebe. I also like Elise, Sybil, Eloise, Penelope….
Simon is a great name. I hope you get to use it someday! So, a big sister for Simon…
The first name that came to my mind was Anna! Others could be Julia, Laurel or Caroline.
My first thought is Lydia or Diana!
Sybil (too close to Simon??)
My husband suggests Nicola 🙂
I might’ve leaned toward a different Elizabeth derivative: Betsy. It’s easily recognizable and friendly like Simon. Beatrice could be really lovely here too!
Jane or Louise are both lovely on their own, familiar but not overused, and complement Simon beautifully.
Since they’re so many names that could work, I think it depends on what’s her middle name going to be. I love Georgiana or Christabel with future brother Simon.
My first thought was Jill/Jillian. Familiar, but never popular enough to be tied to a time period.