To be really annoyed that my all time favourite girl's name is so bloody popular?

(93 Posts)
Theicingontop Sat 26-Jan-13 17:54:53


Really miffed. I was convincing myself up until now that maybe it's not that popular, and besides, I'm in love with the Scottish spelling and everyone else goes for the fancy French version, so she'll be a bit different when it comes to school.

Starting to realise that if I don't want my so far imaginary daughter to be one of hundreds of Isobels I'll have to rethink it. Kind of disappointing. I've had it picked out for years.

Anyone else?

pictish Sat 26-Jan-13 17:56:02

Yanbu - it's a gutter for sure, but there's nowt you can do.

middle name?

VacantExpression Sat 26-Jan-13 17:57:26

I had the same situation with DD's name!

mrsjay Sat 26-Jan-13 17:57:46

I liked Erin for years and when dd2 was born 5 erins were born before her <bitter> but tbh Isobel will go as quickly as it became popular it is swings and round abouts with names sometimes,

WorraLiberty Sat 26-Jan-13 17:58:01

Is it popular again?

I'd avoid different spelling if you can...there's nothing more annoying for a child to have to constantly correct people.

Bajas Sat 26-Jan-13 17:58:23

We have a long time family name of Amelia going back generations but no one in my generation has used it yet. I love it and always hoped to use it if I ever have a dd but now every second little girl is called Amelia/ Amelie/ some other derivative so I feel your pain!

kerala Sat 26-Jan-13 17:59:26

Also rather gutting to realise you think the same as everybody else of your generation and are not the interesting quirky outlier that you thought you were <was going to call PFB Olivia until I realised>

Avoid Isobel in any form its been done to death and lost the appeal it once had due to sheer popularity. Every class has a girl with a variant of Isabel. Also avoid Eve btw one third of the girls in DDs class are named this.

mrsjay Sat 26-Jan-13 17:59:29

It isn't here it has been and gone we have also had loads of little bellas but it isn't as popular I think all the little izzies are at school now grin

PhyllisDoris Sat 26-Jan-13 18:00:47

Where are you?
I have an Isobel and its not that popular round here.

nefertarii Sat 26-Jan-13 18:04:24

Isabella is quite popular at moment apparently. Due to the misery face in twilight.

I had similar. Always wanted to call my first dd 'megan' when I met dfh he had a dog that had various health problems. Digestive problems that made it fart and smell like death, a skin problem that made her flake everywhere and a whole range of bad habit. The dog was called Megan and it put me off for life.

Theicingontop Sat 26-Jan-13 18:04:32

Southeast, near London. They're all Isabelle Graces round 'ere don'tchaknow.

SolidSnake Sat 26-Jan-13 18:07:35

I love how some names become popular and then unpopular again. Meeting people the same age as you is really telling about what names were popular the year you were born!

SuffolkNWhat Sat 26-Jan-13 18:09:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

EchoBitch Sat 26-Jan-13 18:10:22


RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 18:11:42

This was my favourite girls' name from my teens till I was pg at 29 with ds1. Our neighbours called their child Isabella, there were about 100 Isabellas born to friends that year...ds has one Isabel, and Isabella and two Ellas in his class at school. It's crazy popular round here.

I totally went off it as it kind of got a bit - well, boring, hearing it all the time. Such a shame, it's beautiful in its own right but I just can't love it any more.

Angelico Sat 26-Jan-13 18:14:14

Same boat (although different names for us - 2 I loved but were just too popular). Do know a couple of recent Isobels.

On the up side it made us think outside the box a bit and we picked a beautiful, classical, simple name we might have over-looked otherwise.

Euphemia Sat 26-Jan-13 18:14:21

I've taught in about 20 schools and I can't recall a single Isobel. Maybe it's not popular in Scotland? smile

catladycourtney1 Sat 26-Jan-13 18:15:48

No. It pisses me off too. I always thought I'd call my daughter Lily, but it's just sooooo common now. I might use it for a middle name, but I couldn't use it for a first name. Not that there's anything wrong with using popular names (after all, that's why they're popular), but it is a deal-breaker for me, I don't know why.

Strangely, when I was about 9 weeks pregnant, I had a really vivid dream that I had a baby girl and called her Isobel. At the time, I was convinced I was having a boy for some reason, but it turns out I am expecting a girl smile

UrsulaBuffay Sat 26-Jan-13 18:18:42


PessaryPam Sat 26-Jan-13 18:19:08

We had an Isobel at junior school back in the day...

Knock knock
Who's there?
Isobel who?
Isobel necessary on a bicycle.

How we laughed.

GlaikitCheiftanOThePuddinRace Sat 26-Jan-13 18:20:07

It's on the up euphemia, in 10 years time you'll be over run with them (I think y are a secondary teacher? I'm not stalking y honest!)

I love it and the reason it's so popular is because its a lovely name. It's a family name for me and that would be why it was special. Eve is also a family name, so I would say it was a classic that will always be around and have a peak once in a while.

GlaikitCheiftanOThePuddinRace Sat 26-Jan-13 18:21:23

Btw Euphemia are you the EuphemiaLennox I've seen around recently or are you different Euphies?

lljkk Sat 26-Jan-13 18:21:27

I have one, named after DH's beloved granny, once i suggested it DH wanted no other name. DD is the only great-grandDD (vs. 9 great-grandDSs) of that granny, iyswim, the only one who could have been named after her. DH & his cousins are all done procreating.

And it is a fine name. Just a bit over-used! I also had thought it was falling in popularity, though. Grace & variations on Emily-Amelia-Milly-Emilia are the rising stars, maybe?

But then I know only one Olivia, & she's 13.

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 18:21:51

Catlady, you could use a name that means Lily - I think Susan or Susanna does.
I love the name Lily but agree it's way too popular. And lilies don't smell as nice as they should, either - I never realised this till recently!! smile

Esker Sat 26-Jan-13 18:21:52

Ysmay? That way you also get Izzi as nickname.

SoleSource Sat 26-Jan-13 18:23:19

Why be annoyed?

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 18:23:22

There are hundreds of Eves and Amelias here too.

The most unusual name in ds2's class has to be Shelby! I think it's American?

Theicingontop Sat 26-Jan-13 18:23:33

It was Isobel or Elodie. And I'm starting to see more Elodies these days too so it's like they're pillaging my name stocks. <whinge>

determinedma Sat 26-Jan-13 18:23:35

How about the Scottish Ishbel?

Euphemia Sat 26-Jan-13 18:23:51

EuphemiaLennox is a copycat different person.

I hadn't noticed her until someone posted on a thread "Euphemia, what you are saying makes so much sense," and I though "Huh? No-one ever says that to me!" grin

Euphemia Sat 26-Jan-13 18:25:04

I'm a primary teacher, so I see all the innovations coming through. hmm

Kveta Sat 26-Jan-13 18:28:14

I don't see the problem. If you like the name, use it.

Meglet Sat 26-Jan-13 18:29:20

rooney there was a Shelby in Steel Magnolias IIRC.

I always liked Isabella, but realised there were a few of them around so crossed it off my list.

GlaikitCheiftanOThePuddinRace Sat 26-Jan-13 18:31:26

Now Euphemia is a wonderfully underused name, with loads on NN potential!

Elspeth is another that I like along similar lines.

GlaikitCheiftanOThePuddinRace Sat 26-Jan-13 18:33:20


Euphemia Sat 26-Jan-13 18:35:04

My dad's auntie was Phamie. smile His posher cousin was Faye. smile

GlaikitCheiftanOThePuddinRace Sat 26-Jan-13 18:36:27

See loads of potential!

MadamFolly Sat 26-Jan-13 18:38:45

We have a Shelby in the school I work in, the name I notice we are overrun in atm is Dylan, there are many many Dylans.

SofaKing Sat 26-Jan-13 18:40:18

Use it. I nearly named dd Sophia as I liked Sophie but it was too popular. When at tots singing with ds1 there were two newborn Sophias whose parents glared daggers at each other the whole time.

I went back to Sophie and even though it is very popular here in four years I have only known 3 others.

Remember; everyone else is only copying. You have the real one wink

GlaikitCheiftanOThePuddinRace Sat 26-Jan-13 18:41:04

Is dylan the new naughty boy name? It was Darren when I was at school.

girliefriend Sat 26-Jan-13 18:41:51

yanbu I had no idea how popular my dds name was and she was named after a favourite great aunt.

I do however feel I have let her down though by giving her such a popular name, she knows at least 4 other girls with the name at her school sad

My name is very popular now but growing up I never met another girl with my name. Sorry frustrating not to say actual names!!

Yep, loads of Isobels in Surrey. One Ishbel at dd1's school and I think that's lovely and far less commonly used.

I called my DD the name that I had chosen as a schoolgirl as my fave name only to discover that it was the most popular name that year.

There were literally thousands of them at her school* and she was known by her much-hated middle name as the teachers had several in the class with the same last initial. If only I' d had MN to check these things out ...

* May contain exaggeration

SamanthaStormer Sat 26-Jan-13 18:43:43

Loads of Isobel's here too. One in DS1's class, one in nursery at the same school and one girl I used to go to school with's daughter too.

CharlotteBronteSaurus Sat 26-Jan-13 18:44:33

i wouldn't let it put you off
you might never meet another
dd2 has a name outside of the top 100, and we know four others locally
dd1 has a top 20 name, and we know no others.

LadyMargolotta Sat 26-Jan-13 18:48:41

Gorgeous name though. I would still use it.

DesperatelySeekingSedatives Sat 26-Jan-13 18:57:25

Awwww I love the name Isobel! Was the name I was going to give DC2 had he not been a DS smile

It's popularity doesnt bother me at all. DD has a popular name. I think it's one of the top 5 but oddly enough she is the only one of them in the infants (I don't know about the juniors though).

I don't think it's a name that dates either. I have at least 3 Isobels/Isabellas/Isabels in my family who are several generations older than me (26).

AgnesAndTheOthers Sat 26-Jan-13 19:02:01

I have an Isobel. The only one in her class, was the only one infants and still the only in juniors, though there is an Isabel two years ahead of her, so not popular at all round here in the south west.

Maybe you could move OP? [bsmile]

LucilleBluth Sat 26-Jan-13 19:05:29

I have a Dylan and believe me 12 years ago when I was pregnant with him there wasn't another Dylan in sight......things change.

My Dylan was named after Bob....I'm sure he was conceived after DH and I left a Bob Dylan concert early because we couldn't hear him.....we went and got drunk in the hotel bar and hey presto 9 months later.......

marjproops Sat 26-Jan-13 19:08:31

before kids I thought if I ever had a boy Id call him Joshua. this was back in the 90's. suddenly EVERYONE was having a Joshua. put me right off.

Got a girl tho, and so managed to avoid the Joshua.

Branleuse Sat 26-Jan-13 19:09:15

its a classic name and timeless. I love it. I think you should use it

I dont think its overly popular. Not any more than its ever been

TaggieCampbellBlack Sat 26-Jan-13 19:10:43


Both my DDs have common popular names.

However I am obviously a trend setter as I was 15 years ahead of everyone else.

Ponderingonaquandry Sat 26-Jan-13 19:11:24

Isobel and all its variants is so popular around here along with Ella, Faye and Jessica.

I love Isobel and Imogen but they've been well and truly done to death so luckily went for names the normal side of unusual and get nothing but compliments about them and safe in the knowledge they're the only one in their class

LadyBeagleEyes Sat 26-Jan-13 19:12:33

Ishbel is the Gaelic version and I used to know one though I haven't heard it in years.
Pronounced as it says.

SolidSnake Sat 26-Jan-13 19:13:54

Lucille I always thought Dylan was quite a popular name, i'm in my twenties and went to school with a lot of them

SnowGo Sat 26-Jan-13 19:15:33

There is no fathoming my hatred of the name Isobel, however that is only because I am an Isabella and spent my entire school life being asked if I spelt it: "with an 'o'?"/"two 'l's or one?"/"with an 'e' at the end?"
No, my name has none of those because its not an Isa(o)bel(le) angry Its as if people heard the Isa part then assumed it had and Belle on the end not a Bella.

The only plus is that I am just old enough to have missed the onslaught of Isabels and consequent Isabellas. I don't know anyone my age or older with my name so its still unusual for me. Plus I get the pretty shortening of Bella grin

I can offer you Francesca which was the other name I could have been given- there aren't many of them about!

Arithmeticulous Sat 26-Jan-13 19:16:19

Ysabella just gets 'Isabella with a Y' to distinguish between Isabella A, B, C and D and Isobel and Isabelle.

SolidSnake Sat 26-Jan-13 19:19:15

Snow Again, went to school with a lot of Francescas! Maybe it's all different in Wales? grin (unless your Welsh also of course!)

BlablaSos Sat 26-Jan-13 19:23:37

I wanted that name too but I knew 3 of them so didn't pick it. If I didn't personally know the other baby Isabels I would have still had it, it's popular as its a lovely name. I chose Ava for my dd thinking it was really unusual - doh, it's in the top 10 and now I come across loads.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Sat 26-Jan-13 19:23:43

I love Isobel too and am also put off by its popularity.

I work with kids and we have 100s of Amelia's and Lily's. They all have the middle names Grace and May/Mae.

SnowGo Sat 26-Jan-13 19:24:21

SolidSnake really? I've never heard of a Francesca. Closest I've got to it was a Francine at school. I'm not in Wales though, so it must be different!

Arisbottle Sat 26-Jan-13 19:25:49

Not sure why it matters, if you like a name use it.

SolidSnake Sat 26-Jan-13 19:26:08

Yeah, I had two in my English class alone grin Then again my name is Louisa (which isn't the most common name) and there was another Louisa in my class! Maybe you find them all in clusters? grin

SnowGo Sat 26-Jan-13 19:29:06

Clusters might be right, thinking about it there were 3 Isabellas in my primary school of 100 kids though was one was actually Italian so I never counted her wink

achillea Sat 26-Jan-13 19:32:11

Why are girl's names so posh these days?

I'd love to hear of some Doreens, Paulines, Sharons and Tracys.

Perhaps this is the wrong thread. I would go for your root language - Gaelic / Italian / Germanic / Hebrew and take it from there.

Ishbel is Gaelic, Isobel is Hebrew, Isabella Italian. It's the connotation that lies within the language that is important.

Damn that semiotics module at Uni - it never leaves me.

Allinonebucket Sat 26-Jan-13 19:33:07

There are tons of Isabellas and variants around, but I think Elodie, you are just noticing more because it's in your head. I don't think Elodie is top fifty, is it?

achillea Sat 26-Jan-13 19:33:16

When I say Italian I mean Latin of course. wink

MumOfMissy Sat 26-Jan-13 19:44:28

YANBU. I told a guy at work whose wife was preggo my fave name, Anastasia, and they went and nicked it! Grrrr!

How about Isabeau? Same French feel, more unusual. Was considering it for my DD. if not, go for Isobel. She'll always be your Isobel, the others won't matter.

Mandy21 Sat 26-Jan-13 19:48:25

I have an Isobel and love it, she is 7 now and it wasn't popular at the time but obviously has been done and done ever since. As others have said, all of my children have been named after much loved family members - so in a way it was decided before we even considered whether they were "popular" names.

But I also agree that just because its popular, it doesn't mean that there will be lots of them. I also have a boy - unbeknown used the most popular name in the country, but he is the only one in his year.

Child number 3 - christened the bump from the start but didn't tell anyone. One close friend from work and very close friend from university christened their daughters with the name we'd chosen in the 2 weeks before we had her, but we still used it as it was "her" name by then. Makes for interesting afternoons when we catch up with each other!!

I think unless you go for something very unusual, which has its own problems, there is always a danger that a name becomes popular in the months / years after you've given it to your baby. Just go with a name you love!

3monkeys3 Sat 26-Jan-13 19:57:44

My dd's middle name is Isobel - love it. I used to care about the popularity of names but have given my dc progressively more popular names and don't care now. What about ysabeau? I think it's gorgeous!

ClartyCarol Sat 26-Jan-13 20:11:02

Isobel is fab, and nowhere near as overused as Isabelle or Isabella.

I know this sounds awful but Ishbel sounds to me like how a pissed Scotsman would pronounce Isobel.

Like Elspeth a lot.

Tanith Sat 26-Jan-13 20:48:07

I imagine Sharon, Tracy, Debbie and the rest will become popular again when their present holders are in their 80s. Seems to be the way it goes with "old fashioned" names coming back into use.

When I was at school, Ruby, Isabel, Emily, Amelia, Florence etc. were granny names never to be used for babies.
Tracy, though! My class had 4 Trac(e)ys, 3 Debbies, 3 Sharons and 2 Julies.

SolidSnake Sat 26-Jan-13 20:54:05

Most popular girls names when I was in school were Katie, Sophie, Emily and Zoe

shebird Sat 26-Jan-13 21:12:30

I had also chosen this name which i loved and which was not that popular when DD was born. DH didn't like it as he didn't want her to be known as Izzy (reminder of a not so nice girl from the pub) so we chose another name which seems to suit DD better. Sometimes you need to wait to mer your little one before deciding.

Footlongbeef Sat 26-Jan-13 21:14:44

I have an Isobel. She is 5. I'm a primary school teacher and hadn't come across many isobels/isabelles etc in my time teaching either (or any annoying ones...). I researched it too and the year she was born it was in the top hundred but quite low down. The following year, after dd was born, it was top 20. So perhaps the moral of the story is whatever you choose is going to be a product of your generation and may become popular no matter how hard you try to find something different but not wacky. If you love it, go for it. BTW she is the only one in her year at school. Had similar with DD2 - midwife actually said she had two born with the same name that same day and hadn't had any girls called that for 20 years. It is now also a popular name! smile

Pigsmummy Sat 26-Jan-13 21:20:30

I am sad that Emma is no.2 most popular last hea when we called our DD that! Thankfully our surname is unusual

NynaevesSister Sat 26-Jan-13 21:23:36

This is a shock! Had no idea it was so popular. I never knew another Isobel growing up or even now. Isabelle is the closest and only met her recently. Suffered horribly at school with the bicycle joke.

My favourite aunt was called Lily and we have a family name of Mae for all first born girls so if son had been a girl she'd have had a popular and posh name from what every one has said!

halcyondays Sat 26-Jan-13 21:24:37

I didn't know Isobel was very popular. Dd1 has a name that is supposed to be one of the most popular for the year she was born, but she's the only one in her year at school.

I may be a little bit biased as its my own name, but I say stick to your guns!
It's impossible to predict popularity, if you love it go for it.
Mind you, if you marry and change your name, Isobel might not go with it! I had always wanted to use my Grandads name, but it just didn't 'go'. Ah well!

I didn't meet another Isobel until I was 30, so I'm the plonker who turns around when someone is calling their 3yo across the playground!

Nynaeve did you get the bloody Sooty rhyme too??! "Izzy wizzy let's get busy" angry angry angry grin
It was a pain at primary school and returned with a vengeance at high school with a whole new smutty meaning! Grrrrrrrr.

I hated the bicycle joke too.

1944girl Sat 26-Jan-13 21:28:31

Isabella was my grandmother's name.She was born on 1897.She had loads of relatives with this name all born around the same time.It must have been very popular round this period, but it's popularity must have been around for many years as both her own grandmothers and her mother-in-law were all called Isabella.The numerous female relatives I had as a child, including my grandma,who were called Isabella were all known as Bella.I had loads of Auntie Bellas who were all in late middle age.
The name then fell in popularity for a long time.When I was pregnant with my first in 1969 I would not consider the name Isabella for a girl as it was definatly old lady by then.
Now it has shot back in popularity but I have a feeling it will drop down again.

inkyfingers Sat 26-Jan-13 21:28:47

A friend was talking about her DD Antonia and I had a lightbulb moment; that would be the name for my non-existent daughter!

Pontouf Sat 26-Jan-13 21:29:01

I feel your pain. DH and I decided on DS's name back when we first met in 1999. It wasn't at all an unusual name at the time but it wasn't that popular either. We totally fell in love with the name and always said if we had a son that would be his name. By the time DS was born 11 years later, it was number one on the boys names list in 2010. We went with it anyway and it totally suits him. We have been lucky that we haven't met any other children with his name (other than strangers at soft play. None at nursery/no friend's kids etc). Now I am pregnant with DC2 and have been told it is a girl. We decided when I was pregnant with DS that our daughter would have a variation of a name which was only moderately popular at the time (top 50). It is now number one on the girls list. Totally infuriating but we still love it and are probably going to use it.

oohlaalaa Sat 26-Jan-13 21:30:49

I wanted to choose an unusual name, but the only name DH and I could agree on was Ava, which is a top 10 name, but we love the name, it suits her perfectly, and I couldn't give a monkeys about popularity now.

A friend who was pregnant at the smae time, wanted an unusual name too, but could only agree with her DH on Matilda (Tilly). It's not been an issue for her either. It's not the issue you expect.

Choose the name you love.

BestIsWest Sat 26-Jan-13 21:41:49

Why worry if you love the name? Both my DCs have very common names, top 5 names for the years they were born. I think DDs may even have been the no 1 name. However both have names we loved for years before and continue to love. I loved DS's so much I gave my dog the name when I was 7. But they are MY commonly named DCs.

sugarplumpfairy Sat 26-Jan-13 21:51:49

I'm a nurse and the amount of elderly people I have looked after who have had such pretty names like Lucy, Emma or Alice (my DD's name!) and they actually ASK to be called another name like Winnifred/Avril/Enid or suchlikegrin Mad.

hrrumph Sat 26-Jan-13 21:55:59

Unfortunately v popular name. My dd is 7. Two isobel/isabelles and two isabellas in her class. It is the helen/claire/sharon/tracy of the 2010's.

MidnightMasquerader Sat 26-Jan-13 21:57:14

<waves to NynaevesSister and TiddlyOmPomPom>

Isobel is not a 'timeless', 'classic' name; it's one of the most cyclical names there is, swinging in and out of fashion wildly. grin

I was given it in 1973 and it was desperately old-fashioned then. I am named after my grandmother, with my other grandmother's name for my middle name. My Dad told me that just after I was born a load of Isobels turned up in the obituaries - the old ladies with the name dying off! He was really worried that they'd made a terrible choice, but rationalised that I could always choose to use my simpler middle name when older if I hated it too much! Little did he know that by then, everyone would be all over the name again...

Yes, I was tormented with 'is a bell necessary on a bike' though childhood (and it was years before I even got the joke, embarrassingly enough) and Izzy Wizzy let's get busy. grin God, massive flash back, haven't heard that phrase in years!!

I like the name now, but resented it as a child.

By all means choose it, but be warned, it WILL date. wink

PoppyWearer Sat 26-Jan-13 21:59:19

We also decided on DS's name years ago, in tribute to a family member.

Now a hugely popular name, there are loads of them, but it's his name for excellent reasons, and suits him down to the ground.

Wouldn't have chosen another name for him.

Pixel Sat 26-Jan-13 22:06:46

Ds was going to be Samuel. Then I read a newspaper article that said that Samuel was on the 'ten most popular names' list and I was worried that he'd end up at school with a class full of little Samuels, so we used it as a middle name.
Do you know he's nearly 13 and I've never met another Samuel? Yet his school was full of boys with the name we chose instead. We picked it because we hadn't heard of anyone with the same name for years, yet suddenly there they all were. To top it all, a couple of weeks after he was born a couple of film stars named their baby the same so everyone assumed we had copied them.

PiscesLondon Sat 26-Jan-13 22:47:10

My best friend has an isobel, i love that spelling, much better than isabel and isabelle. I'm in the north west & isabella is much more popular than isobel, i only know my friend's daughter with the name.

Most popular names around here seem to be ava, lily, amelia, isla, isabella, and scarlett is also quite popular.

I love gabrielle, but worry that's a bit too popular?

LiegeAndLief Sat 26-Jan-13 22:47:17

If you like it, go for it.

We called ds a very very common name that has been in the top 10 boys names for about the last 50 years. He is in Y2 now and there has never been another one in his year, I don't think there is one in the whole infants now!

Dd on the other hand has a less usual name and one of her best friends at preschool has the same name. They call each other "Other X".

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