Can't do girls' names... here's my maybe pile

(42 Posts)
BeardyHammerclaw Tue 02-Oct-12 13:52:26

I've got two boys names I love and if this baby is a boy, I will just go with whichever of those he looks like grin

However, I'm not so good with girls' names and I'm not sure any of the ones we've come up with are just right. Please let me know what you think of this list and if you can think of any others we might like. We are hoping for a classic English name but not something overused. I don't want a really frilly name.


Helena is my fave really but I am unsure about whether she will spend her life correcting the pronunciation.

Finbert Tue 02-Oct-12 13:56:51

I like Meredith and Helena, but as you say pronunciation could be an issue with the latter. Like all the others except Imogen but all quite common in the school I teach at and unfortunately Imogen seems to becoming 'Chavvy'' in my area (sure I will get slated for saying this as there are some lovely Imogen's!!!!)

delilah88 Tue 02-Oct-12 13:59:11

Finbert is Helena popular in your school?

Finbert Tue 02-Oct-12 14:05:02

No, never taught one smile and I only know one in real life

ProphetOfDoom Tue 02-Oct-12 14:08:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Britchic Tue 02-Oct-12 14:48:07

I love Imogen as being different, beautiful, but not too frilly. Second choice... probably Alice.

Good luck!

Ellie7 Tue 02-Oct-12 15:55:45

How would you pn Helena? As HEL-ena or Hel-ENa? I like both. That's my fav from your list.

OrangeFireandGoldashes Tue 02-Oct-12 16:00:43

What a lovely list. Helena (pronounced Hel-LAY-na), Harriet and Imogen would be my favourites, but tbh all of them are pretty, classic but not 'fluffy' names.

nickeldaisical Tue 02-Oct-12 16:02:56

depends how you pronounce Helena - do you go hell -enna or Hel- ay -na ?

the first would be more likely.

i like it.

if you're worried about pronunciation, you could have Eleanor instead.
(biased here though)
but I like Helena.

smother Tue 02-Oct-12 16:14:49

They are all lovely names!! All gorgeous so too hard to pick a favourite! My least favourite is Imogen. What about Miriam?

BeardyHammerclaw Tue 02-Oct-12 16:52:42

Thanks all. I'm glad people think they are nice names. Helen-a is the pronunciation I would use, like the character in Midsummer Night's Dream. I like Eleanor but have a family member with that name, plus the nickname Elly is quite ubiquitous. I like Miriam too...

Nelly232 Tue 02-Oct-12 16:54:01

Alice is beautiful. Love it.

WixedUpMords Tue 02-Oct-12 16:55:40

Meredith is welsh not English. Just not sure if you knew as you say you want an English name

chaya5738 Tue 02-Oct-12 17:07:18

Lovely list. I love Meredith, Helena, and Harriet.

Meredith less popular.

MrsJohnDeere Tue 02-Oct-12 17:21:36

Harriet or Alice

I love Imogen amd would like to it it on my short list but it has soared in popularity round here lately.

scootle Tue 02-Oct-12 17:27:35

Helena is gorgeous - just use it and correct pronunciation if necessary. Yours is the more usual way of saying it, I think.

I know one small Helena - and was considering it for dd. Such great nn potential.

dieciocho Tue 02-Oct-12 17:38:53

My cousin has been called Helena for 33 years and as far as I know is always called /hel-en-a/, no issues.
Her nickname is Hen.

I love Meredith.

Frikadellen Tue 02-Oct-12 21:09:09

Meredith gets my vote but I do also like Helena a lot

nickeldaisical Wed 03-Oct-12 10:56:20

I have a name that's pronounced differently in foreign languages.
I normally use the english version, but find that I quite like the "exotic" version is someone accidentally calls me that! grin

that rule could work for Helena too.

Narked Wed 03-Oct-12 11:20:08

You can do girls' names grin

Helena and Harriet are my favourites. And Alice is classic.

Helena can be pronounced in different ways - but sounds lovely however it's said.

TitWillow Wed 03-Oct-12 11:59:38

Meredith is lovely! Alice also great.

Ebb Wed 03-Oct-12 12:04:20

Meredith is lovely. I knew a Meredith nn Merry and was just gorgeous. I also like Harriet, Alice and Helena. Not keen on Imogen. I also really like Martha.

SoupDragon Wed 03-Oct-12 12:09:11

I worked with a Helen-a and she was hugely pissed off when people called her Helayna in error.

minipie Wed 03-Oct-12 12:42:57

Lovely list (apart from Harriet which I - probably irrationally - dislike)

Meredith and Helena are my favourites. I think Hel-en-a (not Helayna) is the more usual pronunciation so if that's the one you want, you should be fine.

lilibet Wed 03-Oct-12 12:45:52

Miriam!! Oh yes, it's a gorgeous name and I keep suggesting it to everyone. Much nicer than the others on your list.

NimChimpsky Wed 03-Oct-12 12:50:23

My favourite aunt was Annie Miriam and I adore the name Miriam. I know one who is a Mirry usually. I also love Meredith and know a really lovely Imogen. It's a pretty name.

Helena is okay but I'm not massively moved by it. My cousin is Helen and is invariably known as 'Hels' which is just a bit bleurgh. She has spent years trying to avoid it but school friends, workmates etc all just abbreviate it accordingly.

ivanapoo Wed 03-Oct-12 13:20:39

I like them all, would say Imogen least favourite as shortened to "immo" a lot which I don't like.

I went to school with a Meredith nn Merry. Which is nice.

Harriet will be Harry, which might put some people off.

MadBusLady Wed 03-Oct-12 13:30:09

Merry is a lovely nickname!

I would say the common pronunciation of Helena would be stress on the first syllable: HEL-en-a. Does that sound right to others? If that's where you intend to put the stress, there shouldn't be any problem with pronunication (unless people mishear it as "Eleanor" but that can happen with all sorts of names).

Narked Wed 03-Oct-12 15:37:20

Ivanapoo, Hattie is another shortened form.

LemonBreeland Wed 03-Oct-12 15:40:14

I like Meredith, Harriet and Martha.

Jusfloatingby Wed 03-Oct-12 16:56:03

Meredith - Don't like at all
Helena - Lovely
Harriet - Okay
Alice - Absolutely lovely
Martha - Okay
Imogen - Very nice
Miriam - Noooooooo

JunoViolet Wed 03-Oct-12 18:12:42

I LOVE Meredith nn Merry and seriously considering using it myself. I taught a Merry a few years ago. Gorgeous. I currently teach a 5yo Helena which is also a lovely name - never considered pronouncing it hel-ay-na and everyone says helen-a to her as far as i know. Also teach 5yos Harriet, Alice, Martha if that's of any interest! All gorgeous names though that are not unheard of in my area but not overly popular either.... just right.

Miriam is cute, dont know any young Miriams. Would be lovely with nn. Mimi!

nappyaddict Thu 04-Oct-12 11:29:27

Helena is also my favourite out of all those. If you're not 100% how about any of these?

Bessie, Bethan, Lispeth, Esther, Rosa, Elsa, Elise, Elodie, Louisa, Luisa, Annabella, Cora, Tulip, Pansy, Flora, Rowan, Delilah, Deliah, Carlotta, Nancy, Claudia, Henrietta, Harrietta, Etta, Penelope, Nell, Beatrice, Beatrix, Vera, Susannah, Maggie, Edith, Olive, Minnie, Sylvie, Seraphina, Sefarina, Julietta, Josephina, Ethel, Petula, Dixie, Phoenix, Elvira, Miranda, Hilda, Barbara, Pearl, Hillary, Tabitha, Opal, Emmelina, Isadora, Theadora, Kitty, Genevieve, Helena, Lillith

messtins Thu 04-Oct-12 15:53:28

I love the name Miriam but very put off to find it means "bitter" sad

pastahat Fri 05-Oct-12 13:18:17

Lovely shortlist! We have a 2 yr old Helena, pronounced as you would and it's been much less of a problem than I was expecting ( the pronunciation that is, not her!)
She does get called Helly quite a lot, despite there being nicer nicknames out there - but it seems to suit her anyway..

EllenParsons Fri 05-Oct-12 13:47:31

Lovely list. I think I would go Martha but all really nice choices. I agree with you on the pronouncing of helena as Helen-a but I'm not sure how often you would have to correct it.

MoonHare Fri 05-Oct-12 14:11:21

Love your list!

Hard to give preferences but I think this is the order I like them best:


As a Helena she probably would spend her life correcting people but on the other hand all the people she knows best will pn correctly and that's what matters. I wouldn't be overly worried about it if Helena is what you love.

cardibach Fri 05-Oct-12 19:33:35

I like them all, but am used to Meredith (Meh-RED-ith, not MEH-redith) as a Welsh name, so wouldn't use that.

BoyMeetsWorld Fri 05-Oct-12 19:40:12

Definitely Helena

Arabellasmella Sat 06-Oct-12 21:41:42

Like them all apart from Imogen which doesn't seem to have the same feel.

All lovely but my favourite is Harriet - wanted it for dd2 but dp wouldn't be persuaded!

A few more suggestions:


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