(46 Posts)
Gimmeechocolate Tue 19-Feb-13 21:08:45

We are sorted for boys names and have narrowed our girls list down to 3 names.

Nellie, Ethel and Mabel.

I have always loved Mabel and it was my great grandmother's name. But I already know 3 others under 5. There's a Mabel in Dd1's class.

I LOVE Ethel. I think it is soft and pretty (i know most people hate it) but don't know if i can handle negative reactions every time i introduce her.

I like Nellie... Am I encouraging her to be picked on? Nellie the elephant/ smelly Nellie?! I like Nell but think it is too harsh sounding for a baby.

MolotovCocktail Tue 19-Feb-13 21:11:56

LOVE Nell smile Soft, feminine and oh so cool. Lovely.

sw11mumofone Tue 19-Feb-13 21:12:42

What about Esther instead of Ethel - much prettier imo. Not sure about Nellie - I had a friend who called her yellow VW beetle Nellie when we were teenagers! And elephant does spring to mind..

Gimmeechocolate Tue 19-Feb-13 21:17:20

I already have a Hetty so I think Esther is too close smile

Leeds2 Tue 19-Feb-13 21:29:37

Would prefer Nell. Classic, imo. Nellie just invites a reference to elephants.

hippo28 Tue 19-Feb-13 21:31:07

Love Nellie!

imme Tue 19-Feb-13 21:31:43

Have always loved Nellie. Elephants have never crossed my mind...

CognitiveOverload Tue 19-Feb-13 21:35:25

I think the link with nellie the elephant is quite strong but these things can be overcome.

raisah Tue 19-Feb-13 21:36:19

How about:

She may get teased a bit too much for having an OAP name.

Supersesame Tue 19-Feb-13 21:39:45

Nella, is daughter on kelle Hampton blog, I think it's a lovely name and music relatef

YippeeTeenager Tue 19-Feb-13 21:40:02

Sorry but Nellie is a no-go, I have a friend who called her DD Nellie and everyone that heard it (outside of her earshot!) said 'like the elephant?! - not being deliberately cruel but surprised. Ethel and Mabel are pretty though smile

PelvicFloorClenchReminder Tue 19-Feb-13 21:40:05

Nellie Olsen was a right cow.

I do like Nelly Furtado though, so that kind of balances it out..?

Allalonenow Tue 19-Feb-13 21:40:55

I'm not a fan of diminutives used as full names, Nellie is short for Ellen or Eleanor, so give her the full name and see which nn works best for her.

Purpleknickers Tue 19-Feb-13 21:44:58

My mum was named Mabel absolutely hated it (1930's child) she always called herself Cathy .. Eleanor is a beautiful name in my humble opinion

BananaHammocks Tue 19-Feb-13 21:46:01

Lol @ Nellie Olson, glad I wasn't the only person to immediately think of her! Definitely prefer Nell.

Dominodonkey Tue 19-Feb-13 21:49:03

All quite trendy at the moment and all absolutely horrible in my opinion. When there are so many beautiful names in the world how anyone can saddle a child with the name Ethel is beyond me.

PurpleStorm Tue 19-Feb-13 22:46:57

Nellie = Nellie the elephant to me, sorry.

Also, we bought a CD of childrens songs to keep DS amused in the car a month or two ago, and that features Nellie the Elephant. So it's not like the song has faded into obscurity.

If you thnk that Nell's too harsh for a baby, maybe Helen / Ellen / Eleanor instead? Nell's a nickname for all those.

Not that keen on Mabel or Ethel either.

Starfishkiss Tue 19-Feb-13 22:48:44

nn for Penelope?

Elephant. Sorry.

WMDinthekitchen Tue 19-Feb-13 22:57:46

Not on your Nellie! My grandmother's name was Ellen but my grandfather called her Nell, never Nellie.

mrstowers Tue 19-Feb-13 23:09:12

Love Nellie and Nell.

takethatlady Wed 20-Feb-13 14:25:25

I never understand the negative reaction against Ethel - it's really cute, really pretty, really soft, and gorgeous. If you love it, go for it - I think it would be so cute on a toddler and people's negative reactions would melt once they saw her.

Nell is also pretty, esp as a nn for Eleanor? Not keen on Nellie.

You might know three Mabels, and I know one, but really - look at the baby name lists, it's not popular at all in the grand scheme of things.

Go with your gut smile

Sashapineapple Wed 20-Feb-13 15:23:48

Nellie the Elephant is the first thing I thought. Ethel is just awful, old lady name and I would hate to be called that and for a teenager I imagine it wouldn't be much fun. Not keen on Mabel but the best of a bad bunch.
Why are these old lady names so popular they are just horrible?
It's ok if you can handle it when she is little, but please think about what it will be like for her when she is a teenager and adult.

Gwennan Wed 20-Feb-13 16:01:57

Nell = death knell for me, sorry.

Ethel = not ready for a comeback yet. Just think of the reaction Lily Allen had when she named her daughter Ethel! And she's a celeb and they can get away with odd choices - she was heavily criticised! No one is cool enough to carry off, Ethel, sorry.

Mabel = the best one.

There are plenty of granny chic names a million times nicer than Ethel. For example, Ada, Agnes, Annie Delia, Edith, Elsie, Eugenie, Ivy, Jemima, Lillian, May, Olive, Rosa, Sylvia, Winifred.

Quite like Nellie as a nickname for something sensible like Helen.

PelvicFloorClenchReminder Wed 20-Feb-13 16:12:06

I think the Just William TV adaptation from a couple of years ago did a lot to help Ethel - and it helped that the woman who played her was seriously gorgeous.

And.. <whispers> .. I rather like it


rtc8608 Wed 20-Feb-13 16:30:40

I don't like Ethel. It still seems a bit too 'old lady' for me and Nellie does remind me of the elephant.

I do know a Renelle however who gets called Nell/Nellie/Nells which could be an option for a nickname of Nellie (maybe better for an adult also?)

Narked Wed 20-Feb-13 17:09:58

The elephant packed her trunk and of she went to the circus,
Off she went with a trumpety-trump, trump, trump, trump...

MothershipG Wed 20-Feb-13 17:12:39

My granny was Nellie Daisy May, she thought she sounded like I herd of cows, I thought her names were lovely. smile

Nellie the elephant to me but you could have Helen, nickname Nell?

Nodney Wed 20-Feb-13 17:19:09

I think Nellie and Ethel are both gorgeous names! You can't second guess nick names - my DSs nick names are nothing I'd ever have come up with!

NellieTheEllie Wed 20-Feb-13 17:22:17

Well obviously I think Nellie is a great name! But I'm probably not helping with the link to elephants grin

Welly558 Wed 20-Feb-13 17:22:24

I think Nellie is lovely. I know a little girl who this is the NN all her friends call her and its really very sweet. Elephant and Smelly are two connotations that totally didn't spring to mind. I thought of Nellie McKay who is a youngish(under 40 rather, not that that is old but just to prove, its not just an oldER name) musician/comedienne and the little girl I mentioned.
Mabel. Oddly enough at the Christmas I heard somebody calling their daughter and it was so unusual a name for me to hear nowadays that I mentioned it to DH when I got home. Not in a bad way, just in a "Not heard that in a long while."
At the end of the day, should your child get to an age they feel they want to hide away from their christened name (which face it, even the Sarah's and Emma's of this world have probably wanted to during a rebellious teen stage) they have options to go by a nn.
Mae for Mabel
El for Ethel
Nell for Nellie
Go with what you like as if you're like me, its so hard to agree on names just between my DH and I, let alone trying to appease everyone else!

zingally Wed 20-Feb-13 17:25:52

Nellie the elephant. Big no from me.

Rhubarbgarden Wed 20-Feb-13 20:45:07

I like all of them. If you think Nell is too harsh for a baby (though I really can't fathom why - I think it's a very gentle name) just call her Nellie as a nickname while she's little and she can be Nell as she grows up.

NappiesandGladrags Wed 20-Feb-13 21:08:41

Not keen on Nellie, but LOVE Nel, how about Nancy?

Ethel isn't for me...but I love Elsa or Elsie?

Also knew someone who had a Prudence, I wasn't keen on that but loved her NN Prue - which is all she's known as really

Again Mabel, not to sure and if you know if's not unique to you as such. I love Martha - but apparently common (no-one around here seems to use these lovely names!)

What about


StarNoodle Wed 20-Feb-13 21:12:52

No, don't like it. Would "go" with Hetty (which I do like!) but it's not as nice. Norah is nice, or Nell.

DD1 has a friend called Nelly. Genuinely never thought of the elephant till everyone here brought it up.

Jacksterbear Wed 20-Feb-13 21:19:15

I wanted Nelly/Nell, short for Eleanor, for DD, but DH vetoed it on elephant grounds.sad Lovely name.

springlike Wed 20-Feb-13 21:25:56

No, No and No - sorry but not keen on any of them & defo think of elephants!

peacefuleasyfeeling Wed 20-Feb-13 21:38:49

Ha! All gorgeous, all on my list too!

MrsSchadenfreude Wed 20-Feb-13 22:09:57

All hideous names. If you've already got a Hetty, Et, or Ettie is a nickname for Ethel. I had a Gran and an Aunt called Ethel and both detested their names and were called something else.

Nellie the elephant or not on your nellie. And Mabel is a cow.

nappyaddict Wed 20-Feb-13 22:12:28

I also like Nell but short for Penelope. What other famous Nell's are there apart from McAndrew (who apparently was actually called Tracey Jane)?

nappyaddict Wed 20-Feb-13 22:19:10

Oh there's also Eleanor Gwyn who was the mistress of King Charles II who was nicknamed Nell.

According to my friend there are quite a few people famous in America and Canada with the name but I hadn't heard of any of them.

Allalonenow Thu 21-Feb-13 00:54:48

Dame Nellie Melba, the Australian opera singer, peach Melba is named for her.

Gimmeechocolate Fri 22-Feb-13 13:20:49

Thanks for all your responses. The elephant connection does seem to be quite strong. I guess it wouldn't be too much of a problem unless she turns out to be quite a chunky little girl!

Grannylipstick Fri 22-Feb-13 19:56:42

Love nellie

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