My feed

to access all these features

Find baby name inspiration and advice on the Mumsnet Baby Names forum.

Baby names

Please help! Phoebe or Elsie (or Freya)? Baby is several weeks old

121 replies

NeedToName · 08/12/2023 10:02

Really want to name daughter by end of this weekend. She’s several weeks old.

Looking for thoughts/preferences on Phoebe, Elsie (or perhaps Freya)?

Or any similar suggestions we may have missed?

I seem to be in quite an anxious spin about it. Want to continue to enjoy baby girl knowing and sharing her name. And move on from the naming dilemma!

Likely last child. Perhaps why I’m finding confirming her name so hard. Partner less so.

Elsie is current favourite. A new name in the mix for partner and I. I originally wrote off as “too cutesy” for want of a better phrase. It seems to suit daughter and be nice-ish to say frequently when trying out.

Phoebe is a long-term like for partner and I. Love the meaning and just found out it’s also the name of a type of bird which enhances it’s meaning for me more so. But I’m sadly not a fan of nickname Pheebs. I seem to feel inclined to shorten/adjust the name slightly when trying out, despite knowing this! A local friend of friend went with this name for their new daughter a few weeks before our baby arrived. She wouldn’t mind if we still went with it -turns out we have very similar taste. Worry we may regret not using this name in some way. Also aware we may hear it quite a bit due to the above so need to be prepared for that either way.

Freya is a name I’ve always liked/been intrigued by. I have a close friend with this name. She was the first Freya I met (approximately 20 years ago). She wouldn’t mind if we had a baby Freya. My partner isn’t so keen on this one.

I’m based in the UK, a little outside London in case helpful context.

OP posts:
Awwlookatmybabyspider · 08/12/2023 10:06

Elsie seems to be the one you're most drawn to I'd stick with that.

LulooLemon · 08/12/2023 10:08

Congratulations! Freya would be my choice - less cutesy than Elsie.

NeedToName · 08/12/2023 10:08

I should add, I wonder about using Elsie in current times and whether it’s mainly still thought of as an old lady name by others. Concerned I’d be making a last minute pick with that one I suppose. Don’t want to regret. It’s only been in the mix a few days. Family seem to prefer Phoebe. Partner and I seem to currently prefer Elsie though rather surprised by this.

OP posts:
Stresa22 · 08/12/2023 10:09

Perhaps you could name her Phoebe and not use a nickname. It’s entirely possible to not have a nickname.

MissIndecisive2023 · 08/12/2023 10:10

Have you tried calling her each of the names for a day or so at a time and saying it out loud to her (and your partner)? My DS2 was called a different name for the first 3 days but the more I said it out loud the more I realised it didn't suit him!

StillWantingADog · 08/12/2023 10:11

I like Freya best

btw I sympathise neither of my dcs were named until very close to the 45 day deadline. In both cases we made an appointment with the registrar to force us into a decision. And decide we did, in dc2’s case in the car on the way!

anyway once it was sorted we’ve had zero regrets despite being horribly indecisive

the whole naming your baby before you’ve even seen them thing seems very odd to me.

RosaElize · 08/12/2023 10:17

Elise is fine to use, it’s popular so won’t sound old fashioned at all- seems to be your best fit

Freya is my favourite on your list, but if your partner doesn’t like it I would scrap it

Phoebe doesn’t have to be phebs, but people will probably say it as she gets older

others I think are similar vibes to your list-


Rosiiee · 08/12/2023 10:21

Is this the same poster as last week? My vote is still Elsie 😂 and cutest nickname of Elle!

BreathingDeep · 08/12/2023 10:28

If you love the name Phoebe but don't like Pheebs, maybe get in there first with Bee/Bea as a nickname? I know a few people who chose a name which could be shortened in all sorts of ways, but they chose the one they preferred and that stuck.

Elsie is lovely though I know a LOT of them, so I'd say it's well on the way to losing its 'old lady' status and heading more towards there being three per class at school. If that's the name you both prefer, go with it - never choose a name based on what other people like or prefer. You'll be writing it in Christmas cards and yelling it across playgrounds for years, so you need to love it!

GoatsInBoats · 08/12/2023 10:28

Could you use something like Eliza and go for Elsie as a NN? Elsie is very of the moment I think.

I'm not so keen on Phoebe and I love Freya but if your partner isn't on board you need to veto it.

wherethewildtbingsgo · 08/12/2023 10:31

Honestly just choose one. The name itself matters much less than you're thinking. I got myself into a terrible mess with my first daughters name too. In the end you just have to commit to one and eventually it will become her name. All the names you've suggested are lovely and none of them could be wrong. Just pick one (pick it out of a hat if you have to) and start calling her it. In a few years time you will be amazed you could have imagined her as anything else.

PickledScrump · 08/12/2023 10:49

Absolutely love Elsie, I don’t think it’s thought of as an old lady name, there’s a few little ones around now but I’d say the least popular of the three names. Freya is great too but if partner isn’t keen then I’d write it off. Phoebe I don’t like, no reason why, just not a great name.

You’re drawn to Elsie so that’s likely it’s because it feels like her name. Don’t doubt yourself

Growlybear83 · 08/12/2023 10:52

I think Freya is quite nice but Elsie is a horrible old lady name, almost as bad as Ethel!

Doublebiscuit77 · 08/12/2023 11:03

Freya was my first choice if I'd had a daughter, and Phoebe would have been my third choice. Both great names. sounds from your post as if the baby has decided her name is Elsie! Sometimes names just fit babies. Could you use Phoebe and Freya as middle names?

ab03 · 08/12/2023 11:03

I have an Elizabeth who we call Elsie and we've had nothing but nice comments if that helps (apart from some people asking why not just Elsie)! Haven't met another at nursery yet but Jack Whitehall just had a baby Elsie and it was 18th on the most recent name lists so I don't think it's generally seen as old ladyish any more!

guineverehadgreeneyes · 08/12/2023 11:17


Or Freya Elsbeth.

Then she has a choice of Freya, Elsbeth, Elsie, Lizzie, Beth etc.

Purplecatshopaholic · 08/12/2023 11:28

Freya by a mile. Then Phoebe if you go with Bea as a nickname (but obvs you can’t stop other people using Pheebs). Elsie is bloody awful. What’s with loads of little girls running around with old lady names, lol - weird trend just now imo..

Burntoutbetty · 08/12/2023 11:31

I love Freya and the idea of a longer name like Elizabeth being shortened to Elsie. I think Elsie is an awful name by utself but know others love it for some reason. Just pick a name and own it 😀

Allthegoodusernamesareused · 08/12/2023 11:31

I love the name Freya, but I'm biased because I have one 🙂

Elsie seems to be the one you're drawn to, just go for it if you both love it. Honestly, don't waste your time worrying about whether anyone else thinks it's old fashioned!

MamaBanana12 · 08/12/2023 11:34

I have a Phoebe, she gets a lot of Fi & FiFi. I love the name Personally

trebuvie · 08/12/2023 11:40

Elsbeth Phoebe / Elizabeth Phoebe, with Elsie as nn?

(Elsie Phoebe is also possible but the repetitive endings seem a bit odd in a full name)

caffelattetogo · 08/12/2023 11:47

I'd go with Elisabeth or Elsbeth on the birth certificate, to give her grown up options, but call her Elsie.

makeminealargeoneagain · 08/12/2023 11:55

I prefer Phoebe from your list. I still think Elsie sounds a bit old lady.

LimeCheesecake · 08/12/2023 11:59

I know a couple of 10 year old Elsie’s, so I think it won’t have the “old lady” feel by the time she’s at school, they’ll have had a few come through already and be a bit more normal.

also really old lady names are Susan, Tracey, Linda - they are the ones you don’t hear anymore.

WaltzingWaters · 08/12/2023 12:01

Elsie or Freya

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.