What’s In A Name?

Recently I was driving somewhere and they were talking about the most popular names from 100 years ago.  This was based on statistics from the Social Security Administration.  Interestingly enough, I was able to accurately guess the top girls and boys names–Mary for girls and John for boys.  I also thought back to when I was growing up and how those names had faired over the years.  There were a couple of boys named John in my school and quite a few Mary’s.  I doubt there are very many now!

This brought me to thinking about not only the popular names currently, but how I came up with the names for my dolls.  And I started to wonder how my fellow bloggers and doll friends came up with theirs!

Louisa’s name came from the British TV show “Doc Martin”.

Several of my dolls kept the names they were given from American Girl–Kanani, Kit, Rebecca, Marie-Grace, Lanie, Samantha.  Some came from movies and TV–Cassandra, Alya, Jenny, Fiona, Louisa, Jan.   A couple came from other characters in AG books–Emily, Sophia.  Two were named after songs–Allison (Allie) and Christine.  And some were names I just liked–Shivan, Ryan, Josh, Zara, Abby.

Emily (a renamed Willa doll) whose name was from the book Lanie.

Now I’m curious–how do you come up with names for your dolls?  I know some people name them after other family members, friends, or just names they like.  I’d love to hear how you select names for your dolls!

13 thoughts on “What’s In A Name?

  1. My dolls all have carefully planned names, just because I don’t get a new doll very often. Usually I think about what background the character I’ve made up comes from – what race is she? is she from another country or ancestry? – and then look up names matching that background. Sometimes I use a name that I’ve used in a story of mine. (That’s where Kaori’s name comes from.) Most importantly, though, the name has to flow well and look like who the doll is. And that’s where a lot of the hard part is XD I usually peruse Behind The Name for a good name. You should check it out sometime.

  2. The first doll I got is named Melina Grace. This has parts of my four granddaughters’ names. M for Molly, el for Ella, ina for Claire Alina, and Grace for Rosalie Grace. The names for the rest of my ever growing collection are just names I liked.

    • That is really a great way to come up with a name! It reminds me of a girl I used to work with who went by Jamie, but it turned out her really name was Janet Amy, her parents had just kind of smashed it together for a nickname.

  3. My kids had dolls they named after their father and me. I always loved that.

    Some of my earliest dolls were named for the human Sesame Street characters, Olivia and Maria come to mind.

    My 18 inch dolls are more or less named by what hits me by their looks although Trinity Lane is named for Trinity Lane in Nashville which is the road I took to get to the Nashville AG store from where I was staying.

  4. This is a fun post. Of my 18″ girls the only one that did not come with a name is Melody. She is named after the drummer of Josie and the Pussy Cats and a song about an Eskimo – Melody Quinn. The funny thing is after I started blogging I noticed just how popular Quinn was as a name.

    Otherwise, I might have renamed Kirsten and Kaya, but didn’t think it fair to take away their “history.” However, adding a bit more like a middle name or nickname is a-okay. That’s just me though.

    I only remember the name of one of my first dolls. Sharon was named after one of the daughters of the woman who took care of me while my mom was at work. I did rename my cabbage patch kids and the names I chose were as wacky as the ones they came with. LOL Excpt maybe for Samantha Beverly that one is kind of standard, but Pierre Gaston and Guiseppina Josephine…

    Naming plush, there I am a pro. Usually it’s a characteristic or something that just pops into my head. My webkinz all have great names: Tilly, Grrr, Faye, Freya, Emmett, Fris, etc. Naming our cats was fun too. Only Thunder arrived already named.

  5. I have always wondered that as well 😉 Thank you for sharing and asking.
    I never keep ‘box names’.
    My dolls mostly have nature related names like Poppy, Aspen, Willow etc. A few are named after beloved pets that are no longer with us, Sydney for Sid the Chihuahua, Wasabi for the Pomeranian, Tess for the Border Collie. Very few have ‘just names’ , these mostly come from books, not main characters, that would be too hard to live up to, just the ones I liked. Strangely enough, being from Russia, only two of my dolls have Russian names, probably because most of them have unpleasant associations.
    One small goofy looking antique reproduction is named Penelope, she just told me needed a big name, being on the small side. 😉

  6. i try to give my dolls new names once i meet them. A couple have kept their box first names, Josefina (AG) Leonie (Maplelea), and Kit (AG) well she became Kitten, but all the doll surnames are after their place of Origin (where I bought them anyway). It recently has meant there would be quite a number of Middletons, who aren’t really related so I find a place nearby. and well with any rule there are probably a few that aren’t following the rule, just because.
    I have a Tzeitel (fiddler on the roof) she was Rebecca; Danielle (close to Drew Barrymore’s Cinderella from Ever After) nee Marisol; Hanalei (Ithink Ive spelt it correctly, a bay on the Hawaiian island of Kauai) – Kanani; Tauralie – a variation of a character from the hobbit movies; Chance, a Truly me doll I took a chance on shortly after the Permanent Underwear debacle of 2017 that failed ( i verbally ordered her with request for the non pp body), so she got a second go AG sent me a new one; Georgia Rincon is from Rincon Georgia

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