My First Child's Name is Perfect - Now What?

Filed under: Baby Names

I recently had a baby and named him Calder. We love the name but have been having a hard time thinking of names that we could use for his future siblings. Other names we considered for him are Magnus (nn. Gus), Camden and if he was a girl Ainsley, Penelope or Amelie. None of these seem to go as well as I expected now that we actually have a son named Calder. Can you suggest sibling names?

- Calder's Mom


So, Calder just seems to have something "extra"? A lot of parents feel that way about their first-born's name. In this case, though, I think you're on to something. Here's one way to think about it: What makes Calder so different from other surname-based names like Carter or Parker? And here's one answer: Art.

Alexander Calder was a tremendously innovative 20th-century artist, best known as the inventor of the mobile. His aura surrounds the name. (It's no coincidence that a hero of the art-focused kids' book "Chasing Vermeer" is named Calder.) But unlike, say, Rembrandt, the name Calder doesn't come across as a fancy-pants homage to the artist. It's simple and stylish, and fits in just fine with a class full of Carters and Parkers.

Our target, then, is an artistic name with a mainstream sound. That's harder than you'd think. When it comes to artist names, Rembrandt is a lot more typical than Calder. If we broaden the field to literature, though, our prospects look brighter. Here are some possibilities. Readers, can you suggest more?

Beckett

Bram

Dashiell

Finn

Sawyer

Auden

Flannery

Harper

Marlowe

Scarlett

Have a question of your own to Ask the Name Lady? Drop her a line!

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.