Give your baby a one-of-a-kind name to encourage individuality, embrace diversity, and avoid the confusion in classrooms where several kids have the same name. Unique baby names take inspiration from the physical and fantasy worlds or are made up by creative parents.
Whether you're naming for character qualities you hope your child has, or her future, a strong name that invokes a sense of power or justice can be a great fit for your little one.
U.S. Place Names
Some places are named after people and likewise, people can be named after places. Consider where your baby was conceived, where you met your partner or local places as unique names for the baby.
International Place Names
For a more exotic name inspired by location, look at coveted locations around the world.
Fashion inspires so much of the world, why not baby names? Think about popular brands and designers or favorite fabrics and materials as unique names for boys or girls.
- Argentella (type of lace)
- Gaultier (pronounced gol-tee-ay)
- Jamdani (a finely woven textile)
- Mackinaw (traditional fabric for a lumberjack's jacket)
Tree and Shrub Names
Just as flowers make great baby names, trees and other natural things do. For a more unique version, try changing up the spelling.
The world is vast and full of places or concepts you can use to inspire baby's name. Consider where she was conceived or a favorite place to vacation.
Colorful adjectives add style and individuality to your baby's name. Consider lesser known color names and shades for a one-of-a-kind first or middle name.
- Mikado (a kind of yellow)
- Nattier (a soft shade of blue used by famous painter Jean-Marc Nattier)
- Sarcoline (a flesh color)
- Zaffre (a deep blue made by melting colbalt ore)
Famous People Names
Celebrity first and last names from the past or present make great unique names because they sound familiar, but aren't identical to the original namesake. Famous names pay homage to people who have inspired you or represent hopes of celebrity status for your little one.
Take inspiration from the gods and afterlife concepts of belief systems around the world. These divine names give special meaning and blessings to your baby.
- Nicodemus (Pharisee from the Bible)
- Zophar (one of Job's three friends)
Great books have inspired fictional and real-life people and places for centuries. Use the name of your favorite literary character or get inspired by types of writing.
- Hedwig (from Harry Potter)
- Hermione (pronounced her-MY-oh-nee, from Harry Potter)
- Horatio (character in Shakespeare's Hamlet)
- Ichabod (as in Ichabod Crane from The Legend of Sleep Hollow)
- Moriarty (consulting criminal in the Sherlock Holmes stories)
- Nienna (Queen of the Valar in J. R. R. Tolkien's legendarium, a collection of backstories for The Lord of the Rings trilogy)
Historically, a person's position in life determined what he could or couldn't do and who he could associate with. Today, these names give your baby immediate clout with a traditional feel.
- Beylerbey (governor in Ottoman empire)
- Chatrapati (royal title in India)
Naming a child after an animal in reminiscent of native cultures and captures the personality of your little one's natural spirit.
Out of This World Names
Science and mystery combine when you give baby a name inspired by the cosmos. Planets, stars, galaxies, and the equipment used to discover them serve as a launching point for modern baby names. Use an astronomy dictionary to find out the meanings of potential names, or even find new names that just roll off the tongue.
Plant names have served as inspiration for baby names throughout the past. If you want the floral style with a unique twist, try using a less common flower name.
The culinary landscape of the world is enhanced by the discovery of new edible ingredients and the emotional responses foods elicit. Get inspired by herbs, spices, and other edibles for your original baby name.
- Hallah (as in Challah or Hallah bread)
- Lilikoi (Hawaiian word for passion fruit)
- Suzette (as in crepes)
Holidays, natural seasons, and calendar terminology often sprang from words in other languages. Use these new versions as an influence in choosing your baby's name.
- Suma (means born during the summer)
In modern weather, storms are given common people names. Flip the script and let the weather spark an original name for your little one.
- Beaufort (as in wind scale)
- Noctilucent (clouds)
A new baby is a precious gift parents will love more than anything. Capture this loving spirit for your baby to hold always in his or her name.
Foreign Language Names
A great way to get a unique name for your baby is to turn to other foreign languages. Use a foreign language baby name dictionary to help you find the perfect fit for your little one.
- Akira (Japanese)
- Camisha (African)
- Cassia (Greek for cinnamon)
- Daire (Irish)
- Eagon (Irish)
- Gryphon (Welsh)
- Hamlin (German)
- Isadora (Greek)
- Joby (Hebrew)
- Kalden (Tibetan)
- Maleek (Arabic)
- Zahara (Arabic)
- Zori (Slavic)
Of course you think that your baby is the most precious thing to ever grace the earth. Give your baby a name fitting of his or her precious status.
Sometimes coming up with a unique name is as simple as combining a couple of names you already know. Try these combos for your baby's name.
Sometimes unique names can be a little less traditional. If you want to keep the tradition and go way back with your baby's name, try something borrowed from an ancient language.
- Danae (Greek)
- Daria (Persian)
- Dyre (Norse)
- Echo (Greek mythology)
- Galatia (Biblical)
- Ida (Old Norse god)
- Ileah (Chaldean)
- Javan (Biblical)
- Jove (Latin for Jupiter)
- Kelby (Tuetonic)
- Lael (Biblical)
- Muse (Greek mythology)
- Pandora (Greek mythology)
Names Based on Surnames
Sometimes last names can also make great first names.
An innovative name gives your baby one thing that is truly special about him from the start. Creative names are, by design, less common which can lead to difficulty for others in writing or saying the name. When you choose a unique baby name, share proper spelling, pronunciation, and the meaning behind the name for a smoother transition.