10 Unique Celebrity Baby Names & The Meanings Behind Them
Stars — they're just like us! Except not always when it comes to naming their babies (or a lot of other things, actually). While unconventional baby names are becoming more and more popular among non-celebs, too, when it comes to truly out-there monikers, celeb parents are often responsible for starting trends and trying out titles that don't generally show up on the average mom-to-be's list of possibilities. So what are some of the most unique celebrity baby names, and what do they mean, anyway?
Famous types giving their children extremely unique names is nothing new (just ask Frank Zappa's offspring, Dweezil and Moon Unit). But what do they actually mean? Not all of them are listed in baby books or on baby name websites, after all; to many, some of them are seemingly just... words. And while, on the one hand, it may seem perplexing to share your name with a type of food or breed of animal, there are multiple ways to interpret these names (or any name, for that matter), which often have a deep, personal meaning for their parents, as this list shows.
In fact, there are oftentimes fairly fascinating tales behind the names given to celeb spawn. These are definite stand-outs!
Anyone who had money on Khloe Kardashian going with a "K" name for her first daughter lost out when the star posted the following on Instagram:
"Our little girl, True Thompson, has completely stolen our hearts and we are overwhelmed with LOVE."
While fans speculated that the name might have been chosen as a dig towards Tristan Thompson, mama bear Kris Jenner posted a photo of pink balloons on Instagram with the real explanation: Jenner's Grandfather’s name on her father's side was True Otis Houghton; her father's name was Robert True Houghton. So Khloe was just keeping up with a family tradition. The actual meaning of the English name is a gorgeous one, according to She Knows: loyal.
2. Elsie Otter
Actress Zooey Deschanel is known for being quirky, so it's no surprise that she added a twist to her daughter's name. Elsie, according to Nameberry, is a Scottish name that means "pledged to God." But why Elsie Otter?
"[It's a family name] in the sense that we're all mammals," Deschanel told Ellen Degeneres, according to The Los Angeles Times.
"Elsie is kind of a classic name... and then we were like the middle name can be a little bit wild."
"We both found that we had a mutual love for otters," Deschanel added, referring to husband Jacob Pechenik.
Well, they are adorable.
When Kim Kardashian and Kanye West recently named their third child (and second daughter) Chicago, the explanation seemed simple enough: Chicago is Kanye's hometown. But as for the actual meaning of the Chicago, well, that part is a bit more complicated, as TIME reported: Among the possible derivations for the name are Native American words "“Shecaugo” and “Choccago,” meaning “playful waters” and “destitute” respectively, as well as the words “Chicag,” “Chicagowunz” and “Chicago,” all relating to leeks or onions." (Out of those options, "playful waters" is definitely the most appealing!)
Chicago's big brother Saint and older sister North are known for their less-than-typical names, too!
4. Cricket Pearl
Actress and mom-of-two Busy Philipps has her husband, screenwriter Marc Silverstein, to thank when it comes to her second daughter's uncommon moniker.
“He’s always coming up with character names for his movies and TV shows,” Philipps told People.
“A lot of times your name dictates the kind of personality you have and [Marc’s] like, ‘Everyone likes Cricket, Cricket is just the greatest, happiest kid on the block, the coolest camp counselor, she’s hot in college. He just had this whole narrative for what that name was.”
Originally a nickname for Chistine, according to Baby Name Wizard, the "name is derived from the Old French criquet, meaning 'to creak, rattle.'"
Philipps also has an older daughter with a distinctive, and equally cool, name, too: Birdie Leigh.
Khloe and Kim aren't the only KarJenner sisters to get creative in the baby-naming department, of course: Youngest sibling Kylie made major headlines when she recently named her daughter Stormi. No official explanation has been given thus far for the choice, but the meaning of Stormi (or Stormy) is pretty straightforward, according to Think Baby Names: "Storm."
Meanwhile, fans have their own theories. Before Stormi's name was announced, there were many who expected it to be something butterfly related. Not only does Kylie love butterflies (boyfriend Travis Scott has given her butterfly-themed jewelry and the couple even has matching butterfly ankle tattoos), but one of the rapper’s most popular songs is called the “Butterfly Effect.” When Stormi's name was revealed, the same fans were quick to point out a butterfly connection, as People reported: According to chaos theory, a butterfly flapping its wings can create a ripple effect that results in a storm far away. Whoa.
Whether Stormi will skyrocket in popularity now remains to be seen; as The Huffington Post reported, only 30 baby girls born in 2016 were named Stormi.
6. Blue Ivy
When Beyoncé and Jay-Z named their first daughter Blue Ivy, there were all kinds of wild rumors about the meaning behind the name (most of them Illuminati-related). But Queen Bey hinted at her real inspiration when she posted a posted a passage about the color blue from Rebecca Solnit's Field Guide to Getting Lost on her Tumblr, according to the Daily Mail, including the following line:
‘The light that gets lost, gives us the beauty of the world, so much of which is in the color blue."
As for Blue's middle name, the article continued, "it is widely believed that the name Ivy is intended to reference the Roman numeral IV, as the number four bears lots of significance for the power couple."
Blue's little brother and sister, twins Sir and Rumi, are no slouches in the noteworthy names department, either!
Back when Kylie was still in elementary school, Gwyneth Paltrow and now ex-husband Chris Martin raised eyebrows everywhere when they named their daughter Apple. According to People, the idea actually came from Martin’s North American booking agent, Marty Diamond, who already had a daughter named Apple (Paltrow and Martin even asked his permission to use the name if they had a girl!). Apple's middle names, Blythe and Alison, are the names of Paltrow’s and Martin’s mothers, the article continued.
As the actress later explained to Howard Stern, "Apple" was ultimately Martin's choice, but the girl thankfully now "loves" her name.
As for the name's meaning, well, there really isn't one beyond the actual fruit, but Nameberry categorizes it as a "nature name."
Apple's little brother meanwhile, got a name straight out of the Old Testament: Moses.
8. Bear Blaze
Kate Winslet's first two kids have relatively common names: Mia and Joe. But for baby number three, the actress branched out a bit. As Winslet told Ellen Degeneres, Blaze was inspired by the fact that Winslet and her husband, Ned RocknRoll, basically met in a house fire (which happened to be on Richard Branson's private Caribbean island), Vogue reported. Bear, meanwhile, is an homage of sorts to an old friend, Winslet continued:
"A friend of mine when I was younger was nicknamed Bear and I just had always really loved it. And he was very much a bear. He was everyone's shoulder to cry on - he was a big bear hug. He was a great figure in my life and I just had always remembered him and so that's where it came from."
And while everybody knows what a bear is, the name Blaze (originally spelled Blaise) "is of uncertain etymology," according to Baby Name Wizard. Borrowed from the French, "some believe it is derived from the Latin Blaesus, which is from blaesus (deformed, stuttering)."
Natalie Portman chose a pretty intense name for her son with Benjamin Millepied. Aleph, according to People, is the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet and the number 1 in Hebrew. And that's not all, the article continued:
"Its esoteric meaning in Judaic Kabbalah, as denoted in the theological treaty Sefer-ha-Bahir, relates to the origin of the universe, the 'primordial one that contains all numbers.'"
10. Reign Aston
Naturally Kourtney Kardashian has a place on this list, too, with her youngest child. As the eldest Kardashian sister and mother-of-three told People, the name Reign had been on her mind for some time.
“I actually had the name on our list with Mason,” she said. “Then with Penelope, I had it on the list but spelled R-A-I-N.”
Initially, she thought her third child would be a girl, she added, but “Once I found out I was having a boy, we just changed the spelling again."
It's a name with royal origins, according to Baby Name Wizard: Middle English in origin, Reign is "from Old French reignier 'to reign,' and is related to rex ("king").
Fitting for Hollywood's new generation of royalty!
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