Celebrity-Inspired Baby Names: The Pippa Effect

US-based baby-name website Nameberry has released its mid-year list of the hottest baby names of 2011, based on 23 million page impressions worth of name-searching made by prospective parents-to-be. Pippa – and Philippa – took out top spot, which is a pretty meteoric rise from 2010, when it didn’t even make the top 400.

The name Kate had also increased in popularity, thanks to the newly married Duchess of Cambridge, though not as much as her bridesmaid sister Pippa.

Mila Kunis of Black Swan fame has also seen her name jump 40 places – and it seems celebrity has had a similar effect on other names.

Flynn, the name chosen by Miranda Kerr and Orlando Bloom, has increased in popularity; as has Elula, chosen by Isla Fisher and Sascha Baron Cohen for their second daughter; and Arlo, Toni Collette’s son.

While Victoria Beckham’s name choice for her third daughter has not seen Harper increase in popularity, she did join a current trend – that of literary baby names.

Nameberry’s Pamela Redmond Satran says literary baby names are popular because they are classic, but retain a modern feeling.

“Archer, as in Henry James' Portrait of a Lady and Edith Wharton's Age of Innocence, is perfect: It’s unusual, classic yet contemporary-feeling, and there’s no danger of anyone actually having read the books,” Satran says.

The most popular boys’ name on the site right now is Asher.

Hottest boys’ names:

  • Asher

  • Arlo

  • Everett

  • Flynn

  • Archer

Hottest girls’ names

  • Pippa

  • Elula

  • Luna

  • Hadley

  • Mila

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