Silliest baby names of 2011

Baby names are again in the spotlight with the arrival of Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s baby girl Blue Ivy, but while Blue might seem an unusual choice, it’s positively tame compared to some of the monikers Aussie parents are bestowing on their newborns.

According to the Victorian Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages, while Jack and Mia remain the state’s most popular names, the ‘least common’ list features a few surprises.

Unusual spellings of otherwise common names feature prominently, such as Jayde, Emilie and Jazmyn, and while James is in the top ten boys’ names, the truncation Jim is relegated to the least common list. Popular names from past generations such as Cecelia, Winston and Allan have also taken a dive.

Celebrity names rate a mention with the arrival of babies named Rihanna, Shakira and Ziggy, as do celebrity baby names – the arrival of Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr’s son in January 2011 led to a spike in the number of baby boys called Flynn.

Gallery: 2011 Celebrity Baby Names

Then there are the names which are almost too strange to be true. Perhaps ‘Fonzie’ is a tribute to Henry Winkler’s Happy Days alter ego, but what about Toohey, Audi, Hercules and Voltaire?

For girls, the theme seemed to be ‘back to nature’, with Spirit, Rainbow and Rain popping up periodically, and let’s not forget Vanilla and Star.

If you’re thinking of an unusual name for your offspring, bear in mind that there are a few legal criteria you need to satisfy – you can’t choose a name which is an offensive or obscene word, one which resembles an official rank or title (such as Lord, Lady, Princess, Sir or Doctor), or one that is impractical to use because it contains characters other than those found in the English alphabet (such as Je$$ica). Other than these few stipulations, the world is your oyster. Literally.

However, with nearly one in 10 parents wishing they could rename their child, it pays to give your decision careful thought. After all, it will be with your child for life.

Now to find a middle name that goes with Oyster…

More on baby names: