Parenting is not easy. In fact, it is one of those jobs that one can never actually clock out from. And it begins long before the baby is even born, with a very important decision only parents get to make: their child's name. Every new parent wants to give their child a name that is striking and memorable, but also one that is easy to pronounce and won't give other parents that, "seriously why is that his/her name?" look.
Sure, naming a new baby sounds fun, but it’s actually kind of a high-pressure situation. Whatever is on the birth certificate stays with them for life. Luckily there are middle names – the name a child can go by if they really dislike their first name (just kidding). Middle names are a great way to really spice up more common first names that are more socially acceptable.
If parents are feeling really fancy they can tack on a first and middle name combination like "Anne Marie." So if the name game has got things a little tied up, just know that there is no need to resort to the celebrity-friendly option of just making something up (who names their kid Summer Rain anyway?). Instead, take some inspiration from this list of 25 awesomely unique middle names that will make even the most common first names stand out in the crowd.
Looking for a great middle name in a pinch? How about Dash? Adding the name Dash to any child's name gives just a dash of cuteness with tons of originality. Dash is a really cute kids name with no known origin. In Germany, they spell the name Dasch, which can also be pretty great if you are into all the added syllables. If not opt for the more anglicized version Dash. Think of how cool it would be if your little one introduced himself as Dash, (given name) Dash, just as James Bond would. You have to admit, that would be pretty cool.
Most commonly heard as a last name, Fox is making its appearance more and more frequently as a first or middle name. Ready to bring out the animal in your little one with this cool middle name? All you need to do is pair it with something more common like Marshall and you will be amazed at how unique sounding your little one will be afterward. We all know those names that are cute for children but somehow just don't fit for adults, or the other way around, here, that will never be a concern, Fox for a baby or an adult is just fine and fun.
No matter where you are from, you probably know only a handful of Judes, if at all. The name comes from Hebrew and is actually a shortened version of Judas, according to Baby Center. Though the name is not extremely common, the Actor Jude Law sort of put it on the scene as a hip, little boys name.
As a middle name, Jude becomes even more interesting as it creates the perfect buffer between first and last names. Jude means "praised" and for those parents who hold names in high spiritual esteem, this cute little name could be perfect for your little one.
There is something firm and serious about the name Justice that really makes it an appealing name to parents who want their little one to be taken seriously in life. Justice, even as a middle name is a great addition to the family. The name comes from Latin and means, just, upright and righteous, very fitting for a little boy. Nowadays the name is even being used for both girls and boys, which is great news for parents looking for a name for their baby boy and girl. If you want something truthful and righteous for your child, think of Justice as a great middle name pairing.
We all are familiar with Adele or Addison. From the singer to actors on TV the A names have run their course, but the less common name from Germany Adette is just different enough to win any parent over who is who is looking for a fun, functional, and flirtatious variation of the Adele or Addison more American names. Adette means "sweet" or "noble," and can really add that certain unique twist to any common name, adding cute little Adette as a middle name is sure to be a hit. It really is as adorable as it sounds. Trust us, we know names.
For a truly beautiful not at all common middle name, go all the way to Ireland for this name that is absolutely perfect for any water sign. Pronounced "Meer-a," Meara means "sea" in Gaelic, can you think of any name cooler and more sublime for a baby girl's middle name. Though Meara is similar to Myra or Mira, Meara is not as popular in the United States which is great if you want your little one to have a standout name. Give your little one the gift of an angelic name with a little bit of edge that will make some wish they thought of it first.
Going back to France for this old standby that will really give value to your little girls name. Marguerite, pronounced "mar-ge-REET," is just the French form of Margaret, according to Baby Wizard. Marguerite comes from the Greek word maragon, meaning "pearl." This name is also perfect for little girls with a water or air sign. Marguerite is a fun flirty middle name that did not make its way tot he United States until the 1880s. Though it is still not as popular as it is in France, elsewhere around the world, the name will surely make your little girl feel like one in a million with this beautiful foreign name.
Maxen is a fine name for a first or middle name, but when paired up with something more common like Anthony, sporting the name Maxen is bound to get your little boy noticed. Maxen is a Welsh name with Latin origins meaning "the greatest," ancestry.com says. If you are tired of the typical Max or the somewhat overused, Maximus or Maximillion, try the less common Maxen. This name is cute, easy to spell and easy to pronounce which are all components for the perfect unique middle name. For parent's of boys, you will be glad you kept this one around.
This name might surprise a few people. River is unique enough to receive a lot of compliments, but not too outlandish to get eyebrow raises and the "why did you name him or her that," look. And lucky for you, Parents, out there... River is unisex. If you need a name for your little one but are not interested in knowing if it's a boy or girl until later, feel free to guard this name in your box of names until the big day. River is free-flowing, it is sort of a hippie name but still more acceptable than something like rainbow or unicorn. Enjoy parents.
I have always loved the name Wilder. Perhaps it is because of Oscar Wilde, or maybe I just enjoy the idea of the wild side of a middle name, but for a sweet little boy, Wilder is definitely a winner in my book. The name comes from Germany and means hunter, which is very befitting for a strong boy who likes to run and play. If you are trying to scrounge up a boys name with an interesting meaning and even more interesting sound, think about Wilder, he will be bound to get compliments from everyone he knows, even family.
For some reason when I hear the name Alma I automatically think of the name with a southern tang and a cute accent. The actual origin of the name Alma is unknown, though many have a few guesses as to where it comes from, namely Latin, from the word almus which means kind, nourishing, or fostering, according to Nameberry. Regardless of it's actual origin, the name is pretty cool, especially as a middle name. Think of a little girl named Joy Alma, it just sounds like the coolest girl in school, while also respectful, not confusing like "Otto Pilot" and still classic enough to have her grow up and be proud of her name.
Want something foreign, classic, and easy to pronounce? What about the French classic, Genevieve, it will never go out of style! The name dates back to the early 1900s but it actually has Celtic origins, where it means "white wave." Genevieve was also a well known Saint, making it an even more attractive name to those with a spiritual connection to this adorable middle name. So if you are looking for something unique with a French twist that will not make those around you scratch their heads, check out Genevive, it is a real charming middle name for the cutest little girls.
Looking for something as graceful as your little girl? With a middle name like Grace, your little one is sure to turn a few heads. The name was actually at its peak in popularity in the 17th century. It was used mostly by the Puritans and means favor, mercy, eloquence, beauty of form, and Gods love toward mankind, according to Baby Name Wizard. With such a pure and faithful name it can be hard to imagine anything more perfect for such a lovely little girl. The name is truly elegant and will definitely pair well with any other more common name and still make your little girl stand out of the crowd.
Arguably the most beautiful name on this list, Antonella is a Chilean name that means "worthy of praise," according to Baby Wizard. Though it can seem like a tall order to give such a beautiful name with such a huge meaning to such a little girl, even if it is only a middle name. But as beautiful as it is, any common name that you could pair it with, will be sure to make those around her awestruck with how wondrous her name really is. This is also the perfect middle name pairing for daughters of 'Anthony' or parents who love Latin names.
One of two spice names on this list, Basil is the perfect unisex middle name for your little one. While one could choose to pronounce this adorable little name like the spice, the more classic pronunciation is “BAH-zul” (Long A). The name actually comes from a Greek word meaning “king,” Life Hack claims. Not too shabby, huh? Either pronunciation is lovely though and can pair so well with more common names, like John, or Michael. Why not add a little spice to your little one's life and give them a name, friends, family, and teachers will not soon forget. Hurry though, while this name is not yet popular in the United States, something tells us it will be on everyone's radar soon enough.
This name is super popular in England according to Life Hack, but exceedingly rare in the United States, until now! It is a variant on a medieval German term for wealth or fortune. Otis! Ok, hold on, hear us out. Otis is a very charming name and who wouldn't want to have a name meaning wealth or fortune that they can hold onto for life. Now to mention some pretty famous people have held the name, and it has only done good things for them. Sure it may sound very different from a lot of other names on this list, but we said original! So, if you want an original name for your little boy's middle name that has some pretty cool meanings... check out Otis!
Not only is Eli the name of one of the coolest quarterbacks in National American Football History, but it is also a name stemming from Greece or Hebrew meaning "high" or "ascended," making Eli the perfect name for a leader. The name has mostly been used in a masculine context but there is no clear reason why you could not pair this up for your little girl as well. So, if you are looking for a middle name for your little one that is bound to inspire them and others around them, think about going with Eli, with such great meanings and such interesting origins where can you go wrong?
Michael is one of the most popular boy’s names of all time, however the same name from Russia, “Misha,” is more unusual and not as common, so why not choose that for a middle name? Misha may sound a bit effeminate to the average anglophone ear, but the name actually means "god like," which could inspire a complex or so depending on how he or she may be raised, but as a middle name you are more than likely to be in the clear. Misha is actually a shortened version of the longer name from Russia, Mikhail. Think Mike and Michael. So if you are looking for something, short, sweet, and a bit off the beaten path for your little boy's nickname, try Misha.
Looking for a name that holds a bit of mystery with a lot of punch? Why not try out this unusual old-fashioned name that has recently gained in popularity because of the "Twilight” saga. Esme is a name derived from the old French word esmer meaning loved, Nameberry, the site specializing in baby names claims. Though one will most often hear this name related to girls, one can occasionally hear this name for boys as well. So for a very unique and somewhat vintage name for your little boy or girls middle name, consider Esme, he or she is bound to be the only one around for miles with the same name.
Harlow is the perfect name for a boy or a girl. It has English origins and can mean someone who dwells near a hillside or a rocky area, according to Nameberry.com. However, the sound of the name recalls images of beauty and elegance thanks to the actress Jean Harlow, who made it famous in the 1930’s.
According to SheKnows.com, Harlow can also mean meadow of the hares. Regardless of its meaning, Harlow is a truly original and truly beautiful name that will absolutely inspire a few "awes" and "Oh how cute!" from those who hear it, no matter how you pair it.
Asher is a name that is growing more and more in popularity after the writers of movies and television series have begun naming their leading characters this lovely name. It is a Hebrew name with biblical significance from the Old Testament, according to Baby Center. Asher actually means happy or blessed with abundance and fortunate, which are all things we want our little ones to be. This middle name is bound to gain some admirers, no matter what the first name pairing happens to be. Enjoy trying something new on for size with this cute and very modest middle name for boys.
According to Nameberry Nara is a place in Japan, historically it was used occasionally as a last name and over time is gradually beginning to be used as a first. But it would also be quite an awesome middle name! As it turns out, Nara is also the name of a Hindu male God. And in Hindi, a language widely spoken in India, the name means "man." Though the sound of Nara is much more suitable for a girls name in the English language, Nara will be the perfect addition to any baby boy or baby girls name, and it is unique too. Points for originality!
Wren is such a quirky name for the perfect little girl. A wren is actually a small brown songbird. This is the perfect name for a musical family or for a girl who Mom and Dad hope will love to sing or have a beautiful song in her heart. Wren is so original that paired with even the most common girls' name it will make your little girl shine. The name itself is of Old English origin making it timeless and unique since so few people have the name today. Plus the name is only one syllable, making it the perfect tack on middle name with a really just first name like Anna Wren or Julia Wren.
If you have a feeling your little one is going to be a bit of a pistol, try out a spice name for your boy or girl. Spice names are very befitting for children with big personalities. Believe it or not the name Pepper comes from a long list of origins. According to ancestry.com, Pepper is an English and Northern Geman name, it was once a nickname for a short person or a person with dark hair, or someone with a fiery temper. Even if your little one turns out to be as sweet as pie, Pepper is still befitting as a perfect middle name to spice up something more common.
If you want a middle name for your little one that is really original and fun to say, that even harks back to your own childhood, think about giving your baby girl the middle name Nahla. The name was made famous in the film, “The Lion King.” Where the name is featured as the main female character in the film. According to Nameberry, Nahla is an Arabic name meaning first drink of water. How refreshing is that? Try not to be fooled by the spelling either, the silent 'h' only adds to the charm. Quench your thirst for a great middle name with Nahla.
Sources: The Stir, Walt Disney, Life Hack, Nameille, Nameberry, Ancestry.com, SheKnows.com, Baby Wizard,