Searching for a baby name that’s classic with a twist? Or perhaps you want to honour a family member with their name as part of your child’s? Then take a deep dive into an ocean of traditional baby names with alternative spellings.
It’s time to take another look at the names that have been doing the rounds since our parents were in nappies. There are gems to be found. From traditional beauties like Amy and Ruth, to classic Aussie monikers like Steven and Shane – you’ll never believe how good they look modernised with new spellings.
Alternative spellings for traditional baby names
We asked the huge Mum’s Grapevine Facebook community to tell us the most unique spellings they’ve seen for common baby names, and here’s what they came up with (including 32 different ways to spell Tiffany):
A French name in origin, the meaning of Amy is ‘beloved’ or ‘well-loved’ and is derived from the Latin word Amare, meaning ‘to love.’
Amy is the English variation of the Old French name Amee – Aimee in modern French.
Alternative ways to spell Amy: Aymee, Amii, Amee, Aimee, Aimeigh, Ameigh, Amey, Ami, Amie, Aymeigh
This Greek-origin name means ‘defender of man’ or ‘protector of man.’
Alexander is the is derived from the name Aléxandros, one of the many Greek names expressing the widespread motif of “battle-prowess.”
Alternative ways to spell Alexander:
Allexannder, Allexander, Alexannder, Aleckzander, Aleksander, Alecksander, Alexander, Alexxander, Allecksander, Alecksannder
This sweet name is originally German in origin and means ‘noble.’ It is derived from the name Adalhaidis of the same meaning.
Alice a variation of the Old French name Alis, a short form of Adelais.
Alternative ways to spell Alice:
Aalis, Alyce, Alyse, Alys, Alise, Allice, Allise
A Hebrew name in origin, the meaning of Anna is ‘grace’ or ‘favour’ and is derived from the Greek name Ḥannāh or Chanah.
Anna is the Irish version of Áine.
Alternative ways to spell Anna:
Ana, Annah, Aunna, Arna, Ahna
With Spanish and Christian origins, Angela means, you guessed it, ‘angel’ or ‘messenger of God. It’s derived boys’ name Angelus, which translates to ‘angel’ and also ‘messenger of god’
Angela is the Serbian version of Anđela.
Alternative ways to spell Angela:
Andjella, Angella, Anngella, Anngela, Angelah, Arngela, Anjelah
Meaning ‘son of the right hand’, this biblical name has Hebrew origins. Benjamin comes from the Hebrew name Binyamin which has origins in the Book of Genesis from the Old Testament, where it was given to the son of Jacob and Rachel.
Translated as “son of the south,” the name signifies Benjamin’s status as the founder of the southernmost Hebrew communities in Biblical times.
Alternative ways to spell Benjamin:
Benjaimen, Benjamyn, Benjamen, Bennjaminn, Bennjamynn, Bennjamonn, Benjaymen, Bennjamenn, Benjamon
With Irish origins, Brian means ‘high’ or ‘noble. It is possible that the name is derived from an Old Celtic word of the same meaning.
Brian is a variant of Bryant and a shortened anglicized form of Ó Briain.
Alternative ways to spell Brian:
Bryan, Brien, Bryean, Bryon, Bryen, Brjánn, Brijan, Bryjen, Bryand
Catherine is a girl’s name of Greek origin and is derived from the word Katharos meaning ‘pure.’
It is a variation of the Latin Katharina, from the Greek Aikaterina.
Alternative ways to spell Catherine:
Katheryn, Katharyn, Kathryne, Katherin, Kathrine, Catharine, Cathryn, Cathrine, Kathartine, Catharine, Kathryn
A French name in origin, the meaning of Claire is ‘bright, clear’ and was traditionally a male name.
Claire is the French form of Clara, a feminine derivation of the Latin masculine name Clarus.
Alternative ways to spell Claire:
Clayre, Cllaere, Cllaire, Claure, Clawre, Claere, Cllaure, Cllayre, Klaire, Clare, Clair, Klare, Kleyer, Klair, Klayre
With Hebrew origins, David means ‘beloved’. It’s derived from the Hebrew name Dawid, which evolved from the Hebrew word dod (beloved).
Biblical in origin, David was the greatest king of Israel.
Alternative ways to spell David:
Davyd, Dafydd, Dayvid, Deyvid, Deyvidd, Davidd, Deyvd
Originally a Hebrew surname, Daniel means ‘God is my judge’.
It comes from the Hebrew words Din ‘to judge’ and El ‘God’ and has roots in biblical times with the Book of Daniel.
Alternative ways to spell Daniel:
Daniayl, Danyell, Danyale, Daniail, Daniael, Daniaell, Daniale, Danniel, Danyael, Danyel, Daniell, Danniael, Danialle, Danniale, Daneyel, Danieel, Dannyel, Danyal
A biblical name of Hebrew origin, Elizabeth means ‘My God is abundance.’ It is derived from the name Elisheva which translates to ‘God is my oath.’
Its earliest origins can be traced back to the Old Testament of the Bible, the most popular reference being the mother of John the Baptist.
Alternative ways to spell Elizabeth:
Alyzzabeth, Elizabethe, Elysabeth, Elisabeth, Ellyzabeth, Elyzabeth, Elizabeth, Ellizabeth
Latin in origin, Emily means ‘eager’, ‘rival’ and ‘industrious’ and is derived from the Roman family name Aemilius. It is also believed Emily comes from the Greek term Aimylos meaning ‘wily’ or ‘persuasive.’
Emily is the feminine form of the male version Emil.
Alternative ways to spell Emily:
Emilee, Emeleigh, Emili, Emile, Emeelee, Emilee, Emyly, Emylly, Emilli, Emyleigh, Emillie, Emeighleigh, Emielie, Emilie
An English name but with German roots, Emma means ‘entire’, ‘whole’ or universal’, and is derived from the Germanic word Ermen also meaning ‘whole’ or ‘universal’
A feminine given name, it is also used as a diminutive of Emmeline, Amelia or any other name beginning with ’em’
Alternative ways to spell Emma:
Emmah, Ema, Imah, Emah, Eamah, Amma, Ammah, Emar
Erin is an Irish name that literally means ‘Ireland’ or ‘from the island to the west.’ It’s a Hiberno-English word originating from Éirinn which is also related in meaning to ‘Ireland’
According to Irish mythology, Erin was originally given to the island by the Milesians after the goddess Ériu.
Alternative ways to spell Erin:
Errinne, Eireann, Erynn, Erinn, Eryn, Eren, Erenn, Arin, Aryn, Arryn
Steeped in Greek origins, George is traditionally a masculine name and means ‘farmer’ or ‘earthworker.
It’s derived from the Greek word Georgos which is a combination of the two Greek words Ge meaning ‘earth, soil’ and Ergon translating to ‘work’, together indicating a tiller of the soil.
Alternative ways to spell George:
Georg, Jorg, Jorge, Jawge, Georges, Geoarge, Jeroge
German in origin, Henry means ‘ruler of the home’ and is originally from the Old Frankish name Heimeric.
Its Old French version is spelled Henri and the German spelling is Henrik.
Alternative ways to spell Henry: Hennree, Hennreigh, Hennri, Hennrie, Hennry, Henree, Henreigh, Henrey, Henri, Henrie
An eclectic mix of Hebrew, Spanish and Italian origins, Isabella means ‘pledge to God.’ The name is a variation of the Hebrew name Elisheba, a form of Elizabeth meaning ‘consecrated’ or ‘God is my oath’
It is also a form of Isabel and has a rich history in medieval royals.
Alternative ways to spell Isabella:
Izzabella, Izabella, Isabela, Isobella, Issabella, Itzabella, Iszabella
Hebrew in origin, the name Isaac means ‘one who laughs’ or ‘one who rejoices. It has evolved from the name Yitzchaq, which is comes from the Hebrew word Tzachaq, meaning ‘to laugh.’
It is thought that Isaac gets its meaning from the story that when biblical characters Sarah and Abraham conceived, people laughed because they were so old.
Alternative ways to spell Isaac:
Isaak, Izac, Eyezac, Izac, Eysack, Issac, Izach, Eyzach, Eyzack, Izack
The name Jack is of English origin with the meaning ‘God is gracious.’ It is derived from John, which originated in medieval England (it went from John to Johnkin to Jankin to Jackin to Jack).
There is also a theory that Jack has Celtic origins, meaning ‘healthy, strong and full of vital energy.’
Alternative ways to spell Jack:
Jacques, Jaques, Jeke, Jak, Jacc, Jac, Jach, Jaak
A unisex name of Hebrew and English origin, James traditionally meant ‘supplanter’ and comes from the original Hebrew word for Jacob.
It is also a biblical name: two of Jesus’ apostles were named James.
Alternative ways to spell James:
Jaymz, Jaemes, Jaimes, Jaymes, Jayemes, Jaims, Jaaymes, Jaames
English in origin, Jane (like Jack) means ‘God is gracious.’ It is the English for of the name Jehanne, the Old French feminine form of Iohannes and the Latin form of the Greek name Iōannēs.
There’s even thoughts that Jane is derived from the Hebrew name Yochanan which means ‘Yahweh is merciful.’
Alternative ways to spell Jane:
Jayne, Jaean, Jaeen, Jaene, Jaenne, Jaine, Jainne, Jaynne, Jeynne, Jeyne, Jehanne, Jehn
Hebrew and biblical in origin, John means ‘graced by God’ and is derived from the Hebrew word Yohanan which first appeared in the bible in the Old Testament.
John is the English for, of Iohannes and Ioannes which are Latin forms of the Greek name Ioannis
Alternative ways to spell John:
J’onn, Johnn, Jon, Geon, Johne, Jonn, Jean, Jorrn
With Hebrew origins, this popular boys’ name means ‘the Lord is my salvation’.
It shares the same origins as the name Jesus and derives from the Hebrew name Yehoshua: Yeho meaning God and Shua meaning ‘to deliver or save.’
Alternative ways to spell Joshua:
Jhoshuar, Joshuwah, Joshuah, Joshuwa, Jozua, Joshewa, Joshuaa, Josewa, Djoshua, Jossyouah
English in origin, Jennifer means ‘fair, soft’ and is originally a Cornish version of the Welsh name Gwynhwyfar, used for women of light complexion.
Also a variation of the name Gwenivere, a Welsh name that means ‘white ghost’ or ‘phantom’ – spooky!
Alternative ways to spell Jennifer:
Jenneyfer, Jenniefer, Jennifer, Jennipher, Jennyfer, Jennypher, Jenafar, Jenafer, Jenaffar, Jenaffer, Jenaffr, Jenafor, Jenafr, Jenaphar, Jenapher, Jenaver, Jenavyr, Jeneefer, Jenefar, Jenefer, Jeneffar, Jeneffer, Jeneffr, Jenefr, Jenepher, Jenerfer, Jenfer, Jenifer, Jeniffar, Jeniffer, Jeniffr, Jenifir, Jenifr, Jenifre, Jenifur, Jeniphar, Jenipher, Jeniphyr, Jenirfer
With Scottish and Celtic origins, Keith is both a place and nature name from the Gaelic word Ceiteach. It means ‘wood, forest.’
Also a surname, the Keith clan is one of the most successful and illustrious families in Scottish history. Tradition states that they took their name from the wooded land given by the king to one of their ancestors after he bravely killed a Danish general in an 11th century battle.
Alternative ways to spell Keith:
Keyth, Keeth, Kejth, Keath, Keathe, Kiith, Kithe
Of Scottish and Aboriginal origins, Kylie is often cited as a Noongar name in Indigenous Australian culture and comes from the word Kiley meaning ‘curved, returning stick’ or ‘boomerang.’ Another source is from the Irish surname O’Kiely, which in derives from the Old Gaelic surname O’Cadhla, meaning ‘graceful or beautiful’, descendants of the graceful one.
Kylie has also been used as a feminine form of the Scottish name Kyle.
Alternative ways to spell Kylie:
Khai-Leigh, Khylie, Kylei, Kyley, Kilie, Kyllie, Keighleigh, Kielie, Kyli, Kyly, Kylee, Kyleigh, Kilei, Kileigh, Kylly, Kyllee, Kylli, Kilee, Kylleigh, Cylee, Kaileigh, Ky-Lee
The name Laura is the feminized form of laurus, Latin for “bay laurel plant“, which in the Greco-Roman era was used as a symbol of victory, honor or fame.
With Latin origins, Laura means ‘bay laurel plant’, which in the Greco-Roman era was used as a symbol of victory, honour or fame.
Standing on its own as a given name, it is the feminine form of Laurus and was originally a nickname of Laurel or Lauren.
Alternative ways to spell Laura:
Lora, Lawra, Laurah, Loura, Llora, Llaura, Lorah, Lorra, Lawrah
Meaning ‘pearl’, Margaret is derived both from the French name Marguerite and the Latin Margarita from ancient Greece.
Margaret has many forms in many different languages, including: Maggie, Madge, Margo, Marjorie, Meg, Megan and interestingly Rita, Gretchen and Peggy!
Alternative ways to spell Margaret:
Margarett, Margarette, Margret, Margerete, Mahgret, Mahgaret, Margarite, Mahhgret, Margarreet
The name Michael is of Hebrew origin that means that rhetorical question ‘who is like God?’ whose answer is ‘there is none like El’.
The multi-cultural name is recognized by Jews, Christians, and Muslims and was given to emperors, kings, and saints.
Alternative ways to spell Michael:
Mykill, Michaell, Mychayl, Michaill, Michayl, Mychael, Michail, Mychaell, Michayll, Mychail, Mykaleelle
With various origins, Nina means different things in different languages. For example in relation to the Spanish word niña it means ‘little girl’, in Hebrew it means ‘God was gracious; and in Hindi it means ‘beautiful’ just to name a few.
In Russian, Nina is a variation of the name Anne, a commonly-used and classic name across many English-speaking countries.
Alternative ways to spell Nina:
Nhyinnah, Neina, Neyna, Nyna, Neena, Neenah, Ninah, Kneena
With Scottish, Dutch, English and even South Indian origins, Phillip means ‘lover of horses.’ It’s derived from the Greek name Philippos which is formed from Philein ‘to love’ and Hippos ‘horse.’
The name is a derivative of similar names of other languages like the French Philippe, Italian Filippi and Spanish Felipe.
Alternative ways to spell Phillip:
Filip, Fillip, Fylyp, Philip, Phyllyp, Phylyp, Felip, Fillap, Filipe, Filop, Filup, Filyp, Phillap, Fylap
The name Raymond originated as the Gemanic name Raginmund and means ‘counselling protector’ or ‘famous protector.’
It is also a variation of the from the Old Norman French word Raimund which means ‘wise protection.’
Alternative ways to spell Raymond:
Raemond, Raemonnd, Raimond, Raimonnd, Ramonnd, Reymond, Reymend, Reimund, Raimund
Of Hebrew origin, Ruth has the meaning ‘friend’, ‘friendship,’ or ‘compassionate friend.’ It is derived from the Hebrew word re’ut, meaning ‘friend.’
With biblical origins, Ruth is the central character in the Book of Ruth in the Old Testament, which is one of only two books named after a woman.
Alternative ways to spell Ruth:
Rooth, Rhuth, Rueth, Ruuth, Roothe
With Irish origins, Shane means ‘God is gracious’ and is derived from the way Seán is pronounced in the Ulster dialect of the Irish lauguage.
Shane is sometimes used as a feminine given name, derived from the Yiddish name Shayna, meaning ‘beautiful’.
Alternative ways to spell Shane:
Chayne, Shain, Shayne, Shayn, Chane, Shayyn, Shaine
English in origin, Shirley is a first and surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning ‘bright clearing’ in Old English.
This is made up of the elements Scire ‘shire’ or Scīr ‘bright, clear’ and Lēah ‘wood, clearing, meadow, enclosure.’
Alternative ways to spell Shirley:
Shirlee, Sherlee, Cher-Lee, Cherly, Shirly, Cherlee, Cherli, Sherli, Sherlei, Sherleigh, Sherly, Shirleigh, Shirlie, Shirlli, Shurlei, Shurlee, Shurleigh, Shurlie, Shurlley, Shyrleigh, Shryley, Shyrli, Shyrlie, Shyrlley, Shyrly
With Greek origins, Sandra means ‘protector of humanity’ or ‘defender of the people.’
It is a variation of the name Alexandra which is the feminine form of Alexander or Alexandros.
Alternative ways to spell Sandra:
Sanndra, Xandra, Zandra, Zanndra, Sandruh, Sandraa, Saandra, Sandera
Hebrew in origin, Sharon means ‘a fertile plain’ and is derived from the word Saron which means ‘plain.’
Historically used as a masculine name as well, in the Bible, Sharon refers to flat land at the foot of Mount Carmel.
Alternative ways to spell Sharon:
Sharen, Sharren, Sharenn, Sharin, Sharan, Sharonn, Sharron, Sharyn, Sharynn
With Hebrew roots, Simon means ‘listen’ or ‘hearing’. It is also a classical Greek name, deriving from an adjective meaning ‘flat-nosed’.
In the first century AD, Simon was the most popular male name for Jews in Roman Judea.
Alternative ways to spell Simon:
Symon, Sighmon, Simen, Simenn, Simin, Siminn, Simonn, Simyn, Symen, Symyn
An British name meaning ‘garland’ or ‘crown,’ the name Steven is derived from the English name Stephen
It is also associated with the Dutch name Stefan, which similarly means ‘crown’ and ‘wreath.’
Alternative ways to spell Steven: Steyvyn, Stevenn, Stevven, Steeven, Steevin, Stevin, Steevyn, Stephan, Stephen, Steefen
Of Greek origins, Tiffany has the meaning ‘revelation of God’ or ‘God’s appearance’ and is an anglicized version of the name Theophania which means ‘epiphany.’
The equivalent Greek male name is Theophanes, commonly shortened to Phanis.
Alternative ways to spell Tiffany:
Tiphanie, Tiffani, Tiffanny, Tiphphaneigh, Tiphphany, Tyffany, Tiffaneigh, Tiffanee, Tiffaney, Tiffanie, Tyffani, Tyffanie, Tyffanny, Tiffanni, Tiphphani, Tiffannee, Tiphphaney, Tyffaneigh, Tiffanneigh, Tiphphanee, Tiffannie, Tyffaney, Tiffanney, Tiphphanie, Typhphany, Tiphphanny, Tiffanei, Tyffaney, Tiffanney, Teighffaneigh, Teeffanee, Tieffanie
Of Greek and Latin origins, Tony means ‘priceless one’ in Latin and ‘flourishing’ in Greek.
In English and French it’s short form of the popular name Anthony.
Alternative ways to spell Tony:
Tonee, Tonei, Toneigh, Tonie, Tonnee, Tonneigh, Tonney, Tonni, Tonnie, Tonny, Townie, Townee, Toeknee
Meaning ‘resolute protector’ or ‘strong-willed warrior,’ William comes from the Germanic name Wilhelm which is composed of the elements Wil ‘will’ or ‘desire’ and Helm ‘helmet’ or ‘protection.’
Feminine variations of the name include Wilhelmina, Wilma, and Billie.
Alternative ways to spell William:
Wilyam, Wylyam, Wiliam, Wyllyam, Wiliem, Williem, Wileyam, Wyliem
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