Ivy and Lily: Too matchy for twin girl names?

A reader named Jamie isn’t expecting twin girls. If she were expecting twin girls, though, she and her husband wonder, “Would it be fair, suitable, weird, to name the girls Ivy and Lily?” Jamie says:

I’m not a fan of the matchy twin names – Kara and Kerri, John and Jack, but my husband and I both really like Ivy and Lily. Ivy is just a beautiful name that we love, but Lily pays tribute to his mother whose name is Lilian. Honestly we were thinking about using Liliana and shortening it to Lily. So – do Ivy and Lily qualify as matchy twin names since they are both flowers, and would it be weird for one of the girls to have a “longer more involved name” like Liliana (but shortened to Lily), and the other one just be Ivy (since I can’t think of anything Ivy would be short for).

I do think Ivy and Lily are too matchy, but it’s not because they’re both botanical. It’s because they’re both botanical, they both end with the same sound, they both have the same rhythm, they both feature the same vowels (in the same order), they both have very few letters…they’re similar in many ways. For me, that’s too close.

I think Ivy and Lily could work if they were both nicknames. Ivy could be derived from I-V names like Ivana, Ivette and Ivonne. Maybe even Olivia, Livia or Vivian. Another option would be first-middle combinations like Irene Veronica or Isabella Virginia for the initials I. V.

What’s your take on Ivy and Lily?

6 thoughts on “Ivy and Lily: Too matchy for twin girl names?

  1. I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with one twin having a nn and the other not. In face, doing so reduces the matchiness. I can’t really answer whether Ivy and Lily are too matchy because I don’t like matchy twin names at all, so any matchiness is too much for me. Here are are some ideas for reducing the matchiness or changing it, if you want to. I’d stick with Lily and/or a longer version because I like family names; so, these are alternatives to Ivy.
    – another family name
    – Eve, Eva, Evie,
    – Genevieve nn Eve or Evie
    – Isla
    – Irene
    – Evelyn
    – Geneva nn Eva
    – Maeve

    I think Isla and Maeve are my favourites.

  2. I just came across this completely by accident and had to add that I had twin daughters in March of this year and we named them Ivy and Lily and have had nothing but compliments on their names. I also dislike twee matchy twin names, but felt that Ivy and Lily did not come under that label! I think they are similar but different enough. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion though of course!

  3. Ivy and Lily really don’t rhyme, so I don’t think it would be an issue! They are both beautiful names.

  4. First off, matchy names are things like;
    a.) Heaven and Nevaeh — reverses/using the same letters of/as each other. Aron and Nora. Ian and Nia.

    b.) Rhyming/sing-songy names like Jacob and Jason, Casper and Jasper, Lora and Nora, Annie and Aimy, Kristy and Carly… so on.

    I don’t feel Ivy and Lily are like that. Sure, there’s a bit of rhythm there. But with sibling names, you generally want to be able to say, “Oh, yes, my daughters are named Ivy and Lily.” and not, “Yeah, my daughters are Gertrude and Mary.” The first one flows better than the second, doesn’t it?

    Ivy and Lily are wonderful names, separated and together. I don’t understand why everyone thinks they’re too matchy.

  5. I named my identical twin girls Lillian Monroe & Ivory Monae…they go by ‘Lily and Ivy’ for short ?

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