Preppy Names – A New Guide
In her New York Times review of the new prep bible, True Prep, by Lisa Birnbach and Chip Kidd, journalist Janet Maslin describes the name "Chip" as a "certifiably preppy first name." Since it was in the Times, this is proof positive that there is such a thing as a "preppy name," and, by extension, preppy baby names. Our goal is to assemble the most "certifiably" preppy names we can find, and to facilitate a sort of "preppy names forum" where you can add to our lists of preppy names, or nicknames, or comment on names that are on the list, pro and con.
Our compendium of preppy names includes the preppy baby name list, which is the updated version of the list that has served us so well, though not without controversy, since we first created this page several years ago. There is also a link, below, to another page featuring preppy name suggestions from our readers. And further down this page is our list of preppy nicknames.
We hope you enjoy perusing these lists. As anyone who truly understands prep can tell you, "preppy" is not restrained by place, culture, ethnicity, or any other silly classification. Preppy is both a state of mind and a way of life. (If there are plenty of pinks and greens, that does help). Or, as Mark Oppenheimer phrased it recently in Slate, preppiness has always been "a deep aesthetic, shading into an ethos, displayed in clothes, language, and hobbies." In other words, there should be something here for everyone, or at least everyone who believes in prep. And if there isn't, I'm sure you'll let us know.
A preppy nickname "bespeaks a certain In-ness and inaccessibility to outsiders. It’s like being tapped for a secret society, minus the degrading rituals." The Offical Preppy Handbook, 1980.
Truth be told, nicknames, as the quote above shows, are the essence of preppy names. No matter what your given name – it can be overcome and preppified with the right nickname. Here, we have expanded our world of preppy names to include a special category just for nicknames. If you're looking for a name that says instant prep, even if you have another name already, then one of these nicknames will do the trick. Here are the top 12 nicknames for preppy boys and girls, from the first bible of prep, The Official Preppy Handbook.
*A male high society nickname