Emily is one of the most popular names for girls in the United States, but its popularity is waning. See the chart below.
Why is this so? The New York Times has an article on this today (but it’s paywall blocked so I haven’t read it). But I did read a good article about it here Carnegie Mellon article. Emma grew more popular over time. What the article says, in brief is that there is a push-pull between parents’ desire to have a child fit in and the desire for them to feel unique or special. When Emily became too popular, parents switched to Emma which sounds enough like Emily to be seen as mainstream, but with a personal twist. It’s difficult to know exactly what appeals to each individual parent. This may be pure speculation, but it fits in with my own experience. My granddaughter’s name is Ember. Close enough to seem normal, not weird, but definitely unique.