A Toronto couple is choosing an unconventional means of naming their first baby: an "election" that gives friends and relatives the power to select a name for their child from a list of top contenders.

Expectant parents Katie Reise and Chris Vollmershausen say they started the baby naming process like most new parents – they perused books of names and debated the merits of their different options -- but found the process "overwhelming."

"The first book (we looked at) was '100,000 baby names,'" Vollmershausen told CTV's Canada AM on Thursday.

He said the idea to let their friends and family vote on a name for their child started as a gag but soon became serious as they crossed names off their list of favourites, narrowing it down to approximately 10.

"We sort of, as a joke said, ‘Ah, let’s let our friends vote on it,’’’ he said. “And as we went through the list (of names) … we said 'Why not let our friends vote on it?'"

The couple, who do not yet know the sex of their child, have mailed out 75 customized ballots to their friends and family.

On the ballots are six names:

  • Libby, Molly or Faye for a girl
  • Oscar, Winston or Finley for a boy

The couple have set rules for the naming election, which include no fresh suggestions on the baby ballot. They’ve also committed to going with whatever their friends and family ultimately decide.

"We’re 100 per cent committed," said Vollmershausen, who admits he did not vote in case he picked the "loser" name.

"I don’t have a horse in the race," he said.

The baby’s mother-to-be isn’t leaving it all in the hands of the voters, however. Reise said she recently cast her ballot, but said she is "okay" with all of the names.

"We like all three," she said.

The first-time parents said their friends and family have been very supportive of the idea. "Many of them wanted to weigh in," said Reise, who is due in Aug. 18.

Votes are due today. Reise and Vollmershausen said so far, Finley has a slight lead over Winston, and Molly is the most popular name for a girl, followed by Faye.

The couple, who are getting married in January, said that if they have another child, they likely won’t use the same naming process.

"It’s probably a one-time deal," Vollmershausen said.

Which name would you pick for Reise and Vollmershausen's child?