Ashley Graham and Husband Explain How Their Son’s Name Has Been in the Works for Years

Ashley Graham and Justin Ervin just introduced their newborn son to the world and, wow, his name is layered in meaning.

The 32-year-old model and her 31-year-old cinematographer husband announced their baby’s name on Graham’s Pretty Big Deal podcast today and opened up about their experience welcoming him into the world via a home water birth. So, what name did they choose? It’s—drumroll, please—Isaac Menelik Giovanni Ervin!

Justin, who stepped in as Graham’s special guest for the episode, revealed that he actually came up with their son’s first name when he was just a kid himself.

“My sister Kia and I would have discussions about, ‘Oh, one day, when we have kids,” he said. “I brainstormed my own name for my future son, and I knew it was gonna be Isaac.”

The couple landed on Isaac’s first middle name, Menelik, during their trip to Ethiopia last holiday season. It means “son of the wise” and is also the name of the country’s first emperor.

Little Isaac’s second middle name, Giovanni (which translates roughly to John in English) is actually an homage to his great-grandfathers, both named John, as well as the founder of Justin’s childhood church.

Essentially, Justin explained, “Everything in his name is pointing to legacy.”

Graham and Justin also discussed their experience welcoming Isaac at home with no medication.

“I have to say, now that I gave birth and I did it naturally and I felt everything, I feel like there’s nothing I can’t do,” she said. “There’s nothing that could come my way where I say, ‘Oh, that’s too hard, I can’t handle that.’ I went through laboring for six hours naturally.”

Ultimately, Graham opted for to deliver Isaac at home in a birthing pool because she knew her “anxiety would’ve been through the roof” at a hospital.

“To go straight from the pool to the bed with our son and just hold him, what a bond,” Justin added.

All we can say is welcome to the world, Isaac Menelik Giovanni Ervin!

Lex Goodman

Cat mom, yogi, brunch enthusiast

Lex is an LA native who's deeply obsessed with picnics, Slim Aarons, rosé, Hollywood history and Joan Didion. She joined PureWow in early 2017.
read full bio