Yes, that's my impression too, heavily based on Fiddler on the Roof! But then we run into the gender issue: all those -l ending names seem to be feminine, whereas my friend's father was by definition and inclination quite the reverse. Come to that, even Tolkien put in that cute bit about how "real" Hobbit male names tend to end in -a but he changed it for English readers to avoid confusion.
So that would make Velvel the diminutive of the male name Velva, right? Makes sense ... but isn't in the Database, oddly enough. Maybe one day.