DIAMOND & GEMSTONE SHAPES
There are numerous types of diamond cuts and shapes, all with their own unique style and unquestionable appeal. Cut diamonds suit everyone and look incredible in engagement rings, pendant necklaces and earrings. Different diamond cuts suit different people and occasions. In this article, we investigate ten of the most popular cut diamond shapes.
There is a common misconception that when we describe a diamond’s shape and a diamond’s cut we are meaning the same thing. However, while it is normal for people to say shape when they are referring to cushion cut diamonds or a marquise cut diamond, for example, the shape and cut are entirely different. When we refer to the shape of a diamond, mean the physical shape such as round. The cut is the skill of the jeweler and how they have carefully and skillfully cut the diamond to perfectly reflect light and reduce inclusions.
When people are asked to describe a diamond shape, most will reply “round” and indeed this is regarded as a classic design, particularly popular with engagement rings. Although strictly speaking a round diamond could be almost any cut, the most famous and prominent is the round brilliant diamond cut. The brilliant-cut is noted for featuring either 57 or 58 facets which give the diamond its famous sparkle. The round brilliant cut is what some would say cut diamonds should look like.
A relatively recent creation, the modern princess-cut features distinctive pointed corners. Traditionally square, some princess-cut diamonds are slightly rectangular in shape, though this may be difficult for the untrained eye to detect. The princess cut is one of the most popular cuts and can have up to 76 small facets. The classic prong is the best setting for princess cut as it allows more light to pass through the stone and uses less metal than other settings. Princess cut diamonds typically cost less per carat compared to round diamonds.
Widely popular in the late 19th century, antique-style cushion-cut diamonds have recently experienced a resurgence in popularity. Influenced by the old mine cut, which featured rounded corners and large facets, the cushion cut diamonds have a soft, romantic appearance. Ranging from square to rectangular, height to length ratio is an important factor when considering a cushion-cut diamond. Clarity is also important with this cut, as the larger facets highlight the diamond’s clarity.
The modern asscher cut can be described as a square emerald cut; both have a pavilion cut with rectangular facets. Asscher-cut diamonds feature step facets and cropped corners that make them appear octagonal when viewed from above and offering brilliance along with its signature appeal. Designed to emphasize clarity, the asscher cut allows you to see all the way through the diamond. There are two types of Asscher Cuts. There’s the standard Asscher Cut diamond and there’s the Royal Asscher Cut. Both were created by the Royal Asscher company. Asscher diamonds usually have 58 facets, the same as a round brilliant. The arrangement of these facets gives it a vintage “hall of mirrors” look.
Originally developed for the cutting of emeralds, the emerald cut is prized for its clean lines rather than its brilliance. A large table and the step cuts on the pavilion give emerald-cut diamonds a unique look that really accentuates clarity. Similar to oval diamonds, the length to width ratio of emerald-cut diamonds can vary. A length-to-width ratio of 1.40-1.50 ratio is ideal for a classic emerald-cut shape usually consists of 57 facets. Emerald cut diamond shapes go well with solitaire and simple pave settings and are perfect for three-stone settings.
With curved edges and two pointed ends, the unusual marquise-cut is a modified brilliant cut. With its long, narrow boat-shape, marquise cuts have the largest crown surface area of any diamond shape, giving the illusion of a larger stone. The shape of marquise diamonds is also ideal for elongating the fingers of the wearer.
An oval-cut diamond combines the brilliant faceting of round diamonds with an elegant elongated shape. Oval diamond cuts actually give diamonds the appearance of being larger than they actually are. It can also make the wearer’s fingers appear longer and slimmer. Traditional oval diamonds have a length to width ratio between 1.35 and 1.50.
Like the emerald-cut, a radiant-cut diamond has straight sides and trimmed corners. However, their faceting gives them a much greater level of brilliance, resulting in a very sparkly diamond. Radiant cut diamonds use a hybrid cutting style that combines the clean lines of square cuts with the faceting of the round brilliant cut. The shape of radiant-cut diamonds can range from square to rectangular. Radiant cut diamonds are one of the most affordable cuts because the cutting process uses a larger percentage of the original diamond rough, so very little goes to waste.
Featuring a single tapered point, the pear cut diamond is reminiscent of a water droplet. Worn with the tip pointing either up or down the finger, the elongated pear-shape subtly slims the fingers. This is a vintage style diamond cut and is known for high sparkle. The dimensions of pear-shaped diamonds vary, though the most traditional ratio is between 1.45 and 1.75. Pear shape diamonds are versatile as they can be perfect as a center stone or used as lovely diamond accents.
A heart-shaped diamond is both a symbolic and unique choice for an engagement ring. A modified round brilliant cut, heart shaped diamonds are generally worn as solitaire rings or pendants and are made up of between 56 to 58 facets giving this stone high brilliance.