The most commonly chosen shape, this cut has set the standard for all other diamond shapes, and accounts for more than 75% of diamonds sold today. Renowned for its unrivaled fire and brilliance, this cut boasts excellent light refraction properties, causing it to appear brighter than other shapes. When clarity and color are equal, a round diamond will be more valuable than alternative shapes.
Timeless and elegant, this cut’s flattering effect creates the illusion of long, slender fingers. Reputed to have been specially made for King Louis XIV of France, who wanted a diamond that simulated the smile of Marquise de Pompadour, this elongated stone has gracefully pointed ends for a dramatic appeal. Due to their extended length, marquise diamonds have more size per carat weight than other shapes and boast a brilliant 58 facets.
Living up to its name, the heart-cut diamond has become synonymous with love and affection, making it an excellent choice for an anniversary or engagement ring. This ultimate symbol of romance is essentially a pear-shaped diamond with a cleft at the top. The skill of the cutter determines the beauty of the cut. Look for a stone with an even shape and a well-defined outline.
This is a square or rectangular cut with numerous sparkling facets and often finds its way into solitaire engagement rings. Flattering to a hand with long fingers, it is often embellished with triangular stones at its sides. Because of its design, this cut requires more weight to be directed toward the diamond’s depth in order to maximize brilliance. Depth percentages of 70% to 78% are not uncommon.
This is a spectacular wedge of brittle fire. First developed in Amsterdam, the exact design can vary depending on a particular diamond’s natural characteristics and the cutter’s personal preferences. It may be a traditional triangular shape with pointed corners or a more rounded triangular shape with 25 facets on the crown, 19 facets on the pavilion, and a polished girdle. It is definitely for the adventurous.
Cut into a square or rectangular shape with rounded corners and sides, it’s considered by many to be a softer version of the emerald cut. Possessing a character-rich antique look, the cushion-cut diamond is a favorite of those who prefer vintage-style rings and jewelry. This style of cut looks like a cross between an Old Mine Cut (a deep cut with large facets that was common in the late 19th and the early 20th centuries) and a modern oval cut.
An oval-cut diamond is flattering to most any wearer, creating the illusion of longer, more slender fingers. Cut with the same number of facets as a round diamond, an oval shape emits nearly the same level of brilliance and fire, and its elongated shape makes it appear larger in carat weight than a round.
A hybrid cut, combining the best of the oval and the marquise, it is shaped most like a sparkling teardrop. It also belongs to that category of diamond whose design most complements a hand with small or average-length fingers. Pear Shaped Diamonds are also renowned for their high levels of brilliance. It is particularly beautiful for pendants or earrings.
This is a rectangular shape with cut corners. It is known as a step cut because its concentric broad, flat planes resemble stair steps. This type of diamond is more transparent than other shapes, resulting in the need for higher standards of clarity. If an emerald-cut diamond is marked by an inclusion, it will be much more likely to be detected with the naked eye.
This diamond shape utilizes many of the same cutting techniques of the square emerald cut. What sets the Asscher apart are its uniquely angled and cropped corners, considered a revolutionary concept in diamond cutting when it was first conceived by the owners of the Royal Asscher Diamond Company. Many diamond experts compare the facets of a properly cut Asscher to a hallway lined with reflective mirrors, radiating a great deal of brilliance. The shape is preferred by avant-garde jewelry connoisseurs for its art deco appeal.
Relatively new to the jewelry industry, radiant diamonds were introduced a little more than 20 years ago. This square or rectangular cut combines the elegance of the emerald shape diamond with the brilliance of the round, and its 70 facets maximize the effect of its color refraction. Because of its design, this cut requires more weight to be directed toward the diamond’s depth in order to maximize brilliance. Depth percentages of 70% to 78% are not uncommon.
The shape of things to come in diamonds has already produced other fanciful and innovative styles such as the flower, cloverleaf, and kite. Nor does it stop there, some cuts are variations on standard shapes, others spin off the natural crystal formation of the stone, and still others take the idea of shape to revolutionary new heights. Individuality and taste determine the fashion, and the magic of the gem cutter transforms each stone into a unique work of art.