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The Choices in Diamond Cuts

Sep 3, 2008
Diamonds are cut from stones in a wide variety of shapes know as cuts. While most stones can be cut into any of these shapes, for best effect the natural shape and qualities of the diamond itself will determine which shape is chosen.

If you are custom designing your own diamond jewelry or if you are shopping for an already designed piece, it is always helpful to have an understanding of the terminology used to describe the different cuts used for diamonds. The name of the cut refers to the shape of the diamond when viewed from above.


One of the most common shapes for a diamond used on rings, pendants, bracelets or earrings is the round shape. The sides of the diamond are faceted to allow the light to reflect across the center of the diamond, creating the fire and sparkle that is the hallmark of a beautiful stone. Round diamond cuts are very popular for solitaire style rings and are ideal for stud type earrings.


Another very common diamond cut for the large or center stone or in a solitaire style setting is the princess cut. This cut is the square to rectangular cut that is seen in many of the antique as well as modern settings. Diamonds used for the princess cut have to be superior in clarity to prevent the color from showing at the points or corners of the cut.


The emerald cut is a rounded rectangle with a pavilion or faceted side, typical of what you would see in a well-cut emerald gem. Like the princess cut, the emerald shape requires a very clear diamond of high quality to preserve the clarity of the stone.


A less common cut is the asscher, which is a square version of the emerald cut.


The marquise cut is an elongated shape with both the top and bottom ending in a noticeable point. This shape is ideal for enhancing the size of the solitaire diamond as it draws the eye along the cut of the side, giving the appearance of a much larger carat diamond. The marquise cut is seen in both older and more modern settings and can be accentuated with baguette style diamonds or gems.


The pear shape is similar to the marquise but with one end rounded and one end pointed. This diamond cut can add a slimming and elongating effect to the ring finger and is considered one of the classic diamond shapes. Pear-shaped diamonds are also popular in earrings and necklaces where they give the impression of length.


Heart shaped diamond cuts have long been a romantic favorite. This type of cut does require at least a J quality diamond or above as with a lower quality gem the clarity will not be as distinct and the color may be more evident. Many of the colored diamonds look beautiful in the heart shape.


The pillow cut is a combination of the round and princess cut with lots of facets resulting in sparkle and fire. The cushion cut is one of the most common cuts seen on antique diamonds and is very popular in pendants and other large settings.
About the Author
Amy Carrington is a fashion maven and editor at www.SorellaJewelry.com. Sorella Jewelry Studio creates elegant and original personalized jewelry with the names, words, dates and Chinese symbols that matter to you.
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