Diamonds are cut in many different and exciting shapes. The shape of a diamond is often confused with its cut. Shape refers to the basic form of the diamond: round, emerald, oval or pear shaped, for example. Cut or proportions refer to the ability of each of these diamond shapes to reflect light. A round diamond could have a good cut or a poor cut depending upon its proportions. When it comes to the shape of a diamond, it is simply a matter of personal taste. The right diamond shape for you is really the shape that you like the appearance of or have a preference. The shape of a diamond can be a statement of whom you are; shape can reflect your individuality and also style or a fashion trend. The most popular diamond shapes are displayed here, however there are many new and interesting shapes being developed every year.
Round Brilliant Cut Diamonds
The Round Brilliant Cut: the vast majority of diamonds sold are round brilliant cut diamonds. Round diamonds are the traditional choice for all occasions and preferred by many for a diamond engagement ring. The depth percentage of a round brilliant cut diamond should range between 58 to 63 percent and the table percentage should range between 53 to 59 percent. The most desired percentages for depth are 59 through 62 percent and table of 56 through 58 percent.
The standard round brilliant consists of 57 facets; 1 table, 8 bezel facets, 8 star facets 16 upper-girdle facets on the crown; 8 pavilion facets, 16 lower girdle facets; and usually a culet on the pavilion. Modifications of the round brilliant include such fancy shapes as the marquise, half moon & pear shape.
The Round Brilliant Cut Diamond is the most popular diamond shape and, because of the laws of supply and demand, is the generally the most expensive. Round Brilliant Cut Damonds make up the vast majority of diamonds set in engagement rings. Round Brilliant Cut diamonds are also popular as stud earrings and in pendants. This diamond shape has set the standard for all other diamond shapes, and accounts for more than 75% of diamonds sold today. Round Brilliant Cut diamonds are the most brilliant of all the diamond shapes. You may have heard of a term called “Ideal Cut”. This term refers to the attempt to cut a round diamond into the best proportions to achieve maximum brilliance, fire and scintillation.
Asscher Cut Diamonds
The Asscher Cut Diamond: is nearly identical to the emerald cut diamond and is often reffered to as a square emerald cut.
Joseph Asscher an eminent diamond cutter, who cut the 3,106 carat Cullinan diamond, developed and patented the Asscher cut diamond in 1902. The Asscher cut is a squarish step cut with an almost octagonal outline. The Asscher cut diamond has a small table, a high crown, wide step facets, a deep pavilion and square culet. Because of its high crown and small table, the Asscher cut diamond has more light and fire than an Emerald cut diamond. Asscher cut diamonds have a distinctive windmill reflection and wide cut corners that are characterised by a concentric square patterns. The Asscher cut diamond became very popular in Art Deco jewellery and was a forerunner of the emerald cut.
If you choose a SI-clarity Asscher cut diamond be sure to view the clarity plot on the diamond certificate, because this shape can highlight the clarity of the diamond. When choosing an Asscher cut diamond consider the colour grade, for colours below J-colour, in various fancy-shaped diamonds the colour may be slightly visible in its corners.
Optimum shape of an Asscher cut diamond has a Length to Width ratio of 1:1, acceptable length to width ratios can be 1.00 – 1.40 : 1 depending on the shape of the Asscher cut you desire, noting that the greater length to width ratio the more rectangular the Asscher cut diamond will be.
Baguette Cut Diamonds
The Baguette Cut Diamond: is a form of step cutting and is rectangular in shape.
The Baguette may be have a longer rectangular shape or one that is more like an emerald cut in proportions. As a main stone the proportions should be more rectangular in shape. The Baguette cut diamond is for people who want a long stone and baguette cut diamonds are quite frequently used as shoulder stones to enhance a larger centre stone. The Baguette cut has straight sides and four sharp corners and the facets on the pavilion are step cut giving the Baguette cut diamond a striking appearance. It is unusual to find baguette cut diamonds in larger sizes. For a Baguette cut diamond the optimum length to width ratio is 1.5 : 1, however an acceptable length to width ratio range is 1.50 – 2.5.
Cushion Cut Diamonds
The Cushion Cut Diamond: an extremely popular diamond shape a century ago, Cushion cut diamonds can also be known as “pillow-cut” diamonds, Cushion cut diamonds have rounded corners and larger facets to increase their brilliance. These larger facets highlight the diamond’s clarity, so if you choose a Cushion cut diamond with a SI clarity grade, be sure to review the clarity plot on the diamond certificate.
Cushion cut diamonds can vary in the degree of rectangular shape that they have. Cushion cut diamonds have a romantic look about them and have once again become extremely popular as a diamond choice. For cushion cut diamonds that have an almost square look but elegant and classical charm a length to width ratio of 1.1 – 1.2 is best.
Emerald Cut Diamonds
The Emerald Cut Diamond: is a form of step cutting and is usually rectangular in shape but sometimes may be square, in which case it is known as a square emerald cut. The Emerald cut diamond has rows of elongated facets on the crown and pavilion, known as steps, parallel to the girdle with corner facets. The number of rows of elongated facets may vary on an Emerald cut diamond, although the usual number is three on the crown and three on the pavilion. Inclusions are slightly more visible in “step-cut” diamonds as opposed to brilliant cut diamond styles. The beveled corners on an Emerald cut diamond protect the stone, making it easier to set and creating a unique brilliance.
An Emerald cut diamond highlights the clarity, if you choose an Emerald cut diamond with an SI clarity grade, be sure to review the clarity plot on the diamond certificate. Emerald cut diamonds can vary greatly in how rectangular their appearance is. For the classic Emerald cut shape, look for a length-to-width ratio between 1.30 and 1.40, an acceptable length to width ratio range is between 1.30 – 1.70 depending on your personal taste.
Heart Shape Diamonds
The Heart Shape Diamond: is the ultimate symbol of love and the perfect diamond shape for special occasions such as Valentine’s Day. Most Heart shaped diamonds are almost round in appearance and have the advantage of a nearly rounded pavilion that provides the beautiful brilliance. When choosing a heart shape diamond consider the colour grade, colour grades lower than J may cause the colour to be slightly more noticeable in the corner areas of the Heart shape diamond.
To find a Heart shape diamond with the dimensions and look you want refer to the length to width ratio on the diamond certificate. For Heart shape diamonds length to width ratios between .90 and 1.10 is the ideal and usually the width of a Heart shape diamond will be 10% larger than the depth, however the shape is a matter of personal preference.
Marquise Cut Diamonds
The Marquise Cut Diamond: this diamond has a boat like shaped girdle with 57 facets. The shape and placement of the facets on the Marquise cut diamond is in the brilliant cutting style. The Marquise Cut takes its name from a legend relating to the Marquise of Pompadour. According to the legend, the Sun King desired a stone to be polished into the shape of the mouth of the Marquise.
The shape of a Marquise cut diamond can maximize carat weight, creating a diamond that is visually much larger. The Marquise is a fancy shaped brilliant cut diamond and if set in a ring with the length of the diamond along the finger it can help make the fingers look long and slender. When choosing a Marquise cut diamond consider the colour, colour grades below J colour can cause the colour to appear more visible in the corner areas.
In a Marquise cut diamond avoid what is called a “Bow Tie” effect, a darkened area in the shape of a bow tie towards the middle of the Marquise cut diamond.
Typical length to width ratios in a marquise cut diamond are 1:1.75 – 2.25, however as with all fancy cut diamonds it is a consumer’s personal taste and liking as to what constitutes the optimum shape.
Oval Shape Diamonds
The Oval Cut Diamond: has a brilliant cutting style very similar to a round diamond except that it is elliptical and its technical name is oval modified brilliant.
The Oval cut diamond was invented by Lazare Kaplan in the early 1960s. Oval brilliant cut diamonds usually have 56 or 57 facets. Over the recent years oval cut diamonds have become extremely popular as center diamonds for engagement rings. Oval cut diamonds are also popular because their length can help create the appearance of long, slender fingers.
With an Oval cut diamond avoid what is called a “Bow Tie” effect, a darkened area in the shape of a bow tie towards the middle of the Oval cut diamond.
A length to width ratio of 1.5:1 is almost universally considered optimum for oval cut diamonds, however the range can be between 1.40 – 1.60 depending upon your individual taste.
Pear Shape Diamonds
The Pear Shape Diamond: is a variation of the Brilliant cut, combining the Round and Marquise cuts. A typical Pear shape diamond has 58 facets. A Pear shape diamond is popular for people who like the look of a round diamond but want the style of a fancy shape diamond decide on choosing a Pear shape diamond. Choosing a longer Pear shape diamond for a ring can create a slimming effect on the fingers.
With Pear shape diamonds, the length to width ratio is a matter of individual taste because Pear shape diamonds are used for such a wide variety of jewellery designs. When choosing a Pear shape diamond consider the colour, colours below J may appear to show more colour in the corner areas. For a Pear shape diamond the length to width ratio between 1.50 – 1.75 is best.
Princess Cut Diamonds
The Princess Cut Diamond: is a brilliant style shape with sharp, uncut corners. It is typically cut square rather than rectangular. Brilliant style refers to the direction of the crown and pavilion facets as opposed to step style facets. A princess Cut Diamond generally has 76 facets, giving it more brilliance and fire than the round brilliant. The Princess cut diamond is patented the Quadrillion and is a relatively new diamond shape.
The Princess cut diamond is normally close to a square with a + or – 10% deviation, but it may come in more elongated versions. Try to avoid extremely thin girdles which are prone to chipping. The firey brilliance and unique cut makes a Princess cut diamond a favourite for engagement rings. For a Princess cut diamond that is square, a length to width ratio between 1 – 1.10 is best, if you prefer a more rectangular shape then a length to width ratio above 1.11 is best.
Radiant Cut Diamonds
The Radiant Cut diamond: is a straight-edged rectangular or square stone with cut corners. The Radiant cut is a patented cut with 70 facets and is often confused with a “cut corners Princess/Quadrillions”. The cut corners are distinguishing of this fancy shaped diamond, and they aid in the brilliance of the diamond. Radiant cut diamonds are used mainly as centre stones for rings and pendants and look beautiful when set with baguette shoulder stones.
When choosing a Radiant cut diamond consider the colour grade, colour grades below J can cause the colour to appear slightly more visible in the corners. Radiant cut diamonds can vary in rectangular shape. For a radiant cut diamond that is square in shape a length to width ratio of 1:1.10 is typical, if you are looking for a radiant cut diamond that is more rectangular then a length to width ratio of 1.20 – 1.50 is best.
Trilliant Cut Diamonds
The trilliant Cut Diamond: one of the more unusual diamond cuts and also known as Trillion or Trielle cut diamonds. The Trilliant cut diamond displays a very sharp brilliance and fire if the diamond is cut to the correct depth allowing good scintillation. Trilliant cut diamonds are an excellent choice for shoulder diamonds to enhance a square or rectangular shaped centre diamond and make stunning pendants on their own.
Trilliant cut diamonds can often come with slightly curved sides that create a softer look than the straight edge Trilliant cut diamonds.
Typical length to width ratios for trilliant cut diamonds are 1:0.90 – 1.10, however this is a matter of personal taste.