It’s now the month of Aries which is between March 21st and April 20th. Aries is normally represented by the ram and someone with this Zodiac sign tends to be driven, optimistic, passionate yet impatient, moody and can be aggressive. The birthstone for this sign as well as the month of April is diamond….. the lucky devils! In the next few weeks we will tell you about the main characteristics of a diamond; the 4 C’s. In today’s post we are telling you a bit about the cut of a diamond.
In simple terms; what shape is the diamond? The most common cuts or shapes are the modern round brilliant, oval, princess, marquise, emerald, pear shape and cushion cut diamonds. More unusual cuts can be radiants, triangle, trillions, Asscher, hexagon, and rose cuts. However there are hundreds of different cut diamonds on the market.
Each type of cut has optimal characteristics to make the stone desirable and more aesthetically pleasing to the consumer. Take the modern round brilliant for example which has 58 facets, yes it is a round stone from the birds eye view but consider the three dimensional form. There are so many angles to optimise and consider, when these are not cut well the stone does not sparkle as well; the light that goes into the stone does not refract as well. You will often hear diamond dealers refer to this aspect as the ‘make’ of the stone, how well has the stone been cut?
How can you tell if you have a good cut?
It’s obvious that you need to find a specialist be it us, Origin 31, or someone else but if you wanted to do some independent research then look at the characteristics of the stone you are looking at then read on.
When buying a stone for an engagement or significant event then the majority of time you will be offered a certificated stone. We are great advocates of GIA certificated stones (Gemmological Institute of America, no this is not an ad) as throughout our extensive time in the jewellery trade they are the best independent body to assess the diamonds and gemstones. They produce the best unbiased reports. On a diamond certificate the diamond characteristics have been graded and stated on this document; relating to the cut of the stone you will find 3 assessments which is the cut, polish and symmetry.
Polish; how shiny are the facets of the stone under a 10x magnification? Windows in a house wouldn’t look great or let in as much light if they had lumps and bumps or scratches, it is the same with a diamond.
Symmetry; how well do all of the angles of the stone line up or work together. Is the culet (point of the diamond) in the centre of the stone perpendicular to the table (the top flat facet in the centre of the stone). The stone wouldn’t be aesthetically pleasing if the culet was off to an angle or if the table was uneven at a slant. If the stone is uneven the sparkle would be uneven, the ‘make’ of the stone wouldn’t be as beautiful.
Cut; as mentioned when working with round brilliant diamonds how round is the gem? How thick or thin is the girdle? What is the ratio of the crown (top section) to the pavilion (bottom section)? These are a couple of questions to consider and we possibly sounded like we were speaking a foreign language with all this diamond detail. These gems are truly a mathematical conundrum with optimum percentages to calculate and cut, if these aren’t achieved then you have to work with tolerances. We can assess the stone and find something suitable for all our clients for any of our bespoke jewellery requests.
Each of the polish, cut and symmetry can have a grade between poor, fair, good, very good and excellent. We personally like to recommend and our personal choice to create a piece is using a minimum cut grade of very good. If you have a stone with all cut parameters of excellent (diamond dealer terminology of ‘triple x’) then you do pay a premium for this.
This post is a brief introduction to the cut of a diamond, in particular the modern round brilliant. We are often explaining diamonds to the bewildered people wanting to buy an engagement ring flummoxed by all the variables open to them. Sourcing the right stone, and the right engagement ring for you need not be a minefield but more of a reason to find a jeweller you trust to make your bespoke ring. For any help or advice on gemstones or designing a ring contact us or just drop us a note to email@example.com …. We don’t bite.
An example of one of our bespoke diamond rings for a client