Although often referred to as the same, diamond shape and diamond cut are actually two very different things. One term describes the overall appearance of a gemstone, while the other is used to describe how well worked a stone really is. If there's one thing that people love about diamonds, it's their unparalleled brilliance, and a stone's cut can make or break that beloved quality.
In this article we will examine the difference between diamond shape and cut. We will also cover the details of diamond grading, stone anatomy and the importance of a well cut stone.
What is diamond cutting?
The term "cut" is used in two ways in the jewelry industry. First describe the shape of the diamond. For example, terms such as pear cut diamond, marquise cut diamond, and radiant cut diamond are used to refer to the unique shape of the stone. However, the true definition of cut is used to describe a stone's proportion, polish and symmetry. When a jeweler or gemologist is examining the cut of a diamond, what interests them most is how well the stone refracts and reflects white light. While some stone cuts are naturally clear and lustrous, others are not. Additionally, some diamond shapes look best when used as an accent or side stone in conjunction with another diamond, while other styles work well on their own.
Diamond cuts have evolved over time as trends change and diamond cutters continue to strive for perfection.
How is a diamond cut classified?
The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) classifies diamond cuts into five categories: Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, and Poor.
GIA explains eachDiamond cut qualityas follows: “A diamond with an excellent level of cut will be very bright. It will show a consistent pattern with good contrast between light and dark areas, allowing highlights to appear sharp and balanced. This indicates that the cutter has made optimal use of the material. GIA continues: “A good quality diamond is not as bright: reflections are not as sharp and the diamond is darker or more opaque. The poorly cut diamond has much more prominent dark or dull areas. Given a choice, most people would choose one of the first two diamonds over this stone... All other things being equal, an Excellent cut virtually guarantees a most attractive diamond. Very fine or even fine cut diamonds are also beautiful; they only suffer in comparison with the best stones.”
To determine a diamond's cut grade, credible sources such as the American Gem Society (AGS) and the GIA study how successfully a stone interacts with light to create the coveted optical effects called sparkle, scatter, and sparkle. Each of these highlights is visually unmistakable and is achieved through perfectly polished diamond grinding techniques.
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Luster, also known as luminosity, refers to the inner and outer white light reflected off a gemstone.
Fire represents the scattering of white light into a rainbow of colors.
The term sparkle is used to describe the amount of sparkle a diamond produces. Scintillation also refers to the pattern of light and dark areas created by reflections in a stone.
To better understand diamond cuts, it is important to understand the basic anatomy of a diamond. The following eight terms will give you a basic understanding of the different parts of a diamond.
The crown is the tip of a diamond that runs from the belt to the table.
The pavilion is the lower part of a rhombus that extends from the girdle to the culet.
Facets are surfaces of a diamond that can be polished.
The table is the flat surface on the stone.
The culet is the facet at the bottom of a stone. Preferably the stock is not visible to the naked eye.
The depth ratio describes the height of a diamond, measured from culet to table.
bunch of notes
The girdle is a narrow band found at the widest point of a stone, separating the crown from the pavilion. The belt is sometimes referred to as the "setting edge" because this is where a diamond will be attached when set in jewellery.
Diameter is defined as the width of a stone measured across the girdle.
Elements such as a diamond's width and depth are commonly measured to determine a stone's quality. According to The Diamond Pro, “diamond cut proportions directly affect a diamond's ability to reflect light and impart brilliance. The proportions are based on the proportions between the size, angle and shape of each diamond facet. Different combinations of these elements affect how the diamond interacts with light, which determines its overall beauty and enduring appeal.”
There are three common diamond width ratios: flat, ideal, and deep. Clear cut diamonds often appear larger depending on table size; However, light escapes from these stones from the sides and has a major impact on the diamond's sparkle, sparkle and fire. Alternatively, when a gem is cut too deep, white light is forced to penetrate deep into the diamond, generally rendering the stone less vibrant and attractive. For best results, look for an excellent or ideal cutting stone. These cuts are set at ideal facet angles to ensure maximum fire and brilliance.
The importance of diamond cutting
Does the diamond cut matter?
As you can already guess, diamond cut is important. The quality of the cut is extremely important when choosing a center stone for your engagement ring, as the cut determines a gemstone's sparkle and symmetry, two elements that contribute greatly to its overall appearance.
How the cutoff grade affects the price
Of all the 4Cs, a diamond's cut has the greatest impact on the beauty of the stone. Because of this, gems with higher cut values are significantly more affordable than those with lower cut values. However, many jewelers and customers argue that the high price is worth every penny, as it is often recommended to spend more on the diamond's cut than on the diamond's clarity or color grade.
The quality of the cut is often the determining factor when determining a stone's value and price, but other factors such as proportion, symmetry, luster, fire, sparkle and processing details can also affect the final cost.
Diamond cut and symmetry
According to the GIA, while proportion is often an important factor to consider when purchasing diamond engagement rings, it's not the end game when it comes to a well-cut diamond. “The whole is greater than the sum when it comes to diamond proportions, meaning the dimensions and angles of a cut diamond's facets and how they relate to one another. There is no set "formula" or proportions that result in a perfectly cut diamond. All of the numbers you may have heard others refer to – table size, crown angle, canopy angle – work together to create the spectacular stone that stands before you.”
The GIA continues: “There is a variety of proportions that fall within each cut grade and each specific diamond within that grade may appear slightly different in terms of attributes such as brilliance, fire or pattern. Because of this, a particular stone may be more attractive to one customer than another, even though both work equally well."
The preferred diamond cut varies from person to person. While a person may be attracted to a high cut stone, they may prefer a lower cut diamond.