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The Different Diamond Cuts You Should Know

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Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

A diamond’s shape refers to the pattern of the cut and polished diamond when viewed from the top. Choosing the shape is a matter of taste; there’s no wrong or right. Just as expressing your love is very personal; selecting your diamond’s shape is a way to reflect your unique relationship.

Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Remember, that “shape” and “cut” are describing completely different characteristics of the diamond. Shape is often confused with the term “cut“, which is a term used to describe the diamond when viewed from its side.

Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER
Side View of Diamond or “cut” 
(All shapes have a side view similar to this)

Fancy Shapes

Fancy shaped diamonds are any shapes other than round. When selecting a fancy-shape, the gracefulness of its pattern is the key to a beautiful diamond — and very few diamonds have a pleasing crisp shape. You’ll notice that the shape of all Perrywinkle diamonds are more pleasing than ones you’ll see elsewhere. The shape should not look stretched or squashed; naturally occurring shadows should not be too dark or overpower the diamond’s surface area so that its brilliance will be reflecting from the highest possible percentage of its surface area. This is especially important in an oval, marquise, pear, or heart-shaped diamond since there is a naturally occurring shadow across the center of the surface in the shape of a bowtie.

Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

The bowtie (or shadowing) is not a defect in the diamond but rather a consequence of cutting the “rough” diamond crystal into those particular shapes. The name bowtie comes from the shape of the shadowed area looking just like the shape of a man’s bowtie. Now that you’ve learned about the bowtie you’ll readily see it and wonder why you hadn’t noticed it before if you’ve already viewed diamonds in these shapes. A bowtie isn’t something you’d prefer to have since it lacks brightness; it’s just part of the characteristic of certain fancy shapes and, matter of fact, the more beautiful the diamond the easier it is to see the contrast between the amazing brightness versus the shadowy bowtie.

It is important, however, that the bowtie remain small so that the shadow does not overpower the surface area of the diamond.

Generally, fancy shapes cost more than rounds when under ½ carat but less than rounds when over a ½ carat. This is due to the fact that it takes more time to cut them but they retain more of the weight from the “raw” diamond crystal. Generally, fancy shapes look larger than rounds of equal carat weight

Different Diamond Cuts You Should Know

Princess Cut- BIXLER

Princess cuts can be square or rectangle although squares command a premium. How did a diamond become a Princess? Its lineage goes back to an antique cut developed in Johannesburg called the Barion cut. It is the most popular fancy-shaped diamond. When expertly cut it is similar in brightness, sparkle, and fire to a round brilliant cut diamond.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Devotion Round is a variation of a standard 58 facet with a different quantity (70) and arrangement of facets. The diamond is patented and cut exclusively for Perrywinkle’s. Most people prefer the sparkle, brilliance, and fire in a Devotion round over the traditional round brilliant when compared side-by-side.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Emerald cuts get their name because the method of cutting with 25 facets was originally used for May’s birthstone. Emerald Cuts have a more traditional look due to the “steps” along the perimeter resembling the entry to the grand pavilion. They are usually rectangular but sometimes square in shape. Inclusions are easier to see due to their large “window” into the stone so higher clarity grades are necessary. Their appearance has more “shimmer” but less brilliant than other square or rectangle shapes. Fine polishing is critical due to the easy-to-see-through large top surface.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Asscher cut is similar to Emerald cut except their shape is like a modified stop sign. This cut was designed by Joseph Asscher in 1902. Original vintage Asscher cuts are rare and sought after. The modern Asscher cuts have more facets, a larger table, and smaller cut corners than their vintage counterparts. The resurgence of the art deco style with hand engraving has recently made them more popular.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

The cushion cut is a cross between a rectangle and a round with a vintage lineage. From the1830’s to the turn of the last century this was the style that most diamonds were cut to. It has been referred to as the “candlelight diamond” cut because it was originally cut before electricity. Today’s cushion cuts are cut the same vintage ones, albeit with better polish, symmetry, and silhouettes.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Devotion cushion is a variation of a traditional cushion but possessing far more brilliance. It is cut exactly square. It has 93 facets. The diamond is patented and cut exclusively for Perrywinkle’s. Most people prefer the sparkle, brilliance, and fire in a Devotion cushion over the traditional cushion cut.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Oval cuts are elongated round brilliant cuts. With the proper length to width ratio, of about 1.5 to 1, it has a graceful look however since it contains a bowtie It is important that the dimension is proper so that the bowtie does not overpower and dominate the surface of the diamond. A well-cut oval has similar brilliance and sparkle to that of a round cut stone.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

Marquise-shaped diamonds have been the diamond of choice for royalty even though it looks like a football! It’s named after Louis XIV’s mistress, the Marquise de Montespan. The length to width ratio should be in the range of 2 to 1 for maximum brilliance and gracefulness. The “bowtie” should not overpower and dominate the surface of the diamond.


Different Diamond Cuts - BIXLER

The pear shape is a combination of an oval cut and a marquise cut. It looks like an upside-down teardrop. Excellent symmetry will ensure even sparkle, especially in the point. The length to width ratio should be in the range of 1.65 to 1. It is important that the teardrop is pleasing and the “bowtie” does not overpower and dominate the surface of the diamond.


Heart shaped cut - BIXLER

The Heart shape personifies romance. After all, what could be more romantic than a diamond heart? Contrary to most online information, the heart shape should not look like a pear-shaped diamond with the top notched out. Its shape and design are different and more challenging than a pear shape. When looking for a great heart-shaped stone, symmetry is very important, as is the proper shape of the “lobes”. Heart shapes contain a bowtie.


Want to know more about diamonds? Check out our blogs on diamond color scale, four C’s of diamonds, and Bixler’s diamond buying guide!

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