Diamonds and precious stones can be cut in a variety of shapes and sizes. While Round and Princess Shapes remain the most popular among engagement ring buyers, each of the following shapes has specific benefits to meet your personal preference.
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The most common shape, Round shaped diamonds maximize the amount of light entering and reflecting out of the stone. When buying a round diamond focus on the Cut, as it will have a significant influence on its appearance.
A Princess shape can either be square or rectangular in design. This shape looks like a pyramid with the flat side up. The main benefit to this shape is that it can be much more affordable than a traditional Round shape. This is due to less of the diamond being wasted during the initial cutting and shaping. Remember though, the Princess shape features four sharp corners. They’ll need to be protected by the setting so it doesn’t catch on anything.
A Cushion shaped diamond looks like… a cushion. Generally square in shape with rounded edges, the pillow-like diamond is a favorite for those who enjoy romantic, period piece styling. With a large table area and deep facets, a Cushion diamond with a high-grade Cut and Clarity will show an intense fire, making it a marvelous choice forengagement rings.
An Emerald Shaped diamond is modeled after a traditional emerald. As such, it’ll have long rectangular sides, usually twice the length as the short side. The advantage to this shape is the long flowing Table that allows an Emerald shape an extra degree of presence. Because of its long Table though, buyers must be aware of visible inclusions, so extra care is needed. All things being equal an Emerald shaped diamond will give the appearance of greater carat size.
Very similar to an Emerald cut, the Asscher shape looks like a squared off Emerald with each of the corners cropped at an angle. This creates an almost octagonal shape. A key attribute to the Asscher shape, which can vary slightly depending on the preference of the cutter, is the size of the Table. Historically, the Asscher shape had a larger Table, while more modern interpretations allow for a smaller Table and more total brilliance. While there is no clear alternative it is important to keep in mind that this large Table will allow a perfect view into the heart of the diamond. As such, any inclusions can be easily noticeable if found within this large viewing range.
The Marquise shape is one of the most intricate and elegant shapes attributed to diamonds. While many refer to the Marquise as “football” shaped or “boat” shaped, the actual intended representation of the shape is to mimic a pair of lips. Famously commissioned by King Louis XV to represent the shape of his mistress’ lips, the long slender diamond provides many advantages against more contemporary shapes. Not only does the Marquise elongate the perception of the wearers hand, its lower ideal Depth % allows more of the diamond to be exposed, as such maximizing the viewable Carats. Of concern with a Marquise is make certain the setting properly protects the two pointed ends, and for the two pointed ends to be placed within the same plane (equally dissecting the diamond.) The Marquise is truly a sensual shape that should receive more consideration from modern purchasers.
The Oval shape successfully bridges a large number of attributes from the popular Round shape, while adding some uniqueness and visual length. Benefitting from the fire and brilliance found within a Round shape, the Oval sacrifices a bit of both to bring the wearer additional features. The primary benefit to elongating the diamond is to maximize the amount of Carats represented in the Table. This can make a similarly sized diamond appear larger when cut in an Oval Shape. Oval diamonds also look wonderful with adjacent diamonds or gems, as the thinner profile allows adjacent stones to be mounted snugly.
While an Oval shaped diamond is an equal blend of a Round and Marquise, a Pear shaped diamond joins those two shapes physically together. The net result is a Round diamond with a Marquise tail. A very interesting shape, the Pear shape can vary greatly in regards to its length and width. Providing a unique character all its own, Pear shaped diamonds are typically more affordable than round diamonds and can present the wearer with a one-of-a-kind look.