When wearing gemstone jewellery as a statement piece, your jewellery is often characterised by the cut of gemstone used in the piece. There are many different cuts used in jewellery with some more popular and widely used than others. Today we look at 7 different cuts of gemstone that you may have seen or even wear yourself. But before we do it is important to know the basic ins and outs of gemstones that are used in jewellery…
When gemstones are mined, they are rough in both the surface and the shape. These rough gemstones are cut into shape by gem cutters, ready to be set into a piece of jewellery. There are two main types of gemstone cutting which are faceted and non-faceted. Faceted gemstones have flat sides and are geometrically shaped. These are the most commonly found type of gemstone found in jewellery nowadays as they are brilliant at reflecting light to give gemstones an added sparkle. Faceted gemstones usually have a table, crown, girdle, pavilion and culet as pictured here.
Non-faceted gemstones are gemstones that do not have the same flat sides as faceted gemstones and are usually just cut into shape or rounded like cabochons.
Now that we know a little more about faceted and non-faceted gemstones, let’s have a quick look at 7 different gemstone cuts and their features…
A round cut gemstone, or also known as a round brilliant cut is pretty much self explanatory. It is a gemstone that has a round shape when you look at it from the top (through the table).
Round cut gemstones are still the most popular cut of gemstone and are an extremely popular option for engagement rings as the way these cuts are faceted offers ultimate light reflection and sparkle.
The light reflection comes from 58 facets that all reflect the light which brings that dazzling radiance they’re so commonly known for.
A princess cut gemstone has a squared shape when looking at it from a birds eye view and is the second most popular cut of gemstone seen in jewellery. Princess cuts have 57 or 76 facets which makes for excellent light reflection to make this cut of gemstone truly radiant.
Popular with rings and earrings, the princess cut is usually a less costly option per carat when compared to the round cut due to less waste of the rough when cutting a princess cut.
The shape of an oval cut gemstone is exactly what it says on the tin. They are cut into an oval shape, most often in the style of an elongated round brilliant cut and can act as a magnificent main feature for both rings and pendants. Most modern cut oval gemstones have 58 facets which allows for a vibrant sparkle.
Oval cuts often come with a dark area that is known as a bowtie which can sometimes dull the appearance of an oval cut stone depending on how prominent it is. However, an oval cut is still a spectacular and trendy choice if you’re looking for something a ittle more modern.
Also known as a teardrop, the pear cut is an exquisite cross between a marquise cut and a round brilliant cut. Pear cuts have 58 facets making this choice of cut a truly dazzling option. While many gem cutters have long experimented with the different dimensions of a pear cut to find the perfect amount of sparkle, the amount of facets has always remained the same.
A poorly cut pear can show the appearance of a bowtie, similar to an oval cut. However in a good quality pear cut, this bowtie should not be seen.
Heart cuts are a much more modern cut of gemstone that are almost like a Pear shaped cut with a small cleft cut out at the top. A symbol of love, heart cut gemstones are fantastic for pendants, earrings and rings. A good heart cut gemstone will be symmetrical on both sides and have a well defined cleft to bring out the gemstones shape. These cuts of gemstone work best with larger gemstones, over 6mm in size as its shape is not as easily made out with a smaller gemstone.
Heart cut stones can come with between 57 & 59 facets, though many modern heart cuts are cut with 59 facets. Like other more fancy cuts, a heart cut can sometimes come with a bowtie across the center due to certain facets not reflecting light back to the viewer.
Emerald cut gemstones are rectangular in shape and a brilliant way to show off the colour and clarity of a gemstone. Despite being named after the emerald gemstone, emerald cuts can come in a wide variety of gemstones.
Emerald cut gemstones are characterised by step cuts, which creates a a contrast of light and dark lines which can also be known as a hall of mirrors effect. This cut of gemstone is particularly popular in rings and has been worn as an engagement ring by many prominent figures.
Marquise cuts, also known as navette cuts, are brilliant cut gemstones that are shaped like a long oval cut with points at each end. Just like heart cut gemstones, it is important that marquise cut stones are symmetrical as their shape can make any imperfections easily spotted. This cut of gemstone is an extremely stylish choice for rings but is also highly effective with pendants.
As a fancy cut of stone, the marquise cut can have those darker spots in the middle know as the bowtie effect. But with 56 to 58 facets, the marquise cut is a truly magical cut of gemstone that is full of radiance.
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