There are two different significances for the expression different cuts of diamonds. One of the significances is the one of diamond reflection and the other one refers to its shape. The way the stone is cut can determine its reflective quality. This property is the one that matters and that receives a score in quality certificates. The better a cut is made, the more brilliant a diamond can be.
Diamond Cut Brief History
The history of polished diamonds began in the Middle Age, when the stones were still used in their raw form, but not for making jewelry. In the fourteenth century, the first guilds of diamond polishers were founded. The techniques began to be more improved. In the seventeenth century, the first brilliant cuts were introduced. Early brilliants were not circular, but rounded and even rectangular. Later, the practice of bruting allowed the development of circular shapes. Since the eighteenth century, the shapes improved even more. Saws and jewelry lathes are used since the 1900 and this is how the modern diamond cutting era began.
Types of Cuts
A diamond’s cut is one of the four characteristics of a stone, all beginning with the letter “c”: cut, clarity, color and carat weight. The first one is the most important of all and there are different cuts of diamonds. A reliable cut is the thing that gives the final quality and value of a diamond. A better brilliance means that the stone will shine naturally from its own core. With the right cuts, light can enter well through the table, reach the pavilion and reflect on all sides, until it reflects back to the eyes of the observer. There are four main types of cuts: ideal, fine, shallow and deep. Avoiding light leaks is the main goal when a cut is performed. There are also secondary types of cuts.
According to geologists, a set of formulas can be used to calculate a maximum brilliance that can be obtained. There are proportions to keep in mind and they may not be noticed by the eye of a newbie. Instead, a professional can make the difference between an ideal cut and a poor cut. For determining consumers to make a difference between various types of cuts, there are grades used: fair, poor, good, very good, premium and ideal. Fair and poor are grades that are considered when a small portion of light is reflected back. The carat weight is kept in mind in this case.
Good diamonds can reflect a lot of the light that enters them. But, the poor brilliance can be compensated by cutting a larger stone. The advantage brought by this grade is the cost saving that consumers can obtain. A balance can be obtained between beauty and the money spent and good graded diamonds can be a great solution for those with a lower budget.
Diamonds considered very good can reflect the majority of light that enters them and the brilliance obtained can be good enough. A larger stone is considered again, as compensation. For some customers, these diamonds may be outside of their preference range and for them, ideal and premium are the best choices. The cost of good graded stones is also lower. When premium is involved, many stones that have round cuts can be considered equal to ideal stones. Because they provide a maximum brilliance, these diamonds are for those who truly appreciate quality work.
The best brilliance of all is obtained through an ideal cut, which means that the tables are smaller and the dispersion is ideal. These stones with round cuts are for people who like to have the most expensive diamonds of all. In order to understand the diamond’s anatomy, people have to know the following parameters of a stone: diameter, table size, crown angle, girdle, crown height, pavilion height, culet and pavilion angle.
Six ideal cuts have been considered over the years, but just three of them are mainly used today, more for benchmarking purposes. These are the six types: American Standard, Practical Fine, Scandinavian Standard, Eulitz Brilliant, Ideal Brilliant and Parker Brilliant. One of the modifications of the standard cuts is the Passion Cut, which is the opposite of another one called Hearts and Arrows. The difference between these two is the presence or the lack of arrows, meant for capturing the returning light from the center of the stone in different ways.
A drawback of the cutting techniques is the loss in weight for a stone, which can be of approximately fifty percent. It can be less, but it rarely happens. The technological evolution and the improvement of the techniques did not change this over the years. Today, the work is highly influenced by fashion and preferences. The standard round brilliant can be changed into various shapes. These shapes are not very different from the round brilliant, but they can resemble boats, hearts, triangles, ovals, drops, or pears.
Every shape can be meant for a specific taste and the forms are obtained with mathematical precision. There are also more eccentric shapes, such as the one of a butterfly or a star and this is the result of using the newest technologies that are now available. Too complex shapes are not recommended by experts, because they can be very fragile and hard to handle.
Some cuts that were used for many years are now beginning to be used rarely, but they remain in history as points of reference. Good examples can be King and Magna. Stones that have squared or rectangular outlines can be subject to step cuts. Mixed cuts are a combination of modified brilliants and step cuts and the main purpose of using them is preserving step cuts dimensions and the beauty of brilliants.
The main purpose of using different cuts of diamonds is obtaining the heaviest and the most beautiful finished product from a stone. If the cut grade has to be lowered for this, this can be decided by a professional, but sometimes it is the only solution. A too deep diamond may have a better carat weight, but its brilliance can be worse, because more light can be lost. What is chosen from all types of cuts depends on the budget of consumers and personal taste.