Moijey Fine Jewelry & Diamonds Blog

The Cutting Edge of Diamonds - Part 2

Originally posted on April 27th, 2017

Updated on April 2nd, 2020


Previously on Moijey Fine Jewelry & Diamonds:

Diamonds weren't cut on account of sacredness.

The pointcut was the earliest known diamond cut, which evolved into the Table Cut,

Then the Rose Cut, which was famous for two or three centuries. And then...

The Old Mine Cut and the Old European Cut became blueprints for the brilliant modern cut.

In the 1700s, a diamond deposit was discovered in Brazil, leading to an increased production round brilliant, which is where our story continues.

For half a millennia, diamond cutters have been trying to release the reputable brilliance and fire of diamonds. Early attempts have been excellent starting points: The Table Cut provided the first facets, the Rose Cut provided an early example of triangular faceting, and two cuts became blueprints for the modern round brilliant cut diamond we all know and love today.

The Old Mine Cut has 58 triangular and kite-shaped facets, similar to the modern round brilliant, except that the top half is more substantial and a noticeably large culet. Its shape was also identical to the cushion cut, the author's favorite diamond cut. We'll get into the fancy cuts later. A high top half and deep lower half have enhanced the old mine cut diamond's ability to reflect and absorb light. As a result, the old mine cut remained popular in the eighteenth century.

The Old European Cut is similar to the old mine cut, except that it possessed a circular girdle, which was unusual for a faceted stone to have at the time. That and having a round shape when facing up was also unusual because the older diamonds were cushion-shaped.

The earliest development started in the late 1800s. A jeweler named Henry Morse, through trial and error succeeded in achieving an optically efficient cutting design. Through his cutting experiments, he discovered the correct angles and facets necessary to produce a beautiful array of fire and brilliance and dancing light. Unfortunately, the cutting industry wasn't enthusiastic about Morse's discovery, believing that the older cuts to be superior. Oddly enough, Morse's proportions were similar to Marcel Tolkowsky's dimensions.

In 1919, Marcel Tolkowsky persuaded the cutting industry that his proportions bring the maximum amount of light in a diamond.

The brilliant round cut is the most dominant diamond cut in the marketplace. As a result of Tolkowsky's proportions, diamond cutters and manufacturers developed different shapes, which are considered fancy, and modified the dimensions to fit these shapes.

The most popular shapes in our Silver Spring Diamond Room are princesses, cushions, and pears. Emerald cuts attract our customers as well.

With the round cut as the dominant shape, the princess cut is the second most popular shape. The modern classic, the princess cut, was created in the late 1970s, and it became one of the first square shapes to possess triangular facets instead of step-cut facets. The Princess is also ideal for channel settings and invisible settings, like our 14kt White Gold 1 1/5CTW Square Diamond Engagement Ring.

Do you remember when I mentioned the cushion cut as one of the author's favorites? The cushion has been enjoying recent popularity with people who want an old-school yet modern feel in their jewelry, primarily their engagement rings. Also called an "antique cushion," the cushion can either be a slightly curved square or rectangle, like this 14K White Gold Cushion Infinity Engagement Ring Mountingwhich is new to our website.



Another unique shape is the pear-shaped brilliant cut. A pear-shaped cut can almost be as bright as a round-cut, and like the round can offer timelessness. Our new 14K White Gold Pear Ring Mounting is an ideal example.

On occasion, Moijey can offer clients step-cut diamonds, like an emerald cut. A step cut developed in the 1400s has facets that are either square or rectangular instead of triangular and kite-shaped. The emerald cut is the most popular step cut. Cuts like the emerald cut are excellent in bringing out the clarity of diamonds, and our 14kt Gold Semi-Mount 6x4mm Emerald Cut Center provides lovely transparency.

In this article, I listed what I know is popular with our clients. If anyone wants to learn more about diamond cuts, give us a call. We would love to hear what you have to say.