You may have already picked the perfect shape you want your stone to be in, but there is more to a stone than just its shape! Types of gemstone cuts are many and the cut of your stone, the facets made and combined, can make a difference between a subtle shine, a dazzling show, or a depth of color you can just fall into.
The shape of your stone – be it round, square, or rectangular – is only half the story. So, let’s start with the basic types of cuts and how they can make your stone shine the way you want it to.
The Basics: Brilliant, Step, and Mixed Cuts
Even though you may not know their name, you’ve likely seen the three basic cuts already. The brilliant, the step, and the mixed cut are most common and most recognizable gemstone cuts. Look around your jewelry collection, and you’re sure to find at least one of them!
The brilliant cut is, as its name suggests, the one cut that can make your gem shine the most. It almost triangular in shape, with kite-shaped facets that spread from the flat top of the stone.
Sometimes called emerald, and sometimes a baguette cut, the step cut is of a rectangular shape – its facets are rectangular, which descent and ascent it gem’s sides. This kind of cut is perfect when you want to showcase depth of color, and have your stone gleam in a subtle, though powerful way.
The mixed cuts are, quite simply, the combination of the brilliant and the step. Brilliant cuts on the bottom of the gem, and a step on the top, or vice versa – any and all of these combinations produce gemstones that shine even on the darkest days.
The Briolette is shaped as a drop, or a pear, with no less than 84 triangular facets over its whole surface. Such a gem doesn’t exactly have a ‘top,’ ‘sides,’ or a ‘bottom’ and that is why this is the most difficult to produce. During one day, a cutter can make no more than about ten briolette jewels. A gem cut in this style is perfect for earrings – they dangle and move, letting the light shine off the many, many sides of a briolette, and in that way show off its color and radiance.
A cut that has been around since the 16th century and never once lost its brilliance is the rose. Gemstones cut in this style are flat on their back and have a domed top that consists of up to 24 triangular facets, which merge together to form a single apex. This shape might remind you of a rose – the facets are somewhat like petals opening up and unfolding into a single, richly brilliant rosebud. These kinds of gemstones reflect light gently, almost as though you are carrying a dewdrop on your finger.
The princess cut, one of the most popular choices for a gemstone, is square in shape. What a princess cut can give you is between 58 and 76 facets off which light bounces beautifully. This cut is also known as ‘square modified brilliant’ which says something about its dazzle! Its best used for light and transparent stones.
There are many more gemstone cuts used today, but these are the ones you might hear a lot about. Now that you know the basics, you will definitely be confident when making a decision about what stone you want and how you want it to shine!
Whichever cut, shape and size you prefer your gemstones to be, we can help you find the perfect fit. Just drop by one of our stores, and take your pick!