An Unparalleled Guide to Gemstone Cuts and Shapes

The sizes, cuts and shapes of a gemstone are essential characteristics that play a vital role in the stone aesthetics. The selections of personal choice are plentiful in these categories, and it can be the best part of the assortment process.

These gem features are evident while looking at a gemstone, and most people are familiar with these terms. But there is still confusion about how cuts and shapes are different yet working together and using the same language.

Here, I will explain these terms and concepts and offer clarity about these essential aspects of gemstones.

Gemstones Cuts and Shapes

Gemstone cutting is a method through which rough crystals are turned into brilliant, transparent, and polished stones, as we know them to be. This procedure includes a particular shape for the gem. These characteristics – cuts and shapes – work to enhance the shine, clarity, and color of the stone flawlessly.

The gem cutters – renowned by the professional name lapidary, includes all the considerations about every unique gem to pick the most beneficial shape and cut. Often, the lapidary is seeking to reduce any imperfections and enhance the best qualities.

As compared to a diamond, where the color is spread all around the crystal, as Zucker explains in his book ‘A Connoisseur’s Guide to Jewels and Gems,’ “Sapphire poses a tremendous intellectual challenge to the cutter. Often, the color appears in more concentration in one part than the other parts of the crystal.” The cutter should orient the gem so that the chosen color is reflected through the stone table.

The lapidary is looking for the best compromise between the size retention and beautiful appearance for each gem. A quick way to differentiate between cuts and shapes, and the relationship between both, is that the gem cuts differ in the amount and size of facets carved in the gem’s surface in every category of shapes.

For instance, the gemstone shape can be square; however, the cut does not essentially need to be a princess cut. The lapidary can figure out that the stone features make it best suited for a radiant cut, a cushion-cut, or an Asscher cut.

Although the cuts and shapes can be the same (a pear-shaped gem can have a pear cut), others have much flexibility. All the shapes are embodied in the gemstones – oval, rectangle, square, round, etc. – and how strongly they stay fixed to the shapes can differ as they are cut.

Along with all the gemstone elements, there are more options while considering cuts and shapes, and here I am going to break down common ones into an easy guide for you.

Asscher Cut

A distinct X knows an emerald cut and a hybrid of the princess; the Asscher cut in the step-cuts, cropped corners, and table of the gemstone to increase a gemstone’s clarity. The term for this cut is capitalized, as it is a name from the Asscher brothers who established this cut in 1902.

Baguette Cut

It is rectangular and long in shape; this cut is famous for accent stones. The cut increases clarity with long step-cuts to make a geometric, modern look.

Emerald Cut

Designed originally to cut emeralds, the cut’s effect is to focus the color and cut as color shows vividly with the cut. This cut is similar to a rectangle from the top with trimmed corners, and light brightly bounces between the step-cuts.

Cushion Cut

It is also known as pillow cut due to the softness that the cut makes; the cushion cut has round corners and increases the raw gem while offering brilliance and luster.

Marquise Cut

It is also called navette cut; the marquise is cut that reflects most of the light and offers more sparkle and color depth. Best symmetry for both endpoints is significant to ensure that the stone sits adequately in the setting to reduce breakage or chipping.

Oval Cut

Made in the late 1950s, this oval cut gives the brilliance and fire of round cut gems; however, in a unique shape. The long silhouette can create the illusion of a large stone.

Pear Cut

It resembles a teardrop; this pear cut beautifully reflects light and permit colors to showcase intensely. Like the marquise cut, symmetry is significant for gemstone integrity, and they need a 6-prong setting to give the best support.

Round Cut

Also renowned as a round brilliant cut, it is the reigning most famous cut. All the facets are cut to optimize light dispersion in the stone. Once, this cut was exclusively for the diamonds.

Princess Cut

In addition to the round brilliant, this cut is the second most famous cut. A diverse range of facets is suitable for this cut; however, it does not matter how much; it makes a unique sparkle. The square features of the princess cut also mean that the stone can retain more of it when it is in the process of cutting.

Trillian Cut

It is a triangle in shape; the cut increases gem color and brilliance. Proportions, angles, and symmetry are essential for light dispersion in this different shape. As they are cut shallow, they can appear large as compared to what the weight shows.

The method through which a lapidary cuts and polishes a crystal piece is highly focused and intricate. The process of cutting started by choosing the sorting different qualities and colors of the rough stuff. For better analysis and inspection, large inclusions are cut from the rough sapphire.

After shaping the sapphire rough, it is attached to the cutting pin with the help of special wax used for faceting. Faceting requires great care and talent. It takes a lot of time to master this skill and make an elegant cut that changes the crystal into a fine stone. The base of the whole process focuses on color and light.

Size of Gemstone

The Sapphire size has a significant influence over its cost compared to a small stone of the same characteristics. What follows is a division of what to assume within the ranges of specific carat sizes.

1 to 2 Carat Sapphires

They are quite rare in fine quality. Medium to low quality is widespread.

3 to 4 Carat Sapphires

They are quite rare in fine quality and not possible to replace or match. In this size, medium to low quality is rare.

8 to 10 Carat Sapphires

They are a fine quality; two stones are not the same, and a reliable supply is not easy to maintain. Medium to low quality is rare and demanding to get as well.

10+ Carat Sapphires

Usually, they are considered ‘Important’ in fine quality as they are only one of a kind and very costly in pink, blue, and rare colors. These stones are for the fortunate and lucky, not only for the wealthy. Only to see this kind of sapphires in person is an honor.

It is a brief guide to gemstones cuts and shapes. For more related content, don’t forget to visit our site.

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