Ever wonder what those words like brilliant, marquise, and cabochon in a jewelry description really mean? They’re all different kinds of stone cuts and they have a huge impact on the look of a stone. Read on to become an expert in stone cuts.
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What’s A Stone Cut?
When gemstones are mined or grown, their natural state is a rough, rock like shape. Gem cutters cut and polish the raw gem which impacts the shape, color, and brilliance of the stone. Cuts differ in the amount and size of the facets that are cut into the gem. When approaching a raw stone, gem cutters will decide on the perfect cut based on what will best highlight the stones qualities like color and sparkle while hiding any natural imperfections.
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A rectangular emerald cut stone has about 50 facets, less than those of its circular counterparts. Since an emerald cut has less facets, it tends to be less sparkly than other cuts but highlights the color of a gem beautifully.
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A marquise cut gem is longer and slimmer than other cuts, with 57 facets. This cut is particularly sparkly, reflecting more light than other types of cuts. This style is a favorite in more ornate settings to add a unique floral like shape.
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The square shaped princess cut is one of the most popular in engagement styles. With facts ranging from 58-76, this ultra sparkly cut looks best in lighter, more transparent stones.
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A cabochon cut does not have any facets, but instead is polished to create its shape. It was one of the first ever types of stone cuts dating back thousands of years before modern cutting technology was invented. This cut is ideal for opaque gems like turquoise and gems with extra glow like opals and moonstones.
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A pear cut is shaped like its namesake, pointed on the top and rounded on the bottom giving it a teardrop appearance. A pear cut has 71 facets creating gorgeous sparkle making it another favorite in modern engagement rings.
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If you’ve ever wondered the difference between a round cut and a brilliant cut, they’re technically the same. A brilliant cut is a type of round cut. As the most popular diamond cut, it has been around for years with many gem cutters experimenting with different techniques to create its 57 facets to make the most sparkly stone possible.
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The oval cut is a more modern type of gem cut, first used in the late 1950s. As a more elongated form of the traditional round cut, this style offers all of the sparkle with 69 facts plus a more unique shape.
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A baguette cut is rectangular like an emerald cut, is elongated and more narrow in width. This cut has a simple 14 facets, which makes it less sparkly but highlights a stone’s clarity better than most other cuts. This style is often used as an accent stone in multi stone settings.