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An introduction to diamonds

Carat Weight

Clarity

Color

Shapes of diamonds

Cut

Next steps, tips

As the name suggests, shape is simply the configuration or form of the diamond. As viewed from the top, the most common shapes are:

round
marquise
oval
pear

heart

emerald

princess

radiant

Brilliant vs. Step Cut. A "brilliant" cut has triangular facets which surround the stone and culminate on a flat top. A brilliant cut can be round, marquise, oval, pear-shaped, heart-shaped, princess (square), or radiant. A "step" cut diamond is "glassy" in appearance, since its facets usually span the length or width of the stone. With the exception of the emerald cut, today's most popular shapes are brilliant cuts or hybrid cuts (as opposed to strict step cuts)

Shape and Cost. In terms of cost, the round brilliant tops the list, while the square cuts typically cost about 10% less for a diamond of the same weight and quality. Note that there are lots of other shapes not mentioned here, many of them proprietary and/or patented. Examples include the Lucida (patented and trademarked by Tiffany & Co.), the Asscher (patented and trademarked by the Royal Asscher Diamond Company). Because the manufacture and sale of diamonds in these shapes are restricted by the respective patent and/or trademark holders, consumers can usually expect to pay a premium over the more standard shapes.

There is no "right" or "preferred" shape. Unless you're purchasing a diamond as an investment (in which case you should strongly consider a round brilliant), you should choose the shape which pleases you most.

Go back to Color Continue to learn about Cut
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 OTHER RESOURCES
Other great resources for quality diamond information:

Diamond Review
Diamond Helpers

 
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