Square and Rectangular Diamonds – Two Shapes, Many Cuts

With names like round brilliant cut diamond and Heart Shaped Loose Diamonds, it’s easy to confuse cut and shape. This can make looking for diamond rings confusing, especially when several cuts have the same outline. A few clues help distinguish square and rectangular jewels from one another.

Most stones of these shapes come in two kinds of cuts, step and mixed. Step cut diamonds downplay light reflection. Their major focus is underscoring the jewel’s clarity, color and polish. Mixed cuts are a combination of step and brilliant. They often have step-like tops and bright lower halves, producing brilliance while preserving carat.

Emerald cuts are rectangular with beveled corners. Their top and bottommost facets are broad, allowing an unobstructed view into the crystal. The cut was originally created for the green gemstone, to showcase the interior while protecting the fragile jewel from harm.  In time, the cut was transferred over to diamonds, creating emerald cut engagement rings and other jewelry.

Radiant cut diamonds have an outline and upper half similar to emerald cuts. Their lower sections intensify light to impressive degrees. A carefully formed radiant cut can even alter the color of the jewel. Radiants are also a good match for rough with modest clarity, as the brightness disguises crystal quirks.

Asscher cut diamonds are square step cuts with cropped corners. The Royal Asscher Diamond Company premiered their first version in 1902. This cut features fifty-eight facets with three rows of facets on top and below. The second cut, known as the Royal Asscher cut, debuted in 1999. Its seventy-four facet design is brighter than most step cut stones.

The origin of the princess cut diamond is unclear. What is certain is it’s square shaped with defined corners. The upper half is very shallow, with the lower portion providing brilliance. Standards for princess cut diamonds are loose, allowing for a variety of light patterns.

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