Tag Archives: Princess Cut Diamonds

Comparing Princess Cut Diamonds & Radiant Cut Diamonds

Posted on Oct 24,2014

Princess cut and radiant cut diamonds share some similarities. Both are square cuts and both have a complete brilliant-cut pattern. When set on a ring, these two cuts can easily be interchanged at first glance.

Choosing between the two can be a difficult task, especially since both are superior when it comes to brilliance. You might want to compare two stones of the same carat, clarity, and color grade to determine which shape is more to your liking.

To determine the differences, let’s compare the two cuts based on the following factors:

Physical Characteristics

Princess cut is the second most popular cut next to the round brilliant. It is notable for its square shape and sharp corners. It is the first square cut to achieve the same brilliance as a round brilliant cut diamond.

While princess cut diamonds are traditionally square, there are some stones that are more rectangular than they are square. This depends on the length to width ratio of the diamond.

The radiant cut diamond is the second square cut to carry the same brilliant-cut pattern seen on round brilliant diamonds. Whereas the princess cut has sharp corners, radiant cut diamonds are square in shape with cropped corners. Its cropped corners may offer some practical advantages when it comes to stone setting.

Princess cut diamonds are always set on a prong stone setting to protect its corners from damage and chipping, an issue that is not present with the cropped corners of a radiant cut.

Princess cut diamonds also often have a larger table and more depth compared to radiant cuts.

Price and Demand

When it comes to pricing, princess cut diamonds are typically priced lower than radiant cut diamonds because there is very little waste when cutting a princess cut from the rough stone. This means that a diamond cutter can easily yield two princess cut diamonds from one rough stone with very little waste and as such, the market price is lower.

There is also a higher demand for princess cut diamonds compared to radiant cut diamonds so there is a bigger selection for the average consumer. Jewelers don’t stock up as much on radiant cuts as they do on princess cuts because of consumer demand so if you want more options, princess cut might be a more suitable choice for you.

Brilliance

A radiant cut diamond generally reflects more light than a princess cut diamond when viewed from the top. This is because when light enters a radiant cut diamond, it creates a circular pattern giving it more sparkle when it reflects light. Due to its cutting style, radiant cut diamonds also have more angles to let light in, allowing for more light to be reflected back to the surface.

Princess cut diamonds, on the other hand, are notable for its linear life. When light enters a princess cut diamond, the facets create an X in the center as a result of the contrast between light and dark facets. Due to the number of dark facets, princess cut diamonds don’t appear as sparkly as radiant cut diamonds when viewed from the top.

Radiant cut diamonds sometimes create a bow-tie effect as a result of the misalignment of facets in the diamond when light enters its surface.

Cut Quality

Princess cut diamonds are more abundant because manufacturers are able to maximize more of the rough stone during the diamond cutting process. As a result, there are more poor quality princess cut diamonds available in the market compared to radiant cut diamonds that focus more on preserving the aesthetic appeal of the stone over quantity.

Both cut styles have their own appeal and aesthetic value. In the end, it all boils down to personal preference. If price is the primary determining factor, however, princess cut diamonds are a better option because they have a cheaper per-carat price compared to radiant cut diamonds.

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What Kind of Diamond Engagement Ring Should I Buy?

Posted on Sep 24,2014

Choosing a diamond engagement ring can be a tough decision, especially with the wide-range of styles available in the market. Should you go for a timeless piece or go for something more modern and trendy?

The key to choosing the perfect engagement ring is to find out what your partner wants. Do you think she would prefer the timeless appeal of a solitaire engagement ring or would she prefer a unique and contemporary design?

While it’s common for couples to shop for engagement rings together, many still prefer to surprise their partners with a ring in hand when they pop the question. If you’ve chosen to go for the latter, then you’re probably wondering what kind of engagement ring you should buy.

Even if you can’t directly ask your partner what she prefers, if you have some knowledge of her personal style, then you’ll definitely find a suitable ring.

Styles of Diamond Engagement Rings

Classic Settings

Solitaire

The solitaire engagement ring is, no doubt, one of the most elegant and timeless designs for diamond engagement rings. Its minimalist setting provides a great base for a beautiful diamond and allows the stone to really sparkle and be noticed. It is also one of the safest options for people who aren’t too sure about what to get their fiancée.

Its four prong or six prong stone setting gives adequate protection for the stone, making it a suitable option for daily use. Since the setting is relatively affordable compared to other elaborate settings, the recipient can always have the setting altered by a jeweler if they wish to add side stones or change the setting altogether.

Side-Stones

Diamond engagement rings encrusted with side stones are also a popular option for many couples. This classic design often features a larger center stone and lots of smaller stones on the band set in either a pave or channel setting. It is commonly paired with a similar diamond-encrusted wedding band that provides a beautiful backdrop to the main stone.

Three-Stone Rings

While not as popular as solitaire and diamond encrusted settings, three-stone engagement rings are still quite popular today. Three-stone engagement rings often features one larger central stone and two slightly smaller side stones, although some rings feature three diamonds of similar sizes. They are generally more expensive because of the size of the diamonds. Three-stone engagement rings traditionally feature three diamonds that symbolize the past, present and future.

Diamond Cuts

The Round Brilliant Cut

The round brilliant cut is the most popular diamond shape used in engagement rings and accounts for about 75% of all diamond engagement ring sales. One of the most popular settings for round brilliant cut diamonds is the tiffany setting, featuring six prongs and a simple gold or platinum band. The round brilliant offers maximum fire, brilliance, and scintillation, making it an ideal option for engagement rings. It is also a very flexible shape to work with and goes well with mostly all settings.

The Princess Cut

The princess cut is the second most popular diamond shape for engagement rings and the most popular fancy shape diamond. It the closest square cut to achieve the same brilliance as the round-brilliant cut. Solitaire princess cut engagement rings are perhaps the most popular style. A four-prong stone setting is typically used to protect the corners of the diamond from damage and chipping.

Other Fancy Shapes

The most popular fancy shapes for diamond engagement rings next to the princess cut are: the emerald cut, the asscher cut, and the cushion cut.

Cushion cut engagement rings are especially popular today due to many celebrity engagements. They typically feature one large cushion cut diamond surrounded by a diamond-encrusted halo and a pave or micro-pave band.

Vintage Engagement Rings

While vintage engagement rings aren’t for everyone, some women prefer them for their classic elegance and historical value. Engagement rings from the Edwardian, Victorian, and art deco periods are of particular significance because of their popularity in modern engagements.

With the rising popularity of rose gold engagement rings, designs from the Victorian period are also regaining their popularity.

If you’re fiancée is an old soul or just simply loves the intricacy of engagement rings from past periods, then vintage engagement rings are definitely worth considering.

Generally speaking, unless you know exactly what your partner wants, sticking to classic styles is the safest option.

When it comes to diamond engagement rings, the possibilities are endless. You can even have a setting custom made especially for your fiancée if you want something truly unique. Just remember that the most important thing to consider when buying an engagement ring is the recipient’s personal style and preference.

Posted in  Diamond Cuts, Diamond Engagement Rings |   Tagged 

 

Guide to Diamond Cuts – Comparing Diamond Cuts

Posted on Sep 03,2014

Diamond cut can refer to two different aspects of a diamond’s physical characteristics: diamond cut grade and diamond shape. A diamond’s cut grade refers to how a diamond is cut, its proportions, polish, and symmetry whereas shape simply refers to the diamond’s physical shape (i.e. round, pear, emerald). We have discussed diamond cut grade extensively in previous posts and it has been established that the way a diamond is cut is one of the most important aspects that affects a diamond’s physical appearance. However, a diamond’s shape is just as important especially since it is one of the first things a person will notice when looking at a diamond (whether loose or set in a band).

Diamond shape is a matter of personal preference and as such, there are no fixed parameters that determine whether one shape is better than the other. One person might prefer the sparkle of a brilliant cut diamond whereas another might prefer the more subdued elegance of an emerald cut diamond.

While there is a myriad of diamond cuts available today, the most popular diamond cuts in terms of availability and demand are as follows:

Round Brilliant Cut     

The round brilliant cut is undoubtedly the most popular diamond cut today—accounting for 75% of all diamond sales. Its classic shape and ability to offer maximum fire and brilliance because of the way it is cut make it the most popular choice for many diamond buyers. It is also a very versatile shape that goes well with virtually any setting. Due to the high demand for round brilliant cuts, it is generally priced higher per carat compared to fancy cut diamonds.

Princess Cut     

The princess cut is the second most popular cut next to the round brilliant and the most popular fancy shape for diamonds. It is notable for its square shape, pointed corners, and excellent fire and brilliance. It is the closest square cut to achieve almost the same fire and brilliance as the round brilliant cut. Its shape also makes it a flexible option for many settings, although it is recommended to always set a princess cut diamond in a four-prong setting to protect its corners.

Compared to round brilliant cuts that wastes a lot of the rough stone when cut, princess cut diamonds have very little waste leading to a lower price per carat.

Emerald Cut                        

The emerald cut is adapted from the classic shape that emeralds are cut into, hence the name. It is popular for its subdued elegance, unique shape, and the hall-of-mirrors effect it creates when viewed from the surface. The emerald cut is a type of steps cut that is rectangular in shape and has cropped corners.

Since the emerald cut does not offer much fire and brilliance, inclusions and imperfections are much more visible on an emerald cut diamond compared to brilliant cuts. As such, buyers should pay extra attention to clarity when buying an emerald cut diamond especially for bigger stones.

Asscher Cut        

The Asscher cut is very similar to the emerald cut in appearance but it is square in shape instead of rectangular. While some refer to this cut as a modified emerald cut, it actually preceded the emerald cut. The Asscher cut has been in existence since 1902.

Asscher cut diamonds have larger step facets and a smaller table. It also typically has a higher crown than an emerald cut diamond. A well-cut asscher cut diamond will often deliver more brilliance than a well-cut emerald cut diamond because of its facet and table size.

Cushion Cut

Cushion cut diamonds are square in shape with rounded corners. It has been around for more than 2 centuries and used to be the shape of choice among diamond buyers. It used to be the most popular diamond shape before the round brilliant cut exceeded its demand. Due to recent cut improvements, the cushion cut is slowly regaining popularity. It is especially popular in many celebrity engagements and is typically set in a halo pave setting. While the cushion cut does not offer as much brilliance as the round brilliant cut, it typically offers more fire than other cuts.

Radiant Cut                              

Notable for its vibrancy and brightness, the radiant cut is an ideal option for those who want the fire and brilliance of a round brilliant cut but the rectangular shape of an emerald cut. The radiant cut is a brilliant cut diamond that is faceted both in the pavilion and the crown for extra fire and brilliance. While traditionally rectangular with cropped corners, some variations are squarer in shape than rectangular.

Oval       

The oval shape is a modified brilliant cut. It is very similar to the round brilliant cut in terms of the amount of fire and brilliance it exhibits when viewed from the surface. While not as popular as the round brilliant, some people prefer the oval shape because they are elongated and appear bigger even with smaller carat sizes.

Heart    

The heart shape is also a modified brilliant cut. It is very similar to the pear shape except it has two clefts on the top of each side to create an obvious heart shape. It is more popularly used in earrings and pendants. When used in engagement rings, it is not recommended to get anything smaller than .50 carats as it is difficult to notice the heart shape at all. For smaller heart shaped diamonds, a three-prong setting is recommended to accentuate its shape.

Pear      

The pear shape is another modified brilliant cut that is noted for its similarity to the round brilliant cut on one end and the marquise cut on the other end. One of the most important characteristics that any buyer should look for when choosing a pear shape diamond is symmetry. It is important for pear shaped diamonds to have excellent symmetry because of its shape. Ideally, the point at one end of a pear shape diamond should be in line with the highest part of the rounded end to achieve a perfect pear shape.

Comparison Chart for Different Cuts       

A diamond’s shape will have an effect on its physical size regardless of carat weight. Different cuts have different sizes, which is why some people prefer shapes that make a diamond appear bigger than it actually is. Below is a side-by-side comparison of the different diamond shapes and their estimated physical size, although it is worth noting that no two diamonds are the same even with the similar carat weights:

Diamond Cut Chart

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Princess Cut Engagement Rings

Posted on Jun 18,2014

Princess cut engagement rings rank second as the most popular option for consumers next to the round brilliant cut. Popular for its versatility and lower price range (compared to round brilliant cuts), the princess cut is highly preferred by many especially by those who want to veer away from the traditional shape of the more popular round brilliant cut. Princess cuts are generally priced cheaper per carat because the cut wastes the least material from the rough stone after cutting.

The princess cut, also known as a square modified brilliant, is popular for its fire and brilliance. Its extra faceting adds extra brilliance and scintillation to the stone, making it one of the best options for engagement rings.

Selling Princess Cut Engagement Rings

Since princess cut engagement rings are one of the most popular options amongst today’s consumers, it’s fairly easy to get a good price for a decent stone. If you have a princess cut engagement ring that you would like to sell, you can sell to different venues and get a decent price. Jewelry stores that buy used jewelry have a high demand for popular cuts like round brilliants and princess cuts.

However, if you want to get the best price for your stone, one of your best available options is to sell to an online diamond buyer. They buy all sorts of diamonds of different shapes and grades. They also offer better prices for diamonds because they have lower overhead costs and they have access to a bigger market.

Since princess cut diamonds have extra faceting, they hide flaws and inclusions better than other cuts and as such, it’s easier to sell lower-grade princess cut stones than step-cuts like emerald cut diamonds or asscher cut diamonds.

Buying Princess Cut Engagement Rings

Princess cut engagement rings are a good option for those who want the fire and brilliance of a round brilliant cut but want a square or rectangular stone instead of a round one.

As previously mentioned, princess cut engagement rings are generally cheaper per carat weight than round brilliant cuts because there is very little wastage when it is cut.  While princess cut diamonds have a smaller crown surface compared to round brilliants, a princess cut diamond of the same carat weight as a round brilliant will still appear bigger due to its square shape and pointed corners, which is bigger than the diameter of a round brilliant cut. This makes princess cut engagement rings a good option for those who want the appearance of a bigger stone without having to get a bigger and heavier one.

When buying princess cut engagement rings, pay attention to the following qualities and parameters to get the best value for your money:

Cut

As with any other diamond shape, when buying a princess cut engagement ring, it’s important to pay attention to the cut quality of the stone as this greatly affects its physical appearance.

Table and Depth Percentage

The table percentage value of a very good to excellent princess cut stone is within 56% to 70% and the table percentage should be within 58% to 75%.

Length to Width Ratio

Princess cuts are traditionally square but there are also princess cuts that are rectangular. While perfect square cuts are more expensive, some people prefer princess cut diamonds that are more rectangular than square. If you prefer a square princess cut, look for a length to width ratio of 1.00 to 1.05. If you want a stone that is visibly rectangular, look for a LW ratio of 1.08 and above.

However, if you’re adding side stones, you can get a stone with a LW ratio of 1.08 and it will still look square.

Color

Like with other diamond shapes, colorless princess cuts are more expensive because there is a higher demand for them. If you prefer a colorless diamond to a diamond that shows a bit of yellow, look for a color grade within the D to F range. A G-color grade is the minimum grade recommended for larger stones and H-color for stones that are less than .50 carats.

Clarity

Princess cut diamonds conceal flaws and inclusions much better than step-cuts like emerald and Asscher because of the extra faceting that provides more fire and brilliance. Since princess cut diamonds are more forgiving of inclusions, you can go as low as SI1 for stones that are less than a carat and still a get a pretty decent stone. For bigger stones, however, a minimum of VS2 is recommended.

Where to Buy

Blue Nile

Looking for the perfect princess cut engagement ring? Blue Nile offers a wide-selection of princess cut diamonds. You can manually select the diamond that goes into your setting of choice, giving you a more personalized and versatile shopping experience. If you’re not sure what to look for, consider the following options below:

Build a Princess Cut Diamond

Build a Carat Princess Cut Ring

Build a .5 Carat Princess Cut Diamond

Options from Amazon

Amazon also carries a wide-array of princess cut engagement ring options suitable for different tastes and budgets. We’ve preselected a few options below:

Princess Certified Ring

Classic Princess Engagement Ring

Solitaire Engagement Ring

Posted in  Diamond Cuts, Diamond Engagement Rings |   Tagged 

 

What is a Princess Cut Diamond?

Posted on May 15,2014

The princess cut or square modified brilliant is the second most popular diamond shape used on engagement rings next to the traditional round brilliant cut. Princess cut diamonds are traditionally square with sharp corners but some appear to be more rectangular than square. When viewed from the side, its shape looks like an inverted pyramid. Unlike the round brilliant cut which has been around for more than 100 years, the princess cut is a relatively new shape, only having been invented in the 1960s.

Facets

Princess cut diamonds and round brilliant diamonds generally have the same degree of brilliance, although they have different faceting styles. A round brilliant diamond has 58 facets whereas a princess cut diamond has 76 facets, which highly contributes to its fire and brilliance.

Shape

As previously mentioned, most princess cut diamonds are square from the surface but others are more rectangular. This will depend on the buyer’s preference. To determine how square or rectangular a princess cut diamond is, you should look at the length to width ratio of the diamond (i.e. length/width= length to width ratio). Square princess cut diamonds are within the 1 to 1.05 ratio so if you want a square diamond, you should check if the length to width ratio falls within this range. Those with length to width rations higher than 1.10 are more rectangular.

Square princess cuts are more expensive than rectangular ones but some people may prefer a more rectangular princess cut depending on the setting. When set with side stones, rectangular princess cut diamonds can look squarer than it actually is.

Princess Cut DiamondsColor

When it comes to color, valuing a princess cut diamond is the same as any other colorless diamond; with the D to F range being excellent and more expensive and warmer colors from G to Z being cheaper. It is worth noting, however, that color may be more visible on the edges of a princess cut diamond than it is on a round brilliant diamond so a J-color diamond may appear more yellow on the sides compared to a J-color round brilliant diamond. While some people prefer warmer colors for princess cut diamonds (i.e. around the G to H range). The smaller the diamond, the less visible the color is, which is why G-color princess cut diamonds that are less than .50 carats are still rated excellent.

Clarity

Princess cut diamonds can conceal inclusions better than round brilliant diamonds because of their brilliance. Some customers don’t mind not having such an excellent clarity grading as long as the inclusions are not very visible, although others are more particular about the clarity of their diamonds in a technical sense.

Setting

It is highly recommended that princess cut diamonds be set with prongs on each corner because the corners are susceptible to chipping and should be protected. The corners of princess cut diamonds may also have extra inclusions and facets, which would not look very good if not concealed.

Princess cut diamonds are highly preferred by consumers because its fire and brilliance is almost at par with that of round brilliant diamonds. Its unique shape and bigger appearance also adds to its appeal. Of all the diamond cuts, the princess cut wastes the least of the original rough stone that it is cut from. As a result, it is cheaper in price compared to round brilliant diamonds and other cuts.

Princess Cut Diamond Setting

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