History of Diamond Cuts

All diamonds start as a rough crystal. The shape of the crystal helps determine what shape the finished stone will be cut into. The cutter makes choices based on weight retention, clarity, and color grade.


The Point Cut

Popular into the 15th century, early cutters shaped diamonds using boards treated with olive oil and diamond dust.


“The point cut is considered the earliest diamond cutting style. This fourteenth century gold ring contains one of the few surviving point cuts.” (Gia.edu)


Table Cut

Mid 1400s – to late 1600s

The cutter fashioned the table cut by removing the top part of the octahedron crystal. Sometimes the bottom point was removed as well creating a culet. This cutting style was an improvement on the point cut because it allowed more light to enter the diamond.


Photo from www.1stdibs.com


The Rose Cut

From the 1500s – to the early 1900s

Created as an effective way to use flatter rough crystals, the rose cut features a flat bottom with triangular facets that come to a point at the top. They have great brilliance but little fire.

All of the side stones in this brooch are rose cuts.

Some modern designers, such as Sethi Couture, are now using rose cuts in their pieces giving them a unique, vintage inspired look.

Single Cut

Introduced by cutters in the mid 1600s. This cutting style features 16 or 17 facets depending on whether a culet is fashioned. This cutting style unlocked the diamonds true potential to sparkle

Old Mine Cut

Cushion shaped with 58 facets including a large culet.


Old European Cut

The Old European was an early brilliant cut with a circular outline. The culet on old stones like the one seen below are key characteristics to look for when identifying an older cut diamond.  Old European cuts were seen prior to the introduction of the modern round brilliant which came to be in the early 1900s.

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Blog written by Michaela Taylor