A fancy cut diamond is any diamond shape other than a round brilliant. The most popular fancy cut diamonds sold today are asscher cut, cushion cut, emerald cut, heart shaped, marquise shaped, oval shaped, pear shaped, princess cut, and radiant cut, but there are many others.
The face up shape of a fancy cut diamond is usually the first thing people notice and the main reason why they are purchased. Fancy cut diamonds provide a way for you to express your individuality and appeal to those looking for that less traditional look. Fancy cut diamonds are also a great choice as side stones for a three stone engagement ring or accent stones on a solitaire setting.
Each fancy cut diamond has its own characteristics, so you should take the time to familiarize yourself with each. Most fancy cut diamonds on the market today are cut using the brilliant cut facet arrangement allowing for the same brilliance, fire, and scintillation of that of the round brilliant cut diamond, but some are cut using step cuts or mixed cuts. The round brilliant cut features triangular and kite shaped facets that begin at the diamond’s center and go out to the girdle. A step cut has long, narrow, four sided facets arranged in rows parallel to the girdle on both the crown and pavilion. Mixed cuts are a mix of both the round brilliant and step cuts. They can either have brilliant cuts on the crown and step cuts on the pavilion or step cuts on the crown and brilliant cuts on the pavilion.
Some Diamond Terms for Fancy Cuts
Belly – the center area of the side of a heart, marquise, oval, or pear where it curves out slightly.
Head – the rounded end of a pear
Shoulders – the curved edges between the head and belly of a pear
Lobes – the rounded part of a heart
Cleft – the v-shaped part of a heart
Symmetry and length-to-width ratio are important factors to consider when purchasing fancy cuts. You always want a fancy cut that is symmetrical. For example, both lobes of a heart should be the same size, both ends of an emerald should be the same width. Length-to-width ratio determines the shape of a fancy cut. There are preferred ranges for each shape, but this is also a personal preference.
To learn more about the characteristics of each fancy cut diamond visit our diamond education section.