Diamonds, the hardest known natural material, are not just celebrated for their durability but also their ability to refract light. The way a diamond is cut plays a pivotal role in how it interacts with light, creating the sparkle that diamonds are renowned for. Today, we’ll explore two popular diamond cuts: the old European cut and the round brilliant cut.
Understanding the Old European Cut Diamond
The old European cut diamond, also known as the old European cut, harks back to a time when diamond cutting was in its infancy. This cut was popular during the Victorian, Edwardian, and Art Deco eras. The round-cut diamond is characterized by its circular girdle, large open culet, small table, and a total of 58 facets.
The old European cut diamond was designed to maximize the diamond’s color and clarity. This was particularly important during an era when lighting was predominantly from candles or gas lamps. The old European cut diamond captures and refracts light in a way that draws your eye into the stone rather than reflecting it outward. It’s akin to gazing into a miniature galaxy with each glance.
Introducing the Round Brilliant Cut Diamond
Fast forward to today, and you’ll find that the round brilliant cut diamond reigns supreme. Representing over 75% of all diamonds sold, this cut is a testament to advancements in diamond cutting technology and understanding of light physics.
The round brilliant cut diamond typically has between 57-58 facets and is characterized by its perfect symmetry and iconic sparkle. Unlike the old European cut diamond which was designed to enhance color and clarity, the round brilliant cut is all about maximizing light performance. This means that regardless of lighting conditions, a round brilliant cut diamond will always exhibit exceptional sparkle and brilliance.
The Key Differences
The key difference between these two cuts lies in their interaction with light. The old European cut (round cut) is like a quiet lake at sunset – it draws you in with its depth and color. On the other hand, the round brilliant cut is like a sunny day at noon – it dazzles you with its brightness and sparkle.
Physically, these cuts differ too. Over time, changes in cutting techniques have led to larger tables, smaller culets, and leaner facets in round brilliant cuts. These changes are designed to maximize light reflection, creating the signature sparkle we associate with modern jewelry.
In contrast, the old European cut has smaller tables, larger culets, and chunkier facets. This results in broader flashes of light and a warmer glow compared to the sharp sparkle of a round brilliant cut diamond.
While both cuts may seem similar at first glance, they each offer a unique experience. Whether you’re drawn to the vintage charm of an old European cut diamond or prefer the modern sparkle of a round brilliant cut will depend on your personal taste.
Remember that every diamond tells a story. What story do you want your diamond to tell? Whether it’s a tale steeped in history or one that shines brightly into the future will depend on whether you choose an old European cut or a round brilliant cut diamond.