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Summary: Cushion Cut Diamond

Information on the diamond cushion cut and the diamond cushion shape.

The "cushion cut" diamond style is a diamond shape that had been the most popular cut of diamond in the days prior to modern electric lighting. First created in the 19th century, around 1830, the cushion cut diamond shape was cut and polished in a time when such techniques had to be preformed by hand. With its rounded corners, squared shape, and large faceted culet, the cushion cut lost popularity around the beginning of the 20th century. Nevertheless, under candlelight, its old world and antique charm, brought out by its look of great depth, still make it a cut of high and desirable quality. Today this type of diamond is seeing resurgence in popularity due to the use of modern techniques to cut and polish for such a romantic shape.

It is called "cushion cut" due to having the culet, or the bottom of the diamond, being cut as another facet. The large size of the culet in cushion cut diamonds is due to the fact that cushion cuts were cut and polished to give a great depth to the look of the diamond. Square or rectangular in shape, this type of faceting of the culet for such depth is designed for viewing by soft lighting such as candlelight. It is for this reason that the cushion cut is also known as the Candlelight diamond. Unfortunately, under bright electric lighting, the faceted bottom can create the look of a hole in the diamond.

The cushion cut is a cross between the Old Miner Cut and the modern Oval cut of diamond. The square to rectangular shape of this deep cut of diamond should have a length to width ratio of typically 1.1 to 1.2. The modern cushion cut typically has 58 facets to help give a greater display of scintillation when seen under modern lighting. There are no set proportions for an ideal cut with the cushion cut. The setting should have four prongs to help secure the diamond. The personality traits for this shape of diamond can be found in the origins and current state of the cushion cut itself. The cushion cut holds the traditional look of the older, pre-modern cuts, yet exhibits the brilliance and scintillation brought out from modern cutting and polishing techniques. The cushion cut melds the traditional and the modern and attracts those with the same melding within their own personalities.