Archive for July, 2014
Posted on July 30th, 2014
A cushion cut diamond engagement ring offers modern day brilliance coupled with vintage elegance. The shape resembles a pillow, rectangular with soft corners and gently curved sides. The modern cushion has 64 facets and is among one of the rarer diamonds. The immediate ancestor to the cushion is the Old Mine Cut, which had 58 larger facets in a steep crown with a moderately sized table. These profiles were greatly desired in their time and remained popular for over 200 years until the early 1900s.
The traditional modern cushion will have a length to width ratio of 1:1, but variations of the shape will range in lengths of 1.10 to 1.20 and many stones have been cut into a more round or oval shape. Modern standards are varied and different pavilion facets will dictate a chunkier pattern or splintery fire. One pattern has an extra row of pavilion facets and is classified as a “modified cushion cut” by the G.I.A. Other patterns include classifications such as “cushion brilliant” and “modified cushion brilliant”.
Different Looks of Antique and Modern Cushions
Above are two Antique Cushions. The left ring represents a slightly larger length, so it has more of a rectangular shape. The ring on the right has less distinctive sides and presents more of a round silhouette. These diamonds have larger, distinctive facets than the modern cut stones below.
The two rings above have a modern cushion cut center diamond. The facet pattern in these two present more of a “crushed ice” or crystallized mosaic than the antique cuts. The left diamond has softer corners which looks more oval. Cushion cuts are often used for evergrowing popular yellow diamond rings. The diamond on the right has a 1:1 length to width ratio and a very gentle curve on the four sides of the diamond.
While colorless diamonds are preferable in many modern fancy cuts, many buyers prefer a warmer color representative of the vintage period. Cushion cut diamonds may vary visibly in size based on the depth percentages used. Stones with shallower angles on the crown may look larger when based on carat weight. Both observations apply to diamonds when viewed in the face up position. Inclusions may be easier to see in cushions that use larger facets and may be nearly invisible with more of a crushed ice look. Color, clarity and the silhouette is very subjective in this diamond.
If the cushion cut diamond is the ideal choice for your engagement ring, visit Mark Broumand to view his large portfolio of antique and modern cushion cut diamonds. You can also find cushion cut diamond earrings and bracelets to complement your new engagement ring purchase or existing jewelry collection.
Posted on July 28th, 2014
Rare and beautiful fancy yellow diamonds are gaining popularity as engagement rings, three stone rings or anniversary rings as well as other types of jewelry. In the past, colored diamonds were reserved for aristocrats and royalty since these rare beauties only account for 1 in every 10,000 diamonds. Natural white diamonds are color graded on a scale that ranges from D to Z; D being colorless and Z containing brown, yellow or grey tint. Any color that is graded greater than Z is considered fancy color.
Natural white diamonds are graded on color from a face down position (looking down through the bottom of the diamond). Yellows are viewed in a face up position, meaning grading is assessed when peering down through the top of the diamond. Different grading characteristics are also used for colored than for white diamonds.
Fancy colors are graded on three characteristics:
1. Hue, which is the actual color visible to the eye
2. Tone – how light or dark the color is
3. Saturation – the consistent strength of the color
Yellows are color-graded on a 9 point scale as follows:
• Faint (K – M on white diamond scale)
• Very Light (N – R on white diamond scale)
• Light (S – Z on white diamond scale)
Fancy Yellow Color
• Fancy Light
• Fancy Dark
• Fancy Intense
• Fancy Deep
• Fancy Vivid
Yellows can be used in the same way as white diamonds and some cuts will intensify the natural hue. While white diamonds are valued for being colorless and brilliant, fancy colors are more valuable based on color first and foremost. Typically, a cut with a deeper pavilion will intensify the hue. Diamond cut selection is also based on the rough shape of the stone. Below are some of the best cuts for intensifying color:
Flattering Cuts for Fancy Yellows
1. Radiant Cut
2. Pear Cut
3. Cushion Cut
4. Oval Cut
Mark Broumand is proud to offer Fancy Yellow diamonds for earrings, pendants, bracelets and rings in different sizes, colors and cuts. View Mark’s available selection or fill out a custom design form to create unique yellow diamond jewelry pieces to call your own.
Posted on July 24th, 2014
Marquise cut diamond engagement rings feature an elongated oval shaped diamond with ends that taper to a point. The Marquise of Pompadour was honored with this diamond commissioned by King Louis XV of France. It was said that the King wanted the jewel created as a tribute to his mistress’ perfectly shaped mouth. Also known as the “Navette Cut”, French for “Little Boat”, the Marquise’s namesake is ellipsoid shaped (boat shaped) with delicate lines of symmetry and fragile, pointed ends.
A symmetrical silhouette is a crucial part of this profile as any misalignment will be painfully apparent, especially once the stone is set. The softly rounded left and right sides of the diamond should mirror each other and the pointed ends should be in perfect alignment. There are 58 standard rectangular facets in this beautiful cut. The pavilion (underside of stone) can be created with 4, 6 or 8 main facets.
Per carat, the Marquise has the largest crown surface area and will appear visually larger in a “face up” position than any other cut. This cut is vulnerable to the “bowtie effect”, which is a bowtie shaped shadow in the center of the diamond. Severe bowtie should be avoided; however some degree will be seen in all Marquises. The Marquise will be high quality in color and clarity since flaws will be very visible through the large crown.
The Marquise is one of the most difficult shapes to set and care should be taken to protect the tips with prongs if set as a solitaire. The stone should not be structurally set on the points only, as this will make the diamond even more prone to chipping and breakage. Any flaws are best set in the tapered ends. The ideal length to width ratio will be 2:1, but may range in length between 1.85 and 2.10 to cover more oval stones and more narrow stones.
The unique and delicate Marquise cut engagement rings in Mark Broumand’s collection were selected for their visual appeal and high quality color, clarity and perfect symmetry. If your fiancée desires a larger diamond that slims the finger, the Marquise cut diamond ring is the perfect choice. View Mark’s selection of Marquise cut and fancy yellow diamond engagement rings in an array of ring settings sure to capture her heart.
Posted on July 23rd, 2014
The most popular engagement rings on the market today are round brilliant cut diamond rings. There is such a high demand for these beauties that 80% of loose diamonds are round brilliants. The modern round brilliant was standardized in the early 1900s by Marcel Tolkowsky, who hailed from several generations of well-known jewelers. Tolkowsky’s work led to a standardized set of proportions, depths, angles and cuts to enhance the natural qualities of a rough diamond. The result is a 58-facet round that is incredibly brilliant, with amazing color, fire and energy.
A century of light theory, math and optics studies led to the visual masterpiece that is the modern round brilliant. The table was enlarged to be 53% of overall width or larger and the crown was not as deep. Crown facets were arranged in a repetitive pattern of three different facets: star, bezel and upper half. The pavilion and the lower-half facets were elongated over time. The angles of both the crown and pavilion were not as steep. The lowest point of a diamond, or culet was reduced in size. All of these changes created a more “splintery” light refraction whereas older round cuts had more of a “checkerboard” or chunky black and white refraction of light.
If you are looking for a unique variation of the round, the Antique European round cut has large facets and amazing light scintillation. It is the predecessor to the modern round brilliant cut. Antique cuts also have 58 facets, but the table is smaller and the crown is steeper. The diamond has an open culet (lowest point of the diamond profile) and the pavilion is shorter. Though similar to a contemporary round brilliant cut diamond, light is refracted differently. Light that enters the stone gets captured within the diamond and reflects off the larger culet. This enhances the inner fire of the stone in more of a distinctive black-and-white pattern whereas the light refracted in modern round is more splintered and brilliant.
With all the possibilities for round brilliants available, you can rest assured that Mark Broumand has chosen only the highest quality rings to lend his name to. You can find round cut engagement rings of different carat weights and in a variety of solitaire, halo, three-stone and side stone ring settings. Mark can also custom design the perfect round cut diamond ring to your specifications.
Posted on July 22nd, 2014
There are many reasons to create a custom diamond ring. Mark Broumand can help you create a diamond engagement ring to steal her heart, an anniversary ring to celebrate the years or a men’s wedding band to surprise him. One of the best reasons to create custom jewelry is possibly for no reason at all. The inspiration to create a new ring to be treasured can come from anywhere. Mark has some options to make the custom jewelry design process even easier.
Do you want to upgrade an existing ring? If you have a ring that is sitting in a drawer taking up space, let Mark turn your old pieces of jewelry into stunning new pieces of artwork. Turn an old ring into a new celebration of marriage by creating a diamond engagement or anniversary ring. Perhaps an engagement ring needs an upgrade? You can use parts of your old ring in your new ring, or simply trade in an unwanted piece to create a brand new one.
Do you have a loose diamond or precious gemstone that you would like to set? If you have a loose diamond or gemstone, you can select a ring setting of your choice that is available without the center stone. You have many options for precious metals and accent stones if you choose to design a ring other than a solitaire. If you don’t find a setting you love, Mark can create a custom diamond ring setting for you.
Though many of Mark’s pieces showcase his incredible craftsmanship with custom diamond engagement rings, he can create a beautiful jewelry piece of any kind fashioned with any metal, gemstone or setting you could possibly desire. Many requests have been to create complementary jewelry sets to match an existing beloved jewelry piece.
With Mark Broumand, you can create a custom diamond ring for any occasion. By filling out a simple quote request form, you can receive the upgrade value of the pieces you are trading in to create a new diamond ring. Bring new life to an old ring setting or find a treasured new home for a loose diamond. Though jewelry always warms the heart to give and especially receive, it is even a little more special when it is custom created. When you custom design with Mark Broumand, the possibilities are endless.
Posted on July 21st, 2014
Antique Cut Diamond Rings are treasured for their vintage look and scarcity. Though many authentic antique cut diamonds are no longer in existence, some antique cut diamond rings are still created to recapture eras gone by. Antique Cut Diamond Rings are fashioned from one of four standard antique cuts: Single, Rose, Old Mine and the Old European.
Single cuts have an octagonal or round girdle and consists of between 17 and 18 facets. The table on this diamond is large and the culet may be pointed, flat or non-existent. Many of the first stones did not have a culet until the mid-15th century, when its importance was realized. This cut originated in the 1300s and was valued as a stone for its luster and hardness, not for the fire and brilliance diamonds are prized for now. These diamonds often appeared black to the eye and were represented as such in many paintings of the era.
The Rose was truly a unique shape, with a flat bottom and crown that was dome-shaped. This stone, with between 3 and 24 triangular facets resembles the shape of a rose bud. The Rose does not have a pavilion and the facets rise to form an apex point on the crown. This cut was common during the Georgian and Victorian eras and remained popular up until the early 1900s.
The Old Mine, also referred to as the “Antique Cushion”, has gently rounded corners and a quadrilateral girdle. The table on this cut is small and the culet is large and flat. This profile is heavy on the crown and the bottom. This stone has 58 “chunky” looking facets and was a prevalent diamond cut during the Georgian and Victorian eras. Many of these diamonds followed the rough stones octahedral shape and resulted in a square or rectangular shape that were not uniform.
The predecessor to the modern Round Brilliant, the Old European returned to a circular girdle on a 58-facet stone. The table was small with a substantial crown and great overall depth for the time. The cut was much more even on the pavilion facets than the Old Mine. The light dispersion in this diamond cut was more even when radiating off the culet. This gave the Old European quite a sparkle. This shape was prevalent from the 1800s until the Art Deco Period.
Mark Broumand recaptures the beauty of these vintage stones in the Antique Cut Engagement Rings he has selected. It is important to note that these antique beauties cannot be compared to any of the modern cuts available today. These rings are truly a different cut of diamond than contemporary cuts. Wear a piece of the past from Mark’s unique selection of Antique Cushion Cut and Antique European Cut Diamond Rings.
Posted on July 19th, 2014
The Heart Shaped Engagement Ring is a modified round brilliant cut diamond fashioned to honor the universal symbol of love. It is crucial that each half of the heart stone you select is identical to the other. The ideal weight of a heart shaped diamond should be greater than .50 carat since the outline of shape will be harder to perceive. Smaller heart diamonds are best in a bezel or three-prong setting (one on each lobe and one at the point). If you choose the universal symbol of love for a diamond engagement ring or anniversary ring, keep in mind that the larger stones will require a four-prong setting.Though this diamond is a modified round brilliant created in the early 1900s, the heart shaped diamond has been traced back to the Duke of Milan at the beginning of the 15th Century. In the early 1560s, Queen Elizabeth received a heart shaped diamond ring from Mary, Queen of Scots. Heart shaped diamonds were often given as gifts amongst royalty to symbolize friendship and goodwill. Since this shape was difficult to cut during those times, these diamonds were especially cherished by the recipient.The silhouette or shape itself will be a very important, if not the most important factor to consider when buying heart shaped engagement rings. You or your fiancèe may like a more traditional heart, with a deep cleft and rounded lobes. Others may favor a more slender heart with lobes that are straighter and a more shallow cleft. Different lengths and widths are also affected by the particular setting of the ring. When searching for a heart shaped engagement ring, symmetry and clarity are critical. You will find only the most symmetrical and highest quality diamonds in the Mark Broumand Engagement Rings portfolio. A heart shaped engagement ring will stun in a solitaire, three-stone or halo setting. The brilliance of your heart shaped diamond will sparkle as either a white or fancy colored diamond. Do you have a specific engagement ring vision you would like to bring to life? Mark Broumand can create an engagement ring that will surely make her heart sing.
Posted on July 18th, 2014
An Oval Cut diamond ring features a stone that is a modification of the round brilliant cut diamond; both cuts being created by a family of jewelers and diamantaires dating back to the early 1800s. The oval was created in the late 1950s by Lazare Kaplan. Kaplan’s cousin, Marcel Tolkowsky is the father of the modern round brilliant cut diamond, circa 1920. As of 2009, some Tolkowskys are representative of the 7th generation of master jewelers. This dedicated lineage to the art of gemstones is evident today in the round brilliant and the oval cut diamond ring.
The length to width ratio of an oval will frequently range between 1.33:1 and 1.66:1. A lesser ratio will present a softer and rounder shape as seen on the left in the Fancy Intense Yellow Oval Cut Diamond Engagement Ring and the larger length will form a more elongated oval, as seen in the engagement ring on the right . The preference in shape is completely objective and each stone sparkles with varying degrees of brilliance infused with the unique oval shape.
Much like pear shaped or Marquise cuts, ovals lend the illusion of length to the finger and hands. Women with naturally long and slender fingers will find the oval shape complements their hand quite naturally. Due to the nature of this shape, this stone can be affected with the “bow-tie” effect. This condition cannot be determined in grading or certifications, but will be readily evident upon visual inspection.
An oval cut diamond ring is an ideal choice for the person that is trying to balance brilliance and budget. Mark Broumand’s collection of diamond rings represents a vast array of sizes, colors, styles and settings to match every taste. This incredibly versatile diamond ring easily transverses time between vintage era and contemporary chic and will work well as a diamond engagement ring, right hand ring or anniversary ring. Each oval cut diamond ring at Mark Broumand was selected for its exquisite beauty and high quality, however you will also find inspiration browsing Mark’s custom designed rings collection.
Posted on July 17th, 2014
The rectangular shape and vintage look of Emerald Cut diamond rings show off a subtle sophistication and luster desired by many. The Emerald Cut was standardized in the 1940s during the Art Deco Period. The distinctive look of this stone makes it a very popular choice among antique jewelry fans.
The Emerald Cut diamond was originally created for use in Emeralds to maximize the sparkle and brilliance of the gemstone. An Emerald Cut will have a very large table (top flat area) of the stone and therefore, requires a very high quality stone. Since the table is large, flaws and imperfections will be readily visible upon visual inspection. A rough stone that does contain blemishes may be created so that the flaws occur within the shorter ends or corners of the stone where they can be hidden beneath the facets.
The number of facets in Emerald Cut diamond rings will range between 50 and 58. These facets are created by step-cuts, or trap cuts that are long and narrow. The ideal length-to-width ratio of the Emerald Cut diamond is approximately 1.4 to 1, or a range of length between 1.3 and 1.5. These rectangular diamonds have sharp points that are vulnerable to chipping or breakage. Since the corners are intact, approximately 80% of a rough stone is retained as the finished stone.
This cut is an excellent choice for larger stones, since the large facets effectively reflect light back through the top of the diamond. Though this stone does not possess the “sparkle” of many other diamonds, the cut maximizes a diamond’s color, luster and clarity. Most Emerald Cut Diamond Engagement Rings will be set with the center stone parallel to the finger. For a unique twist, some center diamonds may be set perpendicular to the finger. Since this rectangular beauty is so bold as a center stone, the diamond will look captivating in a three-stone setting or accented with side stones. An Emerald Cut Diamond is also striking when set as a solitaire.
Emerald cut diamond rings are highly sought after for their unique and vintage style. The Emerald Cut diamond ring exudes sophistication and elegance for anyone wearing it. Visit Mark Broumand to find the perfect Emerald Cut Diamond engagement, right-hand or anniversary ring hand-selected for their high-quality and beauty.
Posted on July 16th, 2014
The Princess Cut diamond ring is very popular as a diamond engagement, three-stone or anniversary ring. Princesses are the second most popular choice for diamond engagement rings, second only to the Round Brilliant. The Princess is a relatively new creation of the 1960s.The shape of the diamond will be rectangular or square with a different number of facets which offer varying degrees of brilliance in the stone. Most of the facet work on this stone will be on the pavilion, or lower section of the diamond. A princess has four beveled sides and looks like an inverted pyramid. When viewing the stone through the table, or large top facet of the stone a “cross shape” can often be seen. From a rough stone to a finished Princess, approximately 80% of the stone remains intact since the corners are not chipped away. This makes the Princess a favorite among diamond cutters since much of the stone is retained as compared to a Round Brilliant, whereas approximately 50% of the rough crystal is left on the finished jewel.A diamond’s features can be modified by adding facet cuts, or chevrons on the lower side of the stone (pavilion). More facet patterns will produce faster light scintillation (sparkle) when the stone moves and is often referred to as a “splintery” or “crushed ice” look. Fewer chevrons in a diamond produce larger facets and slower light scintillation. Two to three chevrons is generally an ample number in a stone weighing 1 carat or less. Larger stones can handle 4 to 5 chevrons on the pavilion. There are no hard and fast rules for the number of chevrons and the desired beauty of a Princess is solely at the discretion of the person viewing the gem.A Princess Cut diamond ring is the best choice for anyone that desires the brilliance of a Round Brilliant in a square shaped stone. Since these diamonds retain more of the stone from the rough, their size per carat will look larger than other diamonds. Mark Broumand’s collection of diamond rings are sure to dazzle. Mark has a variety of settings to choose from for any type of Princess Cut diamond ring you could desire.