Although there are many ways to cut a diamond, some are more recognizable than others. And in order to talk about cushion diamonds, we have to answer the question of what is a cushion cut diamond first.
Like with all diamond cuts, the popularity of these diamonds fluctuated depending on the period we’re talking about here. So, that’s another thing to consider as you dive into this topic.
But don’t worry. We’re going to talk about that in a bit – along with other essential things that are characteristic of these types of diamonds.
In the world of diamonds, there are many options to choose from – and the most important thing is to find out what’s your favorite – and stick with it.
Or experiment – depending on your mood and finances.
Either way, you should inform yourself about diamonds in general – and their different styles and cuts – and find what fits you the best.
On that note, now’s the time to familiarize yourself with cushion-cut diamonds and see if they’re something that you’re willing to consider!
The Origin – Where Did The Cushion Cut Come From?
We can thank the older diamond cut called the Old Mine Cut – which dates back to the 1700s – for the modern-day cushion cut and its facet design.
In the 1700s, a big part of mining diamonds occurred in Brazil after the first mines in India – the original source of diamonds, by the way – started drying up.
The Brazilian stone cutters utilized the Old Mine cut since it maximized carat retention, meaning less of the rough gemstones mined in their diamond mines had to be removed during the cutting process.
The legendary Regent diamond, a 410-carat diamond of Indian origin, is a spectacular example of the early Old Mine cut, dating to 1701.
Now, things we discussed so far aren’t technically related to the history of cushion cut diamonds – but the diamond cuts that are the “forerunners” of this shape.
That isn’t the first example of one cut becoming another and getting a new name, either. If the cut is old – older than a few hundred years – it’s not uncommon for it to go through upgrades and changes.
It only goes to show you that cushion-cut diamonds have been popular long before they got the name they have today.
Today, the old miner’s cut and cushion cut are considered two different cuts – but you shouldn’t forget that the cushion cut originated from this old cut.
Right around the beginning of the 1900s, the round brilliant cut overtook the market, becoming one of the most popular diamonds in the world. But that doesn’t mean that the cushion cut – the one we’re talking about today – lost its popularity.
Throughout the 20th century, this cut enjoyed its fair share of popularity – especially in the 1920s and then in the 1950s.
These waves of popularity are common for many diamond cuts.
So, you shouldn’t be surprised to learn that these trends come and go. That’s just how fashion works: You never know when something will go in or out of style, but there’s a pretty good chance that it will be considered “trendy” again soon enough.
The Shape – Specific & Breath-Taking
Every diamond is recognizable for its shape, and cushion-cut diamonds aren’t an exception to this rule.
The characteristic design and look set apart these diamonds from the rest of the bunch – along with the superior subtlety and gracious bling that it has.
As far as facets go, the modern-day cushion cut diamonds have plenty – 64 facets, to be exact. For the sake of comparisons, the so-called Old Mine cut had 58 facets.
That brings us to our next point: Today, cushion cut diamonds are more commonly referred to as “cushion brilliant cut diamonds.” Why?
They incorporate the old cushion cut’s patterns while also integrating additional aspects of the round brilliant diamond – which is the most popular diamond shape and has been for decades now.
Modern cushion brilliant cut diamonds are characterized by their square – and, in some cases, squarish-rectangular – shape and feature curved sides that are usually rounded or have slightly pointed corners.
A cushion-cut stone will usually feature four or eight main kite-shaped facets between the girdle and the culet. However, you can also find some versions of the diamond modified to incorporate additional crown facets, for example.
These are known as modified cushion-cut brilliant diamonds.
These diamonds are often embedded in rings and subtle necklaces; that’s what they’re known for in the jewelry world. Some might not like how subtle these diamonds are. However, if you’re not looking for a flashy display of wealth – but still want a quality cut diamond – consider this cut.
One thing’s certain: Regardless of the setting you choose, your cushion cut diamond will be the center of attention.
Related Read: Which Diamond Shape Is Best? Guide To Popular Diamond Shapes
Cushion-Cut Diamonds Vs. Other Diamonds
We all know that there are countless different-looking diamonds – and every single one can be beautiful in its own way.
So, as someone who’s diamond-shopping, you probably want to see how cushion-cut diamonds compare to other diamonds, right? Well, let’s talk a bit more about that.
Sometimes, two very similar gems can make a world of difference, depending on who’s wearing them and under what circumstances. That’s why it’s essential to see how cushion-cut diamonds compare to other similarly-cut diamonds.
One of the first – and most common – comparisons people are interested in is the one between a cushion-cut and a round brilliant cut diamond.
Here’s something to keep in mind: Cushion cuts combine the power of a round brilliant diamond with the symmetry of the radiant cut. That said, since their 58 facets are more prominent, they’re slightly less sparkly than round gems.
Related Read: Radiant Cut Vs. Cushion Cut: Comparison Guide
Plus, there’s the fact that the round brilliant cut diamonds are the most popular diamonds in the world, second to none. These gems are easy to spot – and will grab the attention of anyone that looks towards them.
Another comparison worth mentioning here would be the cushion cut vs. the princess cut one. In this case, we’re talking about two distinct square shapes that fall in the same category – and yet, look oh-so-different.
Here’s the thing: The sharp edges of a princess cut gem set it apart from others. Princess cut gemstones boast a signature look with strong lines that are best described as modern and geometric.
On the flip side, you have the cushion cut, characterized by its rounded edges. So, right off the bat, the cushion cut feels softer and more romantic.
That shows you how characteristic and unique cushion cut gems are and how you can’t fit them into a subcategory of diamonds that easily. In other words, these diamonds are in a category of their own and are unique in every way, shape, and form.
The price is another factor – but we’ll talk about that in a second.
While the unique shape is more than welcome, it makes cushion cut diamonds one of the most “complicated” options for first-time gem shoppers. You have so many aesthetic choices to make here: Square or rectangular, with or without the hearts-and-arrows pattern, the “crushed ice” effect or not… You get the idea.
Learn More: Diamond Shapes: All Different Types of Diamond Shapes
The Price – How Much Should You Spend?
A price tag is something that needs to be discussed whenever the main topic of discussion is – you guessed it, diamonds.
There are some budget options on the jewelry market, sure – but the cushion-cut diamonds aren’t on that list.
The price that you should expect to pay when buying a cushion cut diamond is between $1,400 and $1,600 on average – and that’s for a 0.75-carat stone.
That’s one of the smallest price gaps when it comes to diamonds – and that’s for a reason: These diamonds are not easy to make, which means that cutting is pricy – and the result of that is a higher price tag in a jewelry store.
Compared to, let’s say, round brilliant cut diamonds that cost roughly $18,000 per carat, these diamonds come relatively cheap. Then again, when compared to some budget options that are around $850 per carat, cushion cut diamonds are a bit pricy.
It depends on what your budget is – and what you’re willing to spend on a diamond.
Some people would prefer buying several cheaper diamonds – while others would instead buy fewer high-quality, expensive diamonds; to each their own.
Considering that these diamonds are pretty specific shape-wise, we highly recommend that you avoid buying them without seeing them in person first. Go to a nearby jewelry store and try out a ring or earrings embedded with cushion cut diamonds.
That way, you’ll see how it fits you and how it looks when worn.
Diamonds don’t look the same when they’re sitting in the showcase and when they’re worn on the hand; keep that in mind when shopping for diamonds.
Are Cushion Cut Diamonds Worth It?
Now that you know what to expect from the price tag attached to a cushion-cut gem, let’s see if you should spend all that money or if there are some alternatives available.
Suppose that you are looking for a diamond that costs around $1,000 – that means that cushion cut diamonds are out of your reach.
Well, you could go for the identical cut diamonds but smaller; it’s what people tend to do when shopping for diamonds with a limited budget.
The shape and the name of the cut are pretty crucial to some. So, it’s not uncommon for people to settle for smaller gems in their preferred cut rather than for a bigger diamond cut in a different manner.
We recommend taking this approach, too. Here’s the thing: The shape of the gem and the quality of the cut are much more important than the sheer size of the diamond in question.
So, manage your budget in a way that allows you to get the diamond you want – and go for the quality instead of the quantity.
Read Also: Which Diamond Cut Holds Its Value?
Now that you know how this diamond looks, how much it costs, what its origins are, and where it came from, let’s do a quick recap and see what you’ve learned today.
First, you must remember the Old Mine cut that “gave birth” to the modern cushion cut.
Second of all, these types of diamonds had two waves of popularity – and it wouldn’t surprise us if there were a third coming. That’s how these trends work.
The shape of the cushion cut diamonds is quite characteristic – a combination of a round brilliant cut and a radiant cut – and it features 64 facets total.
Looking deeper into these gems, you probably realized why they’re on the more expensive side of “regular-priced” diamonds – and why they cost as much as they do.
These diamonds are original and authentic. So, when you do stumble upon them, try them out, see how they look – and definitely consider them if they’re in your price range!
Learn More: Antique Cushion Cut Vs Modern Cushion Cut