How to Set a Cushion Cut Diamond
Many choose a cushion cut for its elegance and enchanting design.
It is often described as classic and vintage, appealing to those who want a more timeless look.
One of the most important decisions you will make for a cushion is the setting.
Having the right cushion cut diamond settings will enhance your gem, bringing out its best qualities.
Make the most out of your cushion cut ring setting with the following tips below.
Cushion vs. Round
One of the biggest arguments against the cushion cut is the round cut.
The round cut has similar faceting and size, but its advantage is its sparkle. The shape of the round helps it reflect light better. It is a highly desirable cut, and its popularity is one of its disadvantages.
The disadvantage is that the high demand for round cut diamonds is driving its price higher.
You can buy cushion diamonds of the same quality as a round, but they are 25% to 50% cheaper.
The cushion also has the most fire or dispersion, meaning it can scatter colored light consistently.
For the price alone, many would choose the cushion cut and its pillow-like shape.
Most prefer the ideal dimensions of the cushion to be as close to the square shape as possible.
For this look, you’d be aiming for a length to width ratio of 1.0 to 1.05.
If you want something more rectangular, you’ll have to go for rations at least 1.25 to around 1.4.
The rectangular version is a fit for those looking for the original antique style of the cut.
It makes the gem look like it was from the 1800s to the 1900s.
Choosing the Right Cushion Cut: The 4Cs
Knowing the 4 Cs of diamonds can be tricky for a cushion cut diamond.
For the most part, you will rely on your sight and preference rather than the grade quality.
Here are some of the things you should consider as you buy.
The Gemological Institute Of America (GIA) considers the cushion to be a fancy cut, meaning they cannot grade its cut quality.
Instead, what you should look for are its polish and symmetry.
Symmetry can be a subjective matter, but ideally, you want to choose one rated as very good to excellent.
You can also opt for a brilliant or modified brilliant-cut to make the diamond flash more light than usual.
Unless you want a rectangular cushion, these square-cut gems are a bit smaller than their counterparts.
The reason behind this is the deeper cut a cushion needs for its shape.
It gives the princess and emerald a bit of an advantage in size. When choosing a cushion carat, make sure you choose one larger than your initial option.
The safest and most affordable when it comes to clarity would be around the VS2 to SI1 range.
If you can afford it, you can spend more on an SI2, which has the cleanest appearance.
The cushion can hide imperfections well, though you may want to clarify with an expert to be sure.
You’ll notice a blemish if there is a large dark color at the center of the stone.
The cushion may not be as brilliant as the round, but its dispersion is enough to hide any color imperfections. We recommend that you choose a cushion of an H grade or higher.
You can go as low as I or J, but it requires scrutiny to determine if the gem still gives off the colorless brilliance.
Another way to get a better price on the gem is by pairing it with the right setting.
The Best Setting for a Cushion Cut Diamond
- For the prong setting, you want to aim for a four-prong. These settings allow the most light to enter the diamond helping the cushion show its brilliant dispersion.
For more rectangular cushions, you can go for a six-prong or double-prong setting.
However, the more prongs on the gem, the less light can come in. You can also use platinum prongs, as they blend well with a diamond. It can even help make the cushion cut look bigger.
- Go Big for Halo: Another option for making the cushion setting ring look big is the halo.
Surrounding it with smaller diamonds adds to its brilliance and can make it look larger than it is.
The halo also serves as a layer of protection for the gem. It is a versatile option that can work with both modern and vintage designs.
The bezel setting isn’t recommended for the cushion, as it blocks light.
Even though it is the most durable, it hampers the cushion’s ability to disperse.
It is also a setting that makes a diamond look smaller, which isn’t ideal for the deeper cut cushion that already looks smaller than its actual carat size.
Find the Right Match for Your Diamond
Combining a setting with a high-quality cushion can elevate its quality in so many ways.
You can hide imperfections by using rose gold or yellow gold settings.
You can also give the illusion of a larger size through the use of halo or platinum prongs.
Cushion cut diamond settings should be one of the biggest considerations in your purchase.