A CLOSER LOOK AT
CUSHION CUT DIAMONDS

THE PILLOWY SILHOUETTE WITH A LONG HISTORY AND INCREDIBLE VARIETY

CELEBRITIES WHO HAVE SAID YES TO THE CUSHION CUT

Jennifer Lopez

A stunning large emerald cut diamond ring that made its debut on Instagram

Elizabeth Taylor

Formerly called the Krupp diamond, this emerald cut of more than 30 carats was renamed the Elizabeth Taylor Diamond in 2011.

Amal Clooney

A sleek, simply set emerald cut diamond ring.

THE FOUR Cs AND MORE

GOOD TO KNOW
  • The cushion is the oldest of all of the diamond shapes. The majority of diamonds cut before 1880 were cushion cut, but many diamonds are cut this way today too.
  • Antique cushion cut diamonds are also called mine cut diamonds or old mine cut diamonds.
  • The specific silhouette and cutting style vary more for the cushion cut than any other shape, but generally, a cushion cut diamond is a rounded square or a rounded rectangle with softly curved, pillow-like edges.
  • Besides its shape, a cushion cut diamond can also vary in its cutting style, whether antique, classic, or modern.
  • A rectangular cushion cut diamond will elongate the wearer’s finger.
CARAT WEIGHT
  • Cushion cut diamonds sometimes appear slightly smaller for their carat weight, especially when compared to other shapes such as the round brilliant, oval, and ASHOKA. This is because cushion cut diamonds are usually cut deeper than other shapes.
COLOR

GIA COLOR SCALE

  • Depending on the cutting style, a cushion cut diamond may not mask a lower color grade as readily as other shapes.
  • Classic and antique cushion cut diamonds usually appear colorless through the J and K color grade range.
  • Modern cushion cut stones, particularly those with “cracked ice” faceting, display color more readily, beginning at the I grade.
  • Modern-style cushion cut diamonds in the I color range or below may exhibit a yellow tint when viewed face-up.
  • At Kwiat, we do not offer stones that show obvious color flaws respective of their color grades.
CLARITY

  • The sparkle resulting from the cushion cut’s brilliant faceting pattern helps to conceal internal inclusions.
  • Kwiat’s recommend clarity range for cushion cut diamonds runs between VS1 and SI1, so long as the SI1 appears clean to the naked eye. Infrequently, SI2 cushion cut diamonds can appear clear to the eye, though it is not typical.
  • Our diamonds are the best of their respective clarity grade, and Kwiat’s SI1 and SI2 cushion cut diamond engagement rings do not show inclusions to the naked eye.
CUT

  • Cut is the most important qualitative element when selecting a cushion cut diamond engagement ring.
  • A cushion cut stone should be bright and brilliant across the entire diamond and show its size properly.
  • A poorly cut cushion stone may have an inconsistent or unattractive brilliance or be overly deep, making a cushion cut diamond appear smaller than its actual carat size.
  • Antique cushion cuts have a softer brilliance with the appearance of larger facets and an open culet. Often, antique cuts have higher crown angles and a smaller table. Modern cushion cuts have an even more intense brilliance. Their facets appear smaller to the eye, with a look that’s described as “cracked ice.”
  • Cushion cut diamonds feature a brilliant cut faceting pattern that’s similar to that of round brilliant stones.
  • The GIA report for a cushion cut diamond will read either “Cushion Brilliant” or “Cushion Modified Brilliant,” depending on the stone’s shape and cutting style. The highly desirable Cushion Brilliant designation from the GIA refers to a cushion cut stone with classic faceting. The Cushion Modified Brilliant designation from GIA indicates modifications to the classic brilliant faceting pattern. This includes a number of technical variations and requires further visual inspection to understand. A Cushion Modified Brilliant diamond can be very beautiful and bright; however, faceting modifications may result in a diamond that lacks brilliance and looks small for its size.
  • The GIA does not assign Cut grades for cushion cut diamonds, which is why trusted professional guidance is so important.
RATIO
  • A diamond’s ratio is its length divided by its width.
  • Our recommended ratio range for both square and rectangular shaped cushions is between 1:1 and 1:1.25.
DEPTH PERCENTAGE

  • There is not a rigid set of depth percentage parameters for cushion cut diamonds. Our recommendation ranges from 64 to 69 percent in order to maximize brilliance and show carat size properly. The more elongated the stone, the higher the depth percentage will be.
  • Cushion cut diamonds with depth percentages below 64 percent may seem glasslike and lack brilliance. Cushion cut diamonds with depth percentages above 70 percent look small for their size because too much weight lies on the stone’s underside.
TABLE PERCENTAGE

  • There is not a rigid set of table percentage parameters for cushion cut diamonds, and a wider range of percentages is accepted for this particular shape.
  • Antique cushion cut diamonds have a smaller table in 50 to 55 percent range, while classic and modern cushion cut stones have table percentages of up to 70 percent.
  • Cushion cut diamonds with tables percentages below 50 appear small for their size and display awkward reflections in the center of the diamond. Cushion cut diamonds with table percentages above 71 are flat and glassy, resulting in less fire reflected from the crown.