September 17, 2023
The princess cut is one of the most popular diamond shapes, revered for its lively brilliance and sharp geometric corners. Its unique “X” faceting pattern makes it a top choice for engagement rings. This guide will cover everything about princess cut diamonds including history, grading factors, settings, comparisons and FAQs.
The princess cut emerged in the mid-late 1900s as one of the earliest diamond cuts designed specifically for brilliance rather than maximizing carat weight.
In 1961, gem cutter Arpad Nagy pioneered the first quadrillion or princess cuts. The name referenced the Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara owned by Princess Victoria.
This groundbreaking princess cut was patented in 1969 by Henry Grossbard, using a square outline and innovative crisscross faceting to optimize light performance.
The princess cut quickly gained popularity for its lively fire, becoming a staple diamond shape for engagement rings.
Defined by its sharp corners and distinctive “X” patterning when viewed face-up, the princess cut has:
The optimal polish, symmetry and angles result in exceptional brilliance, with arrows of light radiating outward through the table. This makes the princess cut one of the most lively and fiery shapes.
When choosing, look for ideal light return as the facets interact, not the presence of actual arrows which depends on numerous factors.
Princess diamonds are assessed using the 4Cs like other shapes:
With its deep pavilion, princess cut retains weight well – a 1.0 carat princess visually faces up closer to 1.25 carat round. Optimize cut and clarity before size.
The princess cut's strong geometry pairs best with simple settings:
The princess cut suits both modern minimalist and classic vintage ring styles.
Price ranges for a 1 carat princess cut diamond:
The princess shape commands a slight premium for its exceptional fire, while offering reasonable value compared to rounds.
How does princess cut brilliance compare to other shapes?
The uniquely aligned princess facets produce exceptional light return. Princess cut diamonds exhibit supreme fire compared to other shapes when optimally cut.
Can a princess be cut too shallow or deep?
Yes, improper depth percentages and crown/pavilion angles reduce light performance. Review certificate for depth % between 65%-80% for ideal ranges.
Do princess diamonds show more color than round brilliant?
Princess cuts typically face up with negligible color. Hues are minimized compared to emerald cuts. Ideal color range is G-J.
Should I remove blemishes from a princess diamond?
No, only minor enhancements should be made to improve transparency if needed. Avoid heavily included princess diamonds.
Does a princess cut ever exhibit a bow-tie effect?
Rarely, an undesirable darker bow-tie effect can occur in poorly cut princess diamonds with skewed faceting. Avoid those with extreme bow ties.
With its sharp corners, geometric appeal and scintillating light shows, it’s easy to see why the princess reigns supreme as an engagement ring favorite. When expertly cut, the princess shape unleashes exceptional fire and brilliance.
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