What is Fancy Cut Gemstones


According to GIA (Gemological Institute of America), each gemstone is evaluated by 4C's. While color, clarity & carat comes mostly from nature, the cut is the human contribution to the gem's beauty. Cut determines the shape of the gemstone and how brilliantly it is set in the jewelry piece. Though standard shapes like round and oval have long ruled the market, fancy gem cuts offer many options.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

What are Fancy Cut Gemstones?

For faceted gemstones, any cut other than a round is considered as a fancy cut. It includes oval, pear, and other cuts, too. In cabochons, anything other than round and oval is termed a fancy cut, including rectangle, square, drops, and different freeform shapes.

No doubt, the beauty of the gemstone shape depends from person to person. However, in various aspects, fancy gem cuts have advantages over other standard shapes. For example:

  • Compared to a round-shaped, the same carat's fancy shapes offer larger face-up and have less price.
  • Rounds are sold at a premium due to their popularity. Also, more rough is discarded during the round cutting process.
  • Rounds don't look good in big sizes. Big hearts or pears look more beautiful.

Most Common Fancy Cuts

Here are some of the most common and popular fancy cuts:

Cushion-Cut: Also known as pillow cut, the cushion cut is a square with rounded corners, just like a couch cushion.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Oval-Cut: Oval cut features a closed curve that "loosely" resembles the outline of an egg. This elegant shape is suitable for rings.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Princess-Cut: A square version of the round brilliant, the princess cut has shape edges and offers a modern look.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Emerald-Cut: Displaying a unique "hall of mirrors" effect, the emerald cut displays a unique pattern of light and dark alternating lines through step cut and straight cuts.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Baguette-Cut: With fewer facets, a baguette cut is a rectangular or trapezoidal cut.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Radiant Cut: More brilliant than emerald cuts, a radiant cut is a rectangular cut with beveled corners.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Pear-Cut: Modern pear cut is a brilliant-cut with 58 facets. Despite showing brilliance, the pear cut shows inclusions more readily.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Marquise-Cut: With large crown surface area, the marquise or navette cut looks larger than any other carat size cuts.

Fancy Cut Gemstones

Other less popular fancy gem cuts are rhombus, parallelogram, triangle, and octagon.

Fancy Cut GemstonesFancy Cut Gemstones

Advantages & Disadvantages of Fancy Gemstone Cuts

Fancy gem cuts increase various characteristics of a gemstone, such as brilliance, fire, color, or clarity. No doubt, fancy gem cut have looser percentage standards compared to round cut stones, one has to keep the following points in mind while shopping:

  • Avoid dark spots in the gemstone and see through areas.
  • The cut should be symmetrical as unnecessary bulges add weight.

Besides, fancy gem cuts offer various options to create a masterpiece to cherish for years to come.