Marquise Cut Diamonds. Watch out for the Bow Tie Effect.

When a diamond cutter has a piece of stone to cut he naturally thinks of getting the most money from the cut.  So he thinks of  a round brilliant cut first as that is the most common, profitable and popular cut. But what about if he has a piece that is long then he must make a decision: cut a marquise shape or cut it down into perhaps more than one smaller stones. Smaller diamonds are not worth as much as larger ones.  A one carat round brilliant cut diamond is worth say AUD $600.00
Convert but you might only get AUD $450.00
Convert for a full carat weight of very small stones!

But a marquise cut, sometimes called the navette cut, is not worth as much as the same weight in a round so the decision is a considerable one. They generally do not have as much brilliance as a round cut stone.

The marquise is the elongated or stretched looking shape. It was supposedly designed for Louis XIV. Because of the shape of a marquise cut stone an effect known as the bow tie effect occurs.  This is a dark area in the centre which resembles a black bow tie.  It will almost always be there and is a negative quality which is worse sometimes than other times. You mightn’t have noticed before but you will now.  It happens in pear shapes as well.

The Marquise cut is most often in a proportion of 1:2 or the width is half as long as the length.  Although it is not the cut that the diamond cutter wants to make, and it is harder to cut and even worse the pointed ends are more easily broken, it nevertheless may end up being the most profitable for him.

It lends itself to wonderful settings and suits some long fingers admirably.  It is different and we all don’t want to wear what our neighbour is wearing.  If you like it, and I just love it, then you are going to be exceptionally happy to get a higher quality diamond for 10-20% less than you are likely to pay for a round cut.

 It is one of those diamond shapes which are ideal for running up and down the finger.  Just today I was handed a lovely marquise to design and make into a ring.  The husband who gave me the ring wants it made so that it goes across the finger.  I first asked him how big his wife was.  As he didn’t know her ring size I wanted to form a picture of her in order to make up my mind what might suit her.  Tall lady with long fingers then there is no decision to be made up and down the finger will look lovely.

It turns out that she is tiny with small fingers and he subtly indicates that she was thinner once a long time ago.  I make up my mind that it should be set almost diagonally across the finger.  That’s a kind of compromise just in case she turns out to be wider than she is high!

 Don’t dismiss the lovely, elegant marquise cut because of the bow tie, or the fact that it is easily broken.  If set well and looked after as it should be it will make a stunning piece of jewellery!

Author: Gary Hocking