Cutting Services

Cutting Services for Every Gemstone Need—Including Yours!

Most people have heard of the “four C’s” relating to gemstones: color, cut, clarity and carat (size).

Color, clarity and carat mostly relate to the original, or rough, gemstone, while cut is where the artistry comes in. That’s where we excel. In fact, we believe a good faceter (gem cutter) makes all the difference, assuming they start with a quality rough stone.

The cut determines the design, shape, size and brilliance of the finished stone. See Gemstone Shapes. By applying an understanding of how light refracts through the gem, the cutter can make the difference between an ordinary, dull stone or a stunningly brilliant work of art.

The Differences Explained

So, what difference does the cut mean to you? While it often takes a trained eye to really tell the difference, the following comparison will help you understand more about cuts and cutting.

Poorly Trained Cutter Highly Skilled Cutter
Repertoire of Cuts Limited range of cuts results in the same look as the vast majority of gems on the market. Can produce new, unique and unusual designs, including Fantasy and Concave cuts.
Knowledge of Refraction May not take refractive index into account, which can result in “fish eye,” or black hole effect. Understands refraction and gemstone orientation to make cuts that bring more light into the gem.
Equipment Some faceters work on cheap, poorly made or poorly calibrated machines, which often result in uneven sides and facets that don’t match. Using the highest-quality machines, such as Ultra Tec, improves the cutter’s ability to make uniform, precision cuts.
Cutting Time A factory production approach means fewer cuts and less precision, which often means a lifeless, dull or ordinary finish. A quality gem cutter will take the extra time to cut and polish each facet in keeping with a higher standard.
Finishing / Polishing Faceters who don’t know which polish to use may not get the highest quality finish. A good cutter knows the correct polish to use based on the gem material. By removing all the fine grinding scratches, the stone’s natural beauty will be as stunning as possible.
Fantasy / Concave
Ordinary faceters are not trained to do these unique new designs and typically don’t have the proper equipment. Only a few top cutters have the special knowledge and equipment to produce these unique, state-of-the-art concave cut pieces.
Jewelers’ Inventory Most large chain jewelry stores carry the same 6-8 standardized cuts churned out by overseas cutters. Jewelry designers and smaller, boutique jewelers are more likely to carry the higher quality and one-of-a-kind pieces.

For more information on cuts and our cutting services, read:

  • FAQs on Cutting – what we do and what to expect
  • Custom Cuts – cuts to order and unique, free-form gems
  • Fantasy Cuts – the new, highly artistic art of designer gem cutting
  • Re-Cutting – for chipped gems or re-purposing existing stones

Looking for a pre-cut gemstone? See our Gemstone Gallery

Questions about gemstones or faceting? Call Ashton Gems at 423-464-4287.

Professional faceter Larry Mattos uses two Ultra Tec machines in his cutting business and can cut a gemstone to any custom specifications.