People see diamonds in a jewelry store and never know or realize how far those sparkly little rocks have come. If you are curious about where and how the diamonds come from and are crafted, you could ask the jeweler. However, it is more fascinating to read and learn about diamond cutting services, from analysis of raw rock to the perfectly cut diamond.
The Raw Diamond Analysis
A gemologist and diamond cutter receives raw diamonds from places like South America and Africa. Every one of these stones is rough and raw, none of which resemble the sparkly things you know as diamonds. In fact, most raw diamonds are cloudy to slightly opaque white. The gemologist puts them under a special light to analyze each stone.
Each stone has its own "fault" lines where it will naturally split, and lines where the gemologist does not want to split a stone. After examining it with the special light and magnifier, the stone is moved under a computerized diamond topography machine. The machine is able to confirm the stone's "fault lines," and then the gemologist is able to decide how best to shape the stone.
Choosing the Shape of the Diamond
Most diamonds are cut into their natural shape, which is round. To cut them in the shapes of squares, hearts, kites, marquises, etc., takes a lot more effort and careful and precise cuts to the raw stone. Other shapes are considered "fancy" shapes and are harder to do. Yet, once the shape of the stone has been selected, it can only be completed if the raw stone's fault lines will allow it. Many times, a gemologist will choose one or more shapes to cut from a single raw diamond because there is "extra stone" left once the primary shape is cut from the raw stone. The extra stone left behind is then cut again to form a smaller stone of a different shape.
Cutting the Stone
Once upon a time, other diamonds were used to cut raw diamonds. The job required an intense amount of skill and patience. Now, diamonds are actually cut by lasers, to avoid fracturing the diamonds along the wrong fault lines. The laser also simultaneously polishes the cut surfaces of the diamond, making its edges perfectly smooth and ultra-shiny. To create facets, the gemologist uses the laser to gently shave slivers of diamond away from the top surface of the stone. A little more polish and the stone is ready to sell.