The research about Hearts and Arrows was started in late 1997 by Brian Gavin together with his father Benjamin Gavin. This research ran over a period of two years which ultimately perfected the combination of angles and percentages for A CUT ABOVE to deliver the most optically balanced diamond today. These years of hands on development led to my presenting the below tutorial in Moscow, Russia, April 23-26, 2004, at the First International Diamond Cut Conference.
Consumers today have become more and more educated and demand perfection in cutting as they do in any other high end consumer product today. They want to know that they have a finely manufactured stone. The advent of the Heart and Arrow effect in the market became a tool for consumers to see perfection in optical symmetry. Since optical symmetry is difficult to quantify because of the variations between each cutter and each stone, criteria need to be standardized for consumers to avoid discrepancies. Therefore just as the Labs grade Color, Clarity and Cut, they should grade the Hearts and Arrows too. Diamond Manufacturers should be rewarded for their excellence in producing an optical symmetrical stone and consumers need to be able to purchase assuredly and with comfort. I will explain what causes the Hearts and Arrows effect and how I feel that they should be graded. The perfectly shaped hearts are formed when the main pavilion facets are cut at the correct angles and polished with such perfection in symmetry that their reflection results in a perfect heart pattern. Once the perfect heart pattern has been attained, the perfect arrow pattern in the crown results.