One of our fans on Facebook asked if Brian Gavin can create Hearts & Arrows cuts on a colored gem, such as a ruby or sapphire. The term “Hearts and Arrows cut” refers to a very special manner of cutting diamonds, so that they deliver the highest degree of light return and sparkle factor.
It actually takes about 4X longer to polish a round brilliant cut diamond to exhibit a crisp and complete, uniform pattern of hearts and arrows, like the one exhibited by this 1.097 carat, F-color, VS-1 clarity, Black by Brian Gavin diamond.
The reality is that very few diamond cutters possess the knowledge and skill to produce hearts and arrows diamonds of the caliber offered by the Black by Brian Gavin, and Brian Gavin Signature collections.
How Hearts & Arrows Patterns are Created:
In order to fully appreciate the spectacular light performance of a Black by Brian Gavin, or Brian Gavin Signature hearts and arrows diamond, you first need to know how challenging it really is to create a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows.
This graphic illustrates how each heart is created by light reflecting off the pavilion facets. We highlighted the lower girdle facet in the 12 o’clock position with green. The light reflects off that facet and splits across on to the lower girdle facets on the other side of the diamond.
Within the niche realm known as Hearts & Arrows diamonds, the diamond cutters focus on a practically unknown factor of diamond cutting known as optical precision. That is the consistency of facet shape, facet size, and the precision of facet indexing upon the surface of the diamond, from the perspective of 360 degrees.
Even the slightest variance in optical precision, will result in variances within the symmetry of the hearts and arrows pattern. For instance, if the lower girdle facets are slightly different in size, then the tips of the hearts will appear to bend one direction or the other. That is because the size of the light reflecting off the lower girdle facets will be different lengths and widths.
Hearts & Arrows cut rubies and sapphires:
Brian Gavin is a 5th generation diamond cutter, who has made it his life’s ambition to cut diamonds for maximum light return and sparkle factor. Throughout his career, the goal has always been to cut the most spectacular diamonds possible. This desire has driven Brian to obsess over diamond cut quality, to the extent that he is always working to improve the production quality of our diamonds.
That is why throughout his career as a diamond cutter and world renown expert on diamond cut quality, he has led the pack by announcing advancements in cut quality and light performance. The latest of which was the launch of the Black by Brian Gavin collection.
There are several reasons why Brian Gavin doesn’t produce hearts and arrows rubies or sapphires. Not the least of which is the fact that diamond cutting and colored gem cutting are completely different realms. But also, because colored gems are cut to intensify color, not necessarily light return.
Hearts & Arrows Diamonds vs. Rubies & Sapphires:
White diamonds are translucent, so light travels through them much more easily than it does with rubies and sapphires. The latter of which can be very light, very dark, or anywhere in between.
This is a handheld hearts and arrows scope. The red filament paper visible in the lower section, is the reason why diamonds appear red in hearts and arrows photographs. Sometimes this filament paper is blue, purple, or blue. The white disk in the middle contains a magnifying lens, which makes it possible to see the pattern of hearts and arrows.
Light reflecting off of the white disks, reflects off the pavilion main facets (as pictured above in green) and then reflects off the pavilion main facets, to create the hearts patterns that you see in the reflector scope images.
Light reflecting off the pavilion main facets when the diamond is viewed in the face-up position, is what creates the pattern of eight arrows. It’s a pretty incredible optical feat if you think about it. We’re literally cutting hearts and arrows diamonds with such precision, that we’re dictating how light reflects from one side of the diamond to the other.
And while we don’t know anybody who is cutting rubies or sapphires with this kind of precision, the reality is that we do have some great contacts in the colored gem market. With that in mind, we’ll be happy to help you find a spectacular looking ruby or sapphire.
Just remember that the focus is always on intensity of color. Colored gem cutters focus on cutting each gem to exhibit the most intense, beautiful color. Whereas as a diamond cutter, Brian Gavin is intent on cutting diamonds for maximum light return and sparkle factor, which is commonly known as light performance.