When it comes to jewellery, nothing beats the sparkle of a diamond, or even better, a cluster of diamonds. The jeweller’s shop window is so enticing with its beautiful display of rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings, shown to perfection under the lighting, twinkling away. Sometimes it’s hard to turn away from the sheer beauty of diamonds shown at their best to entice the viewer in to buy.


Designs on Diamonds are experts in diamond jewellery collections who believe that they should be as affordable as possible. They buy and source diamonds, some of which are pre-owned and they are able to bring them back to life to be enjoyed by future generations. All that they sell comes with certification and authentication and they love to make a bespoke piece that brings a customer’s ideal jewellery to reality.


Today, we are used to being able to buy whatever shape or size we want in a diamond. They are mined more easily from productive African mines than in the past and, with today’s equipment, can be cut to enable the light to enter the stone in such a way as to give the maximum sparkle obtainable. Round brilliants are what most people today think of as the classic which is what we almost always see on sale nowadays.


In contrast to the modern diamonds, there are old cut diamonds and Designs on Diamonds are keen for their customers to get acquainted with these wonderful, rare stones. These diamonds are really special and can never be replicated. They date from the 1890s to the 1930s and have a charm all of their own. Old cut diamonds were a huge improvement on the rather crude looking hand cut stones which went before. In the late 1800s, steam-driven tools became available which revolutionised the precision in cutting the facets and allowing a better design. This work was carried out by craftsmen and that is why the facets vary in size and shape so that each stone is unique, unlike those cut by modern technology. These techniques were very different which adds to the rarity value. Diamonds were less easy to mine and were less easy to obtain commercially compared to now, so it was thought necessary to preserve as much of the stone as possible. Attention was paid to cut and clarity to maximise the beauty of each stone.


Although the quality of the stones wasn’t considered as good as those obtainable now, it was the expertise of the craftsman jeweller who concentrated on bringing out the clarity and displaying the carat to the best effect. When one appreciates the work involved in getting the most from the raw material, it is far more gratifying than wearing a modern machine cut diamond.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that old cut diamonds lacklustre because of the methods employed. They are cut deep from the crown to the base, called a high crown, which gives depth to their brilliance. They are completely different types of stones and are becoming increasingly rare. You may have seen an Art Deco diamond ring. These are made from old cut diamonds and have such beauty, and of course, style.  One feature that is particularly delightful is that they glow especially beautifully in candlelight as the cut gives a deeper and warmer effect.  They were made in the days of gaslight and although we no longer have to live with this, they look their best with low lighting. When you look into an old cut stone you can see the sparkle within the stone, a pattern of light and dark, whereas with a modern cut the sparkle radiates out. This is why the old cut is so treasured as they give pleasure just looking into them.


Why not be different and consider an old cut diamond? You can go to high street jewellers and see a huge range of stones to suit any budget, but they are all produced by machine, looking very much the same and lack the uniqueness of a beautiful piece with history.


Stand out from the crown with your ring or pendant that has a completely different style and look from the mass manufactured jewels that you can buy now. Wear your ring with pride knowing that nobody else has a diamond that is the same as yours, knowing that it was cut by an expert who spent hours bent over his bench just to produce the beauty that is encapsulated in this one stone. If you buy a piece with several stones, each one will be different. This feels so much more special. These old cut diamonds are to be treasured as they could never be made again and as time goes on, become more difficult to obtain.

Vintage clothing has never been more popular and higher prices are paid for quality pieces than ever before so it goes without saying that vintage jewellery is becoming very desirable. Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco jewellery has made a comeback as people now appreciate the cut and styles that were so loved by our forebears. Fashions come and go in all things, jewellery being no exception, but the new enthusiasm for old cut diamonds and old settings is wonderful. Of course, you can have an old cut stone made into a fabulous new piece to your own design, if you prefer,  or Designs on Diamonds can advise you what setting and style would suit your stone and give it a well-deserved new lease of life.


When you own a piece of jewellery that you treasure, not only are you wearing something in which you take great pride and enjoy, but you are preserving the diamond for future generations to love as much as you do.


Owning an antique piece of jewellery makes a statement about who you are and your appreciation of true quality and craftsmanship. If you want proper, professional advice contact Designs on Diamonds who love to share their knowledge and love of these precious one-off stones.