what defines a "Hearts & arrows" diamond?

Some in the industry disagree on which diamonds should receive the "Hearts& Arrows" label. Because there used to be no industry standard, one person or company may say a diamond is a Hearts and Arrows diamond while another may say it is not.

There are generally 5 main components that help define a "Hearts & Arrows" super-ideal cut diamond. These include a diamonds:

PAVILION ANGLE RANGE:40.2 to 40.8 degree angle is optimum

CROWN ANGLE RANGE: 33.4 to 36.4 degree angle is optimum

TABLE SIZE RANGE: 54% to 57% is optimum

LOWER GIRDLE HALVES LENGTH RATIO: 75% to 80% (77% is optimum)

STAR FACETS LENGTH: 40% to 58% (45% - 50% is optimum​)

​     Classic viewer                                                  Firescope                                        Pavilion or bottom                              Table or top

                                                                                                                                                           (HEARTS)                                                (ARROWS)

what is hearts & arrows?


The original Hearts and Arrows were diamonds that surfaced in the mid 80's in Japan and embodied three important design factors. First, they were cut to "ideal proportions", very close to those summarized by Marcel Tolkowsky in his 1919 book, Diamond Design. ​Second, they were cut with superior physical and optical symmetry so that they would garner a grade of "Excellent" in the Japanese laboratories. The third and very important factor was that they were cut to a very specific brilliantine scheme to produce the accepted Hearts and Arrows pattern. The faceting scheme involves prescribed lengths and ratios as well as smaller tables sizes that are imperative in producing distinctive, repeatable and gradable Hearts and Arrows pattern.

Less than 1% of the world's diamonds are cut to Hearts and Arrows optical symmetry precision. This is in large part due to greater amount of rough diamond that necessitates additional polishing to create diamonds with this precise optical symmetry. Diamond polishers take up to three (3) times longer to cut diamonds of this quality and nearly 15% greater waste of the original diamond rough material is lost. Using 100X magnification and analysis through all stages of production, the artisanal cutters create perfection at 10X global standards for grading and evaluation. It is for these reasons that this diamond cut is sold at premium and are expensive than average/inferior cut diamonds.


To see the Hearts and Arrows pattern in a diamond one must employ a specially designed light directing viewer called a FIRESCOPE. The Hearts and Arrows Viewer is a rather simple device that allows the viewer analyze the physical symmetry, contrast and alignment of facets of a diamond by viewing the stone through both the top (crown area) and bottom (pavilion area) of a diamond, by directing white and colored light at set angles in order to catch and reflect light back from specific facets and angles of the diamond.


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