Is the Asscher Cut Diamond Right for You?
By Amber Michelle – Chief Curator & Storyteller
Asscher cut diamond engagement ring by Simon Ardem. Click on image to view details.

Popular for its clean, crisp lines, the Asscher cut diamond lends modernity to jewelry. Its square shape and step cut impart a sophistication and elegance that is steeped in old-world charm. Not surprising, since the Asscher cut has a rich history.

The Asscher cut was first designed in 1902 by Joseph Asscher who, with his brother Isaac, owned the Asscher Diamond Company in Amsterdam founded by their grandfather Joseph Isaac Asscher in 1854. Soon after it was developed, the Asscher Cut became very popular and was patented for a 50-year term. The legendary beauty of the Asscher Cut comes from the balanced facet proportions that produce a dazzling optical display of sparkle and brilliance. Its linear form worked well in the geometric shapes of Art Deco jewelry that were in vogue during the 1920s and 1930s, which contributed to its acceptance.

Styles changed and the Asscher cut fell out of favor, but it was still coveted by jewelry connoisseurs and collectors throughout the years. The supply was limited so finding an Asscher cut diamond was a lot like finding a unicorn and the stones came with a premium price. Then in the late 1990s and early aughts, the Asscher cut had a renaissance as vintage jewelry and fashion influences from the early-twentieth century — particularly the Art Deco period — surged to the forefront. With the patent long since expired, the shape was once again resurrected and the exquisite Asscher cut diamond has continued to rise in popularity ever since.

What is an Asscher Cut?

The Asscher Cut is a square shape, characterized by large cut corners, a small table, broad, even steps and an open, squarish culet. It is important to note that an Asscher Cut has a two-step crown, setting it apart from the emerald cut, which has a three-step crown and is generally more rectangular. The Asscher Cut is widely considered to be the precursor to the modern-day emerald cut. When shopping for an Asscher cut diamond, it is important to keep in mind that the step cut amplifies any birthmarks or inclusions in the stone. It is crucial to choose a stone with a high clarity grade.

In jewelry designs, the Asscher cut contrasts particularly well with round and oval stones. Its step cut faceting harmonizes with the brilliance of the other cuts, creating a multi-textured piece with a contemporary edge. It’s also beautiful set as a solitaire in an engagement ring, especially in a vintage style or very simple modern setting that showcases its distinctive personality.

The Asscher Cut: Vintage Vibe, Modern Style

How do you know if this is the right cut for you? If you are looking for something special that is unique, this is the cut for you. If you love antiquing and anything Jane Austen, then you may want to consider an Asscher cut. If you like to drink tea out of a china teacup, the Asscher may be right for you.

Despite the vintage appeal of the Asscher cut, it is a bit of a style chameleon. It has a distinctly modern edge that is the perfect accompaniment for a simple little black dress, or downtown hipster chic. It is also bold enough to be in perfect balance with prints, yet it is equally at home with tailored styles and ample silhouettes. The Asscher cut has stood the test of time and now its vintage vibe strikes a modern chord that resonates today.