In 1968, aboard a yacht on the River Thames in London, Richard Burton unveiled the Krupp Diamond as a decadent gift to Elizabeth Taylor. It was a colorless 33.19-carat diamond he purchased at an auction for $307,000 (though its worth is now estimated at over $9 million). It's one of the most fabled diamonds in the history of gemology. However, there's one detail you may not already know by heart: it was an Asscher-cut diamond.
What Is the Asscher Cut?
An Asscher-cut diamond is a square shaped stone with deeply trimmed edges. Asscher cuts have large step facets and a high crown that radiate shine.
"The Asscher cut is most similar to the Emerald cut but in a square shape," jeweler Henri Bar says. "What makes this cut different is the larger step facets, smaller table, and a higher crown which gives the stone more weight. The corners of the diamond are cropped to give it that unique look."
Meet the Expert
The founder of Henri Bar & Co, originally from Antwerp, Henri Bar worked in the diamond industry for 45 years and comes from four generations of jewelers.
Pros and Cons of Asscher Cut Engagement Rings
If you are looking for a one-of-a-kind engagement ring with a vintage touch, then an Asscher cut diamond is your best bet. The uniqueness of the diamond will certainly turn heads. This cut doesn't have sharp edges, making is less prone to breakage. While this style of ring is fit for royalty—or at least Hollywood royalty—it comes at a cost. Asscher cut diamond rings fall on the pricier side of engagement rings, so it is certainly an investment piece.
Another important thing to consider when looking for your ring is that in contrast to other popular cuts, the Asscher isn't as shiny. "Keep in mind that while these stones do refract light to create color—or as we call it, 'have a lot of fire'—they aren't that sparkly compared to round brilliant stones."
What to Look for in an Asscher Cut Diamond
- What setting styles look best with this stone shape? You'll most likely want open-prong settings that don't mask the complexities of the cut and that allow more light to enter the diamond. A four-prong setting, for example, would work well. If you want to create more sparkle, a pave or halo setting could be nice, too.
- Where should I shop for this type of ring? "You'll find this style of ring at estate sales or vintage jewelry auctions," diamond expert Henri Bar explains. "Going vintage for an Asscher cut is your best bet since finding a well-cut Asscher cut diamond is quite hard and they can be very expensive."
- What is the most important factor of an Asscher cut? Asscher cuts are more likely to expose inclusions (blemishes) and undesired color due to the open facets, so finding a seasoned jeweler who works with superior diamonds is a must. Additionally, a lower depth is better for Asscher cuts (between 60% and 68%); the shallower it is, the larger the diamond will appear.
How to Care for an Asscher Cut Diamond
Once you've settled on your Asscher cut diamond (congrats!) you'll want to make sure it's well maintained. "I would care for your Asscher cut ring just as I would care for any other diamond piece," Bar says. The Gemology Institute of America recommends cleaning your diamonds with "lint-free cloths, commercial jewelry cleaning solutions, and household detergents." Steer clear of abrasive household cleaners, ultrasonic cleaners, and steam cleaners.
History of the Asscher Cut
This intricate cut was created in the early 1900s by Joseph Isaac Asscher, who founded the IJ Asscher company in Holland, which was later renamed to the Royal Asscher Diamond Company. The business is still in operation today and counts other legendary diamonds such as The Cullinan Diamond and The Excelsior Diamond as part of its their heritage.
Now that you have the low-down on Asscher cut engagement rings, here are seven options you’ll fall in love with.
A one-of-a-kind handmade engagement ring featuring a 0.60ct Asscher Cut White Diamond solitaire mounted in a four-claw setting. This ring stylishly blends an antique aesthetic with modern details, making it the perfect choice for someone with a flair for subtle nuance.
The shank on this engagement ring features six diamonds, adding to the brilliance of the beautiful Asscher Cut diamond in the center. You can custom design this piece, including the metal for the band (rose gold, yellow gold, white gold, platinum) as well as the carat weight. A bold ring with a nod to nostalgia.
Price at time of publish: $6,000
For something truly unique, opt for this 0.95ct engagement ring that sits between two rows of baguettes set in 14k yellow gold. It’s the kind of piece that can stand on its own but also mix seamlessly with your other jewelry.
If sustainability is an important factor when searching for your engagement ring, this 0.75ct Asscher cut diamond should check all the boxes. It’s handcrafted from 100% fair mined gold in the company’s Philadelphia workshop and the company also provides a specific quality and origin story for its conflict-free diamonds. On top of that, their packaging is crafted from eco-friendly recycled paper.
Price at time of publish: $6,500
This 0.75ct Asscher cut diamond is surrounded by pavé diamonds that form a cheveron-shaped band. The one-of-a-kind design makes for a truly unforgettable ring.
Price at time of publish: $1,590
With a total diamond carat weight of 1.50, this Asscher cut diamond is a show-stopping piece. The sleek and elegant look of this ring is made apparent with its platinum band.
This 4ct Asscher cut diamond could easily stand on its own but it is enhanced by the diamond tapered baguettes that sit on either side.
Price at time of publish: $188,000
This pavé diamond band is perfect for continuous sparkle. The center Asscher cut diamond is placed a halo setting with an 18K white gold band.
Price at time of publish: $1,490
Classic and sleek, this 1.5ct Asscher cut diamond is a timeless piece. If a platinum band isn't for you, the ring comes in a variety of different metals to choose from.
Price at time of publish: $1,250
If you are looking for a simple and sweet diamond, then this .75 ct Asscher cut ring is for you. The diamond is set on an 18K white gold band.
Price at time of publish: $990
Asscher cut diamonds gained popularity during the Roaring Twenties and this vintage style ring is reminiscent of that. Trapezoid side stones accompany the center stone with a pavé diamond band.
This handcrafted 18K yellow gold ring features a 1.11ct Asscher cut diamond with Baguette cut accent diamonds flanking either side.
Price at time of publish: $7,800
Classic and modern, this ring is crafted in 14K white gold with a glittering 1/2ct. Asscher cut diamond flanked by 1/4 ct. Asscher-cut stones.
Minimalist with just the right amount of shine, this Asscher diamond cut ring with a pavé band is a stunning choice. The center stone is 1.5ct and is held in a four-prong setting.
Price at time of publish: $1,750
This Asscher cut ring ring holds all of the beauty of the city of Marseille with a chic and elegant twist. The center diamond is flanked by alternating small round diamonds on an 18K white gold band.
Price at time of publish: $1,490
If you are looking for an edgier take on a traditional engagement ring, consider this Asscher cut diamond chain ring. The band comes in a choice of yellow gold, white gold, and rose gold.
Royalty truly radiates from this Asscher cut ring. The center diamond is surrounded by radiant round diamonds with more diamonds in the under gallery. The stones are set on a pavé band for a total diamond weight of 1-1/4ct.
This three stone ring features an Asscher cut diamond flanked by two rounded diamonds that bring out the brilliant shine in the center stone. With the diamonds set on a pavé 18K yellow gold band, this ring gives a dazzling yet polished look.
Price at time of publish: $2,650
This ornate ring holds all of the romance and mystery that comes with a secret garden. Vines of marquise diamond "leaves" surround this Asscher cut diamond with a platinum band. The unique nature of this ring is truly one-of-a-kind.
Price at time of publish: $3,150
The details in this 1.16ct Asscher cut ring are second to none. The center stone is held in a diamond halo setting on a micro pavé band. The split shanks also feature smaller rounded diamonds, and the center basket is encapsulated with diamonds and finished off with handmade filigree.