Gemstones come in all sizes, shapes, and colors, and one shape that is making a very big comeback is the rose cut gemstone. A rose cut gemstone is a stone that has a flat base with a domed top, much like a traditional cabochon stone, except that the top is cut with anywhere from 6, 12, 18 to 24 triangular facets that resemble the narrowing spiral of how the petals of a rose lay naturally in the flower.
Although this term is now more closely associated with the cut of diamonds, it is actually a unique old world gemstone cut that became very popular in Europe in the 16th century with colored stones set in jewelry. The reason? Candlelight. At this time, candles became the lighting of choice because they became more common and more affordable. Plus, the European elite class took notice of how beautifully candlelight would reflect and dance in a rose cut stone's facets, therefore making it a sought-after gemstone cut to have in jewelry.
The rose cut remained popular for both colored gemstones and diamonds throughout the 19th century and into the early 20th century, but it is believed to have actually originated in India in the 15th century. India was a great supplier of both gemstones and diamonds and cutting a stone with a rose cut was a way to elevate stones that had natural inclusions within the stone that were visible to the naked eye. It made them more attractive due to the way they reflected light, and therefore more salable.
Within the past 20-25 years, the popularity of vintage jewelry, especially wedding and engagement rings, has continued to escalate, making the rose cut once again a very popular stone cut to have in jewelry.