spruce cushion with step crown

Bigger spruce green Barion cushion, mixing colors with cut This beautiful gemstones is a Barion cushion and has great crystal and appears to be eye clean. Its darker toned green has just a touch of blue, that I call spruce. It weighs 9.52 carats.


This cushion cut, which is a Barion, meet point design, partially developed by Mr. Graham, is one of the few more “modern” designs I use when cutting tourmaline.  I am a strong believer in simple traditional cuts and I add newer designs only when I feel they enhance yield or the dynamic interplay of tourmaline’s colors.  The mixing of the principal axis (c) color  with the other two axis (a and b)  lighter color is why I cut this spruce green tourmaline in a cushion rather than an emerald cut.  The principle draw back to the cut is the need to have a thick crystal to use it on,  especially if you use Mr. Graham’s original crown angles.  Of course you will also need a tourmaline with  “open  ends”,  i.e. good transparency looking down the c axis  (usually the longer, darker axis) of the crystal.

The photograph clearly shows  the lighter a/b color radiating up and down in the gemstone.  Closer examination shows that the agreeable colors in this stone are nicely mixed threw out most of the gemstone.  The step cut crown gives me great control of the crown’s  thickness, that is simple to cut and produces remarkably bright stones.

If there is any color that tourmaline completely covers from the blue end to the yellow end it is green.  The eye is very sensitive to differences in green and tourmaline caters to that ability extremely well.  Therefore it is a pleasure to say that this gemstone is just a little bit different and earned its description of spruce, only after a significant period of deliberation.  It is a pretty classy tourmaline that just would not have made it up the social ladder without the cut.





About Bruce Fry

I was born in Summit, NJ in 1947 and graduated from Summit High School in 1966. I graduated from the Colorado School of Mines in 1970 and after spending another year in graduate school, I left to see the world of Brazil. After spending some more time discovering myself, I ended up working for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for 32 years as an Air Quality Engineer in the Department of Environmental Protection. I retired in 2007 and took up faceting gemstones again after a long hiatus that reached back to my twenties. I had started cutting cabochons when I was 13 and bought my first faceting machine when I was 15, but ran out of money and time until I retired. My great love in gemology is tourmaline and the collection presented here represents my effort to get as much beauty and variety in the colors of tourmaline as I can. I was particularly lucky in being able to get unheated cuprian tourmaline before copper was discovered in gem grade tourmaline from Mozambique.
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