Books About Faceting

Cutting Gemstones: A beginners guide to faceting by John Broadfoot & Peter Collins, 2003 ISBN:0-646-41461-5
A book designed to teach you about faceting and is suitable for the complete beginner. The book is designed so that you can teach yourself to facet gemstones from scratch. Each chapter leads you through the basics of faceting and highlights the most important principles for the beginner. You are guided from the simplest to the more complex cuts chapter by chapter and step by step. There are also chapters to extend the more experienced facetor including an introduction to the cutting of difficult soft gemstones. Cutting instructions are included for a large number of well known cuts and many new ones. The instructions are accompanied by clear step by step diagrams which enable the learner to see how each stage develops.

Amateur Gemstone Faceting, Volumes 1 & 2, by Tom Herbst, 2014 ISBN:13: 978-3-00-047474-3 and 13: 978-3-00-047475-0, respectively.This two-volume book provides instruction and inspiration for all levels of gemstone faceting expertise, from rank amateur to experienced master.

Faceting 1, Learn the Fine Art of Gem Faceting, It’s Easy! by Tom Mitchell  Introductory text for beginning faceters. Learn the history, the terminology, the machines available, the parts of the machines and how to use them and learn to facet your first stone.

Diamond Cutting by Basil Watermeyer. Chapters: 1 Diamond Identification, 2 Rough Diamond, 3 Preparation of Rough, 4 Polishing Grains of Natural Surfaces, 5 Faceting of Windows, 6 Marking and Designing, 7 Cleaving, 8 Sawing, 9 Girdles, 10 Bruting, 11 Polishing Wheel and Bench, 12 Loupe, 13 Tang and Dop History, 14 Compass of Polishing Grains, 15 Faceting History, 16 Round Brilliant Cut, 17 Cross-Working, 18 Tangs and Dops for Cross-Working, 19 Levelling of Semi-Automatic Tang, 20 Brillianteering, 21 Tangs and Dops for Brillianteering, 22 Faceting Problems and Techniques, 23 Modern Ideal Cut, 24 Whole-Stones, 25 Twisting, 26 Macle, 27 Automation, 28 Operator Systems, 29 Machine Room, 30 Fancy Cuts, 31 Marquise, 32 Pendeloque, 33 Oval, 34 Emerald Cut Introduction, 35 Emerald Cut, 36 Square Emerald Cut, 37 Triangle Emerald Cut, 38 Kite Emerald Cut, 39 The Barion Introduction, 40 Barion Square Cut, 41 Barion Emerald Cut, 42 Barion Triangle Cut, 43 Barion Kite Cut, 44 Barion Pentagonal Cut, 45 Heart Brilliant Cut, 46 Profile Cut, 47 Star Cut, 48 Rose Cuts, 49 Trilliant Cuts, 50 Half-Moon Cut, 51 Control of Diamond Processing, 52 Carat Weight and Measures, 53 There C’s Values, 54 Princess Cut, 55 Interesting Cutting Facts of Some Famous Stones, 56 New Developments.
6.5″ x 9.5″, 406 pages, hard bound. ISBN: 0-620-13248-5
CTP Book Printers, Cape

Facet Cutters Handbook by Edward J. Soukup. Things to Remember, Dopping Is Important, The Standard Brilliant Cut, A Faceting Index Conversion Chart, The French or Calibre Cut, The Triangle Step Cut, The Double French or Cardinal Cut, The Triangle Cardinal Cut, The Emerald Cut, The Six-Rayed Star Cut, The Pentagon Cut, The Cut-Corner Triangle Cut, The Step Cut and Cardinal Kite Cut, The Cut-Corner Kite Cut, The Keystone Step Cut, The Keystone Cardinal Cut, The Cut-Corner Keystone Cut, The Oblong Hexagon Cut, The Modified Square Brilliant Cut, The Don Diego Cut, Polishing Hard Materials, Polishing Guide for Faceters, Faceting Angles and Hints, Table of Facet Angles, Faceting Index Conversion Chart, Step Cut Round, Double Bar Cut, Bar Cut Pendeloque, Hexagonal Brilliant, Opposed Bar Cut, Scintillator Brilliant.
5.5: x 8″, 64 pages, paperback, SBN 910652-06-6
Gembooks, Mentone, California

Faceting for Amateurs by Glen and Martha Vargas. Chapters: I Gems are Minerals, II Faceting Machines, III Laps that Cut, IV Laps that Polish, V Choosing Materials, VI Optical Properties, VII Angles for Faceting, VIII Faceted Stone Patterns, IX Preparing for Faceting, X Cutting the Facets, XI, Polishing the Gem, XII Soft Materials, XIII Disposition and Care of Gems, Appendix I Species Descriptions of Natural Materials, Appendix II Species Descriptions Man-made Materials, Appendix III Useful Tables and Formulas, Appendix IV Manufacturers.
8.5″ x 11″, 340 pages, hard bound. ISBN: 0-917646-07-X
Glen and Martha Vargas, Thermal California 92274
Phone: 760.397.4264


CHAPTER ONE A Definition of Faceting , Cabochon and Faceted Stone Differences, GIA’s Description of a Gemstone, The work of a Faceter is Needed. CHAPTER TWO First Written Words, Man settles down in a home, Man Values Stones, Early Stone Improvement, First Gemstones Brought to Europe, Gem Legends, Confusion of Gem Names, Gemstone Myths, Time of the Roman Empire, Gemstones Mounted in Jewelry, First Faceted Gemstones, Jewelry Arts Expansion, Jean Baptist Tavernier the Famous World Traveler. CHAPTER THREE. Introduction to Diamond-fashion History, Louis de Barium, Diamond Characteristics, Crystallography, Cleaving, Sawing, Bruiting, Girdling, Rounding, Dopping, Tang, Diamond Bort, Wheel, Mill, Disc, Grinding First Few Principal Facets, Brilliantering, Polishing, Modern-day Mass production, Diamond-cutting Centers, Guilds,and Unions, Famous Contributors to Diamond Fashioning. CHAPTER FOUR Early Colored-stone faceting and equipment. Mohs’ Scale of Hardness, Jamb Peg, Faceting Heads, Proportion and Shape, Laps, Abrasives and Polishing, Light, Crystal Structure, Dichroism, Reflection, Refraction, Double Refraction, Birefringence, Dispersion and Fire, Critical Angle, Color Absorption, Idar-Oberstein. CHAPTER FIVE Early History of Cut Designs, Point Cut, Three Brothers, Table Cut, Mirror Cut, Tablet Cut, Step Cup Emerald Cut, Rose Cut, Double Rose, Rosette, Cardinal Mazarin, Perussi, Round Brilliant Cut, Marcel Tolkowsky, Present-day Cut Designs. CHAPTER SIX. The Koh-i-Noor, Charles the Wise, Charles the Bold, Agnes Sorel, The Great Mogul, The French Blue, The Hope Diamond, The Regent, Marie Antoinette, The Orloff, The Cullinan. CHAPTER SEVEN. Diamond Rough Material, Diamond Sources in India, Diamond Sources in Brazil, Diamond Sources in Africa, Other Sources of Diamond, Colored-stone Rough Material, Rubies, Sapphires, Emeralds, CHAPTER EIGHT, Mud Saws, Diamond-impregnated Saw Blades, Jam-peg Machines, Modern Faceting Heads, The Early Mineral Clubs, The Great Depression Years, a Colored-stone Faceter in 1946, A Diamond Cutter in 1946, Professional Faceters, Amateur Faceters, Rock Hounds in the Western United States, Australian Faceters Organization, World-class Faceting Competition, Formation of the United States Faceters Guild (USFG), Future Faceting Museum and Hall of Fame.

325 pages, many in color, plus 25 pages of the Authors colorful photographs of Gemstone Inclusions.. This second edition book is only available if ordered from the Authors website, which is


For centuries colored stones have been cut and polished with the use of laps driven by hand power. These poorly cut gemstones continue to be created in some of the Native Cut countries today. The goal has been to create some facets all over the gemstone which can be polished and made to sparkle. There is no thought as to what quality of polished surfaces are created. The main goal is to end up with a gemstone that has as much weight remaining as possible. Modern day faceters often use the Native Cut stones as a pieces of rough, a starting point for creating a much more beautiful and brilliant gemstone.

Later, Jamb Peg machines began to be used, and are still used today in third world countries. The power sources have gone from hand power to water power, steam engine power, and finally electrical power. It has just been in the past 75 years that mechanical faceting machines have been invented in the more successful countries, which have steadily been improved so that far more accuracy in the cutting polishing and properly placing of facets is obtained. These faceting machines have evolved into several types, such as Mast and Staff machines, Large Quadrant machines, and Platform and Hand Piece faceting machines have been invented. These are used by skilled faceters to create a combination of faceted and carved gemstones.

This author’s book covers the progress of design patterns, which need to be followed to achieve the best light return and brilliance from the mineral being worked on. The angles used and the placing of facets differ one mineral species to the next. This all becomes very important for finishing with a one of the kind; no other like it in the world—GEM.

141 pages 141 pictures This hard cover book printed in color is only available if ordered from the Authors website, which is


Beginning faceters are often amazed at the beauty of their first faceted gemstones, their first tries at taking a rough piece of one of the gem minerals and placing many flat facets around its surface. The sparkling stones always draw compliments from family members and friends. Not having had any lessons or help from other faceters at the start, the author purchased any books or pamphlets that he found available that had anything to do with faceting. This was during the early 1970’s, a time when there was not much available in the way of faceting machines. It was a time when successful faceters kept their secrets to themselves.

The purpose of presenting this book is to offer many pages of information that are guaranteed to help beginning faceters and intermediate faceters who have methods and equipment questions that they would like answers for. Many faceters want answers to improve their skill to the next level of becoming a world class faceter if they choose to do so.

Faceting articles, designs & pictures includes many of the authors faceting articles that he has written over the years, which are meant to inform and improve faceting success. Also, there are many of the authors cut designs that add interest to the articles. Lastly, there are many colored pictures included that add to the articles by showing what the results were when the author made proof cuts of his designs. There are many large pictures in color that show the true beauty of the finished colored stones.

146 pages 82 pictures. This large book 11” high x 9” wide x ¾” thick can only be purchased if ordered from the Authors website, which is

Gem Cutting by John Sinkankas. Chapters: 1 Gemstones – The Raw Material of the Lapidary, 2 How to Get Started, 3 Sawing, 4 Grinding, 5 Lapping, 6 Sanding, 7 Polishing, 8 All-Purpose Units, 9 Drilling, 10 Cabochon Gems, 11 How to Cut Cabochons, 12 Faceted Gems, 13 Faceting Equipment, 14 How to Cut Faceted Gems, 15 Spheres and Beads, 16 Tumbling, 17 Carving and Engraving, 18 Mosaic and Inlay Work, 19 Treatment of Gemstones, Appendix 1 Mechanical Tables, Appendix 2 Weights and Measures Useful to the Gem Cutter, Appendix 3 Tables and Angles for Faceted Gems, Appendix 4 Magazines and Books.
8.5″ x 11″, 297 pages, hard bound. Library of Congress: 78-120070
Van Nostrand Reinhold Company, 450 West 33rd Street, New York, NY 10001

Introduction to Meetpoint Faceting by Robert Long and Norman Steele. Detailed, step-by-step instructions for cutting the Round Brilliant, Lazy Oval, Commercial Marquise, Superpear 96 and Ember.
8.5″ x 11″, spiral bound.
The Graves Company, Pompano Beach, FL – Email: Peter Erdo

Learn How to Facet “The Right Way…” by Jeff Graham. Detailed instructions of equipment and techniques. The basic equipment needed by a new faceter is listed along with explanations of use. Pictures of most of the commonly available faceting machines are incorporated, along with descriptions of the controls. Five beginner’s designs are presented with detailed step by step diagrams and pictures illustrating the cutting process. Designs start with “Easy 8” and progress through “Easy Cushion”, “Floater Trillion”, “Round Brilliant”, and “Brilliant Pear”.
8.5″ x 11″, 58 pages, 3-ring binder.

The Techniques of Master Faceting by Gerald L. Wykoff. Chapters: 1 Gemological Essentials, 2 Gems and Their Properties, 3 Selection and Purchasing Rough, 4 Orienting and Preforming Rough, 5 Dopping and Transferring, 6 Cutting and Pre-Polishing Techniques, 7 Polishing Techniques, 8 Faceting Machines and Techniques, 9 Meet Point Faceting, 10 Diamond Cutting, 11 Special Aspects of Faceting, 12 Bringing Your Techniques Together
6″ x 9″, 234 pages, hard bound, ISBN: 0-96-7892-1-0
Adamas Publishers, PO Box 5504, Washington, DC 20016

Books and Collections of Gemstone Designs

Diagrams for Faceting Vol I -III by Glen and Martha Vargas. Volume I: Section I The Very Simple, II The Round Brilliants, III Brilliants, Without Pavilions, IV Brilliants, Variations of a Circle, V Brilliants Other Than Round, The Scissors Cut, VI Multifacet Brilliants, VII Step Cuts, VIII Variations on Geometric Forms, IX Mixed Cuts, X The Unusual, The Domed Cuts, The Barion Cuts
8.5″ x 11″, 166 pages, hard bound, ISBN: 0-917646-02-9
Glen and Martha Vargas, Thermal California 92274
Phone: 760.397.4264

Facet Design Vol I – VII by Robert Long and Norman Steele. 7 volumes with designs for I Ovals, II Navette/Marquise, III Heart/Pear, IV Cut Corner Rectangle, V Rounds, VI Barions, VII Antique Square Cushion.
8.5″ x 11″, punched for binder.
The Graves Company, Pompano Beach, FL – Email: Peter Erdo

Gram Faceting Designs 1 and additions by Jeff Graham. 56 material optimized designs for quartz, topaz, beryl, tourmaline, garnet, corundum, spinel, and CZ. Five additions of 42 designs each are available, including 3 additions of general designs for mixed materials, the Money Cuts addition, and the Checkerboards addition.
8.5″ x 11″, binder, page protector.

Original Faceting Designs by Charles W. Covill. 122 designs. Includes short articles on adhesives and method of assembly line faceting.
8.5″ x 11″, binder, each design in plastic sleeve, and on CD
Star Series by Charles W. Covill. 245 designs with 6 index pages. This collection features designs incorporating stars. Most of the stars are on the pavilion, some designs have stars on both the crown and pavilion. There are also some triple stars like the Dallas Cowboys wear on their helmets. Rounds, hexagons, octagons, triangles, ovals, pears, hearts, marquise, square and novel shapes.
8.5″ x 11″, 251 one sided, unbound pages total, and on CD
Other Charles Covill design books and collections are available in print including a new book with 109 designs; the VFW series with 25 designs; the Odd Mains series, recently revised with 62 designs; the Tourmaline Crystal series with 16 designs, and Charles’ 12 Best Design awards with 13 designs. The Odd Mains and VFW series are also available from Charles as GemCad format design files on a CD.

For orders, please contact – Email: Diann Covill Hill

Star Cuts by Fred Van Sant. There are six sets of Star Cuts available, called Star Cuts-1 through Star Cuts-6, plus one set called “Extra Designs”. There are approx. 60 designs in each set.
8.5″ x 11″, punched for binder. No direct sales outside the US. Star Cuts available outside the US to their members from the Australian, UK, and Canadian guilds.

The Book of Gem Cuts Vol I – IV by MDR Manufacturing, Inc. 15 – 22 designs per book. Angles for quartz.
8.5″ x 11″, spiral bound.


  1. rmustang

    Hi, Does anyone know how I might purchase instructional materials written by David E Corn? I have his instructional on “The Oval” It is really easy to follow and understand. Just hoping there is more out there.

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