Rose cut diamonds for engagement rings are making something of a return. Thought to have originated first in India in the late 1300s, Rose cut diamonds and gemstones first become used and exceptionally beloved during the Renaissance, when they were thought to symbolize a mystical, even "neo-pagan" type of Christianity that was flourishing in those days. They flourished in the Neo-Classical and Romantic Eras. But they went out of style by the late Victorian Age (which for all intents and purposes closed out in the year 1900).
Rose cut diamonds have flat bottoms without the distinctive tapering body; instead, the crown of the diamond or other gemstone is elevated in a faceted dome where anywhere from three to 24 triangular facets are used to mimic the progressively tighter spiral of a rose. As these come together, they reflect the central focal point of a rose bud.
Now, the rose cut lost its flourish eventually because, to diamond and gemstone aficionados, it's got a fatal flaw. The rose cut "leaks light". Gems, especially diamonds, are "supposed" to be cut in such a way that them emit an internal light (or seem to), a trait know as "fire and brilliance". Rose cuts tend not to do this; instead, they reflect light that is coming in from around them (that is, it's obvious this is what they are doing). Rose cuts are made in such a way that they maximize a stone's carat weight; but this gives them more risk of being flawed in their facets. While this trait can be used to cover up a flaw, it can also distort the color of the stone. Jewelers have used thin gold, silver, or foil backings to enhance the appearance of "fire and brilliance" in rose cut stones.
So, if rose cuts are so flawed, why then desire them for one's engagement rings? Well, price for one thing. The rose cut can offer up a gemstone that glimmers like a star without breaking one's bank, since it is focused on reflecting exterior light rather than radiating captured light from its interior. Also, this cut is so unique in shape that it can provide a powerful air of mystery or sophistication; and it can evoke "ye olden days" and is thus perfect for retrofitting a ring.
However, keep in mind that the rose cut can be very hard to find, since it has been out of style for so long and is so one-of-a-kind. You may have to find one in heirloom collections or estate collections that are for sale, or go through an antiques dealer. Online, you can use Toltec Trading Company to help you get one. But this all means that a rose cut gem ring can be more expensive than taking a standard size ring with gems featuring more trendy contemporary cuts like the round-brilliant, marquis, or princess. If you have an upper price range limit, the rose cut gem engagement ring can be a bargain, but if you are lower budget it can be too expensive because of its rarity.
The author just celebrated her one year anniversary and sports a beautiful ascher cut ring. She and her husband put together the website: http://www.ultimate-engagement-ring-guide.com to help you find the perfect ring.