The Three Muses Gemstone Design

The Three Muses gemstone is a faceting design based on the number 3. These notes, diagrams, and instructions will show you how to cut your own gem.

2 Minute Read

I enjoy creating new gemstone designs. Sometimes, I get a request from a jeweler or receive inspiration from a spectacular new piece of gemstone rough. Sometimes, I just design a gemstone for fun. For the record, the Three Muses gemstone design is just for fun.
Three members of the quartz family, three examples of the Three Muses gemstone design by Mark Oros.
Three members of the quartz family, three examples of the Three Muses gemstone design by Mark Oros. © Hashnu Stones & Gems. Used with permission.

The Inspiration

I've been playing with this design for over a year. It started with my inclination to do something with the number three. This desire stems from being a father of triplets.

My journey went through several stages. First, a three-sided stone seemed too edgy. Then, I rejected a three main facet pavilion after viewing it in GemRay. It had poor light return. Finally, I chose the option of combining/replacing the table with three low-angle facets.

I was very happy with the new design. I cut it in several types of gemstone material with increasingly progressive designs. After several escalating designs (each becoming more complex, up to 171 facets), I stopped designing and cutting variations on my triplet theme. The process of designing and selling this motif was fun and profitable. It became a favorite with my clients. The process was also educational because I could explore the nature of "variations on a theme."

Pic 2
© Hashnu Stones & Gems. Used with permission.

Revising the Three Muses Gemstone Design

I wanted to share the enjoyment I felt exploring the Three Muses gemstone design. So, for this article, I fired up GemCad and revisited this old friend. On reflection, I saw how serious the design became over its various iterations and decided to scale back the complexity and number of facets. I wanted to accomplish three things with the new design:

  • I wanted to give all faceters a chance to try this cut by providing a simpler, meetpoint design.
  • The design needed to be unusual and attractive enough to make viewing and holding the gemstone fun.
  • I wanted the faceter to have the ability to make the Three Muses gemstone unique. This can easily be done by adding concave or matte (frosted) facets. The most attractive and reasonable place to put the small concave facets is in the culet of the gemstone (P4 on the cutting instructions). The matte facets can be played in many combinations. Two of my favorites are [P3 and C2] or [P4 and C1].

After about thirty minutes of creativity on GemCad and GemRay, I was able to produce a gemstone design that I thought was beautiful as well as fun to cut. It starts with a somewhat traditional star cut on the pavilion and goes to a rather unusual crown, going from nine break facets to a tier of six facets, and then two tiers of three facets with no traditional table. I used quartz as the gemstone material when creating the design because I wanted to cut large natural gemstones in several colors without excessive costs.

I hope that you have as much fun cutting the Three Muses gemstone design as I had creating it.

© Hashnu Stones & Gems. Used with permission.

Instructions for 72 Index


1. Cut P1 to a temporary center-point at 53° on 72 - 08 - 16 - 24 - 32 - 40 - 48 - 56 - 64

2. Cut P2 to set stone size at 90° on 72 - 08 - 16 - 24 - 32 - 40 - 48 - 56 - 64

3. Cut P3 to meet girdle at 44° on 04 - 12 - 20 - 28 - 36 - 44 - 52 - 60 - 68

4. Cut P4 to meet P1 & P3 at 41° on 72 - 08 - 16 - 24 - 32 - 40 - 48 - 56 - 64


1. Cut C1 to set girdle depth at 43° on 72 - 08 - 16 - 24 - 32 - 40 - 48 - 56 - 64

2. Cut C2 to meet girdle at 32° on 06 - 18 - 30 - 42 - 54 - 66

3. Cut C3 to meet girdle at 24° on 12 - 36 - 60

4. Cut C4 to meet C1 at 14° on 12 - 36 - 60

Mark Oros

At Hashnu Stones & Gems, we work and play with some of nature's finest creations, gem stones, opals, agates, jaspers, and fossils. We custom facet and carve a great variety of materials for our patrons, collectors, jewelers, artists and our friends. We also provide fellow lapidarists with facet-grade quality rough material for their own creations.

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