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The Best Nesting Dolls

Last updated on December 2, 2022
Best Nesting Dolls

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Our Picks For The Top Nesting Dolls

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Top Pick

MATRYOSHKA&HANDICRAFT Wooden Unfinished Nesting Dolls, 7-Piece

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Wooden Unfinished Nesting Dolls, 7-Piece

Looking for a unique family project? Grab this set of seven nesting dolls, which are made from aspen wood and left unfinished. Each family member can grab a doll and paint it to his or her liking. There's also the option to use a wood burning kit to burn a pattern onto the dolls.

Overall Take

Easily PersonalizedThis high-quality set of nesting dolls makes for the perfect gift for the crafter in your life.

 Runner Up

YAKELUS Classic Matryoshka Nesting Dolls, 10-Piece


Classic Matryoshka Nesting Dolls, 10-Piece

These colorful Russian nesting dolls are handmade. Each of the 10 dolls feature a smiling face on the front and a series of white flowers on the back. You'll notice that the dolls were modeled using the classic 19th-century dolls of old.

Overall Take

Traditional DesignThis set of nesting dolls was hand carved using just one piece of wood.

 We Also Like

Starxing Traditional Russian Nesting Dolls, 7-Piece


Traditional Russian Nesting Dolls, 7-Piece

You'll get seven nesting dolls in diminishing sizes, each with handmade detail painted onto its surface. The linden wood used to construct these nesting dolls is carefully tested to ensure you're getting the best quality. The design is painted using eco-friendly paint.

Overall Take

Intricate DetailThe detail in these nesting dolls sets them apart.

 Strong Contender

Jeccffes Natural Wood Russian Girl Nesting Dolls, 7-Piece


Natural Wood Russian Girl Nesting Dolls, 7-Piece

Since these Russian nesting dolls are made from a natural wood and paint that is constructed from plant-based pigments, they don't have any unpleasant odors. They're also safe to gift to children, as well as adults. This set of seven dolls features a beautiful lady with braided hair and a stunning outfit.

Overall Take

Most VersatileIn addition to using these nesting dolls as a decoration, they also work well as pencil holders, candy bins and toys.

Buying Guide

The nesting doll concept has been copied across many forms over the years. Simply put a smaller object inside a larger object, then put both in an even larger object until you have multiple items “nested” together. Think of it as putting a small gift into a larger box and wrapping it, then putting both in an even larger box and wrapping it.

But there are few replacements for the classic nesting doll concept. Known as Russian nesting dolls due to their origin, these dolls are typically made of high-quality wood, varnished to protect the wood beneath. They’re hand-painted in a variety of designs, from playful sea creatures to the more classic Russian dolls and nutcrackers.

Classic nesting dolls were made with wood and hand-painted using high-quality paints. Today, you’ll find plenty of imitators that are mass-produced in a factory, so it’s important to look carefully at the quality of wood and paint that’s used. You’ll also find that many nesting dolls are a little tough to separate at first, but over time, those joints loosen up a little and you can easily stack and unstack the dolls. You just might need to work a little harder to get them apart at first.

What to Look For

  • Nesting dolls can be tough to pry open at first. If you’re having trouble use something like soap or olive oil to lubricate the area you’re trying to separate. Don’t force it too much since that can crack or damage the wood.
  • If you’re buying nesting dolls for a kid, you may find that a set that depicts fun characters like animals goes over better than the classic nutcracker or doll.
  • The designs on some nesting dolls are more intricate than others. You’ll find some that feature great detail and ornamentation. This painstaking detail can stand out to someone who is truly interested in collecting nesting dolls.
  • Nesting dolls can come in a variety of configurations. Five is a popular number, but you can find nesting dolls with seven dolls in diminishing sizes.
  • The smallest nesting dolls are fairly tiny, so if you’re buying for a younger person, keep in mind that these small dolls can be a choking hazard.
  • Although you can easily purchase nesting dolls in classic designs, truly classic nesting dolls are collectors’ items. If you stumble upon such an item, it could be worth thousands of dollars. Higher-value classic dolls were made in Russia and are more than 20 years old.

More to Explore

Russian nesting dolls are also known as Matryoshka dolls, a word coming from the Latin word “mater,” which means “mother.” The origin of these dolls has been traced all the way back to 1890, when Vasilii Zvyozdochkin made the first set. As the story goes, Zvyozdochkin set out to make a toy that had other toys hidden inside it. So he created the first set of nesting dolls, which featured a woman holding a rooster.

Nesting dolls first gained recognition in 1900, when they were presented at Paris’s Exposition Universelle. It won the Bronze medal at that exposition and soon after, the dolls became popular.

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