It is remarkable, that the faces drawn on those wooden dolls often remind their maker’s face. This goes by unnoticed by the artist. This happens due to the fact that the artist’s emotions, personal warmth and love towards art permeate his creation.

Realizing that has brought me to an idea of making the matryoshka dolls with portraits of people. The very first set that I’ve made was of me and my children. I drew myself on the largest doll and the portraits of my two daughters and two sons on the smaller ones. Originally, that was also the idea behind the very first matryoshka. The toy’s name, Matrena, is derived from the Latin word which means “the mother of the family”.
The nesting dolls will live very long, if you will keep taking good care of them. All natural materials are being used to make matryoshka dolls: specially dried wood, the paint (for example, tempera) and varnish. Several layers of varnish are needed to protect the paint. If you place your nesting dolls in your cupboard behind the glass, it will keep it’s beauty and charm for many years. And then, the grandchildren will be able to see what their grandpa and grandma looked like when they were young. The parents will show their child portraits to their own children. 

On the picture you can see the process of painting the portraits on matryoshka dolls. 

First of all, using a pencil, I make sketches of the faces on the dolls. Thereupon, I start painting the face; then I do the clothes in the front and the back of the doll. I have to be very careful and make sure that I hold the doll correctly, as the fresh paint can easily be smudged if touched. Of course, painting the smallest doll is rather challenging. Those are usually 3-4 cm long, and sometimes even their size doesn’t exceed the size of a little fruit seed. 

When I’m done painting, I cover the matryoshkas with many layers of varnish in order to give the eternal life to my creation. This also means hours of work: any careless move can spoil everything.
My friends have to wait impatiently until I’m finished. Finally, the varnish has dried off, and I place my matryoshka on it’s well deserved place behind the glass, in the spotlight. From now on, everyone, all our guests can admire this object of our pride. 

Elena Julia


Dimitry This doll is less than 5 cm tall

If you like my idea and would like to have your own set done, it’s in my power to create this small miracle. The standard amount of the dolls within an unpainted set varies between 3,5,7 and 10 dolls. I can buy the unpainted sets only in Russia, because only there the dolls are made according the correct technologies, which guarantees the long life of the wood the dolls are made from. Therefore, the amount of dolls within a set can’t be any other than named above. If the amount of people that should be painted on the dolls doesn’t correspond the amount of dolls in the set, I can draw something else on your request on the remaining dolls (for example. family pets, or something else). The images on the dolls don’t particularly have to be portraits, as I can draw nearly everything. For example, if you’d rather have the dolls’ representing your favourite music band or favourite sportsman, that is perfectly possible. Looking for a nice present for your children? Why not giving them matryoshka dolls with their favourite cartoon characters? You can make your colleagues or your boss laugh with a humourous matryoshka set. The possibilities are endless!

I charge 95 euro’s per portrait, so, for example, a complete set of 5 dolls will cost 475 euro. You have full freedom to choose the primary colours of the set, the style of the dolls’ clothes and so on. On request, I can also send digital foto’s to your email to let you see the process of making your very own matryoshka set.

I guarantee that the faces drawn on the dolls will look the same as in the photos. For sure, it will be a great surprise present for the person you give it to. And the greatest thing about it is its uniqueness. You won’t find this present on the store shelves!