Nesting dolls seem to be universal but, from my investigation, appear to have originated in Russia. While traveling, we have discovered many countries have their own concept of these dolls. Recently, while visiting the Greek Glendi Festival at St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church near Sarasota, I discovered many sets of these dolls showing the Greek versions. The first picture shows the largest doll of a set that, when opened, contains the smaller one which, when opened, contains a smaller doll, etc.
Revealed below is the entire set of five dolls. However, some sets contain even more characters not necessarily identical but the shape is usually constrained by the need to fit into smaller and smaller containers. Thus, features, clothing and colors are defined by painting on these vessels.