On my dressing table, I have a set of Matroyoshka (Russian) dolls.

During the lengthy period I worked for a prestigous firm of attorneys in Johannesburg, there was an occasion where a writing article competition was held for the support staff, to be shown in our Staff Newsletter.  I won this.

I had at the time just read a book by David Ogilvy, from the well-known advertising company, and decided to base my article on something which was, to me, exceptional about him, and which concept I imparted:

"When someone is made the head of an office in the Ogilvy Mather chain, I send him a Matryoshka doll.

If he has the curiosity to open it, and keep opening it until he comes to the inside of the smallest doll, he finds this message:

`If each of us hires people who are smaller than we are, we shall become a company of dwarfs, but if each of us hires people who are bigger than we are, we shall become a company of giants. '    "


The history of Matryoshka dolls (via russian-crafts.com/nesting-dolls)

The first Russian nesting doll (Matryoshka) was born in 1890 in the workshop "Childrens Education" situated in Abramtsevo estate New Moscow.  The owner of Abramtsevo was Sava Mamontov - industrialist and a patron of the arts.

The end of the 19th century was a time of great economic and cultural development.  Mamontov was one of the first who patronized arts who were possessed by the idea of the creation of a new Russian style.  Many famous Russian artists worked along with folk craftsmen in workshops. 

In addition in 2008 there was an amazing article on award-winning Nested Bunk Beds created by Tsai Design (refer ElleDecoration.co.za/2008/05/matryoshka-beds).

These beds, as described in Elle Decoration's article, provide an amazing answer to the huge problem experienced due to lack of space in homes by so many who live in confined spaces in South Africa.

I surmise that even David Ogilvy would have been surprised at Tsai Design's ingenuity.