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TGF Mums: Danielle Lehtonen-Riley

This week, we’re sharing interviews with the wonderful mothers in the TGF family, starting with Danielle Lehtonen-Riley.

Favourite TGF pieces and why? Will any be used as heirlooms?

Most of my favourite TGF jewellery has sentimental value. I love my gold Alphabones V Pendant for my daughter, my A ring for my son and my Small Gold Eye Pendant which is the same colour as my husband’s eye. But I also love, love, love my Small Signet with 18ct Gold Skull. It’s the perfect pinkie. And my Smallest Evil Skull in 9ct Gold which I wear as a pinkie on my other hand. I wear these every day. I don’t take them off, I sleep in them, I’m terrified of losing them. I also love my Mum Ring, I feel so proud wearing it. Even though I wear these less now, the Rose and Soaring Eagle will always hold a special place in my heart as they were my first two rings I bought before I worked at TGF. They will all be heirlooms along with my engagement and wedding rings.


I used to listen to podcasts to enlighten and educate but after my first child 4 years ago my brain collapsed (it still hasn’t recovered) and I’ve needed an instant and constant dopamine hit ever since, so it’s a lot lighter these days. Adam Buxton is the podcast king. I assume everyone has listened to his podcast. But Off Menu has been my favourite over the past couple of years. Similar format in that they have a guest for each episode but it’s all about the guest’s dream meal… Which is basically 90% of my conversations, so I guess it normalises my fetish for food. Ed Gamble and James Acaster (btw I have a James Acaster fan club if anyone wants to join) are smart, witty, they’re hilarious. It’s like hanging out with friends – it’s guaranteed to make you lol at least 8 times each episode. I’ve listened to so many but my favourite ones are Sue Perkins, Sindhu Vee, Scroobius Pip and Joe Thomas. When I feel I can engage with something on a slightly deeper level, Revisionist History by Malcolm Gladwell is always interesting if you’re into social science, each episode is looking at and re-evaluating incidents/events in the past. Also, I know this is years old now, but if you haven’t listened to S Town do it now!

My Spotify is like a packet of revels. It’s varied, not very current and doesn’t make any sense together. It jumps from Patti Smith to Frankie Knuckles, Black Sabbath to James Brown. I discovered one new album last year and that was Run The Jewels RTJ4. I love hip hop, this is a classic. I have so much respect for Killer Mike as a rapper and activist. He’s a real one. I’m desperate to get some TGF on him. But realistically 90% of the time I’m belting it out Trolls World Tour (great soundtrack to be fair).

Anyone who knows me knows I fall asleep in front of a movie. It’s so annoying. I have commitment issues with boxsets but my faves that I’ve managed to see through recently are: Succession, Watchmen and Patrick Melrose. Oh and Drag Race! For a show that is so loud, colourful and pretty intense, I find it strangely relaxing. I guess it’s total escapism. I love The Mandalorian too.

My commitment issues also continue with books, I have about 10 on the go which I’m desperate to finish. Audiobooks work better for me these days, I’m currently ploughing through 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami, I won’t say anything about the story other than it’s about the supernatural I guess, but written in such a delicate and mysterious way. It’s 50 hours long but I love his style of writing, it doesn’t feel too long. I’m currently reading Mark Lanegan’s Sing Backwards and Weep – it’s so good I don’t want to finish it – it’s pretty dark. I love hearing about his experience of music and Seattle in the 90s. I’m amazed by how much he remembers. Fuck, I wish I had that as an audiobook. His voice…  I also totally recommend all the Alan Partridge books as audios for obvious reasons!

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