From little things, big things grow: We get to know Stayfly and BadGirl Garden

Whenever we see a flourishing all-femme event we can’t help but get excited. BADGIRL GARDEN is Sydney’s newest antidote to bro club culture.One of Sydney’s newest event series, it all came together pretty organically as a celebration of women, and their many, often intersectional talents. Brought together by the STAYFLY collective, BadGirl Garden is a colourful celebration of culture, art, hip hop and fashion.

We chatted with one of the leading ladies that helped create the event, Irena Stella to talk about the luscious lady garden that everyone’s dying to attend.

BADGIRL Garden brings together a pretty fierce and diverse group of women, where did you get the idea to start an event series?

Badgirl Garden was originally a one off event as a collaboration between Stayfly Sydney and designers AILIE BANKS and MERINDAH FUNNELL.

We threw our first event at The World Bar in Kings Cross and it did really well. That was a catalyst that inspired us to take the collaboration further, and create a space we could congregate and showcase talented women.

Tell me a bit about the artists who are involved, and what kind of art you can expect to see at a BadGirl Garden event?

Every month Ailie and Merindah curate the space and create the signature Badgirl Garden installation, and to exhibit prints of their badass designs all inspired on femininity and strength.

Each event we invite STAYFLY guest artists to do live art on canvas throughout the event, along with the Led hula hoop crew Lumi Spinners. StayFly is the all female hip hip and graffiti art collective that helped bring together all these talented women.

Hip Hop and art, in what ways do they intersect at a BadGirl Garden event?

Our line ups aim at showcasing local and interstate emcees, singers and musicians, often hip hop artists but we also embrace different genres, and we believe it’s a great platform for artists to meet and to feel part of a collective of togetherness and of female empowerment.

Hip hop is a culture we belong to and we believe that including different type of artists enriches our movement and also enhances the experience of the patrons who are exposed to all the talented ladies we get involved with BadGirl Garden.

Our resident DJ LOU LOU is always rocking the house with party vibes and also hosts the open mic session where we invite anyone who would like to improvise a freestyle, jam or practice their verses.

This often brought us to meet new artists we didn’t know before and that we invited to perform the next time.

‘Women are powerful together’ this is a line we affirm with ourselves pretty regularly. In what ways does this mantra influence and inspire Bad girls of BadGirl garden?

We absolutely stand by that statement. We believe that as a team we have the tools to create a safe space for women to get to know each other, and nurture sustainable long term connections and friendships.

It is indeed an amazing time to bring together all the women we see slaying in their fields and we are so happy to dedicate our skills to uplift the BadGirls out there!

Female spaces are important, in what ways was it important for you to create and inclusive event that’s not only a safe space but give women an artist platform?

What motivates us to create this platform is the absolute magic that women bring when together.

In a space full of powerful women there is no such thing as “female artist”. We become a majority therefore we don’t need to be gender classified. We think it’s a really important space for both women and men for that reason.


Live fast, die young, these BadGirls do it well… If you’re keen to check out their next event you, BadGirl Garden happens on the first Thursday of every month from 9pm at Slyfox, 199 Enmore Road.

Cost: $5 on the door

Photography by Rita Abi-Merhi | Instagram

Words by Rosie Rae







You may have caught some of my awkward banter on air at FBi or Bondi Beach Radio radio; however I work work behind the scenes mostly, developing content and formatting programs. Equally passionate about social issues, the arts and raving on weekends. Rose and repartee are my forte.