Home Office Life: Virginia Villari/ Partners in Crime

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This is a series of interviews with people who work from home and share their great (and not so great) experiences. If you would like to get featured, please fill out the short questionnaire here.

What’s your name and where are you from? Where do you live currently?

My name is Virginia and I was born and raised in Rome (IT). After living in New York for 10 years and spending 3 wonderful years being based between Miami, Tulum and Barcelona, I’m temporarily back in Rome and on my way to move to Berlin at some point this summer.

What is it you do?

I do many things! As many freelancers do. My education background is in Art History and I’ve worked as an art curator for several years, mainly independently. My true calling has always been writing. So it’s been over 5 years I’ve decided to focus on working as a freelance content writer, copywriter, digital marketer and blogger for the Arts and Travel industries.

How long have you been working remotely?

Since I started providing writing services, about 7 years. I’ve always set up office in my homes – be them temporary or long term– or worked from co-working spaces, cafes, hotels or wherever I could find a good WiFi connection!

Are you employed or a freelancer? If employed, what is your arrangement and how did you convince your boss?

I think I was born a freelancer! 🙂 I have to be honest: I’ve had issues in keeping jobs as an employee because I just can’t bust my ass for someone else’s dream, unless it’s someone who I respect deeply, like a mentor or a teacher…but definitely not a boss!

Any project you want to share?

Although I promised myself not to talk about this until it’s at a more advanced stage, I can make an exception for SFHO: Together with my husband – also a freelance illustrator, graphic designer and tattoo artist – we are launching our brand: Partners In Crime, also featured on Big Cartel. We offer creative visual and writing services along with an online shop where we sell my husband’s original artworks, limited edition prints and, soon, urban style clothing and accessories with our signature designs.

If there is such a thing, how does a normal workday look for you?

Asana-VSince I often work on several projects at the same time, I try to split my day between the different jobs and some time for myself (and my husband and dog!). In a perfect world, I would wake up early, have breakfast, do around half an hour of meditation and then sit at my home office desk and work an average of 8 hours a day. I would also practice yoga, or do other types of work out, at least for one hour.

In reality, I don’t always wake up early and I recover time after dinner. I might not work during a business day and work the entire weekend instead. I eat at pretty random times; I don’t meditate regularly and I try to work out at least 3 times a week.

Can you think of a time you were really happy to be working remotely?

Yes! When I would spend the winter in Tulum (my husband and I did it for 5 years in a row) and I could work among an international community of remote workers, often time from little kiosks, hotels and restaurants on the beach, facing the Caribbean Sea.

What’s your biggest achievement/ milestone regarding remote work?


The freedom of movement and the chance to define my daily routine or change it according to how I feel. But most of all, being able to support the nomadic lifestyle I love so much.

What is your biggest struggle with working remotely?

I face two main struggles with remote working:

  • Communication with clients. Jobs are often discussed entirely via email or even Whatsapp, especially when I’m traveling, and this makes a lot of room for misunderstandings that, at times, entail redoing the job entirely or even losing the client.
  • Isolation: working from home or when traveling has many amazing perks, but it doesn’t provide the network and the connections/friendships of a work environment such as an office. Especially when you move to another city – and here I speak from experience – working remotely doesn’t help you meet new people fast – like colleagues for example – and getting introduced to the new place’s social life by locals.

What do you do to deal with it?

Regarding the communication with clients: I try to clarify the main points – like compensation, the number of drafts included and deadlines – from the get-go. A signed contract is always a good idea. Also, experience has taught me that when it is the client who makes the communication extremely difficult, sometimes it’s better to just let the gig go, even if you need money. It will save you a lot of future troubles.

When it comes to dealing with isolation, I connect online with expats communities in a certain place or groups of the same profession or like-minded people (like yours). And then I go out and party! I found some of the best connections and business partners on the dance floor!

How does working remotely affect your stress levels?

I am a freelance remote worker and so my biggest source of stress is financial instability. It could depend on slow periods or on clients who are late with payments. At times, I’m also overwhelmed with the fact that it’s all on you: it’s a big responsibility to motivate myself every day to work when I’m home, and there’s nobody who tells me not to spend the day on the couch binge-watching Investigation Discovery (LOL). But that’s the price of freedom, isn’t it? 🙂

Was there a specific reason why you wanted to work remotely?

Yes! It’s essential for me to manage my own time and to have the freedom to change location and experience life in different places. I like to take my time in the morning and I find it more relaxing to work at night. That’s also why I like to work from home.

What’s the most important skill that helped you make it?

Actually, I’m not sure I’ve made it yet! Anyway, I’d say my determination and the fact that I always get back up after a blow and carry on. I believe that it’s also my uncompromising need for freedom of self-expression that kept me on this path.

Are there any essential apps or tools you use daily?

Instagram, Medium, Whatsapp, Word, Pages, Hootsuite.

Apart from your computer, what’s the most important item in your office?


The Arts&Crafts I’ve collected during my travels or made by artsy friends, my notebooks and my film cameras.

What’s your favorite 90s jam?


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