Off-beat businesschic

Dressing for work can be a lot of, well, work. If clothing and grooming speak volumes about who you are, the office is one place where you want those messages to be carefully calibrated.

Still, there is such a thing as being too careful. Anyone who buys all of her work clothes at Ann Taylor is most certainly in a fashion rut. And though wearing a cotton tank top and rubber flip-flops may not get you reprimanded in today's business-casual culture, you probably won't be looking at the corner office anytime soon, either.

With this guide to office style, we're here to help. We have tips on finding work-appropriate pieces, but we went beyond obvious spots, such as Nordstrom and the Gap, and scouted less likely retailers, including (no joke) Bebe. Chic work clothes are everywhere, even at chains better known for hip-hop tees and tube dresses.