Now, when you are done with mastering knit stitch, it is time to learn another basic technique: purl stitch knitting. It is used in many easy knitting projects suitable for beginners. When you knit with purl stitches, your garment has purl stitches on the right side and knit stitches on the wrong side (opposite side, sometimes called the left side).
If you knit using only purl stitches on both sides, turning your knitting, you’ll end up with garter pattern. On this sample, you can see the difference between the wrong side of the stockinette stitch on the top (with all purl stitches showing) and garter stitch (on the bottom). With continental style knitting, purl stitch is done very quickly and easily.
Let’s get started. In continental style, the yarn is controlled by your left hand and picked up by the needle in your right hand. There is no wrapping of yarn around the needle with your right hand which makes this style speedy and easy to learn. There is an added benefit for your health: it is easy on your joints.
Check your work. Continue with the rest of the purl stitches until you get to the end of the row. Purl the last stitch. One of the most common mistakes beginners would make is knitting too tight (not making loops big enough), especially when practicing purl stitch. Check your knitting often to make sure that all the stitches as are the same height and can easily slide back and forth on the needle.
This purl stitch knitting technique is very easy and when you master it, you can knit with your eyes closed. On the sample above, the garment is created by alternating purl and knit stitches and you are looking on the so-called ‘wrong’ side with just purl stitches.
If you continue just with the purl stitch knitting, you’ll have garter stitch which creates a stretchy garment of alternating knit & purl rows. When you are knitting flat (not on circular needles) you are turning your work to knit on both sides. The opposite side of the purl stitch looks like a knit stitch and vice versa.
Here is an added bonus:
Easy Infinity Knitted Scarf Pattern
(it is a great pattern to practice & master your purl stitches & create a unique Christmas gift for someone special)
(4 medium) skeins of organic wool yarn: ~ 290 yards (265 m) or any yarn of your choice
Knitting needles: 5.5 mm [US 9] Yarn needle
Cast on 24 sts.
Row 1 (right side): Slip 1st stitch, purl 23. (sl 1, p 23)
Row 2 (wrong side) and all remaining rows: Slip 1st stitch, purl. (sl 1, p 23)
Continue in garter stitch (purl every row) until scarf measures ~ 65 inches, or desired length for your infinity scarf.
Bind off. Stitch scarf ends together to close the loop using a tapestry needle. Weave in ends.