Stockinette stitch pattern is the most popular weave in needle knitting. It is shown in Fig. 1.
The weave is formed by row-by-row alternation of knits and purls in back-and-forth knitting. In circular knitting, you have to knit all rows using either knits or purls only to obtain the weave.
Stockinette stitch pattern provides moderate stretchability. The weave does not provide any pronounced relief and accentuates the yarn texture and design features of the knitted article. Another advantage is that calculations which have to be done before knitting are not complicated by the necessity to consider the pattern symmetry.
Stockinette stitch pattern is used as the basis for jacquard (multicolor) stitch patterns and “intarsia”. Intarsia is a technique for knitting large stitch patterns or geometric shapes using a few yarns of different colors.
For beginners, the most difficult thing when knitting stockinette stitch pattern is “lines” which sometimes occur on the fabric. They are caused by different height of knits and purls. And when they are alternated, visible horizontal lines may appear. Experienced knitters make them barely discernible or completely inconspicuous as they adjust the yarn tension and knitting density to obtain perfect fabric. The process becomes automatic with time. Presence or absence of lines largely depends on correct correlation between the thickness of the yarn and the needles. If you have noticed lines when knitting stockinette stitch pattern, try to use smaller diameter (size) needles.
There are certain types of yarn which cause “lines” even when used by experienced knitters. These types of yarn are not recommended for making stockinette stitch pattern or should be used for circular knitting. Circular knitting does not cause “lines” because the same type of stitches is knitted.
Reverse stockinette stitch pattern is shown in Fig. 2. In fact, it is the back of stockinette stitch pattern. It has a more prominent relief than stockinette stitch pattern. Sometimes it accentuates yarn texture better.
Have a nice trip to the world of knitting.