Here is the way we were taught to do the purl stitch. It is very comfortable, as when you knit, (or purl), the stitches are in diffferent ways, so you can watch TV, chat a little, without looking or counting, as the stitch shows you if it is a k or p one. I tried to take some pics of a magazine, but my camera as the weather, my flu, is going carazy. Anyway I will post the pic.
I cannot explain you how difficult was for me just to realize that simple fact, but a huge one.
So now I am knitting both ways, because if any ssk, or k2tog is present I must purl the needle under the yarn, as you all do.
It was not easy at first, I tried to cheat myself, my conciuos was very present at those times.
For proving me I could do it just as fast both ways, I made a simple rose, very simple, the pattern is here
CO 120 (continental),
knit 6 rows (purling as you do), with baby yarn and US 3 (3mm) straight needles
Bind off 10 stitches, with a number 5 (3 3/4 mm) straight needle, continue working with number 5 needles for 6 rows.
BO 25 stitches with a n° 6 (4.5 mm), straight needle, for 6 rows,
BO 35 stitches with US 8 (5mm) straight needles, work 6 rows and BO next 50 stitches
You will get something like a weird strip.
With a tapestry needle and the same yarn, go round forming a rose, if you want shrink a little as making petals, secure in ends, ready your rose.
And yes! I did it!!, it wasn´t odd, or difficult as it was at the beggining, nice and comfortable, as if I always worked p stitch that way.
CO 5 stitches, 1° row, k2, M1, k1, M1, k2 (7 stitches)
2° and all even rows, purl
3° row k3, M1, k1, M1, k3 (9 stitches)
5° row k4, M1, k1, M1, k4 (11 stitches)
7° row k1, ssk, k5, k2tog,k1 (9 stitches)
9° row k1, ssk, k3, k2tog, k1 (7 stitches)
11° row k1, ssk, k1, k2tog, k1 ( 5 stitches)
13° row k1, sssk, k1 (3 stitches)
15° row sssk
weave on ends, attach to your rose. This is a very simple way I do my leaves.
You can use it as a corsage, on your hair, or add a stem with an I-cord, with a very thin wire if you want it in a vase. Enjoy your rose, and I am happy, at last I can say I can really purl both ways, without a problem