The beginner knitter will often start with garter stitch, where every row is knit. Then we move on to stocking (stockinette) stitch, where the right side is knit and the wrong side is purled. And the next big breakthrough is combining knits and purls. If you’ve mastered knit and purl, all you need to learn to access an infinite number of knitted textures, is how to combine knit and purl.
When you are knitting, your yarn is in the back of the work. When you purl, it’s in the front. So if you want to, for example, knit 1 stitch, purl 1 stitch, knit 1 stitch, etc, all you need to do before you work a stitch is move the yarn from back to front or front to back.
Once you have that, you can add texture, motifs, and borders to your knitting. Here are just a few useful knitting patterns that combine knit and purl stitches, with written instructions and charts.