I've just learned how to knit back backwards and I'm totally stoked about it. This technique is totally easy and fast that I can't believe that I didn't think of it myself! Basically, instead of turning your work to do a purl row, you keep the right side of your work facing you and you backwards knit from the right needle to the left. Here's what it looks like:
Ingenious, isn't it? Knitty has a great tutorial for knitting back backwards here: Put It In Reverse
The Summit Shawl I've been working on suggests using this technique, which makes sense because it has a bajillion small sections over which you use stockinette stitch. When I started the shawl I gave it a quick try, but I couldn't get my fingers to work it right and was getting frustrated. So I waited until had the pattern memorized and was completely comfortable with it, then gave it another shot. Success!
I think I'm giving up purling from here on out.
Just a few more days left on the I Knitted Alot competition. My Alot is felted and drying as I type, and I cannot wait to post his picture here, along with a parade of other Alots.