Have you read Claudia's comment on my last post about the uneven stitches when knitting back and forth? (Thanks a lot for the advice, Claudia!) Reading that, I discovered something very interesting. In summer last year when I was knitting my Cabled Vest, I learned about Annie Modesitt's combined knitting (you can read about it here). Since then, from time to time, when I have to knit extensive stocking stitch, I would purl using the combined knitting way ... since I think I would get a better tension and more even stitches.
So, the unevenness you saw in the last post is actually the result of my purling that way. I suddenly got the idea of doing an experiment:
I hope the picture here can show you clearly the result. Underneath the red line, I purled in the combined knitting way. Above the red line, I purled my normal way. To me, it is very obvious that my stitches are a lot more even when I purled in my normal way!
This is indeed very puzzling ... as in the case of Cabled Vest, I found my stitches much more even using the combined knitting method.
There are two differences between these two cases, though:
1) Last time, I used sport weight yarn while the yarn now is bulky weight.
2) For the Cabled Vest, the right side is the reverse stocking stitch with the cables while the stocking stitch is the right side for Lace Leaf Pullover.
Isn't this interesting? So it seems there is no fixed rule what is the best. Next time, I should be smarter to observe the stitches early to decide how to knit. Does the "rowing out" bother me? It does a little bit ... but not so much that I feel I need to rip out everything and do it all over again. I always think that a little imperfection, as long as it doesn't develop into catastrophe or tragedy, can sometimes make life more interesting.