Then last week, I was visiting a new yarn shop. I saw a great scarf on display with handwritten instructions for the very simple stitch pattern pinned to it. As the friendly clerk was ringing up my yarn purchases, I asked if I could copy down the pattern, and she cheerfully encouraged me to do just that.
It's been too hot to work with the handspun wool I bought that day, so I tried out the new stitch on some of the Caron Simply Soft I seem to have in abundance. I started fiddling around and changing the pattern a little -- and came up with something that instantly pulled me out of my seed-stitch rut. It's good-looking, reversible, and knits up in a flash! I've only done a few inches so far, but I think it'll be perfect for next January's Red Scarf project.
I'm sure there's a name for this stitch somewhere - surely Barbara Walker has long since documented this one - but I couldn't find the official name for it, so I will simply refer to it as the Enjoyable Rib stitch:
Cast on 38 stitches on size 8 needles (or any multiple of four, plus 2 for edge stitches, using any size needle that suits your yarn.)
Slip first stitch; *K1, K2tog, YO, P1* till one stitch remains - K last stitch.
That's it. Repeat that same row, over and over, always being careful to slip the first stitch of each row. Keep going for 60 inches or so, and bind off in pattern.
My photo doesn't do the stitch justice - in a yarn with a little bit of sheen, the rib columns stand out beautifully and no one will ever believe it's so wildly simple to do. Have fun with this -- I promise you'll find it very enjoyable, too!