The Oregon Ball

This was a little project I came up with while on vacation in Oregon. I made it sitting by campfires with my dad, he made sure I had enough light so that I didn't blind myself.

It's based off techniques from a pattern shared by the Berroco Design Team and if you want to make one yourself, I'm about to try and tell you how.

Before you start, I suggest you use the same yarn (or at least the same type) throughout the entire project.
Sock yarn is good, it makes a nice little ball that is easy to hold on to.
Use needles that give you a tight fabric so the stuffing doesn't escape. I used five double pointed needles, but I'm sure you could just as easily use four... or a circular needle.
A tapestry needle.
A safety pin or something to mark the beginning of the last round (if you need it).

Casting on (I used long tail, not too tight), knitting in the round, picking up stitches, and decreasing (k2tog and ssk). Not too tough and so easy to remember, I'm writing this down weeks later.

  • We're using the concept that we're knitting a ball in six sections.
  • For your first picked up stitch in Verses Two to Five you'll probably want to knit the tail along with it and then knit the two strands as one stitch when you come around again. A similar technique is often used for the first stitch or more when joining in the round.
  • When picking up stitches pick them up in the middle of the 'V' such that they will interlock with the previous rows. Remember you're knitting in the opposite direction as the other squares.
  • Also, when picking up more than ten stitches, I pick up the following sets of ten on a separate needle (But I pick up the first ten with the needle that has the cast on stitches on it, except the last side.)
  • I don't put the cast on stitches on different needles until right before I join in the round and that's done as usual by slipping them all purlwise onto needles. And be careful not to twist your stitches.
  • In my head this project goes a bit like (a very repetitive) song. That is the reason for the formatting.

Now! For the original Oregon Ball.
Verse One:
Cast on forty stitches (Longtail, but you can try others... if you want.)
Divide on to needles
You can use the tail to keep track of the beginning of the round, this project is so small any markers will probably just get in the way.

Verse Two:
Cast on thirty stitches.
Pick up ten stitches (always starting at a corner) from the previous square.
Join in the round.

Verse Three:
Cast on twenty stitches.
Pick up ten stitches off the first side and then ten off the second.
Join in the round.

Verse Four:
Cast on twenty stitches.
Pick up ten stitches off the first side and then ten of the third.
Join in the round.

Verse Five:
Cast on ten stitches.
Pick up ten stitches off the fourth, ten off the first and ten off the second.
Join in the round.

Verse Six:
Pick up forty stitches. Ten off each of the exposed edges starting wherever feels easiest.
Join in the round.
Continue as usual pausing after the first two rounds to finish off whatever raw ends are exposed inside by temporarily turning it inside out. Then continue until you have 16 sts, that's a pretty good time to stuff the ball. Close it up, tie it off somehow, and thread it into the ball.

Knit two complete rounds.
Now at the beginning of the third round (k2tog, k6, ssk); repeat this three more times to complete the round. (32 sts.)
Knit a round.
Then (k2tog, k4, ssk) four times in total. (24 sts.)
Knit a round.
Then (k2tog, k2, ssk) four times in total. (16 sts.)
Knit a round.
Then (k2tog, ssk) four times in total. (8 sts.)
Now k2tog four times so there are four stitches left. (4 sts.)
Go through at four stitches with a tapestry type needle and go through the first one a second time. Thread through to back and sew end in.

Hopefully that's okay.

(2009-09-19) Final Notes: At this point I'm the only person to have knit this pattern, and I apologise for the formatting, when I previewed it, everything was in the right place and the pictures matched the pattern. I'm going to take some of the pictures out.
This pattern can be knit in one day, but you might find it easier and less frustrating if you do two sides per day for three days. I'm interested to see how the pattern works for everyone else.


  1. I like the concept! I'll give this a try sometime soon.

    Would make a great knit hacky-sack, which I need to make for Christmas, or a neat juggling ball, ditto.

  2. I have some leftovers bits from some socks; will cast this on today and let you know how it goes! Thanks so much for posting this cute idea!

  3. This looks very interesting - I'll have to try it if I ever knit my friend that hacky sack I promised her two years ago :)

  4. Your version of the Berroco Design team pattern is much more practical than their "Celestine" - the dodecahedron star, a tree topper or stuffed toy.
    Yay you! And thank you.

    (Note: change bracketed caps to symbols.)

  5. Finally! A easy pattern for making juggling balls! Thank you so much!