Put a "subsurf" modifier on it, an subdivide it 3 or 4 times but don't apply it for now...
step 3 of 13
Hit the Tab-key (Edit-mode), the sphere is still a cube (since you don't have applied the "sub surf" modifier) and do a "Cut loop and slide" (Ctrl + R) and divide it in 3 pieces.
step 4 of 13
Select the outer edges of the cube and size them down.
step 5 of 13
Return in Object-mode (by hitting the Tab-key again) and scale it to get a nice looking ball
step 6 of 13
Get back to Edit-mode and "Cut loop and slide" over and under the middle line (I did a 3 division for both)
step 7 of 13
Ok, this is a bit of work: Select the middle line in Edit-mode, and size it down to get the result shown in my picture (you'll have to scroll a lot to select every point, I know...)
step 8 of 13
Now for the big white laces, create a few Toruses...
step 9 of 13
We'll continue to create the white laces by adding 2 cylinders, which we bend with the simple deform-modifier. (You must "Cut loop and slide" the cylinder in order to make him bendable)
step 10 of 13
To create the stitches, create half Toruses which you put in a row, join them and bend them to follow the shape of the ball (This is a bit tricky, I've had to do some try and fails before I got a satisfying result!)
step 11 of 13
For the Texture now:
I created in Photoshop a random dotted Texture as bump-map. For the color, use a dark-red-orange color. The stripes are just white with the bump-map too. To assign the stripes, select the polygons of the ball in Edit-mode and assign a new Texture.. I don't go in detail for the Textures, since the Blender manual could help if you're stuck...
step 12 of 13
The final scene:
For my render, I created 5 light sources (the back-light color is cyan), put an dark-grey ground with little mirror-reflection, and an dark-grey background with little reflection too which is slightly rotated, to avoid the ball being reflected by the background.