Done right, ropes can look like tubular neon lights, especially if they are synchronized to music. Most are available through retail or online stores in 9-foot lengths, with attachments to connect several ropes together. As with any type of LEDs, the price goes down each year as demand increases.
In his book, Holiday Hero: A Man's Manual for Holiday Lighting (Chronicle, 2003, San Francisco), author and Christmas lighting expert Brad Finkle suggests using rope lights for wrapping around tree trunks, railings, or framing porches, doorways and windows. He also sees advantages and disadvantages of decorating with rope lights.
- Because they are inside a tube, bulbs won't fall out or come loose.
- Rope lights can be programmed or bought in blinking, chasing or steady modes.
- More expensive than miniature light sets.
- For non-LEDs (incandescent, old-school lights), the only way to replace a burned-out bulb is to cut out the section and replace the bulb.