How to Light Your Man Cave With LED Rope Lights

Posted by Birddog Lighting on Dec 7th 2016

How to Light Your Man Cave With LED Rope Lights

It wasn’t that long ago that men and their friends were resigned to watching games, playing poker, and smoking cigars in the least desirable room in the house. Often it was the dark, dank basement or the garage. These days the whole concept of a man cave has transformed from a primitive hole in your home to a swanky, sophisticated pad that offers comfort, technology, and everything modern man could want when entertaining guests.

You’ve picked out the perfect lounge chairs, installed your game table, filled in your entertainment center, and stocked your bar. Now it’s time to consider appropriate lighting for your man cave. Pendants over the game table and bar are traditional, and you could certainly add recessed lighting on dimmers for versatility.

However, you might want to kick it up a notch.  Add some unique lighting options that not only illuminate your space, but also create a hip, edgy effect and display your personal aesthetic. If you want to take your man cave to the next level with lighting, here are a few ways to incorporate rope lights in your space.

Bar Lighting

There are a couple of cool ways to use rope or strip lights around the bar. One of the easiest things you can do is run LED strip lights around the edges of the bar, like under the lip of the bar top, under the bottom edge of the bar, or along the inside of the foot rail, just for example.

You can also use rope lighting to enhance the back of the bar. If, for example, you have a mirrored display for barware and bottles, you can really make it pop by adding lights around the perimeter of the mirror or running it along shelving to backlight bottles and glassware.

Think about getting a kit that allows you to integrate your lighting with a smartphone app so you can remotely adjust the brightness of lights, toggle between colors, or create preset lighting schemes for different types of events.

Memorabilia Cabinet or Shelving

Many man caves double as a display space for collectibles like comics or figurines, sports or entertainment memorabilia, or monster masks and hood ornaments that simply don’t fit the average woman’s idea of acceptable decor in the rest of the home. Displaying these items in the man cave is, of course, better than moving them into storage, which is basically just a holding cell for items slated for donation.

If you’re going to showcase your beloved possessions in a curio cabinet or on shelving, why not highlight them with colorful rope lighting? You can easily line cubbies, shelves, or other display spaces as a way to illuminate your favorite pieces or add some artistry to your display.

Don’t forget, you could take the same basic approach with your entertainment center, running rope lights around the interior edges of shelves, or possibly even using it to backlight the entire entertainment center.


Just because billiard lights hanging over pool or game tables is the traditional look doesn’t mean you necessarily have to get in line. You can definitely think outside the box, especially when you employ rope lighting.

For example, you could create a modern version of the classic pendant by crafting a lighting fixture that features a collection of ropes lights on a grid hanging over the center of the game table. You could even tie them together to form a modern, masculine chandelier of sorts.

Another option is to crisscross rope lights overhead to illuminate game stations and give the man cave a fiesta-like atmosphere. You’ll have to decide on the aesthetic that’s right for your space, but if you’re the type to buck tradition, rope lighting provides you with ample opportunities to get inventive.

Create a Custom Sign

Customized lighting decor is all the rage these days. Instead of opting for something boring like a tin box in the shape of your initial, bedecked with light bulbs, consider what you could create with the aid of rope or strip lights. All you need to start is a sturdy wire frame to attach rope lights to and you could end up with a custom piece of wall art that spells out a word or forms an image. It can be as simple or complex as you want.

You might take the opportunity to craft your mantra, be it “power”, “winning”, or “BYOB”. If you’re really crafty, you could use colorful strip lights to design a more complicated piece of wall art such as a flag (with red, white, and blue lighting) or a sport’s team logo. Too complicated? Consider simply backlighting a favorite piece of existing art or hiring help to fully realize your dream of rope lighting wall art.

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