I have a solution. How about great LEDs that only cost 6 cents a piece new?
Wait until after Christmas and bombard your local hardware store for their "after-Christmas Clearance" sales. You can find strands and strands of LED Christmas lights for 75% off normal, which means you spend about $3 for 50 LEDs. That saves you about $22.5 if you were to buy similar LED's at online retailers. Your LEDs cost you 13% of what they would before. 6 cents for mine vs $1.50 retail.
I like to do things visually, be sure to look at all of the pictures and the image notes for in depth comments and hints to make your life easier and this instructable better!
Step 1: Materials
-LED Christmas lights
-2 large coins
-Time, lots of time......
Step 2: Prepare the Strand
If you lay out the chord and look closely, you'll find a few LEDs with three wires sticking out. Because LED's can only use electricity running one direction, and AC current (what your wall outlet puts out) runs in two directions. Two of the wires on the LED are directly connected as to let current flow backwards through another set of LEDs and allow the LEDs to function.
These LEDs don't let us unravel the LEDs from the rest of the strand very easily, so we'll need to cut off the outlet/plug as well as the 3 wire LEDs. Set them aside, we can use them later.