You don't need spend a fortune on Halloween costumes when you can put together any one of these ideas with items you probably already have in your home.

Hero: Hero costumes — firefighters and police officers, etc. — never go out of style. And the costumes are usually a snap to make. This firefighter costume uses duct tape and a black sweatsuit, while this police officer costume is just a shirt and pants and whatever accessories (handcuffs, holster, hat, badge) you can get your hands on. Just do me a favor and skip the plastic handgun ... yeah, you know it's fake, and your kid knows it's fake, but other folks might not. And it's just not worth the risk.

Fairy: Ever so popular with the little girl set, fairy costumes are so very simple to make. All you need is a little imagination and a lot of sparkle and you can turn almost any leotard and tights combination into a fairy costume. This fairy costume site shows you how to embellish a long dress with ribbons and glitter spray to bring out your daughter's inner fairy princess. If you want a more challenging craft, try this autumnal fairy costume that's created by sewing fake leaves and butterflies to leotard and wings.

Rock star: Fortunately (or maybe I should say unfortunately,) your kids probably have everything they need to put together a rock star costume. Think ripped jeans, ratty T-shirts, excessive fake bling ... you get the picture. Feel free to add a colorful wig, fun instruments or a microphone to jazz up the ensemble.

Animals: Lions (or tigers, or bears, oh my!) are always popular with the kiddos. And fortunately, they are often pretty easy to put together. My youngest wants to be a cat this year. Black pants, black turtleneck, a tail, ears and facepaint — and we are good to go. For more ideas, Google the animal that your child is interested in, or check out Coolest Homemade Costumes. This website has lots of cool animal costume ideas (including 15 different posts about homemade lion costumes ... all including pictures).

Wizards: Whether your child wants to be a scary magician or the charming Harry Potter, there are lots of great DIY magician costume ideas on the web. Make your own magic wand out of a cardboard tube and tin foil and complete the look with a wizard's hat (decorated paperboard) and get ready to enjoy the magic of Halloween!

What's your child dressing up as for Halloween?

See also:

Homemade Halloween costumes

Halloween music

Cheap Halloween costume ideas

Halloween party ideas

Halloween games for kids

Creative Halloween costumes
5 great ideas to get you started on the way to Halloween costume fun.