to get any lure catch large skipjacks (16 - 24 lbs) or small baracudas (he will be able to pull them out without a stick or net) and use which ever lure you want.
to get any article of clothing, go to the offing and catch small blue marlins (about 60 - 100 lbs), you can do this easily with the first popper A you are given. to get different charector's clothing (captian or macala) use their specific rod under items and do the same thing.
put items you get in the aquarium as soon as you get them; you can't get some items if you do not do this.
to get other items aim for the biggest fish on any particular level. the last item you will be able to get with most fish is the metal fish of that type.
the hardest fish to catch in the game is the coelacanth and the bluefin tuna in the fishing port (because there is no specific lure to catch them). aim to the left side of the screen near the dock and use the first big splasher lure to catch the coelacanth. you usually have to get other fish to chase it before the coelacanth gets interested. to get the bluefin use the first big pencil popper and fish just to the right of the dock as far back as it will go; you have to dance the lure right around there to get them to bite.
P.S. i've gotten 263 of 266 items if anyone knows how to get the last two specials or the original player's fourth shirt please tell me. i've tried absolutely everything.