I had no idea TC (Tunisian Crochet) would be so much fun! Maybe it was the lockdown or the fact that I just retired, but it really filled a gap for me when regular crochet started to make my hands hurt. I started noticing all the differences and similarities, strengths and weaknesses of both types of crochet.
Probably the biggest difference from regular crochet is that in regular crochet (RC) you complete each stitch individually and always end up with one stitch on the hook (except for clusters, where you have a few stitches going and then close it off before moving on). In TC, you do half the stitch going from right to left, keeping stitches on the hook, and then complete them on a return pass.
Another difference is that you normally do not turn your work.
In TC, there are different issues – for example, the potential for curling in the first few rows, a tendency for the work to shift diagonally away from your dominant hand, and unevenness between the right edge and the left edge because of the forward and back stitching.
Usually, the results of TC are called “fabric” because it has similarities to weaving, again in its back-and-forth nature.
I’m not advanced enough to be positive about this, but I don’t think you can really make the beautiful motifs, shapes like snowflakes and doilies in TC. And if I want a border around my TC project, I do it in regular crochet. So far, those are the only limitations of TC, compared to RC. But, there are lovely lacy stitches, fantastic color patterns like houndstooth checks, smooth stitches and super-warm knit-like stitches that you can do in TC.
I’m not encouraging anyone to give up our beloved regular crochet, but I do think you’ll have a lot of fun learning a new skill and trying to master this wonderful craft.