My very first sewing machine was a very old Bernina, but I didn't use it very much. I was around 18 when I got it and all I could think about at the time was finishing high school. I didn't really have time for learning a new skill - and on top of that I could not figure out how to thread my machine properly. I ended up giving it away eventually.
When I got older I wanted to start sewing with a machine after hand sewing for many years, so I told my grandma about it. I asked her for advice on prices and brands and quickly found a machine that I liked. But before I could buy it my grandma told me that my aunt had an old Privileg machine that she didn't use anymore and she wanted to give it to me for free. Of course I said yes. Before my aunt got it my grandma used it for many years, so it was old and did not have all the modern stitch options, a visible bobbin and back stitching. But it was the perfect machine for a beginner. I used it almost every day for about a year, until I broke it. I was so sad, because it had become so important to me. Silly me...
I decided that I needed a new sewing machine and it had to be here and now. I did some research on the internet and decided to buy a Singer, since I had only heard good things about it and it had all the basic functions plus a few extras. I got it the next day. I have since used it with great joy every day.
It is a Singer Confidence 7467 - it came with a few bobbin spools, an appliqué foot, a zipper foot, a blind stitch foot, a satin stitch foot, a buttonhole foot and a lot of other things. I went through the manual meticulously when I first got it and I would recommend everyone do this. First of all you will discover things that you did not know a sewing machine could do. Second of all you reduce the risk of breaking your machine by a billion, because you actually know how it works.
I love my sewing machine and I think that all fellow sewing people out there know what I mean when I say that I feel a strange connection to it.
Protip: Now I know that buttonhole foot look weird and scary, but I would really recommend trying it out, since it is so easy to use once you have tried it. I made a tutorial for it. Find it HERE.