When I was growing up my mother would not let me near her sewing machine until I was about 14 years old because she was afraid I would sew through my fingers. The machine is a 1956 Singer Model 301A. It has two speeds - off and FAST!
When I was about 14 or 15, she signed me up for sewing lessons at the Singer Sewing Store. I was the oldest in the class and got to sew on one of the new computerized Singers that cost way over $1,000!
As an adult my first machine was a Kenmore with about 30 stitches. It was okay but I often ended up with tangled threads. In 1998 I bought myself a Pfaff 7510.
Awww....my baby. A great machine that I got on clearance. It doesn't do embroidery like it's big sister the 7570 but it is a wonderful sewing machine.
Recently I happened across a Husqvarna Viking Quilt Designer II on clearance price. It came with an embroidery unit! This thing does perfect buttonholes like you would not believe!
It has feature to cut the threads when you are done. It also has what is called a sensor presser foot. You don't have even to lower the presser foot to start sewing, the machine does it for you! Amazing! I'm still learning about it a little each week.
I'm torn about selling my Pfaff since I don't really need 2 machines. Pfaffie is a dependable girl and has many good years left in her.