To ensure that I don't leave the straight-stitch needle plate on my sewing machine when I'm doing fancy stitches, I place the zigzag-stitch needle plate (it has the wider hole) and the necessary presser foot in a small bag. This way I can't use one without the other. I learned the hard way that trying to do more elaborate stitches with the straight stitch-needle plate not only breaks needles but can really damage your machine.
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