Cover that wall, make it interesting
Instead of painting, you can try something unusual: tiles. The fact is that tiles "naturally" belong in the bathroom and the kitchen, but the fact is also that that's not a rule written in stone. Today you can find tiles in all shapes and sizes imaginable, some of them even imitate other materials very well, so what's preventing us from having tiles in, say, living room? Nicely designed tiles will convert your room from "It's OK" into "Wow!! I mean... wow!""
Stone you may find in all homes or around the fireplace as a visual feature that creates a focal point of the whole space. But, if you want something new, why limit yourself to just one part of the wall? If it looks good, if it fits the space and you like the look, you may cover the whole wall with stone. In an old house it will bring even more rustic look, and in the modern home it will break the strict geometry and straight lines and bring a sense of nature inside.
And then there are wall panels. They may require professional installation but it's worth it because the result may be spectacular. They are made of different materials and shapes range from "usual" to "crazy," and with them you can create stunning visual effects to match your mood and the rest of your home to the last detail. Wall panels are most probably the best way to go if you want to convert your old room into a piece of art you can live in.
But, if you still want some nice wallpaper, step back from repeating patterns and "cover them all" philosophy. Instead of usual design that repeats all over the place, you may choose wallpaper with design that covers the whole wall with a unique picture or a pattern, and you don't even have to cover it in whole, you may do just a part of it. And if you resist the temptation to dress all walls and use wallpapers just on one wall and paint the rest in a color that fits, you'll get a surprisingly good look with a minimal effort.
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