Ethio Milli 74 Comments

100 Bernos Ethiopian Millennium Tshirts Left!

Ethio Millenium Tshirt

In January, we decided that we wanted to produce a Bernos T-shirt commemorating the celebration of the Ethiopian Millennium. We knew we had to be unique and progressive since others will follow, eventually. We also knew we would sell out quickly seeing as when the concept was introduced there was high demand for the shirt, even before we showed the design. As always the last thing we wanted was to mass produce a thousand shirts. We wanted to push the envelope with the quality.

Therefore, with this t-shirt we wanted to limit the quantity.  We wanted to think about every detail of the design concept; the colors, the words, the tshirt itself, the placement, the meaning, the aesthetics of it.

We learned a lot from our past concepts; as always we knew we wanted to get the best t-shirts to start with. We aimed do better than our past t-shirts, we got samples sent from European and Canadian manufacturers. We found that nothing beat our first choice which is and will always be American Apparel.

Before we chose a color for the tshirt we started with the design. We wanted to push the envelope with the serigraphy process with this design. We wanted to see if the design could be bigger on the t-shirt and wanted a grungy sand blasted look. We found that our previous screen-printer had few technical limitations, like size and color correction issues. We had to spend more to get the best.

The 'Bernos Ethiopian Millennium Tshirt' had to of course say Ethiopian Millennium, there was a consensus. Then there was a huge debate, regarding incorporating of Geez feedels in the design, whether to say 2000 in Geez or in English. Finally, we went with Geez but couldn’t find a Geez font that could fit the grandeur of the grunge design concept we had in mind. All the components had to be intricate yet simple, interlaced yet readable.

Ethiopia Millennium shirt

The components include the background two colors, which included the focal point (1) and the background for the main text (2). Then there is the florid design element which encompasses the whole design and reinforces the focal point.(3). The Geez numbered font says 2000, after much research we were able find the right way to spell it out in Geez.(4) The rest of the text says 'Ethiopian' and 'Millennium,' respectively.

 Ethiopian Millennium feedel

We spent a lot of time choosing the font; we wanted to give the fonts special meaning and wanted to use the same font used on the 13 months of sunshine poster. We bought it and tried it; however, it was incompatible to the look we were trying to achieve. So we ended up illustrating a bold grungy font instead. At last, we arrived at the design.

Screen printing process

Once the design was completed, we submitted the vector art work for pre-production to our screen-printer along with the tshirts that was delivered from American Apparel factory in Los Angeles

  1. The design is broken into separate colors and printed on transparencies. At this stage we are sent proof of how the Tshirt will look. We made a few modifications and resubmitting the art work.
  2. These transparencies are then passed on to the screen room for the screen burning process; followed by burning of screens from transparency.
  3. Screenpressing; this time our vendor had the choice both an automatic and manual presses we asked that this process be automated. Our previous designed were printed on manual press. We found that although the final product is almost the same the automatic press produced less inconsistency. We ended up paying a little more for the better press.
  4. Drying & Completion – At this stage, the screen printed tshirts are run through 350° dryer so the ink will cure and thus preventing it from fading or washing out in the laundry.

Are you ready?

At any rate, the Bernos Ethio-Milli T-shirts coming really soon! I am going to throw in some marketing phrases just as a formality, even though we don’t need it to sell 100 Limited Editions top quality Bernos tshirts. Get it fast, while it lasts. Bernos Ethio-Milli attempted but never duplicated.

Why only 100?

Because we couldn’t produce 1000 with the elevated quality goal we set for this project. The closest to millennium was 100. We know that the demand will be higher than the supply, and that’s ok. We enjoy the process of producing and presenting quality products even if it’s just one.

Those special 100 people will be pleased; the rest will just have to wait till the next millennium!

74 Responses to “Ethio Milli”

  1. 1 bgFelasfit

    great job you guys!!! it looks fabulos!

    p.s. did i miss the price while skimming through or?

  2. 2 DawitK

    The price is going to be $24.95

  3. 3 FlorNueva

    so when should we expect these ?

  4. 4 Rahwina

    DK, so when can we place orders? and can we place orders for more than one?

  5. 5 DawitK

    The T-shirts are in pre-production as we speak and should be ready sometime next week the earliest.

    you can make your order once the T-shirt are available for sale as well order more than one T-shirt.

  6. 6 Temelkach

    DK, when do you expect they’d be available for sale?

  7. 7 Nolawi

    We will try to have for sale before the end of the third week in april!

    we have to do a the photo shoot first!

  8. 8 Wudnesh

    I know Bernos T-shirts are unique and original in their design,….but u want to be so unique that you won’t accept orders before doing the photo shoot? Indieeee! How about if I like it better on me? :) You said there will only be 100 of them….and I remember many BPers have been asking you guys to reserve some….and that hasn’t been done. Don’t care what you do, you’d better keep one aside for me…….

  9. 9 meron

    when it’s avaliable we will inform everyone and then take it from there…there will be no reservations…if you want the shirt you gotta order it as soon as possible. first come first serve :)

  10. 10 Surafel

    I have to say that this is an amazing design, and I will have to get one. I finally bought my first bernos Tshirt a month ago, I got the Et-alien one its amazingly soft and comfortable, I will say that you guys make quality stuff not the novelty stuff you see at the soccer tournament.

    My only problem is that you guy don’t make enough tees for everyone in every size, Why don’t you mass produce your tshirts so everyone can buy it. why only 100?

  11. 11 celebratelife

    I love the final design and awaiting to wear one.

  12. 12 Abebe

    Looking forward for the release date!!!

  13. 13 shaleqa

    i can’t order now – why do not you guys let us order now and print on the basis of the order? You have nothing to loose if you print on the basis of order!

    We are in America and I wanted a millennium T-shirt for the last two months and still I haven’t got one and you guys are only printing only 100 and i am not sure if I am going to get it!

  14. 14 kilomamo

    It is a fabulous design. As far as when ordering can start may I make a one word suggestion…”DELL” :)

    Thank you,

  15. 15 celebratelife

    I’m so ready for this t-shirt you will not believe it. You would think I’ve never owned any t’s in my life. I am so afraid it’ll be sold out before I can get my hands on 1 let alone the 3 that I need. Please just make sure you give us a 24-hour notice before it goes on sale.

    Any upcoming designs after this one? You guys got me hooked on your t-shirts.

  16. 16 Yemi

    Great design guys! This has got to be one of the most anticipated t-shirts ever. There is going to be a virtual stampede when the mad rush to get one begins.

    I have the same question as everyone else… why just a 100? Once the design is finished, you can print many more….

  17. 17 Nolawi

    Celeb we wont sell out in 24 hours, if we do we will be shocked. :) You will definitely get one!

    kilo what does Dell mean!

    Yemi, I think the question of 100 has been answered. Also we limit the quantity of the printed shirts because the profit margin on each tshirt is very low and for us to make a little bit of money we absolutely have to sell out/ or almost sell out of all our tshirts.

    We do realize that the Milli might sell out quickly but one thing we will do if the demand is way higher than the availability is to make part two of the milli concept… I think this is going to be unlikely though, but we will see!

  18. 18 Nolawi

    Shaleqa, we think there will be more than enough tshirts available the first week or two, so everyone will have a chance…

    If you are subscribed in our email blast you will get an email right before we go on sale…!


  19. 19 Beza

    Hay guys, May the coming millennium bring us all the peace and love we have been dreaming.

    The millennium is the peoples millennium, therefore we the people are should form our own unity. Check out this site called addismmillennium Visit Addis Millennium it is a great site for the people by the people.

    I love it


  20. 20 AddisLij

    Nice design guys! O, I can’t wait ;-) This sure is one anticipated t. You guys should be proud.

  21. 21 Nolawi

    Thanks Addis, we just picked up the tshirts from the printer and we are so excited… it looks great!

  22. 22 Uncle B

    Are they available for sale yet? Do you guys have it in a different color than bergundy..something like dark blue. I will definitely get one.

  23. 23 Nolawi

    Not yet Uncle, the color is only one which is raspberry picked only because it goes with the design.

  24. 24 Uncle B

    OK, let me know when they’re available.

  25. 25 Nolawi

    will do, are you in the list serve if not subscribe now.. its on the homepage!

  26. 26 Alex

    You guys rock!

    Question for ya: is this suppose to be 2k in Ethiopic? because it’s not. 2k in Ethiopic is nothing but 2Shee(with the letter ‘shee’).

  27. 27 Nolawi

    Actually Alex, we had a huge debate about how 2k is represented in geez, and traditionally both versions are used.

    We contacted few experts that know the right was to spell it out, and there was no consensus but most agreed that it is possible to have numbers with no feedels. Shee is used and everyone understands it but its not the original intention when the geez numbers are written.

  28. 28 Ephrem

    Nolawi, I just talked to this interesting guy a couple of days a go and he said the correct term is “Asra Meet”

    I will be meeting him this Saturday to talk about some fun projects. Hey if you are not doing anything you can join us. He also commented about your T-Shirt design from art-topia.


  29. 29 Alex

    Nolawi, that’s what I figured now. I used to think it’s just 2shee. I am currently gathering some resourceful web sites, documents related to the ET Millennium…it’s available in here.

    Keep going!

  30. 30 abeshaboi

    Great idea to have ethio y2k t-shirt out for sale…because so far i didn’t see any other company or individual doing the same.good job for that. But i didn’t like the design though..sorry to say..because i still couldn’t tell what the two background designs (1&2) imply…wanna see a lil geez words on it and a lil splash of ethio flag colors in any way…at least two of the three colors so that i or any ethios feel belongingness to the shirt at instant of seeing it…. :) …and something to show the futurity of the new year that it is coming…just to save time for any for fereng get perplexed of the message….may be i am asking too much?… but that what i feel about it…great idea though…and plan to buy anyway. ;)

  31. 31 zgent

    Great design indeed! However, I still fail to get the reason behind not using Ethiopic font for the words once you have accomodated the numbers. I have expressed my feelings about the omission of geez font on your T-shirts in a earlier comment.

  32. 32 Nolawi

    abeshaboi, nice input, but we think aesthetic beauty is important, and a major part of that is simplicity – so you maybe asking way to much!

    zgent, I see we are not seeing eye to eye,… two reasons, its really expensive for us to design the Bernos Tshirts on par to the quality standards we have set for ourselves… having said that it becomes really important that we sell all the tshirts to sustain bernos… and we are doing a good job, we expect to sell out everything we print; the reason is; feedback from actual customers is important, they like what we are doing? are buying from us continuously!

    second reason, is that some people just have a different taste, as you saw abeshaboi comments he wanted to make this tshirt more rasta centric, you on the other hand more novelty and less apparel..

    Just curious as to how many tshirts you have bought from us? my guess is zero!

  33. 33 zgent

    Nol, true indeed I have not bought a single T-shirt from Bernos, for the simple reason that I would like them better with a geez font in them. I would like to add that I was tempted many times because they are really good in design. I am sure you have set a high standard for your products and they indeed look nice. I still fail to see how geez fonts decrease the quality of your products. Is it only the customers who are allowed to have a say on your products? How about an admirer, afar from the market?

  34. 34 Nolawi

    ok zgent, maybe you should check out the soccer tournament… they should have a white fruit of the looms with "yagere lij" in geez black fonts… usually about 15$ this year the tournament is scheduled in early july in dallas…

    I never ever said geez fonts decrease quality… they just limit the marketability… we want to widen the audience 

    we listen more to customers for a simple reason that they are apt… others tset belew wereE yabezalu… they never buy anything, just complian I would if it was this or that… if we concentrated on the likes of you we would be out of business…

  35. 35 AddisLij

    Nol – I strongly agree with you! There is no way you can make everyone happy.
    But just to confirm something – YOUR DESIGNS ROCK!!
    And for the

    others tset belew wereE yabezalu

    zim malet new:-)

  36. 36 zgent

    Nolawi, That was indeed rude. You could have explained your issues better. I thought I was discussing things in a civilized manner not complaining about your products. The “Yagerlij and yichi nat…” T-shirts are available for a much lesser price in Addis and elsewhere. If you think it is a money issue, you got it all wrong, for me there is no big differnce between 15 and 20.99 I said it before, the design and quality of your T-shirts are great a 5.99 additional cost is too little to complain about. WerE mabzat alfelegem ena bezihu labqa.

  37. 37 wudnesh


    wwiy Qirr aybelih! Not trying to speak on behalf of Nol, but I think he was just standing firm on Bernos’ decision not to design in geez fonts…and suggesting who/where you can buy such t-shirts from. Personally, I like the t-shirts because they are different…and okk, maybe a good suggestion could come from ‘an admirer’….but, don’t you think I, being a customer, would say: ‘Bene Yamral’? :) so, indiamribih, mejemeria t-shirt geeza. :)

  38. 38 zgent

    WudE hodE,
    Thanks for the good words. I also admire Nols firm stand on the way he likes to run his business. My intention was not to persuade him to do otherwise, it was just a suggestion. Well, bygones! Banchi yamare benem yimer biye yewdedkuten t-shirt egezalehu. I would love to have the alien t-shirt in white or blue, yellow is not my color. If it is not available I will have the millenium one.

  39. 39 Wudnesh

    Zgent, liamriben neww belegna! :)

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