Bernos On TV 56 Comments

Our first TV interview ever. On Medill News Washington came when we had our monthly meeting and interviewed us. Watch video below

Three young immigrants make a fashion statement

by Alysia Patterson – Jul 17, 2008

WASHINGTON — In the world of African affairs, Ethiopia and Eritrea are historically unfriendly neighbors. But in the fashion world style transcends geopolitical tussles.

Three young African immigrants — one from Eritrea and two from Ethiopia — joined forces to create a t-shirt line that fuses together their old and new cultures. And they’ve just found out it’s a winning combination.

56 Responses to “Bernos On TV”

  1. 1 Cool

    Very nice job y’all. You done us proud. Politics out venture capitalism in. Keep it up! But I wish you had not said “I saw a white guy wearing and it was so cool!” You might not have meant it, I ain’t hatin here, but it sends the message, implicit or explicit, “if white folks wear it, we are legit!” It does not have to be that way because you have proven that. I think that was a faux-pas on your first TV interview. Just be careful next time :) PR baby.

    You guys are awesome!!

  2. 2 celebratelife

    Wow, wow, wow Congratulations! The only thing is this time it’s not DK doing the strike a pose move it was Nolawi lol.

    But I wish you had not said “I saw a white guy wearing and it was so cool!” You might not have meant it, I ain’t hatin here, but it sends the message, implicit or explicit, “if white folks wear it, we are legit!”

    I think, what she said, gives more the impression that they have successfully ventured outside of the Abesha community. They’ve been too legit to quit :P

    What’s even more interesting is…it was a white guy, in China town, wearing an African teeeeeshirt stating he be from the mother land toooo! Loved it!

    Just so y’all know Urban Outfitters does have locations outside of the DC area…hint, hint :)

  3. 3 ep

    you guys are great business people.

    Is all about t-shirt sales though?

    Nowali, your name is difficult to pronounce, lol

  4. 4 Sara

    Congrats to the Bernos crew!!!! That’s awesome!

  5. 5 Dinich

    Betam betam arif…ur interview skills are great too…All of ya guys look and sound very professional….

    Well done

  6. 6 Mamo

    Congrats to you all Bernos Crew! It was great!


    Was it too hard to pronounce your name? Newali? By the way, you were kind of ‘shy guy’ and i heard only ‘basically’ from you. Anyways, it was cool.


    Great interview…one question though, were you born and raised in Eretria?


    Awesome! I’ve never thought you were that quite…hummm

  7. 7 Totit

    Congratulation to u all…Nolawi, Dawit and Meron! Great interview!

  8. 8 emfraz

    lol@ n’wali .. great job guys

  9. 9 Kukusha

    You guys are terrefic. Proud of ya’l. Flourishing union.
    Great combination, Great work, Great vision.

  10. 10 Witness

    This is so cool betam gobezoch I plan to buy some tee shirts soon.

  11. 11 datdude

    One thing that stood out for me, why did the interviewer have to butcher ALL three names, esp. meron and dawit? I’m starting to think this is white people’s way of keeping a brother down, not saying your name right. I pronounce Massachusetts right didn’t I?(k. used spell check on that one) From now on its open season on all white names, i’m starting with the mikes and steves. Join me on my crusade.

    Good job all around Bernos, one of these days i’ll be rocking your tees, then you’ll REALLY have arrived :)

  12. 12 masinkomelody

    Cool interview…des sitilu! Meroniye, i still love your jawline.

  13. 13 Spacefog

    Great job guys. Keep shinning!


    From now on its open season on all white names,

    That is really funny…

  14. 14 Hidaya

    Congratulations Meron, Nolawi and Dawit , well done guys, your hard work has paid has paid off…Wish you the best…

    datdude count me in..I am joining your crusade, here no one pronounces my name like it is supposed to, sometimes I even find myself pronouncing it as wrongly as others do which is even worse, I do it for an easy life, for years I did the phonetic spelling and pronouncations, now I have given up and resigned to my fate…

  15. 15 salome

    Way to go guys.

  16. 16 S

    Awesome! Way to go, lady and gentlemen! Meron, you’ve got that model thing going on. :-)

  17. 17 embrt

    on the wide shot of the three of you guys sitting at the coffee shop, the way nolawi’s awkward expression (between 00:28 – 00:35) is HILARIOUS. he looks weirded out. LMAO

    but um, congrats bernos.

  18. 18 Anonx

    Its a big step, congrad guys.

    D-you speak tig, or only eng. and swed.?

  19. 19 abyssinia

    Congratulations, guys!

    Just wondering what Nolawi said to have his part cut off…I thought that was an awesome opening.

    Do you still have the alien tee?

  20. 20 Bed_ford


  21. 21 Mandefro

    Bravo bernos. we need more sick designed T’s man.

  22. 22 munit

    WOW, this is big, Congrats, how come Nolawi didn’t speak? Meron looking good as always, congrats congrats

  23. 23 The Uncle

    A great introduction to an entrepreneurship. Keep up the good work and continue to work harder.

  24. 24 Anchi!!!

    Great guys!!!

    Why the white guy remark?

    Still love ya

  25. 25 Selam

    Great job Berons!! Love your T Shirts…

    I am still waiting for my Ts ordered a few weeks ago.

  26. 26 Nolawi

    Ha, they girls the camera man minamin were setting up and I was looking at the brand they used…

    the lighting was bright as well…

    anyways I went last – and basically i was shamelessly plugging away … and I guess they didn’t use any of it…

    anyways the stuff meron said about the white guys is very good… Dawit also did a good job… a little too serious but its ok..

    anyways any pr is good pr….

    this is not a big deal in my humble opinion… but thanks

    also selam please email us… orders do not take more than 7 business days in most cases within the US…

  27. 27 kiki

    Bravo people!! You all did great. You all looked and sounded great (too bad you got edited Noli). Keep doing the great job you are doing.

  28. 28 r


  29. 29 meron

    thank you everyone!!!

    as far as the comment goes: the interview was long and i said many other things, they just decided to use this one. i was also shamelessly plugging :) the story was a true one and the most recent one that happened, from the previous saturday actually. i thought it was funny that a white guy in Chinatown in the US was wearing a tshirt made by an ethiopian (me) that read “Made In Africa” thought it was interesting…it’d be just as interesting if a Latino was wearing the shirt!

    anyhow, we are not about politics here, but about Great Tees

    again, thanks everyone for the support!

  30. 30 ababiru

    Seems like Press folks are coming out of the woodwork to congratulate the crew. And why not? You guys do make us proud with your professionalism.

    Keep up the good work!

    celeb, kiki, et al – missed u all

  31. 31 JG

    You should open a store in DC!

    beautiful designs.

  32. 32 Hidaya

    Sorry to deviate from the topic…In China they advocate official racism towards black people who might go there for the Olympics and use their restaurants and bars… if this is not denied officially and turns out to be true, I am boycotting all things Chinese everywhere however hard it might be…read on…

  33. 33 curious

    inspiring… Africa Unite..singing as I write..good job to team Bernos.

  34. 34 Ethio Jazz

    Meroniye, Nol and DK,

    I’m really proud of you all. Congratulations on the spotlight! Look forward to seeing some new designs.

  35. 35 LoveJones

    Much respect Nols, Dawit, and Meron. How can I invest?

  36. 36 datdude

    hidaya, thanks for joining my crusade. Whats amazing is how people get anxious when you’ve asked them to spell their name for you for the fourth time :) lol.
    I hope that article about china is false though, thats just wrong on many levels.

  37. 37 nyalasmoke

    congrats ppl! I am with you, datdude and hidaya, how the hell can’t they pronounce No-La-Wi, while they can Swartzkopf or Schwarzenegger.

  38. 38 lilye

    Embert & Nyala beTewatu gedelachihugn SBS!

    Bernosoch very very good job.

    Nice to see all the BP people are still around. Fiqir to

  39. 39 Dinich

    Datdude, Nyala

    We live at a time when a black man is a presidential candidate. U guys sound more like Jeremiah Wright. Let’s just give the journalist the benefit of the doubt and call it an innocent mistake, which is more likely the case here.

    I am not being so naive as to suggest racism doesn’t exist. It does, but probably in a more indirect and sublte way than just mispronouncing a black name….

  40. 40 Spacefog


    Wake up and smell the Coffee, please.

  41. 41 Bed_ford

    Chinese people are the most racist people; but I do not think the article conveys the official policy of the government. Doing business with African country do not change the attitude of the ordinary citizens, either. To do business and project a good image they bend over; show a humble face; but deep down they are who they are!!

  42. 42 Hidaya


    I hope so too, I will be amazed if it is an official policy, it wouldn’t be very clever of them to do that, there are loads of black people in the world who might take offence to that and boycott them, not good is it for a country with a load of goods to shift?…

    hidaya, thanks for joining my crusade. Whats amazing is how people get anxious when you’ve asked them to spell their name for you for the fourth time :) lol.

    lol,or when they actually ask you to spell it, then pronounce it for them, and they still go ahead and murder your name anyway, it is just like a farce me telling folk “that is not my name” “this is my name” all the time and well foreign folk making up a brand new name for me…on another note, we are musketeers now, Nyala joined The struggle lol, only thing left to sort out, who is making the banners?…


    congrats ppl! I am with you, datdude and hidaya, how the hell can’t they pronounce No-La-Wi, while they can Swartzkopf or Schwarzenegge

    Nyala welcome to the musketeers’s struggle,:)we are standing up for the dignity of our names, and yes changing Nolawi to Nowali which is what it sounded to me is just not trying at all…it is not even a difficult name to pronounce and Dawit’s name I heard it as Dawi which sounds like the Welsh version of the name and all our names are much easier to pronounce and spell than Scharwazenegger, which to this day I cant spell…

  43. 43 DNL

    Proud of you three. Good job!

  44. 44 e.l.l.


    That’s funny what you said about the white boy (not really sure it’s “cool”, some people just like attention and he definitely got it from a beautiful woman) and your comment in the blog that it would be just as funny if a Latino wore it. I came across your site randomly and showed it to my brother who wanted the “Made in Africa” tee because he thought it would be funny (or because he secretly wants more attention). I wonder if he ordered it? Oh and I am Latino if that wasn’t clear (not even sure it matters).


    How many t-shirts would you say you have? I’m curious what a t-shirt connoisseur keeps around.

    Felicidades en su exito!! Se cuidan.

    P.S. Nolawi looks like a mad scientist at one point. I guess it’s good that he’s your graphic designer!!

  45. 45 datdude

    if the extent of our revolution involves mispronouncing names, then i’m sure we are far from being meaningfully compared to Wright. Anyway, journalists routinely pronounce much more difficult names than dawit,(plus its their job to not be ignorant) i’m sure you’d join our cause if they also butchered your name and called you potato chips.:)

    to the musketeers(hidaya&nyalasmokes), thank you for joining this noble cause. We must continue to be noble citizens by day, helping old ladies cross the street, and chasing down purse snatchers, but when its game time, unleash the ruthless bastardization of timmy’s name. good day. [insert evil laugh]

  46. 46 Honest

    Nolawi, I advice (sisterly advice) you that you cut your hair (don’t get mad), it doesn’t not look good on you. Experiment and try the “clean cut” look.

  47. 47 spacefog

    Lol at mad scientists


    No Wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

    Hair looks great

    no cuts, please!!!

  48. 48 Anonx

    e.l.l– all may not be for attention though, some guinely understand that the first man was born in Africa. And the T is a way of connecting with first homosepian, may be, if a white person wears it.

  49. 49 Nolawi

    Nolawi, I advice (sisterly advice) you that you cut your hair (don’t get mad), it doesn’t not look good on you. Experiment and try the “clean cut” look.

    Honest if you were trully honest you would have used your real name and email addy.. i think

  50. 50 wudnesh

    ewweeeee, des sitilluuuu…..proud of you guys! Meru, I wouldn’t be surprised if u were spotted by a modelling agency and we saw u on a cover of a glossy mag with a bernos T-shirt on ;)

  51. 51 meron

    youre too sweet wudnesh…

    Wow press people are really coming out huh? i think maybe its time to have the press back no? *hint hint*

  52. 52 Juru

    Keep it up! Wish you more success!!!!

  53. 53 Salome

    Great Job guys, keep it up.

  54. 54 Selam

    Dear Bernos,

    I still have not gotten my T shirts order on June 24. I sent you an e-mail at twice already. Not sure what to think. I have ordered your T shirts once before and gotten them ok. Please contact me.

  55. 55 Mans Nour

    A message of Congratulations to Nolawi, Dawit and Meron from Asmara, Eritrea !

    I hope your joint venture in its own right will have a stake at bridging the gap between the Eritrean and Ethiopian people.

    Let’s keep the momentum!

    Mans, Eritrea

  1. 1 What’s up w/ bernos? :™ | African T-Shirts

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