Popular ideas for a retirement engraving usually constitute a combination of appreciation for the work that has been done in the past, congratulations on the present achievement of retirement, and well-wishes for a long and prosperous future. Most engravings are also personalized with the retiree in mind.
Making the engraving unique and appropriate for the person who is retiring requires a personal touch and more thoughtful consideration. It is important to consider the nature of the work the person has done up until this point, his back story and what his future plans are. For example, if the retiree is an avid sailor, a nautical-themed engraving might be extra special.
It is also often customary to state the total years of service the retiree has committed to his employer or career as a reflection of his dedication and work ethic. If the retiree is religious or spiritual, it is often popular to invoke a blessing or a prayer for a long and happy retirement to come.
Obviously the tone of the engraving can vary greatly, depending on whether the gift is being given by a co-worker, a boss, a child, a spouse or a friend. If the engraving is being written by someone from within the retiree's workplace, it is often more formal and appreciative, whereas an engraving from a friend or family member can be more relaxed and even humorous.