Ask The Celebration Advisor: [I need a ] nice way of saying "no children under 2" at wedding. ~ Karen
The Celebration Advisor: Karen, don't feel like you're stepping on toes by not inviting children to your wedding — or in this case — children of or below a certain age. It's perfectly acceptable! Traditional wedding etiquette provides a few ways to make this clarification known without hurting feelings (theirs or yours!)
First, you can put only the names of the parents on the outer and inner envelope of the wedding invitation. This exclusion of "and family" or the child's name should be understood as "no young children allowed." It is highly inappropriate to put "no children" on the invitations. Some may not be as familiar with wedding invitation etiquette. If you get a call saying "we're bringing our children too", explain the situation at that point.
Though it is not appropriate to state this on the invitation according to traditional wedding etiquette, it is acceptable to include a small note (much like you would include a map with the reception invitation) that briefly explains that there is an age limit for the children in attendance.
If you want the parents of young children to come but don't want their children in the actual ceremony or reception, consider providing guests with the names and numbers of local babysitters. Another option is to provide a nursery with babysitters for the duration of the ceremony. If the parents want to attend the reception, they may have to hire a sitter of their own. Depending upon the ceremony location, this can be a agreat alternative that still provides an age limit for the children at your wedding but doesn't put a crimp on your guest list.