Once you bake a cake and allow it to cool, the next step to making it festive by adding frosting and decorations. Shaking sprinkles over the top works well enough, but try to get the sprinkles on the side of a cake and they will likely fall off. Be ready with both hands for attaching the sprinkles and ensuring that they stick. Plan to apply them at the same time you spread the icing over the cake for best results.
Place the cooled cake on top of a cake platter lined with parchment paper.
Cover the cake with icing, using a spatula to spread and smooth it over the top and sides of the cake.
Put gloves on to keep your hands clean, if you wish.
Pick up the cake platter from the bottom with your non-dominant hand (opposite your writing hand) and carefully tilt the platter with the cake held over a bowl of sprinkles. Do not allow the cake platter to tip far enough to drop the cake or let it slide.
Use your dominant hand to grab a handful of sprinkles from the bowl and press it into the side of the cake.
Turn the cake platter and repeat pressing the sprinkles into the sides until the cake has an even coating of sprinkles.
Set the cake platter down and gently pull the parchment paper out from under the cake, removing excess sprinkles fallen from the sides of the cake.
Remove and discard the gloves.
Immediately apply the sprinkles to the cake after icing to improve sticking of the sprinkles. You'll need about 2 cups of sprinkles for an average-sized cake.